What Router Should I Get?

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware edited January 2014
Hello all,



I have finally had enough of my Airport Express station. I cannot stand it anymore. My network drops out several times a day without warning. The indicator light is fine, but my MBP cannot see it. I have to restart it like twice a day, sometimes more. I took it back to the Apple Store KOP and they said it was functioning normall. My feeling is that it can't handle the interefence from the other WiFi networks in my apartment building. My MBP seems them...it just loses my network. I had the same problem with a snow base station a few years ago.



I am thinking of getting an 802.11n router as I have C2D MBP. Any thoughts? Price is a consideration. I just want something fast and reliable.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 22
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,228member
    Why not the AirPort Extreme Base Station?
  • Reply 2 of 22
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 16,907member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    Why not the AirPort Extreme Base Station?



    Expensive, and I have had some issues with airport extreme. Not as bad as the AExpress or standard snow...but yeah.
  • Reply 3 of 22
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post


    Expensive, and I have had some issues with airport extreme. Not as bad as the AExpress or standard snow...but yeah.



    Good call. I had problems with mine and returned it within the week. I returned to using my Linksys router which is running the Hyper-WRT firmware.
  • Reply 4 of 22
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 16,907member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by audiopollution View Post


    Good call. I had problems with mine and returned it within the week. I returned to using my Linksys router which is running the Hyper-WRT firmware.



    No Lynksys/Mac issues? Anything I need to know about setup?



    Also, would someone fill me in on what I need for 802.11n....just the software from Apple and compatible router, yes? Or is "n" restricted to Apple products. I thought I heard that somewhere.
  • Reply 5 of 22
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post


    No Lynksys/Mac issues? Anything I need to know about setup?



    Also, would someone fill me in on what I need for 802.11n....just the software from Apple and compatible router, yes? Or is "n" restricted to Apple products. I thought I heard that somewhere.



    The router I use is a Linksys WRT54G ... flashed with the firmware from the following link:



    http://www.thibor.co.uk



    I've had no issues using it with my Mac.



    Of course, it's only a G router ... not great if you're looking for a speedier solution.
  • Reply 6 of 22
    galleygalley Posts: 971member
    My Belkin N1 has been rock-solid. It also has the best status display ever.
  • Reply 7 of 22
    emaneman Posts: 7,204member
    I've used 3 different Belkin models between home and school, and I've never had any problems with them...
  • Reply 8 of 22
    Ewwww Belkin!!! I would stay away from belkin in my experience some of the worst wireless hardware around!
  • Reply 9 of 22
    splinemodelsplinemodel Posts: 7,311member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ChrisDaMacMan View Post


    Ewwww Belkin!!! I would stay away from belkin in my experience some of the worst wireless hardware around!



    Belkin uses OEM products from various taiwanese vendors, so the quality can be expected to vary from one product to the next. Linksys, netgear, and D-Link (I think) all design their own stuff.



    If I were buying a consumer wireless router, I'd get one with Micrel silicon. I'm not sure how to check that, but, nonetheless, I'd find this much out.
  • Reply 10 of 22
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post


    No Lynksys/Mac issues? Anything I need to know about setup?



    Also, would someone fill me in on what I need for 802.11n....just the software from Apple and compatible router, yes? Or is "n" restricted to Apple products. I thought I heard that somewhere.



    Linksys routers generally only need a working web browser to operate it, it's hard to get more platform agnostic than that.



    I think cross-brand compatibility has improved for "n" but I've never tried it. Unless you move a lot of files between two local computers, or need a long range, then "g" will do fine.
  • Reply 11 of 22
    feartecfeartec Posts: 119member
    I switched to a 802.11g Airport Extreme and wish I just kept my Linksys. You can't hardwire Ethernet cables from the router to the computer and I always like having a solid line to it, so Apple does have it's drawbacks. I also have had problems with the extreme and pretty much farting out of control and having to reset it. Don't go brand specific on this one, do research on every brand before deciding. 802.11n should not be a deciding factor...yet
  • Reply 12 of 22
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 16,907member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Feartec View Post


    I switched to a 802.11g Airport Extreme and wish I just kept my Linksys. You can't hardwire Ethernet cables from the router to the computer and I always like having a solid line to it, so Apple does have it's drawbacks. I also have had problems with the extreme and pretty much farting out of control and having to reset it. Don't go brand specific on this one, do research on every brand before deciding. 802.11n should not be a deciding factor...yet



    Good point. My thinking is that I'll go with something like this:



    http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Links...oductDetail.do
  • Reply 13 of 22
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    SDW I saw your link and the product description says Win 2000 or XP required.



