Skip Navigation

Top tiers at Virgin Media may be going slightly faster
Thursday 09 February 2017 10:33:17 by Andrew Ferguson

It seems a long time since Virgin Media did a massive round of speed upgrades, but some customers may have noticed a subtle change in the speeds recorded by speed tests. Virgin Media customers on the 200 Mbps tier which normally connects at 220 Mbps may have seen the DOCSIS modem configuration update to a 230 Mbps connection and 300 Mbps customers go from 330 Mbps to 345 Mbps.

We asked Virgin Media what the reason for this was and got the following response:

"We often tweak our network profiles to ensure that we continue to deliver the speeds we sell as the volume of customers on our higher tiers increases.

A Virgin Media spokesperson

A little extra speed is always welcome, but there is we believe a more subtle reason for the change and that is with the existing advertising rules providers are supposed to be able to show 10% of customers can reach the speeds in the advert and by tweaking the connection speed up you hopefully achieve that a bit easier, or put in a more cynical fashion those cable customers in slow areas are going to be balanced out by those in the good areas going faster now. Virgin Media is not the only one reacting to pressures on how speed advertising is heading, the switch from an up to 38 Mbps product to an up to 52 Mbps on at BT Infinity gives them an edge now and another if an average speed rules is enforced. The biggest worry is that with average speeds is that providers will become careful about who they allow to sign up to their services, i.e. as well as credit checks you may be filtered based on your prospective connection speed and be offered different products or simply told the service is not available.


Posted by jelv 3 months ago
"The biggest worry is that with average speeds is that providers will be come careful about who they allow to sign up to their services".

Plusnet have been doing that for a very long time. If someone wants faster than 2Mbps upload but can't get above 40Mbps down Plusnet refuse to offer Fibre Extra even when the customer is perfectly happy to pay.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 3 months ago
BT Consumer too, with its faster broadband but we shall not call it Infinity customers.

Sky with no sub 2 Mbps customers now.
Posted by Nagasaki_SLH 3 months ago
Virgin Media are for me going slower at the moment, maybe they've given my bandwidth to a more deserving customer. I'm in the KT12 area, service is meant to be 75Mbps. Apparently they are upgrading and it will be like this for another month, and has been so since early January. Very hard to get any info from Virgin, in fact there WeBstatus I was told to go to says 'No broadband issues'. Very frustrating
Posted by adriandaz 3 months ago
This also seems to be applied to some 100Mbit connections as my grandads seemed to be getting 106Mbit/sec on Speed tests.
Posted by silverguy 3 months ago
virgin are disgusting.

Im currently with their 300Mbps service and they lie through their teeth.

I get 3mbps in the evening (less than 1% of the speed i pay for) There are 100's of people with overutilization issues.

I was told when buying the service no congestion issues existed.
Posted by silverguy 3 months ago
Then i was told that i could leave the service without penalty as they were in beach of service for having slow current speeds.

Of course when i phone up "we have no record of this sorry you cant leave" i then promptly told them i recorded our phone calls and i was allowed to leave.
Virgin could try and fix their current network before defrauding the public further and "offering" faster speeds.
Posted by burakkucat 3 months ago
". . . on the 200 Mbps tier which normally connections at 220 Mbps may . . ."


I suggest --

s/normally connections at/normally connects at/
Posted by John_Gray 3 months ago
SamKnows sees me as fairly consistently getting 76.78 Mbps download rate. Is this some form of 'magic number'?
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 3 months ago
Wrong word fixed :-)

Posted by comnut 3 months ago
Virgin customers, WHY don't you ask a question on their forum???

Plusnet is OWNED by BT..

It is YOUR choice, do you want slow speeds and bad service passing the buck??? (Its not us, ask your ISP :P ) Yes, there are a lot of happy users, BUT wait until problems start...

Virgin has their own share of problems, BUT it is ONLY their problem.. :)
Posted by dtayloris 3 months ago
I am a new Virgin Media customer - 8/2/17. Sold the VIVID 100 Mbs package on fibre - no congestion. I struggle to get 3.5 Mbs at times in the evenings. It is a SHAM! Oh, and the Virgin forum is all about compalints, no real answers.
Posted by comnut 3 months ago

DO try a proper speedtest, if it is not 100, then ask virgin... It would also help if told us your location.. :p
the best detailed speed test is..(look at bottom of page!!)
Posted by albegood 3 months ago
mine was 315.2/18.66 Mbps

very happy, always achieve the best results, a very rare occasion the service is slow let alone poor
Posted by comnut 3 months ago
DO make sure you are POLITE! think of the poor guy reading your post...

It will take a lot longer than TWO DAYS... :)

I hope you are not near Walsall..

there are other NON BT cable ISPS..:)
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 3 months ago
DSLreports works around some of the Virgin Media issues which can be peering capacity, and the 24 and 32 thread behaviour is likely to override congestion issues thus giving a better picture than you experience.

