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Embarq Now CenturyLink page on DSLReports
Six Month Rating

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Review by Tsume See Profile

  • Location: Johnson City,Washington,TN
  • Cost: $35 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 1 days
Good "It's reliable (now), it's better than dialup, great support"
Bad "Speed is very 1990's, no plans on upgrading ever, price"
Overall "It's better than nothing, and their support agents are wonderful."
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:
(ratings match consensus)

My Other Reviews

Update 3/28/15: I paid Comcast the money to run a line to my house about 5 years back. I do not miss having Centurylink. They keep sending ads to my house touting blazing fast speeds "up to 10mbps" but the fastest my house qualifies for is 3mbps... which is twice as fast as what it originally was here, but ultimately still a pathetic speed. That is 33x slower than the speed I get with Comcast. Since this is a semi rural area, it is safe to assume that Centurylink will never upgrade this area to real speeds. With the definition of broadband having been raised, almost of all of East TN and SWVA has only one option for broadband service IF you are lucky enough to have one... Comcast or Charter, depending on your city.

Original review: I recently moved into a new home and I signed up for Embarq since Comcast wanted to extort $3,000-$4,000 to run cable down 3 utility poles to my house and I just am not that rich. Embarq maxes out at 1.5mbps here with no plans on ever upgrading, so I am going to have to deal with these ridiculously lame speeds until I can pay for Comcast. The low ratings for services and value for money reflect my belief that I should be getting 5mbps minimum for this price.

Pre sales information, first agent I talked to said I could get 3mbps but all others after I signed up said 1.5mbps. I had reliability issues at first, and the problem was finally resolved when they replaced the problematic card that I and 7 other users shared. This was about a month into my service.

member for 11.1 years, 2881 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 3 days ago


Woodland, WA


Your package almost mirrors mine. Because the phone line coming to my house is old, this is the only option I have.

While I can still watch Youtube videos, Twitch TV is almost impossible to watch now. My service degraded sometime around last year (or very late 2013), and the changes that were made on Twitch's end only made it more difficult to watch any stream.

I gave up on gaming. Now they're intent on making it hard for me to watch video footage. Feels good to be living in the mid 1990s.



2 edits

Rural cashcow

At least you had 1.5Mbit, CL recently dropped my sync so I can only get download at 1.3Mbit. Even though my line can support 2.5Mbit/768kbit. My mistake was calling techsupport. When I call back they say I'm SOL because I'm getting the 80% agreed upon in their contract.

$56/month for 1.3Mbit

Review by brugar See Profile

  • Location: Las Vegas,Clark,NV
  • Cost: $33 per month (12 month contract)
Good "Consistent, reliable service."
Overall "Good value"
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:
(ratings above consensus)

Update - March 2015

I recently renewed a 12 month contract for CenturyLink's 10M/768K Pure Broadband High Speed Internet Service at $33.31 per month ($63.94 less $34.00 discount for 12 month contract plus $3.37 in taxes, fees, and surcharges). I estimate service reliability at 99.8% or better.

The FCC/SamKnows internet monitoring service measurements for my internet during February:

Downstream throughput: 9.87 Mbps average 4.77 Mbps min 10.19 Mbps max
Upstream throughput: 0.71 Mbps average 0.43 Mbps min 0.79 Mbps max
Latency: 30.08 msec average 28.08 msec min 50.22 msec max
Packet loss: 0.27% average 0.00% min 44.13% max

At my address CenturyLink recently started offering 20 Mbps (apparently using bonded ADSL2+ technology) internet service. Web site prices: $73.95 no contract month-to-month internet service or $66.90 for bundled internet and unlimited home telephone service with a five year price guarantee.

CenturyLink's competitor Cox Cable now offers 50 Mbps internet service at $49.99 per month for the first 12 months and $66.99 thereafter.

While faster Internet service would be desirable, CenturyLink's 10 Mbps Pure Broadband service offers, in my opinion, the best value: adequate performance at a reasonable cost.


Update - January 2013

I am continuing to use CenturyLink Pure Broadband High Speed Internet service at 10 megabits per second (10M/768K). I renewed again on a 12 month contract at $59.95 less $20.00 promotional discount plus fees giving me total cost of $41.93 per month. Contract has a $200 early termination fee.

My modem syncs at 11772 kbps down and 887 kbps up on ADSL2+ mode with fast data path.

I participate with the FCC / SamKnows internet monitoring service. Measurements for my DSL service during December 2012 as reported by SamKnows:

Downstream throughput: 9.97 Mbps average 8.36 Mbps min 10.35 Mbps max
Upstream throughput: 0.74 Mbps average 0.49 Mbps min 0.77 Mbps max
Latency: 31.73 msec average 25.17 msec min 829.76 msec max
Packet loss: 0.23% average 0.00% min 19.49% max

Service has been better than 99.9% reliable. Reliability would have been even better if CenturyLink had not bungled a central office equipment upgrade. The work on my line should have been done overnight instead of during the day. Once I reported the outage CenturyLink technicians promptly restored service. The equipment upgrade was completed the next day without disrupting my service.


CenturyLink upgraded my Pure Broadband DSL service from 10M/768K to 10M/896K last week. They also changed my data path from fast to interleaved. I sent an email to TalkToUS@centurylink.com asking to be switched back to a fast data path. They responded within a day to report that my fast data path had been restored.

