New MBP and Wireless Routers

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by No Regrets, Dec 14, 2011.

  1. No Regrets macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2011
    #1
    Hello all,

    I am thinking about getting my first MBP and had a couple of questions....

    Will any wireless router work with the new MBP or does one need to use a Mac wireless router?

    The reason why I am asking this is because I just bought a new plasma tv and therefore upgraded my basic TimeWarner cable to the High Def TimeWarner cable bundled with broadband Roadrunner internet and digital phone. TimeWarner said that when they come out to do this upgraded install that they may need to use a new wireless router that combines the digital phone capabilities.

    So now I'm afraid if I buy a new MBP that it won't work, or if I need to buy a Mac wireless router then I'll run into digital phone or cable tv problems.

    I'm not tech savvy at all, so please forgive my ignorance.

    By the way, the router that I currently am using with my PC laptop (TimeWarner has not come out to do the upgrade as of yet) is a Linksys WRT54G.

    Thank you
     
  2. Ccrew macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2011
    #2
    Wireless for the most part is an industry standard configuration. It'll work just fine with your Linksys.

    Heck, my wireless Juniper firewall works better than my Airport Extreme does with my macs and the software is much more configurable..
     
  3. heisenberg123 macrumors 603

    heisenberg123

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    Oct 31, 2010
    Location:
    Hamilton, Ontario
    #3
    my MBP works fine with my Linksys router
     
  4. Satnam1989 macrumors 65816

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    Nov 16, 2011
    Location:
    Illinois
    #4
    D-Link, Linksys and Netgear Routers work excellent, Can confirm 100%. Yes your WRT54G will also work but I suggest that you need to upgrade it ASAP! cause its old......you don't need to stress about buying a Apple Airport Extreme but if you got the money you might as well get the Time Capsule and also use its backup capabilities with the storage it comes with......

    I have been using D-Link and Linksys branded WiFi routers in two of my locations for over 6 years and going.

    #1 Choice: D-Link
    #2 Choice: Linksys
    #3 Choice: Netgear
    #4 Choice: Any other brand....this one and onward is all you


    Nothing against anyone who has success with Belkin but I have very little luck with the Belkin wireless N routers with 3 different laptops (Dell XPS1645, Gateway FX-7805 and Macbook Pro) I don't have the exact models of the two routers anymore but they were bought within the past 16 months so fairly new still. Issues with not connecting and drop in performance and even at a friends house who had one working perfectly I was not able to get my Gateway FX-7805 to connect for some reason, It would connect to their Netgear router just fine.
     
  5. dontwalkhand macrumors 601

    dontwalkhand

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    Jul 5, 2007
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #5
    Though I do use an Apple Airport router, it is not required for you to use it in order to get internet access to your Mac. You can use any router, but I do suggest upgrading from your Wireless G router to one with Wireless N.
     
  6. Mojo1 macrumors 65816

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    Jul 26, 2011
    #6
    For ease-of-use right out of the box nothing beats the Apple option. Being able to easily network a USB printer is a nice bonus.

    Linksys? I owned two of them and I had to regularly restart the routers. My Apple router rarely requires a restart. It's been a number of years so perhaps things have changed, but I didn't care for the web browser administration interface either. Mac tech support was non-existent; if you called with a problem and told them you were using a Linksys router with a Mac the usual reply was "We don't support Macs." Then why are Macs listed on the box as being compatible?

    I have heard more favorable things about D-Link.

    But if and when my AEBS Flying Saucer Edition goes belly-up I'll replace it with another Apple router. They just work.
     
  7. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

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    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #7
    Your existing Linksys will work fine with a Mac.

    One warning though, from your comment it sounds like Time Warner may be installing a cable modem with a wireless router built in? If they do that you have two choices. You can just dump your Linksys and use their built in wireless router. Or you can use your router in line with theirs, but to do that you will want to put their router in "bridge mode". Once they install it just note the cable modem model number and Google search for "Motorola SB6120 in bridge mode" (for example) and you can figure out to do this.
     
  8. squeakr macrumors 68000

    squeakr

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    #8
    If it is like the modem/ router combo they are using around here, you will want to Google for the admin codes and turn off the wifi in it altogether as it has serious issues. Hope you get something other than the Ubee! I have several co workers that cursed the thing daily until they reverted to their own wifi router and disabled the TWC Ubee. Here's to hoping you get a Motorola or anything else.
     
  9. Adamantoise macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 1, 2011
    #9
    The above post is nonsense.

    Radios in Windows, OS X and Linux all use the same 802.11 a/b/g/n protocol ... Only reason manufacturers offer OS specific tech support is because most customers are not savvy enough to navigate the network intricacies of their computers on their own.

    I've used a WRT54g and now an e4200 ... Both worked flawlessly with my Snow Leopard Macbook Pro.

