Is 300ms loaded ping acceptable for fiber?

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JB1319
JB1319 Posts: 10 Spectator

Hello everyone, I am a new customer who just got gigabit fiber with Spectrum and have done a few speed tests and have noticed the pings seem high for fiber? 300 loaded seems high to me when I see videos of other people with fiber with a ping of 1 and 8ms loaded.


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  • William_M
    William_M Posts: 1,155 ✅ Verified Employee Moderator
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    Hey there @JB1319

    All cables but especially fiber optics can have issues with sharp bends. The degree alone is not an issue but rather the distance the bend is made over/the bend radius. I don't think the spool of fiber is a problem but there may be something I can't see in the picture such as where it comes in through the wall is bent too sharply down. I see from your previous discussion your idle ping 10-15ms ping which is fantastic, but 300ms under load is not. I'd recommend verifying the issue persists with just your desktop connected straight to the modem (fast.com has a bufferbloat test accessed by selecting the "Show more info" button) and if so an appointment with a repair technician to check the wiring would be warranted.

  • RAIST515O
    RAIST515O Posts: 125 Contributor
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    Any number of things could have triggered it. Could have been routine maintenance/update kind of stuff, momentary signaling issues, other possibilities.

    Unless it starts to happen repeatedly, shouldn't be any cause for alarm.

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  • catchtwentytwo
    catchtwentytwo Posts: 146 Contributor
    edited March 14
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    Welcome to the Forums:

    Did you test using Wi-Fi? The only accurate way to test is by connecting via ethernet directly to the modem and use a PC or Mac with the appropriate desktop application //www.speedtest.net/apps . Browser-based tests are often skewed due to extensions and addons.

  • JB1319
    JB1319 Posts: 10 Spectator
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    The screenshot I attached was through wifi. I am now on my pc, which is a wired connection from the Spectrum router using a lan port. The desktop app does not show latency while under load. According to it my ping is 13. On the Speedtest.net website it is saying 10ms idle, 18ms while downloading and 16ms while uploading and a jitter of 1ms. On waveform's bufferbloat test it is showing 12ms at rest and a median of 20ms while downloading with a max of 370ms and a median of 22 while uploading and a max of 38ms. It still gave me a scoring of A but says I may experience encounter issues during low latency intensive games. I am just curious if it is higher than what I have seen of other fiber connections due to it going through the router then to the pc or if its just the way Spectrum network is setup? Im not really trying to complain, just curious and trying to see if it is a problem that will eventually cause issue. If need be I can plug the onu directly into the back of my pc.

  • RAIST515O
    RAIST515O Posts: 125 Contributor
    edited March 14
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    It all depends on the application... coupled with where the endpoints are... how you get routed between them... then all the weird things that may cause a packet to get held in a queue or need to get retransmitted....

    ...Basically, it's really hard to give hard and fast, definitive answers.


    First thing first, it is always good to have a decent grasp on what your typical traffic looks like. Some of the metrics you are looking at may be virtually irrelevant for what you are regularly doing, and thus only noticeable in very edge cases.

    For example, many 'speed tests" are basically timing how long it takes to move a large file down the pipe, then another one back up... maybe even noting how many transfer windows it takes to complete the transfer and tracking idle states so it can give some form of quality rating.


    But... how often are you pulling 300+MB down, or pushing 40+ MB up in one shot (and needing it all to go in the span of 3 seconds or less)?


    Many games actually need little more than an oldschool ISDN or DSL level of bandwidth (like, a handful of dialup modems bound together) to work properly for the core gameplay activity... unless you have a MASSIVE amount of data slamming you for a buttload of players all at once, pretty much the bandwith beyond about 10mb/second down, 4 up isn't often needed except during things like zone transitions, inventory management, etc. Watch data flows while playing and you may see things stay under 5mb/sec--in some cases even under 1mb/sec--excep in very specific situations that aren't very common for normal gameplay.


    Similar things can happen when comes to applications like Netflix, Hulu, or Crunchyroll... the clients have a buffering scheme going on so the video feed pulls things in smaller chunks after the initial burst pull to start the video--watch the data flow and you may be surprised to see a stream only consuming on average around 40mbps or less in some cases (depends heavily on the source's details).

    In other words... monitor the consumption as you use it, then look at tests in a way that better aligns with those scenarios. Something like fast.com (Netflix test) or testmy.net (they have selectable and configurable latency and bandwidth tests) might provide a little more insight for how YOU particularly use your internet.

