Telstra Cable: Thoughts, Opinions, Advice


As it turns out the place that I’m living in now has absolutely woeful ADSL speeds - due to there being a good 6kms of copper between the house and the exchange. This means that I get at best 1.5mbps speeds, soI’m partying like its 2002. :expressionless:

Anyway, as per the title I’m after opinions and advice/thoughts on migrating to Telstra cable.

I’m currently with Internode on naked ADSL2+ (which have gone way downhill since their acquisition by iiNet and subsequently TPG :frowning: )NBN isn’t an option as there is no time frame for it to be rolled out in our street/suburb, Optus doesn’t have any infrastructure here either, andI’m on the reverse slope of a hill which pretty much rules out any of the wireless broadband options as well.

I’m pretty clueless when it comes to dealing with cable/fibre internet as I’ve never had the need or the ability .


I really feel for you guys in Australia when it comes to Internet speed, a speed test from my home to a server several hundred km away (and on a different provider) distance estimate in graphic is incorrect, its closer to 600 - 700 km


And I was getting mildly excited because my FTTN NBN appointment has been made for February LOL.

If I’m lucky I’ll sync close to 100 Mbit, more likely given my distance from the Node it’ll be more like 60.


Aw man, that’s crazy! NBN FTTN appointment booked for early Feb too - can’t wait for my new mediocre internet :expressionless:

Luckily my node is about 50m away, so I should get fairly decent speeds :pray:


You know, Discourse has a search tool…


And on that side note… That’s the problem with Apple. Get rid of the optical drive - who needs it? Oh wait - Aussies, cos our internet speeds are so poor, downloading isn’t always an option! Cloud services for phones, easy! Except hellish expensive data services!

Ok, now that’s out of my system…

I can’t recommend Telstra, full stop. But with regards to cable, I was on Optus cable in Brissie, now iiNet cable in Geelong… I love cable; no complaints here.


I have only positive comments on Telstra cable, had it for the past few years in Sydney, rarly any issues, speeds around 110+ all day everyday.

Now I’m in Qld hardly a good word to say about Telstra.


I get up to 115 Mbps on Telstra cable. However my modem sucks and needs to be disconnected and rebooted to restore speed at least once a week.


Hey Entropy - and anyone else, I’m getting Telstra cable as NBN is a long way off. If the standard issue Gateway Max cable modem is no good, are there other options? If so, what do people use?


Further to @whitestickbloke 's enquiry If you do use a third party modem I’m guessing Telstra won’t support it. Unless they have an approved list of other devices


My cable modem is a pretty old netgear one (Telstra branded). Not sure what the reliability of the current Telstra one is but I hope it is better. Bear in mind the current one is also able to be used as a Telstra air access point to share your bandwidth in return for Telstra air access on the road. Don’t think you can use other than Telstra modems.

I switched from ADSL2+ because we are about 3 km from the exchange, and couldn’t do better than about 3Mbps. Compared with that cable is great, if you have access it is worth doing. The only meaningful difference between cable and the NBN fibre is upload speed and to a lesser extent cable congestion slowdown (not a big deal). Upload is about 2.25Mbps on cable and about 40 Mbps or so on full speed versions of NBN fibre. Useful if you store big files like pics and video in the cloud and take a lot regularly. Otherwise…meh. If you also had access to NBN I guess it all comes down to download speed for price comparison, as most cheaper NBN packages seem speed constrained and cable is full speed regardless of package. Not sure if the cable version of NBN will also have the same speed tiers, or if it will get better upload speed than current.

It will be some time before NBN comes to us, but I don’t worry about it much really as cable is pretty good in the meantime, and by the time NBN arrives at our front door I will be seriously aiming for the greater flexibility of 5G wireless anyway.


I’m on Telstra naked cable with the boost so 115mb down 10 up. Had adsl and it was 1.5mbit here so woeful. We were scheduled for hcf nbn via the sane cable but with nbn ditching that due to $$$ I’ve got a bad feeling we will get bumped to fibre to the node and get stuck with woeful speeds. I’ll have no choice either, even if foxtel still use them for tv Telstra have to disconnect the cable broadband. Criminal really.


My understanding is if you are on cable already you won’t get the fibre, premises or node. The NBN will be through the cable. Maybe even if the cable runs past your door and you arent currently connected.


