Apple Time Capsule lives on with third-party antenna, 5TB hard drive update

Posted:
in General Discussion
Upgrade vendor Quickertek has upgraded stock Apple 802.11ac 2-terabyte Time Capsules with larger hard drives and a high-gain external antenna in a bid to keep the hardware relevant -- but the enhancements come at a price.




The base upgrade replaces the stock hard drive in the Time Capsule with a 5TB hard drive. An upgraded unit retails for $499 through the QuickerTek website.

A $699 version adds further modifications, with the stock device not only boasting a 5TB hard drive, but a very large combination 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz external six-antenna array added to the top of the unit.

Both models offered by QuickerTek have a one-year parts and labor warranty through the company, as either modification violates the Apple-provided warranty on the hardware.

Apple's Time Capsule last saw updated hardware on June 10, 2013. Apple's retail price for the 2TB Time Capsule remains $299, with a 3TB model available for $399.

The last software update for the product was at the end of 2016, and fixed a long-standing "Back to My Mac" bug.

Near the end of November, reports started circulating -- backed by AppleInsider sources -- suggesting that Apple may be ending the AirPort family hardware. Former AirPort engineers are now reportedly working on other teams, including Apple TV development.

The internal departmental changes suggest that Apple has no plans to update its existing lineup of routers, including the AirPort Extreme, Time Capsule, and AirPort Express, but do not discount the possibility of the functionality being added to a different product. Apple's AirPort Express network extender and AirPlay audio target has not even been updated to the 802.11ac Wi-Fi specification.

Without specifically confirming the dissolution of the AirPort hardware division, were were told by our contacts within Apple speaking on the condition of anonymity that the AirPort ecosystem back to the 802.11n version of the AirPort Extreme basestation would be made "as safe as possible for as long as possible."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 42
    JanNLJanNL Posts: 282member
    Stylish /s
    MetriacanthosaurusSpamSandwichirelandrandominternetpersontallest skilwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 42
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,319member
    This is why Jony Ive runs design at Apple.
    StrangeDaysdamn_its_hotrepressthislolliverwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 42
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,417member
    What the...
    tallest skilrepressthis
  • Reply 4 of 42
    steven n.steven n. Posts: 1,124member
    I have gone through a 6-8 WiFi routers trying to find one capable of covering my entire house without issue. The vertical Airport is the only one that worked. In fact, it covers my house and unto 2 houses down with no dead zones. Sweet.

    For years, when people would argue if Apple was a software company or a hardware company, I made the point they were a systems house. They did both software and hardware designed to run in a tightly coupled manner. They used standards so you didn't have to use Apple stuff but their magic spice of system's integration made it so the experience was much better than anything els around if you did.

    I am wondering if they are loosing this vision. Airport. Monitors...:-(
    repressthiswatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 42
    williamhwilliamh Posts: 672member
    Upgrade vendor Quickertek has upgraded stock Apple 802.11ac 2-terabyte Time Capsules with larger hard drives and a high-gain external antenna in a bid to keep the hardware relevant -- but the enhancements come at a price.



    So does this fly or something? I think it is safe to say that SJ would not approve. I want to just laugh but I wouldn't mind some facts about this, like what sort of increased range you actually get.  I went to their website and didn't see that. Granted, I lost interest pretty fast.
  • Reply 6 of 42
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,897administrator
    williamh said:
    So does this fly or something? I think it is safe to say that SJ would not approve. I want to just laugh but I wouldn't mind some facts about this, like what sort of increased range you actually get.  I went to their website and didn't see that. Granted, I lost interest pretty fast.
    We've asked for a review loaner. We've got a lot of stuff we can test it against.
    patchythepiraterepressthis
  • Reply 7 of 42
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,614member
    lkrupp said:
    This is why Jony Ive runs design at Apple.
    :smile:   I mean, where would you PUT this monstrosity. I wish Apple would spin off a tiny part of the company to make small and insignificant products like routers, monitors, and other handy peripherals. I don't mind going with a different router but I REALLY mind losing the Time Machine feature. I don't mind losing the Thunderbolt display but I'd really like something nice looking instead. 

    repressthis
  • Reply 8 of 42
    mobirdmobird Posts: 276member
    What if you just wanted the ugly antenna upgrade
    tallest skilrepressthis
  • Reply 9 of 42
    emig647emig647 Posts: 2,414member
    paxman said:
    lkrupp said:
    This is why Jony Ive runs design at Apple.
    :smile:   I mean, where would you PUT this monstrosity. I wish Apple would spin off a tiny part of the company to make small and insignificant products like routers, monitors, and other handy peripherals. I don't mind going with a different router but I REALLY mind losing the Time Machine feature. I don't mind losing the Thunderbolt display but I'd really like something nice looking instead. 

    For time machine you can buy a NAS and set it up. I have time machine on my 32TB Synology for all the users in my house set up. Ironically I have an AirPort Extreme without time machine sitting next to it. 
    jbdragon
  • Reply 10 of 42
    That's a real eye-poker. They could have used antennas with 1/2" radius ends. That's a really ugly design, but I'd get it if it actually improved range and reception capabilities. Fortunately, I don't need it.

    My reliable 4th generation 2TB Time Capsule is on the ground floor and it covers my upstairs rooms and my basement with a strong signal without any need for antennas (although my basement iMac is normally connected using Ethernet cable). Except for the slow drive speed even using an Ethernet connection, my Time Capsule gives me zero problems. Just set it and forget it. I upgrade the firmware occasionally and that's about it. It connects my Rokus, FireTV, other Macs, Grace Digital Internet Radio, Android streaming boxes and PS3 simultaneously without a hitch.

