Time Capsule from Santa, Should I keep it?

wehokev

macrumors member
Original poster
Oct 18, 2007
86
0
Santa brought me a new 4th Generation 1 Gigabyte Time Capsule (Model number MC343LL/A ) for Christmas. I was all excited to set it up.

However, when I was doing a search to confirm that my model number was indeed the newest version (it is), I read all the horror stories about Time Capsules dying after 18 months.

So what does everyone think? Should I keep the Time Capsule and hope that Apple has fixed the less-than-18-month life expectancy in this new generation? Or should I take it back?

Any thoughts would be most appreciated.
 

craig1410

macrumors 65816
Mar 22, 2007
1,121
838
Scotland
My TC just died this morning between 10am and 12pm. No warning at all it just stopped working with no signs of life at all. I bought mine on 7th April 2008 so I got more than the "usual" 18 months before failure, perhaps due to having it on a UPS power supply and almost never switching it off and perhaps due to having it sitting on a stainless steel desk where the heat can escape by conduction.

Anyway, I have a genius appointment booked for tomorrow at 11:20am when I am hoping to get a straight replacement. The TC itself is out of warranty but I have Applecare on my iMac which should cover the TC.

All in all I have been very pleased with the Time Capsule and would certainly recommend it as a backup solution. I don't believe I have lost any data per se because everything stored on the TC is also stored elsewhere. It is still an inconvenience having to set everything up again but that will only take me 10 minutes. I hope I will get a newer model of the TC (mine is an original 500GB model) but that would only be a bonus. The main thing is that Apple replace it tomorrow as I hope they will.

I hope you decide to keep the Time Capsule as it is a neat little device but if not then I'm sure you will have no trouble selling it on.

Craig.
 

NeuralControl

macrumors 6502a
Dec 3, 2009
917
30
I would keep it. Give it a try and see how it goes. You can keep an eye peeled for posts/articles on this generation Time Capsule.
 

KnightWRX

macrumors Pentium
Jan 28, 2009
15,043
4
Quebec, Canada
So you got a free Time Capsule, which even if it died in 18 months means you lost... exactly 0$ (that's if it does die) and you're wondering if you should keep it ?

If the answer isn't obvious by now...
 

spaceballl

macrumors 68030
Nov 2, 2003
2,856
240
San Francisco, CA
If you don't currently have a backup solution, then time capsule is great. Works like a charm, and you can back multiple computers up to it. I love mine (i have the 4th gen as well). But FWIW, my parents have the gen 1 TC, and it is still kicking just fine.
 

Bobacus

macrumors newbie
Jan 28, 2009
19
0
In the end, its up to you, but from what I've heard from friends of mine, is that the issue with the time capsule is that the added heat from the hard drive is what causes issues.

What some of my friends and myself do, is just use a regular airport extreme with a usb hard drive hanging off of it, works like a champ, and gives you the advantage of being able to keep your hdd if the airport extreme dies.
 

Diode

macrumors 68020
Apr 15, 2004
2,371
38
Washington DC
I'd keep it. If the only thing letting you from keeping it is the 18 month deal (which has been fixed), then you should know that Apple has been replacing them out of warranty - no questions asked.
 

beaner454

macrumors regular
Apr 22, 2003
145
0
Qnap Ts-410

I had a 2tb Time Capsule & I'd suggest returning it. Then use the cash + $100 to pick up a QNAP TS-410 like I did http://www.amazon.com/TS-410-Desktop-Network-Attached-Storage/dp/B002TMR81Q http://www.qnap.com/pro_detail_feature.asp?p_id=134

While it won't act as a router, it gives so much more than a TC could dream of including 4 bays of hard drive storage. It even will serve your iTunes content over your network to other computers and DLNA & UpNP devices. Plus it has a much better throughput for transferring data. Before I upgraded to the QNAP I was always displeased with the transfer rate of the TC over Wifi or ethernet.
 

The Hammer

macrumors 6502
Jun 19, 2008
371
42
Toronto, Canada
So you got a free Time Capsule, which even if it died in 18 months means you lost... exactly 0$ (that's if it does die) and you're wondering if you should keep it ?

If the answer isn't obvious by now...
What about whatever is on the TC such as iTunes etc will Apple recover it for him?
 