    Anyone who knows a thing or two about routers knows that Cisco (Linksys) is the industry leader ... Apple Routers do an okay job, but compared to the Linksys routers in the same price range (e4200) ... Well I won't call them toys but they just don't stack up.
     
  10. squeakr macrumors 68000

    squeakr

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    #10
    I disagree. Whereas Cisco is the industry leader and makes rock solid commercial products, the Linksys division (their consumer level) are more like toys than the Apple, imho. I have had several Linksys routers (I will say that about 3 years ago I stopped using them, so they may have gotten better since), but I had to reboot them at least once a week. The older WRT series were rock solid and gave no issues for me, but once they moved to the internal antenna design, I had nothing but heat and connectivity issues. The only thing to solve this would be a hard reboot (which is a pain when distant from the machine and unable to get it to respond through commands)

    I do like their web based management better than the Apple app version (makes management from a PC next to impossible) and will say that the controls offered by Linksys were incredible and much more veried than Apple's offering (although I prefer DDWRT to their firmware). Although that is all fluff for me when I have I have to reboot every couple of days. I haven't rebooted the Apple (other than to install new firmware) in the last 3 years since I switched to it. The other bonus is that it works at 450 Mbs transmission ratio with the Apple when used with my MBP (they upgraded the speed without much fanfare).
     
  11. Adamantoise macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 1, 2011
    #11
    The phrase "you get what you pay for" applies to everything, not just Apple products ... Many people who have problems with Cisco initially bought a $50 router and then compare it to the $180 Apple Airport.

    Routers in the same price range are effectively identical in throughput performance, and it's bells and whistles that set them apart
     
  12. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #12
    So this poster's experience was different than yours and that makes it nonsense?

    Cisco is a respected brand in the commercial router market, but Linksys is no better than any other consumer level product.

    For the average Mac user the Airport Extreme is much easier to setup and maintain.
     
  13. Adamantoise, Dec 14, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2011

    Adamantoise macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 1, 2011
    #13
    Linksys offers entry level to top performance routers.

    Allow me to demonstrate the mindset of some consumers:

    1. Visit a store and buy the cheapest recognizable 'brand name' router they can find.

    2. Go home and have problems with it.

    3. Visit store again and buy an Apple router.

    4. Go home and post about how amazing Apple routers are.

    ... Now if the consumer had spent the same amount of money on a DLINK or a Linksys as he did on the Apple router, he would not have that problem to begin with.

    As I said before, you get what you pay for. Same thing applies to computers and everything else.

    Edit: I've used both routers (Apple and the e4200) on Windows and OS X ... ASUS Black Diamond and Cisco e4200 are the best routers on the market ... Go and read a review or two. Apple is good too, if you don't do anything but HTTP requests.
     
  14. squeakr macrumors 68000

    squeakr

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    #14
    Although I tend to agree with you about the get what you pay for, on this instance I will not. I purchased two of the very first dual radio simultaneous 2.4 and 5 GHz models with integrated MIMO technology antennas. I forget the model but could look it up when I get home and wipe the dust off of one. They were over $250 each, and I needed two to get coverage within my house. They flat out sucked.

    Eventually Best Buy took the one back after several exchanges and gave me an Airport Extreme and a refund of the difference. One AE is enough to cover my entire house and never needs rebooting nor overheats. The models I had were neither good nor cheap and Linksys just stopped supporting them within about 3 months (no firmware updates to fix their issues, which were known to plague this model). They redesigned the internals and I heard they were better, but they lost my trust and support. CSR for Linksys could offer nothing other than restart the router and wait for the updated firmware to fix the issue, so I guess as you say I got what I paid for!! Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice...well that isn't happening.

    Even with all the issues those routers ran circles around the other 5 Belkins I had. (Yes, over the years I have had every brand of consumer router out there and find for me the Apple has been the best). I though of even getting some commercial Ciscos and call it done (be it known the Apple has commercial certifications, or at least did at one time). Having not been in the market for 3 years, I wouldn't know if that is still true. I have just set the router and forgot it. The best thing to live by.
     
  15. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    Location:
    California
    #15
    I have not used the other routers you mentioned so can't comment on them, but your comment about the AE is a gross generalization not supported by facts. I use a Time Capsule (basically a AE with a hard drive inside) for far more than HTTP requests and it works just fine. I have my PS3 in the DMZ, ports forwarded for bit torrent and DLNA server etc.... far from a casual user.

    No doubt these other routers have some nice features. The built in DLNA in the e4200 looks nice for example, but the AE is far from limited to web browsing.
     
