Totally unscientific test of new Airport Extreme 5

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by class77, Jun 24, 2011.

  1. class77 macrumors 6502a

    class77

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2010
    #1
    I just replaced my 10 day old Airport Extreme 4 with a new Airport Extreme 5 and in my opinion, there is a definite increase in range. I have nothing scientific to back this up, just a test of the wifi range on my iPhone4. My office(where the router is) is at one end of the house and the garage is at the other end of the house.

    When I set up the AE4, I walked around my small home(2600 Sq feet on one floor) and had only 2 bars by the time I got 2 rooms away. I lost signal totally before I got to the door to the garage.

    When I set up the AE5, I had 3 bars in all rooms of the house. I had 2 bars at the back door, I had two bars in my husband's shop(which is attached but not part of the house) and I had 1 bar standing in the driveway to my home outside my garage! I LOVE the new Extreme and I'm very glad I got it.

    Just my .$02 since there has not been much information available. Hope it helps somebody
     
  2. unobtainium macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2011
    #2
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

    Thanks for that info! I don't need that much range (I'm in a condo) but nevertheless it's good to hear confirmation that Apple has impeoved the AE.
     
  3. fehhkk macrumors 6502a

    fehhkk

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
  4. class77 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    class77

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2010
    #4
    Seems to actually be running cooler, but that's just judged on touch after being on for less than 3 hours
     
  5. applefan289 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    Location:
    USA
    #5
    I have a feeling this "minor" update from Apple for the Airport Extreme and Time Capsule is:

    Airport Extreme - longer range, runs cooler, and possibly other minor improvements

    Time Capsule - increased storage to 2 and 3 terabytes, along with the changes mentioned above.

    If Time Capsule really does have longer range, I will have to buy it because I'm using an Airport Extreme (last generation) and I've wanted a simple way to back up my stuff, so if on top of that, I get longer range, I'll definitely be happy. Not to mention I can sell my Airport Extreme for close to $100, if not more.
     
  6. itickings macrumors 6502a

    itickings

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2007
    #6
    Thanks for the unscientific report. Sounds promising at least.

    Now I'm just waiting for somebody to get all scientific and vivisect the newcomer for our enjoyment. :D
     
  7. tibere86 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2010
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #7
    Couldn't Apple just have easily modified the current firmware to bump up the output power?
     
  8. macleod199 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2007
    #8
    Short answer: no.

    Slightly longer answer - the way we're magically getting higher speeds on the same spectrum is more and more complex symbol encoding, which means encoding and decoding hardware have to improve their ability to generate distinguish similar symbols in a noisy environment.

    Just jacking up the power (even if the power adapter components supported it - not a given) doesn't necessarily solve the noise problem. It may just distort the signal (like overdriving a microphone or guitar), if the encoders/decoders aren't built to handle it. And if the signal is distorted, it's only going to hurt bandwidth.
     
  9. cdd543 macrumors 6502

    cdd543

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Location:
    Denver
    #9
    I'm grabbing one in the morning to replace my generation 4 and will report back as well. Sounds promising.
     
  10. Dionysus2112 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2011
    #10
    thx for the post OP if i can find one at BestBuy tomorrow ill grab one using the 100 Best Buy gift card from the ED promo.
     
  11. ugahairydawgs macrumors 68020

    ugahairydawgs

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2010
    #11
    So does it have 4 usable ethernet ports on the back now? Or does the spec sheet total include the WAN port in the number listed?
     
  12. tibere86 macrumors member

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    Jul 9, 2010
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #12
    Great explanation. Thanks!
     
  13. cdd543 macrumors 6502

    cdd543

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Location:
    Denver
    #13
    I got mine today and it's a huge difference for me. My modem and router live in the basement and the throughput is much higher in my house. Upstairs I'm getting double and triple the speeds I was getting previously. This is on my iphone 4 and android device. My far corner upstairs bedroom would get 7mbps tops of my 30mbps connection. Now I'm getting 16-18 in same spot on both devices. Outside I would be lucky to hit 2mbps max(brick home) and I got 17 on iphone and 6mbps on my android phone. My android phone always receives a poorer wifi signal. This is also a lot better than the linksys e4200, netgear n750 and asus rt-n56u which i just tested recently. Obviously not scientific in any way, but this thing looks awesome so far.
     