After trying Clearwire for several months, CenturyLink's introductory offer of 10 Mbps Pure Broadband offer at $29.99 per month on a 12 month contract was too much to resist back in January 2011. I renewed on a 12 month contract at $40 plus fees/taxes with a $200 early termination fee.

I am in an area where Prism TV is offered. I signed up last year for the Federal Communications Commission broadband monitoring program run by SamKnows.com. Data collected by SamKnows confirms my experience: consistent, reliable broadband service at or near advertised speeds. From Sprint to Embarq to CenturyLink, my DSL service has been always been reliable.

Looking back six years to my previous review, I find that I have DSL service that is more than six times as fast for only 20% more money.

My review from 2006 -- 1.5 Mbps DSL service - $35.00 per month - 12 month contract

Helpful and well informed customer representative. Placed order on Monday for 1.5 Mbps DSL. Received self install kit on Tuesday (Sprint SP-660ME-61 modem/router). DSL service scheduled for Thursday. Live at 2:00 am on Thursday, as promised. Smooth as glass. No problems.

member for 12.5 years, 846 visits, last login: 9 days ago
updated 23 days ago


Review by GCoop See Profile

  • Location: Gordonsville,Orange,VA
  • Cost: $29 per month (12 month contract)
  • Telco party CenturyTel
Good "Stability"
Bad "Customer Service"
Overall "Its my only shot at Highspeed. But I have been pleased for the most part."
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:
(ratings above consensus)

Had the service since Dec 2004. No major Problems. In 2009 there were a few latency issues here and there during the typical holiday high usage times. From my experience I would give them an "A" rating. They are closing in on the ever so coveted five nines (99.999 %) uptime for me. 2010 has been uneventful which is good. 2011--I cant remember the last time there was any trouble with the service!! 2012--Upgraded me to 10Mb at at no extra charge per month. I continue to be very happy!! As with any service dependant upon location and load YMMV. 2014--Still going strong...No Complaints. 2015--More of the same. No issues to speak of.

member for 10.3 years, 1655 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 48 days ago


Minneapolis, MN

Eh, their speeds are wayy too slow.

Living in a prime subarb, where my neighbors can pull 100mbps off of comcast and fiber is connected to my house, I think I deserve to pull more than a measly 40mbps. And with the broadband definition set by Wheeler being 25/4, you think they'd try to improve the rest of their customers too. I guess with having techs come on time, this is what we have to pay for it. Crappy Speeds.

Review by ozar See Profile

  • Location: USA
  • Cost: $80 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 18 days
  • Telco party CenturyTel
Good "Internet connection and speed seem to be working well at the present time"
Bad "Install co-ordination was non-existent; terrible telephone support; too expensive"
Overall "The worst company I've ever dealt with overall, but I'm hoping for improvement"
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:
(ratings match consensus)

NOTE: the overall support and service has been the worst of any company I've ever dealt with, but there are people working for CenturyLink that can and will help with issues. You do have to determine who they are, though, and you have to keep the pressure on to get things done. I'd love to give CenturyLink a great rating in all categories of this review, but so far they simply have not earned any top scores. I'll continue to adjust comments in this review and change the ratings as things improve or degrade, whichever the case may be.

Comments below are listed in date order - NEWEST to OLDEST...

01/21/2015 UPDATE:

I've decided to break my rating down according to the categories and the layout used in the graph by DSLreports.com for ISP ratings.

PRE-SALES INFORMATION: the sales team at CenturyLink don't seem to know the products they are selling consumers very well. When I told them I wanted to buy my modem rather than rent it, they couldn't even tell me the brand or model of the modem being sold. They also failed to tell me about some large installation fees that would be charged for the upgrade, but they did make sure to get those charges and a few other unexpected charges on the first billing. Surprise!

INSTALL COORDINATION: install coordination was non-existent in my case - it took 18 days for the speed upgrade I ordered to be performed. Each day, CenturyLink said the tech would be coming, but nobody showed up, nor did they call to say they were not coming, or that the appointment was rescheduled for the next day. I had to call them each day to ask what happened to the tech, and what was going to happen next with the service appointment. This happened over and over again causing me to lose 4 days of work.

CONNECTION RELIABILITY: a good score is deserved here because so far, the connection has been reliable and I am getting the speeds promised by the plan they sold me. I'll report back and lower the rating score should that change.

TECH SUPPORT: telephone support from CenturyLink has always been absolutely horrible so I've given up on them, but email support from the help-team at TalkToUs@CenturyLink.com has been good, except that it seems to take a long while and often takes repeated email requests to get issues corrected, or settled. They have been working with me to get the billing issues corrected, so I do appreciate that.

SERVICES: the internet speeds offered in my local area are still far behind those available in many parts of the USA, and even for pure Internet service, they expect you to pay a monthly fee for a blocked phone line, along with an unlisted phone number.

VALUE FOR THE MONEY: even when the speeds are consistent, I believe CenturyLink charges too much for their services, and with the surprise charges they list on billings, they leave me feeling like they are trying their very best to squeeze every penny from me that they can. Considering all the time spent and trouble encountered getting issues corrected, and then the cost of the service itself, it isn't a very good value for the money, so I'd highly recommend going with a different ISP if you have other options available. There are very few options locally for me, so I'm left hoping for improvements in this and the other low scoring categories of this review.