InfoSecmgr

Guest
Dec 31, 2009
324
0
Ypsilanti, Michigan
My TC just died this morning between 10am and 12pm. No warning at all it just stopped working with no signs of life at all. I bought mine on 7th April 2008 so I got more than the "usual" 18 months before failure, perhaps due to having it on a UPS power supply and almost never switching it off and perhaps due to having it sitting on a stainless steel desk where the heat can escape by conduction.

Anyway, I have a genius appointment booked for tomorrow at 11:20am when I am hoping to get a straight replacement. The TC itself is out of warranty but I have Applecare on my iMac which should cover the TC.

All in all I have been very pleased with the Time Capsule and would certainly recommend it as a backup solution. I don't believe I have lost any data per se because everything stored on the TC is also stored elsewhere. It is still an inconvenience having to set everything up again but that will only take me 10 minutes. I hope I will get a newer model of the TC (mine is an original 500GB model) but that would only be a bonus. The main thing is that Apple replace it tomorrow as I hope they will.

I hope you decide to keep the Time Capsule as it is a neat little device but if not then I'm sure you will have no trouble selling it on.

Craig.
Really? An Applecare warranty purchased for a completely different product covers a totally unrelated product?
 

KnightWRX

macrumors Pentium
Jan 28, 2009
15,043
4
Quebec, Canada
What about whatever is on the TC such as iTunes etc will Apple recover it for him?
The TC is for backups, you should never put important data on unmirrored drives if you don't have another backup.

I wouldn't suggest using a single TC as a storage solution, especially if you don't have backups. It works fine to backup your Macs though. The chance of both your TC and Mac failing at the same time is ridiculously low.
 

seedster2

macrumors 6502a
Sep 16, 2007
686
0
NYC
I'd sooner get a AEBS and an external hard drive.

Anyone still buying these devices after a consistent reporting of problems is asking for trouble. Sure they replace them right now, but no one knows if the policy will change in the future.

Moreover, if old backups and changes matter, they will not retrieve them or let you crack open the device to swap HD's. No thanks Apple.

It's a great concept but poorly implemented because it is not at all user serviceable
 

SwiftLives

macrumors 65816
Dec 7, 2001
1,339
240
Charleston, SC
Really? An Applecare warranty purchased for a completely different product covers a totally unrelated product?
Yes. As long as the Time Capsule/Airport was purchased up to two years before your Mac purchase or purchased after you bought AppleCare.

Sometimes the people at the Apple Store need reminding of this.
 

craig1410

macrumors 65816
Mar 22, 2007
1,121
838
Scotland
I got my Time Capsule replaced after 21 months of ownership and it took less than 10 minutes. It was covered under my iMac Applecare cover which I bought in August 2007. Personally I think this is a great level of service because the Applecare only cost £139 and I have already saved £242 which is what my TC would have cost to replace.

Okay it was maybe a design flaw which prompted the failure but these things happen. In fact, the reason I have a Time Capsule in the first place is because my KCorp Gold WiFi router failed after a couple of years usage due to, wait for it, a power supply failure... Needless to say I wasn't able to get it replaced for free. Also, a friend of mine had a problem when his Lacie USB external drive power supply failed and he either had to buy a new power supply (not cheap at about £40) or remove the disk from the enclosure and fit it to another enclosure.

As for those who say the Time Capsule is not user serviceable you should be made aware that you can in fact remove the hard disk from a Time Capsule in much the same way that you can with an external USB drive. Whether it invalidates the warranty depends on whether you cause damage during the process. Peeling off the self adhesive rubber base is the hard part but by no means impossible. After that it is fairly easy to extract data or erase the internal disk.

I'm not making excuses for Apple here but they are not the only company to suffer device failures or have design flaws but in my view they excel in the way they support you when it does go wrong. In my case I was back up and running in less than 24 hours even though my failure occurred on New Year's day! You can't get better than that!

Craig.
 

wehokev

macrumors member
Original poster
Oct 18, 2007
86
0
I'm going to keep it

Wow. Thanks to everyone for the thoughtful responses.

In the end (to answer your question NeuralControl) I am going to keep it. Let's hope that Apple has fixed the problems of the earlier versions in this fourth generation of the Time Capsule.

