Help me choose an apple router...

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by COrocket, Sep 13, 2013.

  1. COrocket macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2012
    #1
    So I'm looking to get a wireless router for my new 30 Mb/s connection and I'm looking at the airport express. I've got a simple setup with a Mac mini which Id like to wire in, and an ipad and iPhone. One thing that bothers me about the express is the 100mb Ethernet port. I feel apple is "gimping" the product on purpose to differentiate it from the extreme. I know it is fast enough now but I'd be nice to have some room to grow as Internet gets faster. I looked and I could get a refurb previous gen extreme for $100, or a current gen refurb express for $75. I can't decide if it is worth it to spend the extra $25 on a router that seems overkill for my current application? I'm not optimistic that the express will be updated since they have gone 4 years between the last updates.
     
  2. glenthompson macrumors 68000

    glenthompson

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #2
    If you plan to attach more wired devices the extreme is the way to go. Think about devices like TVs, cable/sat boxes, Apple TV, printers, etc. I have 12 hard wired devices in addition to wifi.

    100mbps won't be a problem with a 30mbps connection. Going to gigabit ethernet wont help i ternet access since the incoming line is the bottleneck. It will affect internal transfers. That's why I have gig between my computer and my server.
     
  3. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #3
    I have used and measured Express and Extremes in the past. I use neither now. Perhaps the "middle of the road" new Extreme that has both N and AC would be a good fit.

    I have found that for Macs in general, if you are not cable connected to the primary router then the next best thing is two routers bridged. Thus your Mac would be cable connected to one router which wirelessly talks to the main router. Let the main router handle DHCP and use reserved DHCP for your Mac.

    This leaves all of the heavy loading and handling with the routers and your Mac is somewhat just on the peripheral for communication control.

    If the distance is not too far or impacted by obstacles, give Apple's newer routers a chance via AC. As for me, I think there are better choices out there and highly suggest you check out Smallnetbuilder site which gives pretty good reviews of various routers and shows the test results as well as their conclusions. Last I recall, Apple's Extreme got an okay rating but fell into a more pedestrian category.
     

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