01/11/2015 UPDATE:

I've upgraded the ratings on CenturyLink "Connection Reliability" and "Services" because I'm still receiving the speeds (or very close to those speeds) that I'm paying for each month. In addition, there have been no connection dropouts, thus far. If this trend should continue, those ratings will be raised to the highest score. There's still plenty of room for improvement in the other categories, and each of those will be adjusted accordingly, based on performance by CenturyLink.

01/10/2015 UPDATE:

After sending a few more emails to TalkToUs@CenturyLink.com, someone finally showed up to upgrade my service to the 25Mbps bonded connection that was originally ordered back on Dec 22, 2014. CenturyLink kept telling me on the phone that I was already configured for that speed, and I kept telling them that I wasn't, and that in fact, I had no connection at all since someone had altered the connection but had not completed the upgrade and had not provided the new modem required for this type of service.

Once the tech did arrive, he provided the new modem, then he did some work on the NID outside my home before climbing up the telephone pole a few times to make additional changes. After all that, he had to make a trip back to the local office to make further wiring changes because only one DSL line of the two required was working. He called me from their local office to make sure both DSL lines were working on my end after making the changes, and I confirmed they were.

In the end, this upgrade cost me four days of lost work and a huge amount of frustration and anxiety because I kept being told the tech was coming out, but then nobody showed up, nor did they call to say they were not coming. I ended up with at least 20 hours of my time invested from sending emails and phoning CenturyLink Support trying to get the service order completed. Even when the tech did come, I almost missed him because he did not call me before coming the way Customer Support said he would. Needing to leave the house for about 5 minutes to run an errand, I took a chance, and when I got back home he was pulling up to my residence. Install coordination was totally non-existent for this service upgrade, and the time and grief it cost so many different people was truly unnecessary.

01/08/2015 UPDATE:

Two different people in the CenturyLink Customer Care section told me today that their tech would be arriving at my home this afternoon with the modem that I purchased from them to complete the upgrade to a 25Mbps-bonded internet connection. I took off work again to meet with the technician, but as been the case for the 6 previous appointments, no tech showed up, and nobody bothered to call me to say the tech was not coming, or that the appointment had been rescheduled. I had to go through the tedious process again of calling CenturyLink and drilling my way down through their phone menu system to find the right person only to be told that the appointment has now been rescheduled for Jan13. In the interim, I have no internet connection because the old modem I had will not work on bonded connections.

01/07/2015 UPDATE:

Up to this point, customer support and service seems to be only getting worse. I've been trying to get my residential internet service upgraded for going on 3 weeks now and they can't seem to get it done. Several different CenturyLink sales people told me that 25Mb/s bonded service is available at my residence, their website says it's available, others in my residential area have it, and I have it at my work location only a few blocks away.

They made an appointment to come out and do the upgrade, but no technicians showed up, nor did they call to say they were not coming, or that the service upgrade was rescheduled for the next day. This process has repeated itself for five appointments now, and still nobody comes by to fulfill the service order, nor do they call to say they are not coming. I've called their phone support lines and emailed their support teams repeatedly, and they only say that they are running behind in my local area and that the appointment has been rescheduled again, but no reason is ever given for them not showing up or calling regarding the missed appointments. I've taken off work a number of times to remain at home because they tell me the technician needs access to the line from inside my home. Nobody at CenturyLink appears to care that I'm missing work based on their need for inside home access.

12-26-2014 UPDATE:

I've lowered the rating scores again but I am upgrading to a faster connection (25Mb/s bonded ADSL2) effective later this week to see if it works any better. Once we see how that all goes, I'll report back and hopefully be able to up the review ratings. The one thing that is bothering me already with this transaction is that during my teleconference with the CenturyLink sales team I was advised that there would be a monthly rental fee for the modem, so I told them that I wanted to buy the modem rather than rent and was told then there would be a one-time fee of $99.

No problem so far, but when I asked about my options for a CenturyLink modem, they did not know what modem they were trying to rent or sell me, so after placing me on hold for a while and checking with someone else at CenturyLink, they returned to our conversation saying that I had a choice between the Actiontec C2000A, or the Cisco DDR2200. Not knowing anything about either modem, I chose the Cisco device only because of my familiarity with that brand. After the order was placed, I did some research and found that Cisco stopped manufacturing that modem more than 3 years earlier. So, while it will work with the new connection, it is quite out dated at this point in time.

CenturyLink should have made me aware of this fact, but they never mentioned anything about that, or any of the other shortcomings with this older modem. I'm very much of the opinion that a consumer has a right to know basic information about what they are buying or renting, and the CenturyLink sales team should have had some knowledge about the product they are trying to rent or sell to consumers.

Obviously, I no longer want the Cisco modem and have asked for an alternative, but in the interim I'm crossing my fingers, hoping for some good luck with the new package speeds and service.