In case anyone cares, I decided after reading KnightWRX' extremely simple, common sense argument:

The chance of both your TC and Mac failing at the same time is ridiculously low.
I'll let you know how it goes…

Thanks again,

-kevin
 

InfoSecmgr

Guest
Dec 31, 2009
324
0
Ypsilanti, Michigan
Yes. As long as the Time Capsule/Airport was purchased up to two years before your Mac purchase or purchased after you bought AppleCare.

Sometimes the people at the Apple Store need reminding of this.
I'm still not sure how Applecare purchased for a computer covers the time capsule. I'm not trying to argue, I'm just trying to figure out where it says that.

EDIT: er...just found it. So the OP purchased a time capsule WITH his Mac?

Edit 2: I should be able to get a replacement keyboard then? I have an iMac still under Apple care and the 3 key sticks....
 

ftaok

macrumors 603
Jan 23, 2002
6,137
1,162
East Coast
Really? An Applecare warranty purchased for a completely different product covers a totally unrelated product?
Yes, but only if the items are purchased on the same receipt. For instance, you buy a Mac mini with a new 24" LED display. The AppleCare fee on the mini covers the monitor as well (along with the mouse/keyboard, etc).

Yes. As long as the Time Capsule/Airport was purchased up to two years before your Mac purchase or purchased after you bought AppleCare.

Sometimes the people at the Apple Store need reminding of this.
This is something that I never heard before, but it's great to know. I recently bought an AEBS, so if I buy a new Mac in the next two years and purchase AC for it, it'll cover my "old" AEBS. Awesome.
 

nefan65

macrumors 65816
Apr 15, 2009
1,345
14
I had a 2tb Time Capsule & I'd suggest returning it. Then use the cash + $100 to pick up a QNAP TS-410 like I did http://www.amazon.com/TS-410-Desktop-Network-Attached-Storage/dp/B002TMR81Q http://www.qnap.com/pro_detail_feature.asp?p_id=134

While it won't act as a router, it gives so much more than a TC could dream of including 4 bays of hard drive storage. It even will serve your iTunes content over your network to other computers and DLNA & UpNP devices. Plus it has a much better throughput for transferring data. Before I upgraded to the QNAP I was always displeased with the transfer rate of the TC over Wifi or ethernet.
Just what everyone wants in their house; a $500 NAS on their desk, or underneath it, with fans blaring, to back up iTunes and Pictures.

Think of what your needs are, and go from there. Mostly songs, pictures, and files? Determine the total storage you'll need, then add a little for growth. There's no need to spend tons of $$$ on external storage, if it's only for backup. If you need redundancy, then copy the contents of all that to DVD for storage in another location.

If it were me, I'd return it, get an AEBS, and an external FW or USB drive. You'll end up with extra cash in the end, and it'll do all of what you want.
 

tonyled

macrumors member
Sep 4, 2009
30
0
The TC is for backups, you should never put important data on unmirrored drives if you don't have another backup.

I wouldn't suggest using a single TC as a storage solution, especially if you don't have backups. It works fine to backup your Macs though. The chance of both your TC and Mac failing at the same time is ridiculously low.

amen, it astounds me at how many dont understand this concept
 

ftaok

macrumors 603
Jan 23, 2002
6,137
1,162
East Coast
amen, it astounds me at how many dont understand this concept
But still, even if the TC is used strictly as a back-up device, it'll still be a hassle if the TC dies in 18 months.

The OP is asking whether he should keep the TC or do something else. Personally, I would get an AEBS and combine that with a nice external HDD that can be used with the AEBS or connected directly to the Mac. Sure, it doens't look as pretty, but I think it's the better option.

ft
 

akutad

macrumors regular
Jul 12, 2008
150
0
London, Ontario, Canada
But still, even if the TC is used strictly as a back-up device, it'll still be a hassle if the TC dies in 18 months.

The OP is asking whether he should keep the TC or do something else. Personally, I would get an AEBS and combine that with a nice external HDD that can be used with the AEBS or connected directly to the Mac. Sure, it doens't look as pretty, but I think it's the better option.

ft
I agree. If I outgrow the drive... then buy another one.

Sucks if I outgrow time capsule, great for apple, gotta buy another time capsule.