They were intending to do that, but not every house had cable run to them or even every street in some suburbs and if they have lots of units or townhouses like many have since they often only connect the front house which is my case. So they have cheaped out and are giving them the node instead. Basically a massive forced downgrade. The cable is still active for foxtel mind you. Telstra just aren’t allowed to keep bigpond running on it after nbn is complete.


Unfortunately, the Telstra issued modem is the only option for cable. That said - I would strongly advise not using it as a router for a number of reasons, but mainly because they crash often and also don’t allow you to change the DNS - and Telstra’s DNS servers are woefully bad. It is difficult, but possible, to put the Telstra modem into bridge only mode (can’t remember what it’s called on the latest firmware) but then you can set your router to manage the network and hand out DNS/DHCP. I have had nothing but trouble when Telstra’s modem is also managing the network etc. I have about 6 clients with Telstra Cable, and they’re all using AirPort Extremes as I’ve described.


My cable modem (installed yesterday) is a Netgear C6300BD (which Telstra call a Gateway Max), it does have a bridge mode option which is under Advanced view, WAN Settings then NAT Off (Bridge Mode). I have a Billion 7800NXL so I suppose I could use that as the router/connection and have the modem in bridge mode?

I’m wondering if the DNS issue you mention is why I have so much trouble downloading stuff from the Mac App store. So what happens is I download something and it gets to about 200mb then freezes, then I can resume and it works for a bit then freezes again. Even in iTunes if I go to play music it just pauses for ages before playing. Yet says I have connection speeds averaging around 115mbps.



Quite possibly. I find Telstra DNS is awful, and especially when talking to Apple stuff on Apple equipment in my experience.

Note: For anyone reading this in the future, I believe you need to activate the Cable service and make sure it’s active and working via the Telstra Cable modem before you put it into bridge mode.


Well, there’s one very good reason to go on Telstra Cable:

I went back to Telstra Cable in 2010 after being on iinet ADSL since about 2002, because at that time the Cable plans suddenly became much better value. I’ve been on the same grandfathered plan since about 2011 which at the time was 200gb for $88. Some time in the last two years I think it was they upped that to 500GB.

I’m now on my fourth cable modem. First one was a Motorola dumb modem with single ethernet port which I used my Time Capsule as the router.

Second was a Cisco Cable modem. I used this in Bridge mode also with my Time Capsule.

Third was the Gateway Max mentioned above. This was the first one to support Telstra Air. It had some initial problems but was mostly pretty good, though it got very hot.

Now I’ve managed to get hold of the Frontier Gateway which is coming soon to the public (now, how did I manage that? probably obvious. This is where I stress that my opinions are my own).

The Frontier Gateway is actually an ADSL modem with a WAN port, and you get given a separate Netgear Cable Modem. This Gateway is obviously geared towards an NBN world where your primary access method might change (eg from Telstra Cable to NBN Cable which would involve getting a new NBN Cable Modem, or from ADSL to FTTN, or from ADSL to FTTP).

The big selling point of the Frontier Gateway is that is has built in 4G fallback so if your primary connection fails you can still use the web. I believe it will be available publically sometime in Feb.


Built in 4G fallback? Interesting. I wonder who pays for that? Is the mobile service just tacked onto your bill, or?

(Don’t worry if you can’t answer. Happy to wait for the official line.)

My current Asus DSL AC68AU can also do dual WAN w/ 4G fallback, but requires you provide the 4G modem in the form of a USB adapter.


I’m assuming you checked you can actually get Telstra cable, but did you also check if you can get Optus Cable?

When I moved to Melbourne a couple of years ago I was lucky enough that the rental I had gave me the option of both Telstra and Optus. At the time Optus was cheaper on a month to month deal, offered free install, free fetch TV and unlimited downloads. Despite advice that Optus was woeful with congestion I had read enough to understand that was very location specific so figured it was worth a bash anyway. To my delight, it was near perfect and had no congestion at all.

When we bought a house and moved I lucked into a place with both Optus and Telstra again so transferred the Optus connection. In this place it does occasionally suffer from congestion, but it’s pretty rare and I don’t know that I’ve ever seen it drop below a 50MBit even on a “bad” day.

For reference, this is right now with my wife streaming music, my son gaming online with voice chat running.


The downside to Optus is their 2MBit uplink (I believe Telstra is better).

In short it’s worth giving Optus a shot if it’s available to you since it’s cheaper (although it is worth going month to month for the first month while you check it out…)