MBA 2013 Router?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by AlanMac95, Jul 7, 2013.

  1. AlanMac95 macrumors newbie

    Jul 7, 2013
    Hey guys, I just purchased the new MBA (i5/8gb ram/256gb ssd) and it's supposed to ship on July 10th.
    I'm going to university in August and have been informed that it's best that I bring an ethernet cable and/or a router to connect to wifi in the dorms. They've told me they're about 30 dollars, but the ones I'm finding are ~200$ from the apple site. Can anyone give me some tips as to where to buy either of those? :) Thank you!
  2. SusanK macrumors 68000

    Oct 9, 2012
    Alan, Ethernet is a wired connection. If you do that you will need an adapter. MBA has a thunderbolt port, no Ethernet port. Get a thunderbolt to Ethernet adapter from Apple. I think the price is in the $25 range for the adapter. You can get the Ethernet cable at most electronic stores.

    If you want wireless you need a router or access point. I am using an ancient AirPort Extreme with my mid 2012 MBA. I don't have the new MBA.

    Routers are available at various prices. Mine goes for about $15 now on eBay.
  3. Mrbobb macrumors 601

    Aug 27, 2012
    Universities are so ancient, who uses Ethernet these days?

    Buy an el-cheapo 802.11n Access Point and have your roommates, and the guys next door help you with the cost and then everybody can have access to it.
  4. SusanK macrumors 68000

    Oct 9, 2012
    Would Airport Express 802.11n be a suitable choice? Apple is offering the refurb for $69. Should be an easy set up, I hope.
  5. luisito macrumors regular


    Nov 15, 2012
    Nothing can beat Ethernet when you talk about gaming. If this were a PC forum, you would have the whole internet against you.

    Hardwire connections still have many advantages over wireless. However most people use WiFi for its practicality.

    The biggest advantage from hardwire is the low to zero ping.
  6. rabidz7 macrumors 65816


    Jun 24, 2012
    Intelligent people who know what ping is.


    Get an ethernet cable and a thunderbolt to ethernet adapter.
  7. Mrbobb macrumors 601

    Aug 27, 2012

    I don't game, so unlikely to get a rebuke ever.


    So... how often do we do this ping thing to make our life more complete?


    Not familiar with Apple's networking products. Sorry can't help.
  8. mmomega macrumors demi-god


    Dec 30, 2009
    DFW, TX
    I ran CAT6 throughout my new house because it is much quicker and more reliable than WiFi. Who has any buffer issues or slow transfer rates across 2800 sq ft? Not this guy.

    Yes WiFi can be convenient but walls won't limit my ethernet speeds.
  9. CarlJ macrumors 68020


    Feb 23, 2004
    San Diego, CA, USA
    As someone who used to help run networking for dorms at a large university, I would suggest you get clarification on what they told you before spending your money - an ethernet cable (plus thunderbolt-to-ethernet adapter) will get you a good fast interference-free connection from the ethernet jack(s) in your room to... well however long a cable you get. Fast, reliable, but not always convenient.

    Many universities will be twitchy about you bringing in your own access point, though, because a) if they already provide WiFi that blankets the dorms, user-supplied access points can muck with the signal (making you unpopular with the network admins and your dorm neighbors), and b) misconfigured user-supplied access points on the network can do surprising things - if, for instance, you manage to bridge the wired and wireless networks together (thus inadvertently routing traffic for part of the building through your laptop), you'll likely get a knock on your door from unhappy network admins (who may cut off your access for a period of time). Even more fun is if you end up running an open access point, and one of your dorm neighbors uses it run a file sharing site for movies/music, the IP address will track back to you, and *you* will be the recipient of the legal action from the RIAA/MPAA (this was a surprisingly frequent occurrence).

    So what I'm saying is, ask enough questions of the networking folk at the university to be sure you're not buying an access point that you'll be required to shut off as soon as you arrive, and if they do support user-supplied access points (and don't have good WiFi already available), make sure you understand how to properly configure/secure it.
  10. throAU macrumors 601


    Feb 13, 2012
    Perth, Western Australia
    People who want real world gigabit throughput.

    They don't use "gigabit" wifi that is shared between multiple users and doesn't get anywhere near gigabit speed at any sort of reasonable range.

    WIFI is not a cable replacement. It is useful when cable is too expensive or not practical (e.g., on the couch), but given the choice between gigabit ethernet on the desk or wifi, its a no brainer.
  11. TC25 macrumors 68020

    Mar 28, 2011
    Uninformed comment of the week.
  12. scaredpoet macrumors 604


    Apr 6, 2007
    If you want to take full advantage of the 802.11ac wireless ethernet on your MacBook Air, you can get one of these routers for cheaper than the Apple version:

    And if you're really on a budget, and are willing to go a bit slower:

    If you absolutely need a wired connection, then you should get one of these:

    Then you have nothing to contribute to the conversation.
  13. SusanK macrumors 68000

    Oct 9, 2012
  14. Dr Charter macrumors 6502

    Feb 26, 2011
  15. SusanK macrumors 68000

    Oct 9, 2012
  16. AlanMac95 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 7, 2013
    Thanks guys, I just bought the thunderbolt adapter + ethernet cable. Hopefully it'll be good enough haha :)
  17. SusanK macrumors 68000

    Oct 9, 2012
    Alan, that will work. Plenty of time to explore wireless solutions after you get settled in.

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