  • JB1319
    JB1319 Posts: 10 Spectator
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    I appreciate your comment and thanks for the advice.

    Bandwidth and throughput arent my cause for concern as I average 950mbps/950mbps wired and 1150mbps/1000mbps on wifi which is maxing out the gig connection and I am 100% satisfied with those numbers its just the ping times that aren't quite sitting right with me when just about every video/forum post/screenshot of a speed test from a fiber connection usually has less than 5ms idle ping and usually less than 10ms under load when tested from a good server that is close by. I will readily admit that it is something that I would probably never notice in real world use unless there actually is something wrong (bad splice/connection somewhere or some kind of network problem) and it gets continually worse, which is honestly my real concern. There just aren't many relevant search results (at least not that I can find) of other people with Spectrum fiber posting their ping times. If there was, and there results were similar to mine I would take it that's just how Spectrum's network is set up and I am also fine with that as well because honestly, I'm loving the speeds and responsiveness coming to this service from my old connection of 25/3 with high latency.

  • catchtwentytwo
    catchtwentytwo Posts: 146 Contributor
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    If your tests are done to a Spectrum Server, you could "experiment" testing with different Spectrum locations to see how distance effects the results. Then try the same tests to non-Spectrum servers. And at different times of the day.

    I'm in Connecticut, about 60 miles from Manhattan you can see my tests performed wirelessly.



  • JB1319
    JB1319 Posts: 10 Spectator
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    Thanks for the reply. I have tested from quite a few different servers with the condition that they be withing 150 miles of me. 2 of them are Spectrum servers. While the download speeds fluctuates between Spectrum vs Non Spectrum servers, the ping stays about the same. I did a little test using the command prompt. I pinged a 1.1.1.1 and 8.8.8.8 and got some surprisingly good results. A minimum of 8ms, a median of 10ms and a Max of 15ms. I personally thing its not really something wrong, its just the way Spectrum's network is set up. I have found a couple of videos on you tube of Spectrum fiber customers showing speedtest results and their pings are similar to mine.

  • RAIST515O
    RAIST515O Posts: 125 Contributor
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    All levels of their infrastructure (copper and fiber technologies) feed into the same backhauls and exchanges to go out to the wider webs of networks. Until the older pitfalls of the hybrid sides of the system convert more fully to the newer OFDM channel structures with the DOCSIS 3.1/4.0 improvements (better bandwidth/latency management) things will likely remain a bit unbalanced. This mixed bag can lead to a wide variance in how things perform from market to market.

    Those older spec'ed lines/devices can consume more time on the lines moving the same amount of data in/out of the fiber side, which can potentially cause increased queuing periodically. So long as the load is light, they can dip in and out with little impact. But as they approach their theoretical caps they may start to hold the line longer and longer (coax local node latency can easily ride in the 30's or higher periodically in some old segments).

    Once those newer wider/faster alternative lanes are put into play for more and more people (eventually everyone) to use, the delays that keep popping up should dramatically decrease.

  • RAIST515O
    RAIST515O Posts: 125 Contributor
    edited March 14
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    We may also see a shift in consumption (and thus congestion) soon with the potential termination of the ACP program.

    No idea how many people in the Spectrum customer base are benefiting from that federal program, but It could have a profound impact if that money dries up in April as predicted and it causes people to terminate service.

  • JB1319
    JB1319 Posts: 10 Spectator
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    Thank you for the replies. I wasn't really trying to complain because to be honest, this is the best internet I have ever been able to get in my household or even use. It really is good I was just more of less curious as to if those pings were normal or not. After doing some further research and asking around in various places, evidently 10ms on idle is pretty good numbers and well within the range of acceptable.

  • JB1319
    JB1319 Posts: 10 Spectator
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    While digging for answers about higher than normal latency from a fiber connection I ran across information about how the fiber install is supposed to be. My service is brand new and I am not very knowledgeable about it so I have been asking a lot of questions in a lot of places. The installer rand my cable through an existing hole in the wall and straight downwards creating a bend and then he looped it and used a bracket to hold it to the wall. I have been told that this is not on par with how it should be done and that I should call to have it fixed. Apparently the cable is not "bend insensitive" and so can cause issue having a 90 degree bend in it and also since it is a traceable drop it should be grounded on both ends since it comes inside an enclosure. I ponder if this or some other sloppy work that I haven't identified can be the cause of the higher than normal pings and sometimes non-responsiveness I have noticed(slow loading images on websites, etc.) I have attached a picture and if anyone can offer some insight it would be appreciated.