    What gives? Will this work for Macs?
  • Reply 14 of 22
    walkerjswalkerjs Posts: 11member
    I've had no problems with any linksys wireless routers and my Macs, with the exception that if you are using WEP encryption you have to put a '$' in front of the WEP key. My brother-in-law got a Macbook and bought a $50 linksys (don't remember the model, it was one of the blue ones) and was able to configure it with his Mac with no issues (and my help.)



    Verizon came and installed FIOS at my place not too long ago and supplied a wireless router with the installation: an Activetech MI424WR and there were no problems whatsoever configuring it. The tech wanted me to use the Windows machine I have to configure it, but that was unnecessary. All our Macs (two Macbooks and one Mini) talk to it with no problems.



    My Macbook also seems to have no problem with a wide variety of routers that it 'finds' when I'm out and about with it, including my employer's Cisco heavy-duty wireless routers for the WAN.



    We do all the stuff too: Web, email, iChat, video iChat, downloading big Linux ISOs over bittor- er, downloading big files.
  • Reply 15 of 22
    ootlinkootlink Posts: 41member
    I'd give you a glowing recommendation for the D-Link DIR-655, especially if you have gigabit wired machines elsewhere in the house. The throughput is ridiculous..



    Over wireless, I have yet to test it, but from what I hear it's about as good as an even more expensive 802.11G router in range, but I'm not sure how it fares against other 802.11N routers.



    http://laptopmag.com/Features/Common...ked.htm?Page=2

    http://review.zdnet.com/D_Link_DIR_6...-32145084.html



    I got mine at amazon for $125 shipped (IIRC)



    The only thing that sucks is that while there's a USB port, it can't be used for printer sharing OR disk storage. Don't really care about printer sharing, since my printer is a network printer, but I would have loved to have a network hard drive going.



    The latest models (revision A2), which is about all that ships now, have blue LEDs and slightly newer chipsets.



    And it looks pretty sweet, had they not given it a piece of black plastic around it, it'd look like an Apple product (it does smell like one!)







    ^ if aesthetics matter any..



    Edit: BTW, there's a handful of routers on the market that have gigabit ethernet, this and the DGL-4300 (802.11G), as well as the Netgear Next routers. Unfortunately, the DGL-4300 doesn't have gigabit WAN, so you can't add on another gigabit switch and get full speeds.



    The Netgear NEXT routers don't have external antennas however, but damn they're sexy. lol.



    Best of luck either way I would love to try an Airport Extreme (they do have one advantage, they're dual band, [5.8 and 2.4ghz] and they can handle 802.11A clients, which only the buffalo routers can do as well).... D-Link will be releasing the DIR-855 soon which -IS- a dual band router, and I believe it has a usable USB port too
  • Reply 16 of 22
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 16,907member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by OoTLink View Post


    I'd give you a glowing recommendation for the D-Link DIR-655, especially if you have gigabit wired machines elsewhere in the house. The throughput is ridiculous..



    Over wireless, I have yet to test it, but from what I hear it's about as good as an even more expensive 802.11G router in range, but I'm not sure how it fares against other 802.11N routers.



    http://laptopmag.com/Features/Common...ked.htm?Page=2

    http://review.zdnet.com/D_Link_DIR_6...-32145084.html



    I got mine at amazon for $125 shipped (IIRC)



    The only thing that sucks is that while there's a USB port, it can't be used for printer sharing OR disk storage. Don't really care about printer sharing, since my printer is a network printer, but I would have loved to have a network hard drive going.



