Airport Extreme + External HD versus TimeCapsule

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by wahoo10, Oct 27, 2011.

  1. wahoo10 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2009
    #1
    Tl;Dr: Any downsides to just hooking an external HD up to an airport extreme?

    I have a 500GB HD that I use for pic/music backups (enough storage) but my other HD I keep a backup of everything on is about 5 years old and won't connect sometimes and will sometimes randomly shut off. It's 5 years old, survived college, and HDs fail, so I'm looking to buy a 1TB for everything, keep the 500GB for music/pics still.

    My music/pics are the one thing that if I lose, it'll really, really suck. Everything else would be cumbersome but not terrible (especially since banking stuff is online). So, I was thinking of either going TC or Extreme+external. I don't see a downside to the Extreme+external, other than it's not as sleek and they're separate, and I save money. Am I missing anything here?
     
  2. bwhinnen macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2010
    Location:
    San Diego
    #2
    In practice no. I ran that way for a good 12 months before buying a Time Capsule (needed the extra wireless AP and decided the extra was worth it).

    I had a AEBS (Gen 3) with a 1TB WD 2.5" drive attached, it just chugged away. Just make sure you format it as HFS+ on the Mac before plugging it into the AEBS and you will be all good.

    I had shared TIme Machine backups and general data on there without a worry.
     
  3. N0ddie macrumors 6502

    N0ddie

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2011
    Location:
    Glasgow
    #3
    I was told that the Time Capsule is good for backups ie. Time Machine backups but was slow in using it as a network HDD?

    Dunno if its true but I'll be going down the Extreme + HDD in the not too distant future.
     
  4. skorpien, Oct 27, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2011

    skorpien macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #4
    You'll get roughly the same (if not worse) transfer rates with an AEBS + HDD as you would with a Time Capsule. If you want faster transfer rates, you'll need to invest in a NAS.
     
  5. N0ddie macrumors 6502

    N0ddie

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2011
    Location:
    Glasgow
    #5
    Care to recommend a good one? Will be using it to store files (music, pics etc) for use on our iMac, MBA and MBP?

    Looking for around 2 TB?
     
  6. hafr macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2011
    #6
    I've got an AEBS with an external USB drive connected to it. It streams 720p rips wirelessly with no problems, no lag when playing music in iTunes. Transfer speeds when copying large files is around 10-20 MB/s, which is good enough for me.

    So I'm not experiencing anything that would make me want to get a TC instead. Especially not since it seems to be a hassle to use the internal drive as a network disk.
     
  7. wahoo10 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2009
    #7
    I'm just using the HD as a backup drive, not using it for realtime streaming. I ended up purchasing a refurb 2011 Extreme and will be looking for a HDD today. I didn't like the idea of combining my main external and a router together. Seems like a great router and it would suck to have to ditch it because the external fried...
     
  8. skorpien macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #8
    If that's all you're going to use it for, the AEBS with a USB HDD is actually a great solution. I just assumed you needed faster throughput and figured you'd want to be streaming movies, etc. If that were the case, I would recommend the Synology DS211j as a NAS, but that may be overkill (and overpriced) for your situation.
     
  9. bwhinnen macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2010
    Location:
    San Diego
    #9
    There are no issues with using the internal TC disk as a network drive at all. I have a couple of things stored on there as a backup to the other copy I have on my NAS. But have had no troubles with using it the same as an AEBS + HDD :)
     
  10. hafr macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2011
    #10
    Why? I mean, streaming movies from an external USB drive connected to the ABES works great even on wireless. I even stream 720p rips to a computer that only has 802.11g with no lag what so ever.
     
  11. skorpien macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #11
    Then I stand corrected. I don't personally have a USB HDD connected to my AEBS that I can test with, but from what I've read on these forums it seems that most people that were having issues with slow transfer rates were using their setup for something along those lines. Glad to hear it's working for you though.
     

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