Router Help (please)

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Harry Pujols, Feb 19, 2014.

  1. Harry Pujols macrumors newbie

    Feb 3, 2014
    Hey everyone!

    So will be obtaining a new Macbook Pro in the very near future, and considering upgrading my router at the same time.

    Currently live in a medium size apartment (~900sqft) and use the internet for music, Netflix etc, and some gaming (COD4, Diablo2, some Xbox360 but not much). I've been rocking the old school Linksys with the blue front but it's showing its age. Drops on occasion and it's bottlenecking me - I get 50 Mbps from Comcast but regularly can only get 20Mbps via speedtest on my old Toshiba laptop.

    I'm not sure I really need dual band, as I only live in a 3 unit building and don't think there's a ton of intereference. Also, as the single user, I don't expect to be doing a ton of continuous data transfer between machines. One thing I DO like is the idea of having a router with USB that allows for some network memory.

    I've narrowed down the search to:
    Linksys EA1200 (or 2500) - great reputation, but neither has USB. Not sure if the 2500 really gets me anything as I don't know if I really need the dual band.

    Netgear N300 (the one with USB) or N600 - seems to have better range than Linksys, but not as good reviews

    Apple Airport Express - most expensive, no USB for storage, only 1 wired port instead of 4.

    Would ideally like to spent between $50-$80.

    Anyone have any experiences with the above? Anyone able to convince me if dual band is truly necessary for my uses?

    thx in advance
  2. Curun, Feb 19, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2014

    Curun macrumors 6502


    Sep 10, 2013
    you didn't give details on router, a WRT54G? 802.11G raw throughput is 54mbps, but typical application layer is going to be around 20.

    Netgear/Linksys/ etc I have seen reliability issues with. Crapshot. Plus recent security issues of both Linksys and ASUS...

    Airport Extreme, $85

    Simultaneous dual-band, has 3 gigabit eithernet, and network attached storage USB. It supports 3 stream 802.11N and will do 300 if not 450mbps raw link to your new MacBook which is a huge jump from 802.11G if that's what you had.

    2.4GHz band only has 3 isolated channels, 1, 6, 11. In a small apartment where range isn't an issue, 5ghz is ideal. It allows 40mhz wide channels vs 20mhz for more data, and has many more fully isolated channels to choose from.

  3. Harry Pujols thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 3, 2014
    Thanks for the info - apologies, yes, I believe my current router is the WRT54G. I hadn't considered the refurb'd Airport Extreme - do they get the same quality/scrutiny as refurb laptops?
  4. Altemose macrumors G3


    Mar 26, 2013
    Elkton, Maryland
    A refurb'd Extreme is a fantastic purchase. They are held to Apple's high refurb standards. I bought eight refurb Expresses and all were visually new, and functioned like new so I am happy. The Extreme is a great router and has the USB port for hard drive or printer sharing. Depending on what generation you get, it can also be used for Time Machine backups. The Extreme is plenty powerful for what you need.

    I have a 75+ user wireless network composing of a 5th Gen Extreme and eight 2nd gen Expresses (wireless N). The speedtests come back within 45-58 Mbps down, 11 up across the building on all APs. Everything is hard wired to the Extreme. I can honestly tell you the Extreme has plenty of power and then some!

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