  16. squeakr macrumors 68000

    squeakr

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    #16
    I second your sentiments. The only differences are that I have used most other routers prior to getting the Apple (currently still have 6 at my house ready for deployment, if I want high power and G :) ). I run an entire network off of mine and have ports forwarded, QOS enabled, DHCP running with static mapping. I had great luck with Buffalo, old Linksys (before Cisco bought them), DLink, Asus, Netgear, and several I can't remember names and models. With the exception of my lasts Linksys (and like I said they may have gotten better, but I care not to trust them after being abandoned last time) and Belkin, all of them have been pretty much rock solid. I don't buy cheap things, so I am glad that the assumption was that I bought cheap and that is the issue, I just hate that people can't accept that Apple may be good too and people made an intelligent choice in selecting it. Rather than everyone is a moron fanboy that bought solely based on name and price!
     
  17. JamesGorman macrumors 65816

    JamesGorman

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    Winnipeg
    #17
    I recommend anything by linksys..In my experience they play well with any device and are a breeze to set up.
     
  18. Mojo1, Dec 14, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2011

    Mojo1 macrumors 65816

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    Jul 26, 2011
    #18
    Why Is it...

    ... that some folks insist on ridiculing someone's opinion on a forum when they disagree with a post? Your disparaging comments regarding my assumed lack of computer experience, etc. do nothing to support your position.

    Look, I posted my experience with Linksys routers vs. Apple. If you don't agree with me, fine... Simply state your opinion and leave it up to the OP to decide what he/she wants to do. If you put down someone it says a lot more about your need to be right (and lack of maturity...) than the validity of the alternative opinion.

    In addition to my own experience with Linksys I have read plenty of forum questions from Mac users experiencing problems when using that brand of routers. I'm glad that your experience has been trouble-free, but it isn't always the case... Like another respondent noted, I had to regularly restart my Linksys routers. The AEBS? Hardly ever and when I have had to do it simply unplugging its power supply does the trick. The Linksys usually required a lot more effort to get working properly.

    Enabling network encryption on a Linksys vs. an AEBS? Don't get me started!

    (As I noted earlier, it has been at least four years since I gave up on Linksys. If things have changed, simply point out where Linksys has improved the Mac user experience. That kind of information is actually helpful.)

    Hopefully Linksys has improved its firmware upgrading procedure for Mac users; when I used Linksys routers it was a royal pain in the behind. Apple firmware upgrades are a one-click operation.

    And as I noted previously, the AEBS makes it simple to share a USB printer on a network. As far as I know Linksys does not have this capability in its cheaper routers.

    When it comes to Apple hardware vs. alternatives it is almost always possible to find a less expensive alternative. If cost is your primary concern you can skip the Apple router and purchase a cheaper brand.

    But if you want to avoid trouble-shooting and prefer "plug-and-play vs. "plug-and-pray" I suggest that the Apple option is worth the extra cost. If the OP doesn't want to spend the money on an Apple router, I suggest taking a good look at the D-Link options because in my experience they tend to work better than Linksys when networking Macs.

    As far as the OP's situation: why not get the MBP and see if it works with your current router? The only wrinkle is the TimeWarner upgrade; I have known a number of people who have experienced problems with cable modem/wireless router combos supplied by cable companies. They appear to be more problematic to use with Macs than a stand-alone router.
     
  19. No Regrets thread starter macrumors regular

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    Dec 14, 2011
    #19
    Thank you to everyone who responded to my inquiry. The posts were very helpful and much appreciated!
     
  20. Mikey86uk macrumors 6502

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    Jul 3, 2010
    Location:
    England
    #20
    i cant speak for everyone but...

    My 2010 MBP 13" sometimes wont connect to my D Link DIR655 :confused:

    Sometimes it will be ok for a few days then it disconnects and then reconnects every 5mins or so, or sometimes it will find all near by routers apart from myn :confused:
     
  21. Satnam1989 macrumors 65816

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    Nov 16, 2011
    Location:
    Illinois
    #21
    I have a 655, using with my 15" 2011 MBP works 100% all the time....no issues
     
  22. chrisvee macrumors regular

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    Jul 2, 2010
    Location:
    Winnipeg, Canada
    #22
    OP, you can use any router you chose. I'd suggest one with N wireless capabilities.
    I have a D-Link DIR-655, and it's working fine. These routers do tend to overheat though. I've had a few D-Link routers with that problem, so I'm switching out. Don't get me wrong, they do produce some good routers, but I'd like to give another brand a shot.

    Does anyone know if the Netgear WNDR3700 is still a good buy? They're selling them locally for $79 Canadian. I've read some good and bad things about it.
     
  23. motoracer1486 macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 26, 2006
    #23
    Another vote for the Dlink DIR-655. 3+ years with no problems.
     
  24. Mikey86uk macrumors 6502

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    Jul 3, 2010
    Location:
    England
    #24
    What hardware revision is you 655's?

    myn is A3 if that makes any difference, and im looking at the Netgear one posted above btw
     
  25. i4k20c macrumors 6502a

    i4k20c

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    Sep 10, 2005
    #25
    Whichever router you get, get custom firmware for it.

    Either Tomato USB or DD-WRT and it should make your router much better based on my research.
     

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