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3 thoughts on “Airport Extreme 802.11N (5TH GEN)

  1. Cary Champlin says:
    100 of 106 people found the following review helpful:
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    High performance WiFi (yes), my own cloud (cool), and easy setup (nice), July 26, 2011
    By 
    Cary Champlin (Seattle) –

    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: Airport Extreme 802.11N (5TH GEN) (Personal Computers)

    Although setup is quick, it is the high performance 802.11n dual RF bands and the creation of my own cloud storage (HD on USB port) that makes the AirPort Extreme a best-in-class choice!

    Setup:
    After reading the other reviews, I knew this was going to be quick and easy. I started a pot of coffee thinking I could enjoy a cup while plugging in the AirPort Extreme Base Station (AEBS) and configuring it. Here are the steps:

    1. Attached an ethernet cable from the AEBS to my ISP connection. Plugged in the AC adapter and power cord. AEBS powered up. Status light flashed green for a second, glowed amber for several seconds, then flashed amber until the AEBS was configured from a computer.

    2. From my MacBook Pro (wireless access works fine for this step), the airport utility app had already launched and was waiting for me (otherwise, go to ApplicationsUtilitiesAirPort Utility.app). Followed instructions that included typing in a router name and two passwords. The default AEBS configuration selects channels and RF bands automatically to optimize speed.

    3. Plugged a spare hard drive (in my case: Mac OS Extended (Journaled) formatted 1 TB HD) into AC outlet and the USB port. As soon as the HD had started, it showed up as a MBP network drive device on ‘Finder’. I then created a folder, transferred a file, and read it back.

    At this point, the coffee machine beeped to let me know my coffee was ready. I was done before the coffee was even ready – about three minutes from opening the box to being operational! Gotta luv it.

    Basic Performance Testing:
    Not about to let the coffee go to waste, I proceeded with some performance testing. I conducted some very basic data throughput tests by transferring files from the MBP through the AEBS to the HD. This test arrangement kept my ISP download and upload data rates out of the equation. For the wired tests, the MBP was connected to one of the three AEBS Gigabit ports.

    Test 1 (a control test configuration between MBP and HD via USB on MBP):
    Write to HD: 33.8 MBytes/sec
    Read from HD: 34.3 MBytes/sec

    Test 2 (wired data transfer)
    From MBP to AEBS via Gigabit port, then from AEBS to HD via USB): 13.6 MBytes/sec
    From HD to AEBS via USB, then from AEBS to MBP via Gigabit port): 18.3 MBytes/sec

    Test 3 (wireless data transfer – 5 GHz RF band)
    From MBP to AEBS, then from AEBS to HD via USB): 7.8 MBytes/sec
    From HD to AEBS via USB, then from AEBS to MBP): 12.6 MBytes/sec

    Test 4 (range test, 5 GHz RF band between MBP and AEBS with a max capacity of 300 Mbits/sec):
    3 ft, devices in close proximity: 300 Mbits/sec
    50 ft, indoors, no ext walls in path: 243 Mbits/sec
    70 ft, outdoors, one ext wall in path: 144 Mbits/sec
    80 ft, outdoors, one ext wall in path: 104 Mbits/sec

    Default settings seem to provide high bit-rate connections. Using ‘manual setup’ in Airport Utility.app, I tested several variations on the configuration without improving the rate/range for the 802.11n wireless provided by the default setting of the APBS. Reading data from the HD back through the AEBS to the MBP was always faster than writing data to the HD. Including ethernet into the data transfer path (Test 2 compared to Test 1) reduced data rates in half. Including WiFi into the data transfer path (Test 3 compared to Test 2) reduced data rates to 2/3. Range test performance was very good for distances within 50 feet.

    My own storage cloud:
    Originally, I envisioned just using the HD (USB port on AEBS) as a network drive for a SVN (i.e., software version control) repository in support of software development on my MBP. But, I realized that this drive is a common storage location for all my devices (MBP, iPad, iPhone, iTouch) that is accessible wirelessly on my local WiFi. And with a VPN connection, from anywhere with WiFi access to the internet. Simply stated, I have my very own cloud! We aren’t talking about a skimpy few GB either, but a full TB of dedicated exclusive mine-only cloud. Now, that’s cool.

    Why buy the 5th generation AEBS:
    – High performance 802.11n wireless performance
    – Easy and quick setup
    – USB port for attaching a hard drive or printer
    – Capability to create my very own AEBS WiFi storage cloud for all my devices
    – Guest access to ISP without access to other devices or attached USB device
    – Sleek clean stylish look

    I am so completely pleased with this purchase.

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  2. J. A. Reyes "JaRa76" says:
    77 of 82 people found the following review helpful:
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Best Router I have used, July 6, 2011
    By 
    J. A. Reyes “JaRa76” (NY, NY) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    This review is from: Airport Extreme 802.11N (5TH GEN) (Personal Computers)

    Just to be clear on this, I did try the Cisco E4200, which, according with people who knows about wireless networking, is the best wireless router out there but the range was not as good as the Airport Extreme. I have a town house and the router needs to be in the basement, the E4200 signal did reach the second floor, but with more than two devices connected to the router, the signal dropped so much that was unusable. With the Airport Extreme, no problems at all, the signal is fast enough with two or more devices connected. An additional perk is that with the E4200 you can use the USB port just for storage but not for a printer, but with the Airport Extreme, you can connect an USB Hub and have a printer an a external Hard Drive connected at the same time. This router is a keeper.

    My setup: 2 iPads, 2 iPhones, 1 PC, 3 Macs.

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  3. Mister Murse says:
    26 of 29 people found the following review helpful:
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Simple & Painless, July 2, 2011
    By 

    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: Airport Extreme 802.11N (5TH GEN) (Personal Computers)

    I switched to this router from my old modem/wireless router in one and am very pleased. Installation of this router was simple and painless, with the Mac doing all the work, literally. Plugged it in and OS X recognized it and setup went without a hitch. I’ve also paired this with an external hard drive, and now I can use Time Machine to wirelessly create backups, which is perfect for any MacBook/MacBook Pro/MacBook Air owners who don’t want to continuously plug in a hard drive to allow backups; just set it up and Time Machine takes care of the rest! Very happy customer.

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