  • JB1319
    JB1319 Posts: 10 Spectator
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    The bend where it comes through the wall is approx 90 degrees going straight down. Its a little difficult to see in the picture because it meshes with the black line in the wood panel wall. I followed your advice, disconnected the onu from the router and plugged it directly into the 2.5g port on my pc. I then ran a couple of tests and the results were as follows:

    Speedtest.net: Download Speed: 1150mbps, Upload Speed: 954mbps, Ping: 10ms(idle) 16ms(under load) 17ms(upload)

    My ping results on Waveforms Bufferbloat test yielded the following result: 9ms(idle), 12ms minimum under load while downloading with a median of 20ms and a 275ms maximum while under load. The upload results were as follows: 13ms minimum, 17ms median with a max of 40ms.

    Fast.com results: 1.1gbps download speed, 1gbps upload speed, 8ms unloaded, 29ms loaded.

    So basically not much of a difference ping wise between using onu directly to pc vs onu to router then lan port to pc. Several people on a dedicated fiber optic forum has told me that the install was very sloppy after seeing pictures of it so my worry is that the bend in that cable going through the wall may not be the worst of the poor craftsmanship.

  • William_M
    William_M Posts: 1,155 ✅ Verified Employee Moderator
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    If the ping is only spiking that high when under max load on the waveform bufferbloat test, it does not seem likely there's an issue with the fiber or anything else. Are you experiencing any issue actually using the service, such as seeing very high ping in games or other services only when downloading at the same time?

  • RAIST515O
    RAIST515O Posts: 125 Contributor
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    Should keep in mind also that ICMP ECHO isn't the most reliable tool either... one of the lowest priorities out in the wild.

  • JB1319
    JB1319 Posts: 10 Spectator
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    I did a chat and got it scheduled for a tech to come out and look over my install. The connection seems fine to me, extremely fast speeds and I think the pings are good, I was just concerned that something was wrong due to the bend in the cable. I checked out the rest of the install and it seems kind of sloppy as well including running the cable on the ground under my house. Thanks for the advice and replies.

  • JB1319
    JB1319 Posts: 10 Spectator
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    While I was sitting at my pc tonight, I noticed a sudden loss of internet. Then I noticed it, the blue light on the router was slowing pulsating on and off. It did this for maybe 5 minutes, then it just went out. 20 seconds go by and it comes back on solid, then begins to pulsate on and off again, but this time it is alternating between blue and red, then it goes dark again for a few seconds then goes back to solid blue like nothing ever happened. Is this something to be concerned about or was it being updated?

  • JB1319
    JB1319 Posts: 10 Spectator
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    Every since I got the service installed/activated I run several speed tests a day using different services, along with trace routes and ping tests just to get a feel for the overall performance, partly out of curiosity and partly just to see if all the negative things I have heard about Spectrum are true or not. I even opted to use Spectrums router.


    To begin with my install was botched, regardless of what anyone says. The installer used Commscope single mode outdoor drop cable inside my house. This cable is not bend insensitive and there is two 90 degree bends and he fastened it to the interior wall using a screw and ziptie. And this is only 1 cut corner. Will it work, sure, but is it proper, not at all.

    Once the service was up and running, I ran a few speed tests just to see how fast it really was. The first few days it seemed to be where it should be, 949/949 using a wired connection. But the ping times seemed high to me for a fiber connection as well as having random stutters and buffering while watching various streaming services.


    Then the random drops in speed started. To be fair, I wouldn't have ever noticed of I didn't run speed tests, but going from 949/949 down to 600/400 is a huge drop. It wouldn't last long, usually a few minutes to an hour or so, but it happened none the less

    I initiated a chat and they set up a tech visit. The tech looked at the install, agreed that it was ugly and corners were cut, but that "it works and that's that". He checked the light levels did a diagnostic, told me the speed drops/ping times were all normal then left.


    So my little random problems continued and then the spontaneous router restart O described in the op post happened. Every since then my speeds are consistently low. As low as 500/350 and as high as 800/600. Not the level of speeds it should be at all. I have restarted the equipment using the website/app but it's still the same.


    The tech who came to my house told me if I complained over little things or to often Spectrum would charge me so I am hesitant to really do anything.


    Not a happy customer.