02-28-2013 UPDATE:

Here we are over 2 years now since my last review and things have not improved one bit, but have only gotten worse. Each and every night from about 6pm to around 11pm, the 10 Mb/s down-speed connection that I've been paying for drops all the way down to dial-up speeds and remains there, most likely due to CenturyLink overselling the service compared to what it can actually handle. The rest of the time, speeds are erratic at best and are rarely what I'm paying for. With any luck, perhaps this provider will fold so that other options will make themselves available in this area.

11-15-2010 UPDATE:

I've lowered the review ratings on CenturyLink once again. Connection speeds are all over the place and latencies, too. I don't know what's wrong with the service CenturyLink provides to its customers causing it to be so inconsistent, but if my automobile acted up as much as this connection does, I'd be getting rid of it in a hurry. Sure, I'd leave CenturyLink in a heartbeat, but there aren't any real alternatives in this local area. I keep hoping that they will take the steps to improve their service, or that a better company will come along and buy them out, and then make things better, but it's looking more and more like neither will ever happen. If I could pay what the service is actually worth, I'd be out about $20 to $25 bucks each month instead of $80.

09-22-2010 UPDATE:

The DSL connection has been working slightly better over the last couple of weeks, but I don't feel confident at all that it will stay that way for long. I'd still be quick to try an alternative provider if there were other DSL providers in this area. As indicated earlier, we have a local cable company that also provides internet services but the speeds they currently provide are far to slow, and the cable service was too expensive the last time I checked it. The Tech Support score I provided is based on the support provided by the company, not by our own CTL_Joey here on the forums. We'd need a separate section to rate him where he'd definitely receive a 5 score from me... Thanks, Joey!

08-15-2010 UPDATE:

Ratings have been downgraded once again due to the horrible Connection Reliability and Value For Money that we've experienced recently. Also downgraded rating for Tech Support, but that is not intended to reflect on the help provided right here by CTL_Joey, as his help is the only good support provided by Century Link. I'm currently paying about $100 per month for phone and DSL service whereas it's certainly worth no more than about $40 per month due to the lousy connection reliability and terrible tech support.

Consider your options closely before signing up with Century Link because even if other available options are slower, they might be better if they work properly and consistently. Any improvements with the service from Century Link will have to remain steady and consistent for some time to come before I'd be willing to upgrade this review to a more positive one. Check the forums for more details about what users are experiencing under Century Link, and consider yourself warned.

07-08-2010 UPDATE:

The CenturyLink DSL connection that I have at home and work have both been absolutely horrible for the last week or two with very slow speeds, constant page timeouts, and page hangs. Both, my 10Mb/s and 5Mb/s connection are getting speeds similar to a dial-up account and are unusable for all practical purposes. In addition to that, every time it rains, my home connection goes on and off repeatedly as long as it's raining, making the connection useless.

The CenturyLink techs have been out several times and they've told me to call in a repair request when it rains next so they can come check for the problem during the rain, but by the time they get to my house, it's no longer raining. Living in a small town of less than 3,600 people, you'd think they would know when it's raining and think to themselves that they need to go troubleshoot this problem immediately, but that doesn't seem to be happening.

For all those reasons outlined above, I've downgraded the "connection reliability" section of this review to the lowest option possible and the connection itself will have to become and remain far more reliable for some time before I'm willing to upgrade it again. At the current time, I'd advise any viable option over CenturyLink for those that need a reliable internet service.

03-3-2010 UPDATE:

Scores have been upgraded for Connection Reliability, Tech Support, Services, and Value For Money, all based on help received from our very own CTL_Joey. DSL service here was truly lousy for several years but Joey pulled the right strings and got things working properly. Thank you again, Joey!

05-17-2009 UPDATE:

Just wanted to update my review to say that the speed finally did move much closer to the 10 Mb/s that I pay for, but I'm back to having to reboot the modem every few hours, or sooner, in order to maintain decent speeds. I'd definitely give Embarq a lower score for connection reliability if there was a lower score available. Otherwise, their DSL services are mediocre. Hopefully, the CenturyTel/Embarq merger will bring some improvements, but I've learned through experience not to count on it. Time will tell, and I'll be back here to report on whatever happens, either way.

04-28-2009 UPDATE:

The speed of my 10 Mb/s connection has dropped to about 2 or 3 Mb/s and stayed there over the last 4 days. Rebooting the modem doesn't seem to help speed it up any longer.


The only other options available to me in this area are dial-up, cable, and satellite. The cable service in this area is down quite often for no apparent reason, so I didn't consider that as a viable alternative.

I'm currently on the "Up to 10.0Mb/s download / 896k/s upload" package and the price I've listed for this review includes the regular phone line charges, plus the DSL service.

The initial order process (about 5 or 6 years ago) went fine and while it was a self-installation, the actual DSL signal was reaching my line in about 3 days and I was up and running. I started out with the 645 Series modem supplied by Sprint/Embarq and the 1.5 Mb/s download package, then I upgraded when 3 Mb/s package was available, then again when 5 Mb/s download package became available. In all cases, the upgrade was totally painless and without any effort on my part. However, when I recently upgraded to the 10 Mb/s downloads package, Embarq sent me a new modem (Embarq EQ-660R) that was supposed to be easy to install, but it turned out to be very problematic and took several different Embarq support techs a number of hours to get things so that I was up and running again.

