Time Capsule Advice?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by devildog820, Mar 30, 2010.

  1. devildog820 macrumors member

    Sep 29, 2008
    So I need a new router and I'm just going to make the jump to a 1TB Time Capsule. However, the last TC update was some time ago and I'm wondering if I should hold out for the next refresh.

    Thoughts? I guess the only cool thing they would add would be more HDD space.
  2. Semdk macrumors member

    Feb 24, 2010
    I've had an Time Capsule (2TB) for a month now... and i'm amazed how it just works - and how easy it is using..
    The router it self has a really good signal. It's easy setting up (using mac, in my case).

    It even works great with Windows :)

    the only negative thing about it is the transfer speed with WiFi, its horribly slow from distance, but acceptable from close distance

    All in all:

    + VERY easy
    + It just works, not like others which has problems with the firewalls (same old Windows story)
    + Good WiFi Signal

    - Bad WiFi transfer speed
  3. designs216 macrumors 65816


    Oct 26, 2009
    Down the rabbit hole
    I like the concept of the Time Capsule but there seems to be widespread reports about the hard drive dying after 1.5 years or so. I ended up going with the Airport Extreme and an external 2TB drive. Not as clean, I'll admit but much more serviceable.
  4. emptyCup macrumors 65816


    Jan 5, 2005
    Every time a Time Capsule thread appears someone like you brings this up. And, every time, I ask people who have actually had their personal TC die on them to tell me how long it lasted. So far two people say theirs died (maybe three, he is not sure). This is a pretty small failure rate and it does not seem abnormal. Mine has been trouble free for 25 months.

    The "widespread reports" seem to be widespread only because people keep spreading the same rumors. Compare this to reports here that the 27" iMac has a screen problem. Also, the two with dead TCs say the power supply went. Is there a different power supply in the Airport Extreme?
  5. Batt macrumors 65816


    Dec 17, 2007
    Syracuse, NY
    Yeah, mine will be 2 years old next month. It has performed flawlessy for that entire period. I'd not hesitate to buy another.
  6. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    May 29, 2007
    My 2 TB Time Capsule, purchased early August '09 was replaced under warranty a few months ago. It kept on shutting itself off and would take several tries to power on again (bad power supply?). The replacement has worked without a hitch.
  7. emptyCup macrumors 65816


    Jan 5, 2005
    Thank you. Count now stands at 3-4 actual owners reporting problems.
  8. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    May 29, 2007
    You may be correct that the problems with power supplies are not widespread, but they aren't just minimally isolated to 3-4 people either. There has been enough press from a variety of sources (not just MacRumors). From what I have seen I get the impression the failure rate is higher than it should be on average. With that said, I haven't hesitated getting one. It's a great device, albeit slower than I expected over WiFi. As long as I have AppleCare on my MBP, my Time Capsule is covered.
  9. newdeal macrumors 68020

    Oct 21, 2009

    I love my time capsule, it was a really good purchase and has already saved my ass when my SSD crapped out on me. Without the time capsule I would have been super pissed but with it I just restored to the replacement SSD which didn't take too long. Transfer speed isn't too bad except on the 5ghz band which has horrible range, I was using the 2.4ghz exclusivley but they just released a firmware update to fix the 5ghz issues and hopefully that helps
  10. Le Big Mac macrumors 68030

    Le Big Mac

    Jan 7, 2003
    Washington, DC
    I too had the dead TC at ~20 months. Apple replaced it free. Too soon to say if this one will develop the same problem.

    Anyway, I think the concept of the product is great but the failure highlights the main problem, which is that you can lose your router *and* your backup data in one swoop. In my case we averted disaster by about one week--I hooked up the replacement (which took almost two weeks to arrive because of snow) one day before my wife spilled coffee on her macbook.

    If I were doing it again I would buy an Airport Extreme and hook up an external drive to the AEBS in the size you want for performing backups using Time Machine. The cost will be about the same, if not less. All you sacrifice is the form, but you're in a lot better position in terms of being able to swap out the hard drive if there are problems. I happily took the free replacement, but had Apple stiffed me I would have bought the AEBS and gone with an external.
  11. colmaclean macrumors 68000


    Jan 6, 2004
    Do you only need a router with a built-in ADSL modem?

    It's worth noting Time Capsule/Airport extreme don't include the modem, so you'd need to pay for one of those too.
  12. prss14 macrumors regular


    Jul 18, 2009
    Love My Time Capsule But Hate the Heat

    I purchased my refurbished 500 gb Time Capsule last September. Super simple to set up the wifi network and time machine. I have had no issues with dropped signals or anything like that. If I am far away from the router it is sometimes slow to respond, but other than that I am happy with the speed. What I don't like is the heat generated by the Time Capsule and my Apple TV. I don't know that I believe that there are thousands of Time Capsules dying each day, but knowing how hot mine got without even using the HD concerned me. From what I have read in various places the failures come from overheating the power supply. The HD's actually seem ok and are pretty easy to change out if you want. There are some fan modifications you can perform, but I haven't gone that far. I purchased a usb fan for my Time Capsule and now the temps stay pretty consistent. Much cooler, and I haven't done anything to void the warranty. I only wish I had a larger HD in my Time Capsule. Other than that I love it.
  13. emptyCup macrumors 65816


    Jan 5, 2005
    There may be a problem but I am not seeing actual owners reporting it (the way they did for bad iMac screens or cracking Macbook cases, for example). What I do see are people quoting other people quoting reports copied from the usual incestuous, click-baiting internet sites.

    Four may be an undercount, but only four people have responded to my request for actual owners to report failures. There is nothing on Mac Fixit or elsewhere I've looked. Mac users are not shy about complaining and yet I have not seen it. It makes me think that the story was a plant.

    If I knew how to make a poll I would. I am not trying to defend Apple. There are enough real things to complain about. Nevertheless, if you read news integrators like MacSurfer it is not uncommon to see rumors sweep through the usual sites like PR storms.

    My TC is over 2 years old. If there is a problem I want to know about it. If there isn't I'm tired of hearing about someone who heard from someone who heard...

    Do you have any actual data that the failure rate is higher than normal?
  14. nastebu macrumors 6502

    May 5, 2008
    Also, Apple has never acknowledged a problem, which although it's not definitive, means something. Some percentage of Time Capsules fail after 18 months or so, but other than a lot of threads on websites--which is anecdotal evidence and so not worth basing any serious conclusions on--there's no particular reason to believe this isn't just a reflection of the normal rate of hard drive failure.

    If you think about it, there's not a lot of sense in this. Why would the hard drives in TC's be unusually prone to failure? People have made guesses about heat, but that really doesn't make much sense at all given the heat my MacBook Pro runs at.
  15. iDisk macrumors 6502a


    Jan 2, 2010
    Menlo Park, CA
  16. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    May 29, 2007
    Oh my, excuse me then. I didn't realize you were the authority on this.
  17. jaforres macrumors member

    Oct 18, 2009
    I love my TC. The only issue I have had is because I have another device in front of it back to my mac is not working. That not a limitation of the TC rather a limitation of NAT.

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