Any chance of an update to Airport Extreme?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Dukeylosta, Oct 13, 2015.

  1. Dukeylosta macrumors newbie

    Dukeylosta

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2015
    #1
    The Airport Extreme is an odd Apple product, but a useful one, and it hasn't been updated in a couple of years. I'm ready for a new router and as a great example of the Ordinary User of Technology, I really like the idea of the Airport's ease of setup and use. But I would like some of the upgraded features like additional ports and USB 3, for heaven's sake.

    Has anyone heard anything about an upgrade? Am I the only one who is a little nervous about going to a NetGear or whatever that has all those ridiculous-looking spiky antennae sticking out?
     
  2. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #2
    USB 3.0 on a router is usually a gimmick and I would not count on Apple for more than three Ethernet ports. That being said, I could see it being feasible that Apple could drop a minor performance update.
     
  3. Dukeylosta thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dukeylosta

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2015
    #3
    Thanks, Altemose. USB 3.0 SOUNDS like it would be better. This is the level of technical sophistication I have -- and why I tend to trust Apple as a consumer. Now that I'm getting products that have ac, it's making more sense to upgrade my very old (like 6-7 years) Airport Express. However, the thing I hate the most is buying an Apple product and finding out a month later that they're updating it. I can usually keep up with that sort of thing on sites like this, but with the Airport Extreme, we're all pretty much in the dark...
     
  4. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #4
    The issue is that the chipsets in most routers can not even handle a saturated USB 2.0 bus, let alone even reach the speeds of USB 3.0. Granted, there are exceptions and lately some of the top router manufacturers have been pushing some impressive USB speeds in routers. If you are looking for the best benchmarks, then Apple is going to fall short. However, if you want a router that gives you fantastic reliability, simplicity, and speed then the Extreme won't disappoint. Plus, you can get them for $129 from Apple Refurbished and they have official Time Machine support.
     
  5. Allograft macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2014
    #5
    I jumped ship to a Asus RT-AC87U last year. Unreliable, Asus support is trying, but Quantenna's drivers for the 5Ghz suck. I'm hoping that with new hardware that supports MIMO, that may mean that the router will be updated too. I would definitely go Apple.
     
  6. Mr. Wonderful macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2009
    #6
    The AirPort Extreme has been able to saturate USB 2.0 for at least two generations now.
     
  7. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #7
    USB 2.0 is capable of 60 MB/s (Megabytes per second). The highest benchmark I have ever seen on an Extreme was around 25-30 MB/s.
     
  8. jermy4 macrumors demi-god

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2010
    #8
    What about the gigabit ethernet ports? They should be able to push ~ 120MB/s right?
     
  9. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #9
    The Ethernet ports are full Gigabit speed.
     
  10. jermy4 macrumors demi-god

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2010
    #10
    I guess you missed my point, if you plug a hard drive into the usb 2.0 ports on an airport extreme you are limited by the usb 2.0 speed when connected with a ethernet cable. It would make sense to upgrade the extreme with usb 3.0.
     
  11. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #11
    Extreme is not a NAS intended for rapid access to drives. For a drive used for Time Machine backups, USB 2 is just fine. If we are going to upgrade a new version of Extreme....put in USB 3.1 ports using USB-C connections. :)
     
  12. Mr. Wonderful macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2009
    #13
    USB 2.0 real world speeds peak at ~33MB/s.
     
  13. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #14
    I understood your point but what I was saying is that the Extreme is already pushing nearly the real world limit of USB 2.0 as stated by @Mr. Wonderful. If you read reviews and tests on routers with USB 3.0, very few actually surpass the Extreme in USB drive performance. The Extreme's USB 2.0 chipset gets the job done and those who need higher performance should be shopping for a NAS rather than a router with a USB port.
     
  14. jermy4 macrumors demi-god

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2010
    #15
    So I do actually own an extreme and have considered adding a usb drive to it for time machine but I wonder if it would be quite a bit slower than using a time capsule since it is only usb 2.0. Has anyone compared the performance of an extreme with an external drive vs a time capsule?
     
  15. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #16
    You are looking at 20-25 MB/s using the USB port on the Extreme. The speeds are perfectly ample for basic NAS and backup purposes.
     

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