The newly supplied modem drops the DSL sync signal quite often, but intermittently. In fact, it will sometimes drop out about every 5 or 10 minutes during the evening, then the signal re-syncs and you can connect again. Another thing that I've noticed that happens frequently is that the speed will suddenly drop drastically and I get download speeds around 5M/7M. Rebooting the modem will usually get things going faster again.

I recently replaced the ISP supplied modem with a D-link DSL-2540B modem/router and have not lost sync again since doing so. I've also not noticed the degraded speeds suddenly appearing, but I'm not certain just yet that all is fixed, as it's only been a few days since the ISP modem was replaced.

...comments above are listed in date order - NEWEST to OLDEST

member for 6.9 years, 1329 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 68 days ago


Review by nrf See Profile

  • Location: Morrow,Warren,OH
  • Cost: $67 per month
  • Install: about 7 days
  • Telco party CenturyTel
Good "works most of the time"
Bad "can't quote accurately, outages"
Overall "no longer a reputable company"
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:
(ratings match consensus)

My Other Reviews

·Time Warner Cable
I was quoted 15mbit for approx 67/month. what I got was half that and had to wait a month for them to update the CO. then I got 14mbit. unfortunately they charged me $84. when I complained they said I should be on a contract for a better price. so I committed to 1 year at about $59/month. still got billed $84. talked to a retention specialist asking to fix it or disconnect me, she gave me a quote of $64 for one year. but still billed $84. now disconnected.

more outages than I am comfortable with, including unadvertised outages for 'upgrades'.

member for 12.1 years, 3477 visits, last login: 92 days ago
updated 126 days ago


Review by mjn See Profile

  • Location: Cape Coral,Lee,FL
  • Cost: $45 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 5 days
  • Telco party Sprint
Good "Quick install, solid connection"
Bad "Upload could be faster"
Overall "Cheaper than Comcast (without bundling)"
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection reliability:
Value for money:
(ratings well above consensus)

Ordered 10Mb "Pure Broadband" (no home phone required) online on Friday, August 2nd 2013, the site said it would be ready by August 12th. On Saturday, they called and advised me that I needed to pay a $25 deposit but to do so on the phone I would incur a fee. I opted to go to the local Centurylink store. While there I asked if there was any way to push the install date up any since I was getting rid of Comcast that week, and he said that it should be ready by the 9th, which was great because Comcast was set to disconnect on the 10th. I opted to provide my own modem (Embarq 660) since I had DSL previously so my total out of pocket for the installation was a $15 activation fee and the $25 deposit.

The service went live on Wednesday August 7th and was just a matter of unplugging my cable modem from my router, plugging the DSL modem in and power cycling the router. Download speed is lower than Comcast (25Mb/s on Comcast, 10Mb/s on Centurylink), but for what I use it for (streaming Netflix, Hulu, etc) it works fine. Upload is just under 1Mb/s (896Kb/s I believe), it would be nice to have something a little faster but not a deal breaker for me. Aside from a couple outages in September that occurred during the day while at work, it's been rock solid, and my bill has been a consistent $45.35 every month ($39.95 + taxes/fees).

Overall I'm very satisfied with my Centurylink service.

UPDATE: 10/24/2014


I disconnected service after the one year promo (8/6/2014), the speed went down to about 7Mb/s the last few months I had it. When I called to inquire about getting a new promo for the service the best they could do was $70 for DSL + home phone which is exactly what I didn't want, The service was solid, but trying to save money, I wasn't going to pay $30 more a month for the same service. I switched to Comcast and got their Economy Plus promotion (3Mb/s) for $19.99/mo for 12 months.

member for 14.6 years, 4280 visits, last login: 3 days ago
updated 158 days ago


Review by Rainia See Profile

  • Location: Nathalie,Halifax,VA
  • Cost: $55 per month (12 month contract)
Good "Nothing at all. Problems throughout years."
Bad "Joke of a company. They've "given up" on my problem"
Overall "Stay far away. If there is any other dsl or cable in your area, get that instead."
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:
(ratings below consensus)

4 years ago CL was nice enough to finally run DSL lines out to my very very very small "neighborhood."

And everything worked fine for 2 years. When they ran the lines, we could only get 512k package. Eventually they upgraded us to 1.5Mb.

After 2 years, I encountered my first issue. I game online every day, and I started noticing really crappy ping and my download speeds were terrible. However, speedtest.net..and of course, century link's speed test website, gave me my normal speed as a result. So, nobody cared.

I will tell you right now. Bottom line is "if you are getting the speed then we cannot help you." That's right. If your speeds are "normal", then you can basically piss off. Any other problems? They do not care about. Latency? Piss off.

I called multiple times every day. I always get "nothing we can do. there are no problems." etc from everyone.

Guess what? 2 days later, I have no internet at all. The port on the DSLAM went bad. They repaired it and boom, internet is back to working normal. Imagine that? If they had listened..

Moving along, the next 2 years we are fine. Mind you,however, they have not upgraded the DSLAM still. Everyone is still on 1.5Mbs.

And that brings us to July 4th, 2014...because this is where everything went to hell and there are no signs of turning back at this point.

On July 4th, 2014, around 4PM EST, a storm rolled in. A few minutes later, lightning flashed and my internet was out completely. I called and complained, they stated they can't get anyone out until Monday (july 4th was a friday) I'm super pissed but whatever.

