Time Capsule 2TB vs 3TB.

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by KyleGP, Jul 25, 2011.

  1. KyleGP macrumors member

    May 3, 2011
    Now I know many will say it comes down to needs, or that I should just choose an alternative to TC, but let me explain first.

    I'm pretty set on a TC because I like the effortless backing up, especially wirelessly, I also need a new router, and I'm after a NAS device too.

    The TC offers all 3. I plan to use the Time Capsules internal drive for the automatic backing up, and NAS drive.

    I could probably, yes, buy another brand of router and use an external hard drive with it. I like the TC because it's all in one, and it looks nice. That's a feature to me.

    On a side note, having a TC with an internal hard drive is faster than a router with usb powered external hard drive.
    Internal drive > Usb drive.

    Plus, instead of having to power 2 devices, TC is technically one device.

    That out of the way, I have to make a choice between 2TB and 3TB.

    Right now, I'm after the 3TB. I have a lot of files, and the smaller the TC, the less far back the backups will go. Plus the less NAS storage I have.

    The problem is the price (sort of).

    I can afford the 3TB, but it's $520!!! (Australia price) or $319 for the 2TB.

    That's a $200 difference for only an extra TB. Theres another thread saying it's overpriced and whatnot, but half the posts are flaming at each other over the "Server grade hard drive" debate.

    I know they aren't, so I'm not going there.

    Is it really worth paying $520 for a 3TB time capsule? It's an awful lot of money.

    $319 to me, seems very reasonable. You get a router, 2TB NAS & backup device that looks great, and works great. I paid $400 alone for a premium router 2 years ago. It was top of the line and guess what? No hard drive was in it!

    So $319 to me, seems excellent. And yes, I've just debated with myself but I'm going back and forth and can't really decide. It's a choice between the obvious and the WANT! Apple has me by the balls. The 3TB is evermore so tempting.

    Basically, yes, I would utilise the 3TB fully, but is it worth it?
    I'm looking for some more reasons to justify the price, or maybe it's just an outrageous price but are there any more reasons why it might be more worth it to pay that much?

    Damnit Apple.
  2. prss14 macrumors regular


    Jul 18, 2009
    I have the 500 gb TC and have loved it. I know that is doesn't win the various debates here, but I like mine. I don't see how they justify that price for the 3TB. You aren't that far from just buying another TC and having extended coverage and another 2 TB. One question is how are you planning on backing up the data that is on your TC? If you are using the TC as a NAS as well that data will need to be backed up as well.
  3. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    I had a first gen TC. It was a 500GB model. After 18 months, the power supply died. Apple replaced it under AppleCare but my data was still gone. After that experience, I now use an AEBS as my router. I use my first gen TC, but only with an external 2TB Western Digital USB drive. If it dies again, I don't lose my data, my router and my NAS all at the same time.

    After my experience, I would not recommend TC. If you must get TC, at least get an external USB drive so the only copy of your stuff isn't sitting inside the TC. In all fairness, I should mention that there is an advantage to purchasing a TC and using it as your router. It turns out OS updates are cached locally and if you have more than 1 Mac, this is an incentive to using a TC as a router.

    Then there is the topic of NAS. It is possible to use a TC as NAS and for Time Machine. I've already mentioned why I don't rely on it for this purpose but as long as it isn't your "only" copy I don't see anything wrong with using TC internal drive for NAS. If you have to choose between the 2TB and 3TB, I say pick 2TB and add an external USB drive for more capacity and also the safety net that all your data isn't depending on one device to stay up and running. When my 500 GB TC died, it turns out that my daughter's Mac experienced an issue where she lost all her data while the TC was off at Apple getting replaced. Needless to say she never got all her stuff back and we had to roll back to a pre TC backup that was sitting on another third party NAS we happened to have. I also use a LaCie NAS drive. Lastly I use CrashPlan. Under no circumstances should you rely on one and only one means of backing up your data. Even if Apple's TC history had been flawless, it would be foolish to rely on TC and TC alone.

    We have Comcast internet. Comcast internet is overpriced and questionably reliable. It used to confuse and perplex every router we tried, even our Apple TC, until we got an AEBS. If your internet provider is shaky, I suggest separating your router from your NAS/Time Machine backup location as you don't want your ISP to be able to futz things up on their end and cause backups to stop working on your end. If you can afford it, I suggest an AEBS for your router and a 2 TB TC with 2 TB external drive for your NAS and backup solution. You will miss out on cached OS updates but you will have the peace of mind that everything isn't sitting in one box and a single point of failure not only takes your backup and NAS data away, but kicks you off the internet at the same time.
  4. Obscurelight macrumors 6502

    Jul 22, 2011
    If it suits your needs then get the 3TB, you are also paying for the convenience
  5. blueroom macrumors 603


    Feb 15, 2009
    Toronto, Canada
    If you're basing it on Apple made, looks and all in one the TC wins. For any other reason a simultaneous dual band router & Synology NAS is far more flexible plus allows you to upgrade one or the other as needs change.

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