Streaming radio dropout
Over the years, my home network has grown. It now has good Wi-Fi coverage over most of the house, thanks to four base stations, but my TV, recorder, and DVD player require wired Ethernet, which is delivered using TP-Link powerline adaptors. When I add a Sonos 1 music player, it suffers infrequent dropouts in radio streams. Could this be due to my powerline adaptors? Yes, but you may well have other problems. Like many networks, yours has grown over the years and not been properly planned. The time has come to design and implement it so that it’s robust and expandable, and not likely to suffer interference or conflicts.
If you can, connect your Wi-Fi base stations, wired systems, and modem-router with proper Ethernet cabling. Powerline networking can work very well, but uses domestic electric wiring to transmit network traffic. Even the best and most modern wiring is designed to deliver power safely, not to transmit high volumes of digital signals. It can therefore be sensitive to your own domestic electrical appliances cutting in and out, and heavy equipment in nearby buildings. It’s also completely unshielded.
When planning your network, connect non-portable devices using Ethernet as much as possible. This will give them better bandwidth and reduce the number of devices competing for your wireless network. Position your Wi-Fi systems to optimize local cover without conflicting with one another, or spilling into the street and areas with public access. It’s a major task, but well worth the time and effort.
Most networks grow without proper structure until they hit problems. Step back and redesign yours to be clean, efficient, and robust.