About an hour goes by, and I called back to try to reason with them about Saturday. Instead, I got the voice message saying "We are aware of a problem affecting your area." I just hung up and decided I'll get over it. I go to work the next day, Saturday, come home and I noticed all my modem lights were on. Guess the problem was severe and they decided to get people out over the holiday weekend. Cool.

Except...not. This is where it all started. From that moment on, when I got my internet back, everything was and still is broken to fuck. I was playing WildStar(MMORPG) at the time and ever since logging back on after they "repaired" the internet in my area, I began noticing small lag spikes and delays in combat. It drove me nuts; I finally downloaded a latency monitor to see what my latency is in Wildstar and guesssssss what! anywhere from 90ms-300ms. Spiking everywhere. No stability whatsoever. All over the place.

Did my standard procedures. Reset modem, etc. Nothing worked. So here we go...

Ran speed tests...and here's the interesting part. speedtest.net pings are fine (90ms). Speed tests on centurylink.speedtest.net are all 200+ms. And,by the way, it still is that way.

Called century link. The next 3 months, up to this day, would involve me arguing back and forth that there is a problem and them arguing back that there isn't. I finally got escalated to CHRONIC (their "team of specialists" who noticed my line was building a lot of FEC errors. (it still is, by the way, by the millions per day).

And over these 3 months I would have multiple techs come out and show off their lack of education in the networking field(HOWEVER:They were extremely friendly, and talkative. In retrospect, they probably aren't even trained in the networking field anyway. They are line techs. They did prove very friendly and at least helpful in respects to the line; probably the only saving grace of the company). Regardless, they did their job and replaced splices/ect along the line, "groomed" it, and ran a new jack in my house for me. (At least, so im told they did all these things).

Doesn't matter. 200+ping ms to everything.

And this month, about a week ago, I finally got an email saying they basically "give up" and are blaming the issue on network congestion and bandwidth exhaust. I was told that starting in July, the DSLAM usage spiked to 80% and has constantly been there. This is why I can no longer do almost anything.

Which, by the way, makes no sense because the problem is here 24/7. Unless of course, everyone around here doesn't sleep (like myself) because I can't fathom why my ping is 200ms to chicago at 4am in the fucking morning if the problem really is "congestion."

My area went into permanent bandwidth exhaust in November of 2013. Yet I didn't have a single problem until July4th, 2014. So tell me, what's the deal? Nobody knows.

Nowadays, my ping displayed ingame is "fine." Playing titanfall, for example, I have 60ms ping. Great. But it sure the hell doesn't play like 60ms ping at all. I recently tried to play ArchAge, a new MMO. I cannot see my ping..but I can tell it's likely 150-200+ because of the 1 second input delay in combat. Can't even play games in my own fucking country anymore it seems.

So, yeah. Permanent bandwidth exhaust. No hopes of ever upgrading or fixing issues in this area, ever. Needless to say, it makes me that much more excited to leave here.

member for 246 days, 30 visits, last login: 149 days ago
updated 166 days ago


just me


in reply to Rainia

I read your complaint. I found it very interesting that all your problems petty much started in July 2014. I have had embarq DSL since approx 2006, Then century link bought them out. Everything was fine and always worked wonderfully, UNTIL JULY 2014 when something happened and now its the biggest nightmare I ever encountered. I know how you feel. Something was changed in July 2014 and its affected their mail big time. I even stopped using one of my 4 mailboxes because it never comes in, its always failed. Nothing has changed on my puter.

Caveat Emptor
United State
·TracFone Wireless

It is the same old story

Once upon a time the telephone companies cared about customer relations. They don't today. Telephone companies today are obligated to maintain your copper wireline connection whether they like it or not. It's the law.

There are no laws, rules, regulations or public utilities that oversee cable/telephone Internet providers. When ISP are good they are very, very good, but when they are bad they are horrid. The day will come when telephone and cable are as irrelevant as the old-fashioned push mower that took all day to do what the riding mower can do in one hour.
Mac: No windows, No Gates, Apple inside

Review by Mr Matt See Profile

  • Location: Eustis,Lake,FL
  • Cost Contract price not specified. (12 month contract)
Good "See my review of CenturyLink"

My Other Reviews

I am posting future comments about Embarq as combined with my CenturyLink review.

This review is to reflect on why I have not switched from Comcast to Embarq.

When I moved to Eustis, Florida the best deal was a Broadband package offered by Comcast through Circuit City. See my review of Comcast Broadband under Comcast reviews.

I planned to try Embarq Broadband when the Comcast's six month introductory rate changed from $19.95 per month to $42.95 per month. I contacted Embarq in mid 2007 and was advised that the only available download speeds at my address were 768K for $19.95 per month or 1.5M, for $24.95 per month. I was also advised that in order to obtain service and a free modem, I would have to sign a one year contract or pay an additional $10.00 per month and pay for the modem up front. I passed on the offer and continued to use Comcast for Broadband service.

About Six Months later I helped a friend that was using Embarq Broadband, set up a wireless network in his home. When he checked availability he was offered tiers from 768K to 5Mb and choose the 3Mb tier at $29.95 per month. I ran a speed test before I installed the router and found that the download speed was actually 3Mb as advertised. During the installation I called Embarq technical support and asked about switching the ZyXEL Modem to the bridge mode. The technician was helpful and provided correct instructions on changing to the bridge mode. So far I have heard no complaints about his broadband service.