    It would be nice if Apple would build a router with an internal PLEX server (like some of the newer routers have) which would come in handy. However, I know that's not going to happen.
    edited March 2017
  • Reply 11 of 42
    wozwozwozwoz Posts: 238member
    You really don't want to be using wi-fi for back-up purposes:  all you are doing is needlessly radiating your brain, and turning your home into a potentially unsafe environment, esp if you have kids around. Get an ethernet connection, and do it properly, efficiently and safely.
    SpamSandwich
  • Reply 12 of 42
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,492member
    steven n. said:
    I have gone through a 6-8 WiFi routers trying to find one capable of covering my entire house without issue. The vertical Airport is the only one that worked. In fact, it covers my house and unto 2 houses down with no dead zones. Sweet.

    For years, when people would argue if Apple was a software company or a hardware company, I made the point they were a systems house. They did both software and hardware designed to run in a tightly coupled manner. They used standards so you didn't have to use Apple stuff but their magic spice of system's integration made it so the experience was much better than anything els around if you did.

    I am wondering if they are loosing this vision. Airport. Monitors...:-(
    It is pretty clear that Apple lost interest in monitors when the race to the bottom of pricing showed no sign of abating. Sure, 5K etc etc, but monitors have a limit to what they can actually do. Oh, add ports, maybe graphics, but all this is isn't going to want to make people "upgrade" on an annual basis. The same is likely true of the AirPort. It had a good run, but it doesn't seem like Apple sees it as a Something That Will Enhance and Change Peoples' Lives (tm). I think they are wrong for the reason you cite (AirPorts are solid tech) but they sure don't excite people to upgrade periodically (= make AAPL cash.) Plus, you could make an argument that local TimeMachine backups compete with their intent to offer iCloud storage services for a fee. 

    I think there is room in this space for some nice stuff. How about network based VPN? Instead of running the VPN server on a mac, put it on the AirPort?

    And of course, Apple itself actually makes no hardware at all. They don't have factories. They contract for that. I do think Apple employees write code though.
  • Reply 13 of 42
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 8,588member
    wozwoz said:
    You really don't want to be using wi-fi for back-up purposes:  all you are doing is needlessly radiating your brain, and turning your home into a potentially unsafe environment, esp if you have kids around. Get an ethernet connection, and do it properly, efficiently and safely.
    Utter nonsense, and the same old nonsense from you -- you constantly post about wifi and bluetooth being dangerous sources of radiation but you have absolutely nothing to back that up with when asked for sources. 
    lkrupplolliverjetzwatto_cobraAppleZulu
  • Reply 14 of 42
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,614member
    emig647 said:
    paxman said:
    lkrupp said:
    This is why Jony Ive runs design at Apple.
    :smile:   I mean, where would you PUT this monstrosity. I wish Apple would spin off a tiny part of the company to make small and insignificant products like routers, monitors, and other handy peripherals. I don't mind going with a different router but I REALLY mind losing the Time Machine feature. I don't mind losing the Thunderbolt display but I'd really like something nice looking instead. 

    For time machine you can buy a NAS and set it up. I have time machine on my 32TB Synology for all the users in my house set up. Ironically I have an AirPort Extreme without time machine sitting next to it. 
    So you connect your Synology to an Airport extreme?  Could this be done with a third party wifi router and would it be reliable? I once tried to connect an HD to an AirportExtreme and it was a massive bag of hurt. Just never worked reliably. 
  • Reply 15 of 42
    irelandireland Posts: 17,671member
    A stroke of genius here, combine a quadcopter with a router—signal wherever you go.
    SpamSandwichwatto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 42
    cescocesco Posts: 37member
    Calling it the Sideshow Bob basestetion.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 42
    damn_its_hotdamn_its_hot Posts: 1,186member
    paxman said:
    lkrupp said:
    This is why Jony Ive runs design at Apple.
    :smile:   I mean, where would you PUT this monstrosity... ...I REALLY mind losing the Time Machine feature...  


    Seems like they could have at least made the antennas white or a lite gray. This thing reminds me of a roadie for Bob Marley after grabbing an electrical cord with short!
    SpamSandwichwatto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 42
    kamiltonkamilton Posts: 262member
    Could do a colonoscopy with that thing
  • Reply 19 of 42
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,417member
    ireland said:
    A stroke of genius here, combine a quadcopter with a router—signal wherever you go.
    And power the quadrocopter with laser beams!
  • Reply 20 of 42
    vmarksvmarks Posts: 724editor
    wozwoz said:
    You really don't want to be using wi-fi for back-up purposes:  all you are doing is needlessly radiating your brain, and turning your home into a potentially unsafe environment, esp if you have kids around. Get an ethernet connection, and do it properly, efficiently and safely.
    I want to ask:

    We're bombarded by wireless radiation all the time. We have been for decades, with AM, FM, Television (UHF/VHF, and now ATSC in the same spectrum space), Satellite, cordless 900mhz phones, mobile phones (AMPS, GSM, CDMA, LTE, and so on) - Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and the signals used for wireless meter reading, among other things. Even if we shut off Wi-Fi and Bluetooth as you'd recommend, all these other signals are still reflecting around. What's your recommendation for living among these other signals that none of us have any control over?

    I agree that a wired solution is faster than the wireless one, but I would like to hear your answer to the question above.

    lolliver
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