Amazon Review by Paulmoh
1393 people found the following review helpful
Not so technical review from a technical guy
I am a Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE). I am going to describe this router in non technical terms.
This is a replacement router for a Cisco E4200.
there is a lot to like about the new Extreme, I am going to briefly say, it is very easy to setup, you are not overwhelmed by multitudes of blinking lights and the ports are intuitively marked. The Airport Extreme Software is a pleasure to work with. Even if you are challenged by setting up a wireless network, you should know that setting this one up can be as easy as setting up a wireless password. Most features you want upfront are enabled by default. You really don’t need to know much to start your journey.
For you, what will inevitably be an indication of good performance is the range, quality of signal and reliability of each feature so let’s get to it.
The set Up
Connected a 2400x1200 Laser Printer via the Ethernetport.
Connected a 2 Terabyte external Hard Drive, in effect turned this in to a Time Capsule
Location, Basement, two floors beneath me, Far North East corner of the house.
Simultaneous connections from a TV to Netflix, a Gaming laptop to Steam, an iPad, A Desktop and everyone’s cell phones at home (hodgepodge of Android and iOS devices)
the goal was to tax the CPU, not Monitor Verizon’s network; So the focus was on the router during heavy loads while printing, accessing the hard drive and connecting to the internet.
The processor in this device is very capable, We all decided to hit everything at the same time, I am pleased to report the printer took the same amount of time to print a 250 MB Illustrator File as if it were the only device on the Network, Netflix didn’t miss a beat, transferring 500 GB worth of Data over the air was as fast as if it was the only activity in progress. We monitored the lag progress during an online gaming session. the lag was consistent with past performances. In short, this device will keep up at the high-end of demand for a residential dwelling (and I dare say small to medium sized businesses).
This is probably where you will get in to a subjective discussion with other people over what this device can do. Please note, the range is very dependent on your set of restrictions. For this reason we placed the router in the northeast corner of the basement and 2 floor from the indoor range testing site. From a bedroom located 2 floors up and in the Southwest corner of the house, we had a flawless connection to the router with acceptable degradation of signal. A desktop with ac WiFi capability did experience a superior connection. Also the range outside of the house improved greatly, a 50 feet connection from the southwest corner of the yard proved to be reliable for both n, ac and g devices. Oddly enough a Nintendo console with b protocol was experiencing a stronger connection to the router. I don’t know how this could be possible unless the antenna scheme on the router is in fact as good as Apple says it is.
Pleased to report this device keeps a steady connection. the drop rate is very low and infrequent.
Apple did a fantastic job here. I could get in to details on why this router is just as good as some Enterprise routers but I think that will put you to sleep.
What should you do?
I am very impressed with this device. The setup is fool-proof and the performance has been excellent, while it is more expensive than other routers in its class, I do believe you get more and if you have a problem, taking it to the Apple Store for Genius consultation will more than make up for any price gap with others. Remember, Range is a highly subjective performance gauge, your situation may not be as clear cut, there maybe more signal interference around you or there maybe more physical obstruction (like really dense walls, floors or ceilings. So for this reason, buy this from a retailer with a liberal return Policy. You can always bring it back and try a different brand.
This router impressed me, enough so that I will be giving a MacBook Pro serious considerations for my next Laptop. The Halo effect certainly worked on me.
Areas of Improvement.
Packaging. I dropped the router after I opened the box. It is nearly impossible for an unsuspecting customer not to do this. Open this box over a bed or somewhere not too high above the floor.
You can access the internal part of the router fairly easily, I opened this and to my surprise, there is space for a 3.5" internal hard drive, I was very excited to see this but further investigation showed that there is no way to connect the hard drive to the logic board. Understandably so! (otherwise why would you buy a Time Capsule) But obviously for me, having an extra hard drive sitting around collecting dust would have given me a way to reuse and recycle.
Good luck with your decision.