Several weeks later I was contacted by Embarq and was advised that additional download speeds were available at my address up to 5M. At that time they offered Three Months of free service and a free modem if I signed a one year contract. Since mid 2007 I have received several solicitations from Embarq offering anything from Three Months of free service to Six Months of free service if I sign a One Year contract. I always ask the representative for a copy of the TOS and Contract before I sign same and have never receive the information that I requested.

From my friends experience Embarq provides satisfactory service and more choices for the customer. I am again considering Embarq Broadband and will update this review if I can get a written proposal from Embarq sales.

Edited 6/24/10

CenturyLink voice reliability has declined. I was considering subscribing to CenturyLink DSL but I have experienced two voice outages in the last year affecting our voice service up to Eight Hours. Embarrassing because I can no longer tell the Comcast representative, when I receive a call pitching Digital Voice, the reason that I subscribe to CenturyLink service is so that I can call Comcast and complain when my cable service craps out.

I have been following the CenuryLink forum and have found that CenturyLink has over subscribed their DSLAMS in this area. Many customers are complaining that they are suffering time sensitive low throughput. Like from after school until Midnight.

Edited 2/17/2011

CenturyLink just revised their pricing. They removed the 5MB Tier and added a 25MB tier. On their website they indicate that 3MB cost $24.95, 10MB cost 39.95 and although not yet on their website I was quoted around $65.00 for 25MB. All prices quoted were for internet service bundled with voice. If a subscriber signs a contract they now allow a 30 day trial period and claim that if the subscriber is not satisfied they will refund their money and release them from the contract. They were not clear about the procedure to return the modem. One thing that irritates me is they do not disclose a $3.45 modem rental fee on their website. They indicated that I can purchase my own modem but claimed that they will support a customer owned modem even if it is the same model they rent. The only thing keeping me from trying their service is the contract. If one does not sign a contract they charge a $15.00 a month punitive fee.

Please see my review of Comcast.

Edited January 8, 2012

Trying to determine the rates for CenturyLink Telephone service is like trying to pick up jello with your fingers. Their website is almost useless. They require the subscriber to start an order before they can learn the price of what they are subscribing to. When I recently made changes to my service, the only offerings were basic and unlimited. They have since added a middle tier that does not require the subscriber to subscribe to unlimited long distance. Before they added the middle tier the subscriber had to order all features individually if they did not subscribe to unlimited long distance service. Subscribers can now order a package with ten features with or without unlimited long distance as a bundle. In general their rates appear intended to be confusing. Where available subscribers have the option of subscribing to telephone service through their CATV company.

I considered switching to CenturyLink HSI but gave up because I could not get an accurate price quote. I do not want to pay a premium for HSI if I do not sign a contact. I am still using Comcast for Broadband.

member for 7.1 years, 2039 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 263 days ago


Review by Titus See Profile

  • Location: undisclosed location
  • Cost: $45 per month
  • Install: about 4 days
  • Telco party CenturyTel
Good "Reliability"
Bad "Evening speeds"
Overall "VG reliability - downtime extremely rare"
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:
(ratings match consensus)


Just concluded a complete revamp of my service with the help of Centurylink TS (rep that hangs here on BBR), and couldn't be happier. Now I'm jinxed. Seriously good tech support and as reliable service (no downtime) as you could ask for. Very happy with CL DSL.


Video problems have resolved, and performance is back to where it was - decent. Still, the price is high for 10M connection. But I'll pay that rather than pull my hair out with Xfinity.


Evening performance suffering. Videos buffering down to slower streams. Network congestion for nearly a month. Paying too much for this level of what was solid service at $90 a month (with phone).


Solid service @ 10 MB


Still very good, but late night downtime is on the increase, usually between midnight and 2 AM.

Speed is what I pay for and latency is OK (see latest test grab).


Service is as reliable as can be. No downtime to speak of and speeds on the money - no complaints.

Billing is a little rough lately, but I think I've worked it out.

BR corporate fan boys remind why i stopped visiting this site.


New pricing as of 1/6/09 puts the 10M package at $54.95 for landline customers. I'm adjusting my total cost based on an increase of roughly $15 (from $39.95 for 3.0 to $54.95 for 10.0). Easy as a phone call (or chat) to get the new rate.


I upgraded to the 10Mbps package on the 24th. of December by way of embarq_joey here on the DSLR Embarq forum.

The install date was one day off due to line conditioning and being moved to a new DSLAM (I'm 4000 ft. from the CO). So far everything is working great. You can see my speedtests here:

»/testhistory/1 ··· 67/8cbb5

I'm estimating total cost; I haven't received the first bill with the new charges. I have a land line, and with 3.0 service the total bill was $67. The 10Mbps service is $65 a month (roughly $25 more than the 3.0 service).

Connectivity so far, as always, is rock solid.

Hat tip to embarq_joey !


Teh system logon message for me today (aren't they cute!) told a heart warming tale of how my last update was framed and, to this day, leaves the staff in tears. After finding their hankies, I was implored to update my review.

PS: The HSI price here is $39.95 + the no-frills landline brings the total to $60 and change.