In speed testing the highest numbers is not always best.
Posted by leexgx 2 months ago
i guess this is why my modem was screwed up all night (was getting DOCSIS denied network access for about 12 hours in the status in my modem)

230mb now and upload is now 12.7mb from 12mb (sure it was 12000000 before and now its 12700000 on upstream (i am getting 29MB/s down) (upload at the start is bit screwy as it takes 1 second to start the 8 second test so the first 1-2 seconds of it at the start seems to be slow or 0) also its still over reporting my upload speed by about 1mb
Posted by leexgx 2 months ago (24 downstream test)

both of them was done around 3am, note dslreports uses a very high connection count and will always give you a max speed result possible (not realistic speed result) due to brute force way of doing a speed test
Posted by leexgx 2 months ago

high utilization in your street area or you got a fault on your line you should be able to do 100mb

all virgin media connections are ran at 10% higher then speeds you pay for (yours is 110mb)

it's so when you do a speed test it can at least do 100mb or whatever your connection is (assuming Wired speed test) the 200mb and 300 are running at 230 345 (was 220 330)
Posted by leexgx 2 months ago

""there are other NON BT cable ISPS..:)""

as far as i am aware there is only 2 networks in the UK and thats openreach (BT) and virgin media cable (minor ones are the kingston? and some localised FTTP and wireless broadband) i dont know of any other network that uses DOCSIS apart from virgin
Posted by comnut 2 months ago
Andrew, Don't know WHAT you are talking about (roll eyes)

the simple fact is that IF your speed test result is lower than you pay virgin for, then they can see what the problem is...

leexgx: I am not talking for *experienced* users, just those who do not know the tech, and want good speed... :/

B4RN, gigler, gigaclear (check their web it DOES still do giga bit!), hyperoptic, purefibre...

and more do at least 100Mbps or Gigabit...
Posted by comnut 2 months ago
if you can find me a website that's not limiting their bandwidth (or just cannot afford a 100M box..) I would like to know...

a lot of the 'distro' websites are very overloaded...

Posted by CarlThomas 2 months ago
Hmm. The amount of premises that can receive VM and one the altnets named is close to zero. The only significant overlap I can think of is Bournemouth. The coverage of all of those named combined is perhaps 1-2% of the UK, and the bulk of that is Hyperoptic apartment buildings.

Not sure you can really call those guys an alternative to VM.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 2 months ago
@comnut was pointing out that our speed test is a proper one, and some of the testers out there brute force a connection to give a good result, when many other applications e.g. video streaming will be stuttering and buffering.

On finding a website, well we don't limit people to 100 Mbps at all, if you don't trust my code in the speed test there is always the rare files in the tools section.
Posted by comnut 2 months ago
Hey :) yeah, your one is 'proper' but a bit basic... :)

you can change all the parameters at dslreports..

and newbies please note that it has NO relation to 'actual' speed...

to measure 'real speed'... there are some options..
'netflix speed' at :)
Tbbmeter from thinkbroadband

netmeter from

there seems to be some problem with

I get faster speed from you tube, but it may just be a 'peak time' problem...
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 2 months ago is JUST another speed tester, and if your provider has a netflix can it will benefit, and does not give you upload speed, latency or feed into a wider set of UK monitoring.

As for the files no reason for them being slow, files from youtube will often be served from a CDN in a large providers network.
Posted by comnut 2 months ago
but why is YouTube download faster???
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 2 months ago
Because YouTube will make use of large CDN clusters that may even be inside the providers network
Posted by roughbeast 2 months ago
My max traffic rate has gone up to 335Mb which gets me a top speed of 332Mb.Some customers have been given 345Mb.
To be fair to VM they always allow for overheads, so I have been getting 317Mb anyway. I wouldn't call their approach cynical either. They cannot account for what gear folk have on their property that might reduced measured speed, so they have to counteract negative impact if they are to avoid being blamed for not living up to the minimum requirements of the regulator. Anyone refused a contract because their connection may under-perform, is a victim of the regulator, not the ISP.
Posted by comnut 2 months ago
very true, roughbeast :)

I hope the detractors are reading!!!!

but please, what is your fastest youtube download??

Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 2 months ago
NOTE: Willing to bet some of those software helpers will do things like utilise multiple threads.

Any you are testing files on the Virgin Media network, thus missing problems they may have or may not have with the edge to the rest of the world.
Posted by ZenUser27 2 months ago
The modem config means nothing if the speed is way way lower than that
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) 2 months ago
A gentle reminder to keep comments civil, disagree, raises points etc but don't resort to petty name calling and comments will remain.
Posted by rtho782 2 months ago
Upload has just jumped from 21mbit to 22.001 mbit on HW 300. This is today, since the previous 330->345 change.
Posted by roughbeast 2 months ago
Me too. They just gave me an extra 5% upload speed as well as the extra download.

Posted by roughbeast 2 months ago
Comnut. I have never tried to download from Youtube, so I don't know.

ZenUser: That is the point of having a higher config. It allows for overheads that might drop users below the headline figure.
Posted by fiberman 2 months ago
317Mbps down
22Mbps up
You must be logged in to post comments. Click here to login.