You can’t think of having one internet connection on multiple devices without a Starlink Splitter.
The standard household using Starlink Internet has more than one computer or internet-enabled device.
All these devices need a similar signal, yet Starlink does not allow you to link all your devices to one router.
Splitting the Starlink signal comes into play when you want to use wired peripheral devices such as printers, but the router only has a singular port for the dish cable.
The router only takes one direct connection. The splitter connects the dish to the router and an additional device.
This article simplifies Starlink splitters and how to get the ideal one.
Table of Contents
- Splitters In Internet Communication
- Can You Use Splitters With Starlink?
- How Do You Use Splitters with Starlink?
- How Do I Check Starlink Splitter Compatibility?
- What Is The Difference Between A Splitter And Switch?
- Does a Splitter Affect Starlink Latency?
Splitters In Internet Communication
Splitters are common in any form of communication that uses signals.
In internet communication, such as Starlink internet, signals from low-Earth orbit satellites first go into a receiver.
The splitter splits the received signal so connected devices use the same signal without needing other equipment powered on.
You can then connect more computers and other wired devices to connect simultaneously using the same signal.
Connecting multiple devices allows you to experience Starlink’s high speeds on multiple devices.
For example, suppose you have one audio source and you want to recreate a similar listening experience for multiple people.
In that case, you can use a splitter to allocate each person individual headphones to get the same audio experience.
A 4-way radio signal splitter
Can You Use Splitters With Starlink?
We have established splitters work with all types of data signals. To that end, splitters work with Starlink, too.
They split the RF signals from Starlink and distribute them so you can use other devices simultaneously.
You might use a splitter if you want to replace the standard Starlink router with a third-party router to connect other devices.
Using another router allows you to use Starlink’s speeds and the router as a bridge between your receiver dish and another network.
Alternatively, a Starlink splitter comes in handy when you want to enjoy WiFi protocols that are unavailable on Starlink, such as WiFi 6.
In this scenario, you get upgraded features such as improved security, faster speeds, and more compatibility with other devices such as mesh system devices.
How Do You Use Splitters with Starlink?
- Get a Stalink-compatible splitter. Since Starlink doesn’t have splitters, get them from an aftermarket source. However, ensure they can handle Starlink frequencies and have less than 4dB insertion loss. Additionally, you will need coaxial cables with matching connectors for the splitter and Starlink dishy.
- Connect your router to the dish via the $25 Starlink Ethernet adapter.
- Disconnect the cable that connects the dish and router and, instead, connect it to the splitter’s input port such that there is a direct dish-to-Starlink splitter connection.
- Connect your Starlink router to one of the splitter’s output ports. Use the other output port to connect devices like your alternative router or mesh device.
- Connect your Starlink router to the Starlink Ethernet adapter.
- Power on all your devices.
- Wait until all of them have a stable connection.
- If you have a mesh system, this would be the ideal time to configure your system to your liking.
How Do I Check Starlink Splitter Compatibility?
Splitters apply to all telecommunication aspects, be it TV, satellite internet, electrical work, or networking.
Therefore, check the following core factors to know if a splitter will work with Starlink.
Splitter Frequency Range
Cable and satellite internet services don’t operate on the same frequency range. Satellite internet operates on higher frequencies.
A compatible splitter for Starlink needs a frequency range above 3 GHz since Starlink specifically operates between 10 and 13 GHz for downloads and between 14-15 GHz for uploads.
Splitter Insertion Loss
Insertion loss is how much signal strength dissipates when going through a splitter. You need minimal signal loss for the ideal Starlink splitter.
A splitter with less than 4dB insertion loss will pair well with Starlink to maintain a strong signal.
Splitter Output Ports
More output ports on a splitter means you can connect more devices. However, more isn’t always better.
Each port will get an equal portion of the signal strength. Therefore, get a splitter to handle a few devices to maintain signal strength.
Splitter use in satellite internet communication is common. Coaxial, HDMI, and optical splitters might be challenging to use with Starlink.
However, ethernet splitters can work well with Starlink.
Since Starlink uses a router/modem and has ethernet output, you can use them to connect third-party routers or switches.
What Is The Difference Between A Splitter And Switch?
A switch for multiple ethernet connections
Although they seem to perform similar actions, there couldn’t be a wider difference between a splitter and a switch.
A splitter divides incoming signals into several output devices.
On the other hand, a switch connects multiple ethernet devices to the same network.
This difference in usage is relevant in application.
Splitters help when you want to use two devices using one cable without multiple power sources.
Conversely, a switch connects more ethernet devices to your network while reserving your router’s or modem’s ports.
The switch has an edge when it comes to satellite internet connections.
The switch gives you more ports to plug various devices into the same network.
Additionally, unlike a splitter, a switch does not degrade your signal or slow down the speed of your internet service provider.
In Starlink’s case, it would be better if you used a switch instead of a splitter, especially if you are on a modest plan such as the Residential plan.
You maintain the average 50-100 Mbps download speed and have clear signals even when you add ethernet devices to the switch.
Does a Splitter Affect Starlink Latency?
Starlink gives you about 5-20 ms latency, depending on location and network congestion.
And while you might experience low latency to the main receiver (dishy), a splitter’s insertion loss could deteriorate speed and latency.
Therefore, you must insist on a splitter with the most negligible insertion loss.
Network or ethernet splitters segment your Starlink signal into 2 signals with slight insertion loss.
Still, you can still get decent performance if you don’t overburden the splitter with too many output devices.
If you experience problems with splitting Starlink signals, use a switch to connect devices in the same network easily.
Furthermore, you will retain speed, low latency, and signal strength.