No downtime since February. At least none that I was aware of, anyway. I may have been asleep, so I can't say for certain. I'm so very sorry the previous review brought such emotional responses from the BBR staff that I'll keep this one short (-:


Embarq is currently rolling out 10MB plans, as well as re-structuring tier prices. I was offered 5.0 for $5 more than I'm paying now for 3.0 ($44.95 w/POTS). I called in and renegotiated my current price for 3.0 to the new price of $39.x, with the understanding that I've renewed my contract for another year rather than go month to month come April. The service has been very good; speeds are spot-on with my caps (with only one brief period of high latency -fixed fairly quickly), and with no downtime. I'm happy with the service, and the price drop was most welcomed.


It's been one year since I signed up with Embarq. The service, up until a week or so ago, has been excellent, with no downtime and consistent speeds. There is a promise of "new equipment" in my area by 11/23/07 to address these issues. However ...

Embarq appears to have joined in an industry trend of appallingly bad support. Everything is geared towards sales, and problems are addressed (or not) only by repeated calls because you can't get through or you get erroneous information when you do. Service interruptions always cause clogged queues and their online chat system buckles like a dollar store beach chair.

I'm downgrading my rating to reflect the poor support and lack of accurate information from Embarq. I'm also not happy with what I'm paying at this point given the quality of support. There was also confusion as to what occurs when your lease expires at one year: I've received different answers from different reps. This is not acceptable.

Bottom line after one year: very good connection reliability (much better than cable) but with near terrible support (on par with cable).


There has not been a moment of downtime since my last review, and speeds are consistently spot on. The price ($50 for 3000/640) is still a bit too high, IMO, but the service -- compared with cable in this area -- is solid as a rock. Cable goes down here with half the passing storms.

Latest test to speedtest dot net's DC server was:
D: 2988
U: 637
L: 19ms (DC server)

I'm updating my review due to a recent experience with tech support. There's a world of difference between phone messages (management) and the people that man the lines -- both phone, email and chat. These guys are on the ball and deserve a lot of credit for the time they take in helping us out, even with matters of little concern. There is a tech here on BBR who posts in the Embarq forum that is also a valuable asset to the BBR community and Embarq. Perhaps I shouldn't mention the name, but it begins with dsl.

Kudos to all of you that work hard to make the little things possible for us!

My first trouble with the service and I'm totally unhappy with tech support. There has apparently been a fiber cut somewhere that occurred midday on the 17th. Phone tech support has been horrid, with messages stating everything from their business hours to 'all lines busy' to some nonsense about weekends being their busiest time and to try my call at another time.

36 hours to fix cut fiber is one thing, but their communication on the matter is worse than Adelphia - and that's saying something.
If not for Comcast being my only alternative, I'd pay the $99 and go with another provider. If customers don't talk with their wallet the companies never hear you. If this problem doesn't go away by next Saturday my next review will be for Comcast.

I dropped my TS rating to 3 and the Value for money rating to 2.

Update: 12/8/06
I upgraded to the 3000/512 tier for ten more dollars a month, as all speed tests were right under my 1500 cap, line quality was good and latency is bearable. I notice I'm paying a bit more than some areas for my middle-tier speed. I've no idea what metric Embarq is using to determine price points per area, but income in my neighborhood certainly isn't above the national average.

I've included some links to tests run via BBR:

Speed tests from both coasts:
»/im/19732034/4 ··· 6256.png

»/im/19761057/8 ··· 6700.png

Line test:
»/linequality/n ··· /2142177

I'm quite happy with (A) no longer being a customer of Adelphia/Comcast and (B) the performance of Embarq so far. The connection can lag a little more than cable at times, but pages pop open and downloads generally run better than 250KBs. I've actually hit above my cap a few times, as illustrated by the image below.

The upgrade was done completely from the CO, on time and with no problems. I did have to reboot the modem in order to gain connectivity after the upgrade.

I called Embarq last Friday and I'm up Tuesday (today, the 21st) on their 1500 tier. Installation was a breeze (5 minutes), and speed tests clock me nearly up to the 1500 I'm paying for (I'm within a mile of the CO).

So far so good -- I'll update after some time passes.

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member for 10.7 years, 2609 visits, last login: a few hours ago
updated 288 days ago


Review by firedrakes See Profile

  • Location: Arcadia,De Soto,FL
  • Cost: $120 per month (12 month contract)
  • Install: about 2 days
Good "decent price, great tech support and insane speed"
Bad "need faster speed and cheaper bill"
Overall " if you area is good for centurylink. then its worth it."
Pre Sales information:
Install Co-ordination:
Connection reliability:
Tech Support:
Value for money:
(ratings above consensus)

i am paying $140 with phone,tv,dvr. it is the 25mb dl plan. mind i am very close to the centurylink building..

this is bonded dsl. my only issue is i know they do some fiber here where i live. but wont do it to my house.

member for 6.1 years, 1101 visits, last login: 1 days ago
updated 362 days ago


Phoenix, AZ


If they'd just upgrade your area to VDSL2, then you'd be able to get 80/40 through pair bonding (or 100/12 or 100/40 if that close) no problem.

Arcadia, FL


mostly likely. but its like pulling teeth with them.