  14. TallManNY macrumors 68040

    TallManNY

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2007
    #14
    Great news. I've also got a large amount of space to cover (front porch and back yard, plus three floors). Getting slowish speeds with old AEBS located in basement. Just a little bit of boost in connection would really help some key problem areas.

    Now can we get confirmation that AEBS and TC are the same in terms of Wi-Fi connection. I'm happy to pay $120 more for enclosed backup, but better wi-fi connection is much more important than inconvenience of attaching external back up hard drive.
     
  15. crellion macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2009
    #15
    I want to know some more key-differences between the G4 and this new-G5 model...

    I have a G4, but as soon as you get to the corner of the house (2600 sq ft) - I get a dead-spot... Nothing goes through...

    Wonder if this is a major improvement from that?
     
  16. kfscoll macrumors 65816

    kfscoll

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2009
    #16
    Huh? The new Airport Extreme Base Stations have 2.8x the output power of the previous generation.

    I don't know where your "symbol encoding/decoding" mumbo-jumbo is coming from, but it sounds made up to me. Link? I think that it's far more likely that the added range of the new Apple routers is simply because of their higher output power.
     
  17. MikhailT macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    #17
    What about stability and wireless connection drops, have you guys notice any so far?
     
  18. DarwinOSX macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2009
    #18
    Thats because you don't understand how this works. Instead of trying to understand it you oddly call it mumbo jumbo. Increased power alone does not mean increased range or speed. Try doing some research. Here I'll even do it for you. All you have to do is read.

    http://www.smallnetbuilder.com/wire...516-why-high-power-routers-dont-improve-range


     
  19. kfscoll, Jun 26, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2011

    kfscoll macrumors 65816

    kfscoll

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2009
    #19
    Uh, okay, that article basically says that in addition to increasing router output power, other ways to achieve increased range are to boost client signal power and/or to increase antenna gain. It says NOTHING about "symbol encoding and decoding" which is the mumbo-jumbo I was referring to.

    Believe me, I "understand how this works." That article makes sense. "Symbol encoding and decoding?" Not so much.

    In addition to the new AEBS' increased power output, it's also been mentioned that it might also have a new antenna configuration. If so, the new AEBS might be able to "shout louder" (to use the parlance of the article you linked) and "hear better" (my words).

    Regardless, I have a new AEBS on order, so we'll see if it's better, the same, or worse than my existing AEBS. I'll be the first to eat crow if there's no improvement.
     
  20. cdd543 macrumors 6502

    cdd543

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Location:
    Denver
    #20
    No issues so far. Netflix on apple tv and iPad working great. Haven't noticed any drops.
     
  21. crellion macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2009
    #21
    Well Apple does call this router as 5th-GEN... So they HAD to have a reason to call it that... If it was nothing - I don't know why they don't just keep selling the current model the way it is with the same price?
     
  22. tibere86 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2010
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #22
    Did you notice any latency differences between them?
     
  23. WiiDSmoker macrumors 65816

    WiiDSmoker

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2009
    Location:
    Hermitage, TN
    #23
    So is it 4[3+WAN] ethernet ports or 5 [4+WAN]?
     
  24. TallManNY macrumors 68040

    TallManNY

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2007
    #24
    Any real reviews out there?

    Is this thread still the best source of performance tests on the new routers? Any significant breakdowns and tests out there yet? I've read about the hard drive "scandal" about it not necessarily really being server grade. But I would have thought that another big issue for folks would have been performance and range. So far nothing and original poster seems to indicate that there are significant improvements in that area.
     
  25. cdd543 macrumors 6502

    cdd543

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    Location:
    Denver
    #25
    Negligible--maybe netgear was higher latency--had worst range too. Asus one was best of those three for me.
     

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