Recently purchased an MSI GE72 2QF-247US running Windows 10 that comes with an Intel Dual Band AC3160 wireless card. I happened to notice later that my downloads seem to max out around 4.5 MB/s or roughly 36 Mb/s. I have an Asus RT-N66U router on a 200/40 connection from my ISP. Connecting directly to the router with a cable will reach the full speed. My old laptop had an Atheros AR9285 single stream wireless card and could reach speeds of 110 Mb/s on the 2.4 Ghz band, along with both of our Samsung Galaxy S5's. The 5 Ghz band doesn't work as well due to the range from the router.
So the first tests I did were some speed tests from the new laptop on both bands. On 2.4 Ghz it normally reaches 36 Mb/s and occasionally as high as 54 Mb/s. On the 5 Ghz band, I get from 12 to 24 Mb/s. Very poor results. Performing the speed tests standing beside the router gave a more consistent 54 Mb/s on the 2.4 Ghz band and there was no change in the 5 Ghz band. Curiously enough, the upload speed on 2.4 Ghz is usually faster than the download speed? The adapter status in Windows shows the 2.4 Ghz connection speed as 72 Mb/s and the 5 Ghz considerably lower.
I've tried updating the wireless card driver with the driver from the OEM website as well as Intel's latest one. I've tried a few different configuration options found in these forums from other users having similar problems. I've tried multiple different settings on the Asus router. No matter what I do, I cannot increase the connection speed.
I've ruled out the router or any interference issues so it comes down to this wireless card. Possible causes could be poor reception (even though it's showing 5 bars in Windows) due to the design of the laptop, poor reception from the antennas (possible connector problem? will check later), a driver problem, or a problem with the card itself.
Since most of our devices now support the AC wireless standard, I am picking up an Asus RT-AC87U on the way home today. It supports MU-MIMO and is an AC2400 router. Since this wireless card only supports one stream, I have also ordered an Intel Dual Band AC7260 wireless card that should be here in a week. It supports two streams and should have twice the performance of this AC3160.
In the meantime however, is there anything I can try to improve the speed of the AC3160? It doesn't seem right that this card can't compete with a 6 year old Atheros. Judging by the number of posts regarding people having similar issues with this card, I would hazard a guess that this card was designed for and only works well on the wireless AC standard. Am also disappointed with MSI and will be contacting them as an expensive gaming laptop should not come with an inferior wireless card.
Edit: A good indication that there is a problem is the fact that in the adapter status in Windows the link speed says 72 Mb/s when a single stream wireless N connection should say 150 Mb/s, like my old Atheros card does. I'm wondering if the card is even connecting with wireless N and not G as 54 Mb/s is the maximum speed for G I think? I've tried setting the router to only accept N connections and I can still connect to it so it can't be connecting with G? Also, we're having issues with dropped connections from both of our S5's and they seemed to have started when I received the new laptop. Thinking back, we only seem to have the issue when the laptop is connected to the router. Normally I wouldn't assume the AC3160 would be causing interference except for the few posts I've run across, one of them on here, where the user is complaining about this card breaking the wireless connections of other clients when using certain routers.