    The latest models (revision A2), which is about all that ships now, have blue LEDs and slightly newer chipsets.



    And it looks pretty sweet, had they not given it a piece of black plastic around it, it'd look like an Apple product (it does smell like one!)







    ^ if aesthetics matter any..



    Edit: BTW, there's a handful of routers on the market that have gigabit ethernet, this and the DGL-4300 (802.11G), as well as the Netgear Next routers. Unfortunately, the DGL-4300 doesn't have gigabit WAN, so you can't add on another gigabit switch and get full speeds.



    The Netgear NEXT routers don't have external antennas however, but damn they're sexy. lol.



    Best of luck either way I would love to try an Airport Extreme (they do have one advantage, they're dual band, [5.8 and 2.4ghz] and they can handle 802.11A clients, which only the buffalo routers can do as well).... D-Link will be releasing the DIR-855 soon which -IS- a dual band router, and I believe it has a usable USB port too



    Well, hardwiring is not an issue for me honestly. My goals are lack of interference and excellent speed. I am ready to lose my mind with this Airport Express, which Apple has checked out and says is fine. I think I will just turn it into a wireless printer adaptor or something. Pain in the ass.



    I'm really back to square one here. I kind of want to stay with Apple, but I've not had good experiences with their routers at all. Reading some reviews of the new Extreme, I may try it and see. Perhaps the increased range and N spec coupled with the 5GHZ band will help. One can hope.
  • Reply 17 of 22
    o4blackwrxo4blackwrx Posts: 382member
    I bought the Airport Extreme Base Station N a moth ago now and do not regret it at all. I have not used all the features of it yet, such as Air Disk or Wireless Printer, but I can tell you that I have 0 issues with it. I have used D-Link, Microsoft, Linksys, Airport Extreme (1st gen), Motolora, Netgear, & Airport Express wireless products before and I have never had any problems with my Apple ones. I have done literally 100+ installs of wireless routers and I have found none of them to be easier to maintain then Apple's. Linksys comes in at a close second. I would recommend trying the new N base station and upgrade the firmware as soon as you get it. I haven't regretted mine and I even had a Linksys WRT54G laying around I could've used instead of spending the $189 for the N base station.
  • Reply 18 of 22
    I've been using the new Airport Extreme Base Station (N) since early march, w/ zero issues. My config is not very complex, admittedly (MBP, Windows laptop & HP printer). I use the 5.0GHz frequency; speeds are very good, and zero flakiness so far...
  • Reply 19 of 22
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 16,907member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cubbie5150 View Post


    I've been using the new Airport Extreme Base Station (N) since early march, w/ zero issues. My config is not very complex, admittedly (MBP, Windows laptop & HP printer). I use the 5.0GHz frequency; speeds are very good, and zero flakiness so far...



    Well, I decided to take the risk today and I bought the Airport Extreme. I got it home over lunch and set it up, but I can't yet get an IP address. I need to do some more fiddling. I took the AExpress and connected it to the printer, then went and created a new network. I still get the blinking amber light on the Extreme though. I think I may need to shutoff my modem completely (you have to pull the batt pack because it's a Comcast VoIP one). I had some trouble getting the Airport Express set up originally back in August too. We'll see. I also had some trouble with the Macbook seeing the basestations. I don't know. Perhaps I live in a giant EMF field, like in Lost
  • Reply 20 of 22
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post


    Well, I decided to take the risk today and I bought the Airport Extreme. I got it home over lunch and set it up, but I can't yet get an IP address. I need to do some more fiddling. I took the AExpress and connected it to the printer, then went and created a new network. I still get the blinking amber light on the Extreme though. I think I may need to shutoff my modem completely (you have to pull the batt pack because it's a Comcast VoIP one). I had some trouble getting the Airport Express set up originally back in August too. We'll see. I also had some trouble with the Macbook seeing the basestations. I don't know. Perhaps I live in a giant EMF field, like in Lost



    That's exactly what you need to do... I'd unplug your modem from the power source for about 5 minutes, connect it to the AEBS, plug modem back in, turn it and AEBS on... I had same issues until I unplugged my modem...
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