Apple Airport Replacement

My existing Network seems to have a few drop outs and doesn’t provide full coverage for our 3 storey home. It comprises;

100Mbps Fibre Modem/Router supplied by the ISP (WiFi function disabled) and connected to an Apple Airport Express - acting as a WiFi access point for the lower and mid level rooms.

A Cat6a cable is connected to the router on the 1st floor and provides an ethernet connection point on the 3rd floor for an Apple TimeCapsule - acting as a WiFi access point for the 3rd floor and possibly mid level rooms too.

It should enable devices to switch to the nearest access point, depending which floor you are on etc; but devices seem to ‘hang on’ to the previous access point (despite sharing the same SSID name).

Apple no longer supports these devices and there are still some areas of the house with poor WiFi connectivity.

Rock solid WiFi is important for the whole family to use their devices and in particular, the fact that I’ve just had a WiFi House Alarm installed.

I guess I need a mesh system.

Any recommendations? :grinning: :grinning:

We have an Eero system and you can get it during Amazon’s upcoming Prime day. We still use an Airport Express to stream music from an iPhone into the 552. We have been very pleased with the Eero setup.

Thanks for the reply Skip, but unfortunately Eero isn’t available here in New Zealand :frowning_face:

I used to use AirPort Extreme and moved to Netgear Orbi (not strictly mesh). I felt I got improvements all around - solid signal, extended coverage and beyond the original range of AirPort Extreme. The dedicated backhaul of the Orbi certainly helped, I felt.

My needs these days have changed somewhat and now use a Synology router - so far very impressed, although coverage needs are not the same, so can’t comment on ultimate range performance. But apps, interface and access controls exceed the Orbi , and arguably the Airport Extreme, capabilities and are unique (they’ve essentially used their NAS interface). They also have a “mesh” extender similar to Orbi, but I can’t comment on its performance.

1 Like

Another recommendation for the Orbi WiFi System (RBK50) AC3000.

I had a very similar Apple set up to you, and with similar results. Apparently the Apple WiFi stuff is now ancient technology. I replaced the Apple kit a few months ago with BT Whole Home WiFi discs ( white discs which will work with any ISP / router). It’s a mesh system and works brilliantly, 3 discs cover the whole house and most of the garden. Confusingly BT also offer “Complete WifI” which do a similar thing but these are black discs and are only compatible with a BT router.

Good luck, Paul

Thanks Paul, if I was still living in the UK, I think that would be ideal … unfortunately no BT stuff here in New Zealand :grinning::grinning::grinning::grinning::grinning:

Although not as consumer plug and play as some, but I highly recommend the Ubiquiti products. They are quality designed, support the wifi protocols well such as fast roaming and hand off, can support mesh, wireless uplinks, and can be PoE powered to reduce wiring, PSUs and clutter.
FWIW they work well with Naim, Roon, Qobuz, Tidal, Netflix 4k, Amazon Prime etc (at the same time) and support WMM as default, so you can stream hidef reliably over wifi with other flows on the wifi, ideal for multimedia prioritisation if you set your UPnP server OS to support (though this may require IT know how on your UPnP server config)… but it’s there you should you need it.
Setting up overlapping and cooperating coverage is excellent, but there is sooo much more to a good wifi system than simply coverage.

If you were in the UK I would also recommend the BT Whole Home products… they are very good, albeit they don’t support PoE or WMM (as far as I am aware), but excel at being plug and play.

Just replaced our aging Netgear wifi router with a TP one and the performance all over the house and garden / garage area is great. Naim streamer never dropped out also.

I’ve recently put in the TP-Link Deco M4 system.

I previously had a Draytek router and Draytek Access point with all the band steering and router assisted roaming enabled but we were experiencing slow speeds and dropouts from time to time. It was only a 802.11g/n system, albeit dual band.

The M4 set was only £99.99 for 3 units.

I have installed 2, both wired and placed into access point mode as I wanted to continue to use the Draytek router for routing as it supports dual WAN connections and we have 2 internet connections.

Now we have faultless Wi-Fi throughout the house and it reaches well into the garden too. on an iPad gets me 220 mbps almost everywhere inside which is what a wired connection will achieve. I haven’t found the need to install the 3rd point as our house isn’t exactly massive (3 bed detached) and one at the front of the house and back is sufficient.

I’ve noticed that the Naim app and Roon now connect instantly so it must be handling Multicast better than the Draytek did.

We changed over from an AirPort Extreme setup earlier this year. No issues over the time we had this setup but wireless coverage was the main issue that made us change. We went for the TP Deco M4 system. Very easy to setup and it works very well. The only thing to be aware of is the number of ports available for wired devices. Ours just plugs into a 2960 and everything else plugs into that so it’s not an issue, but if you have a few devices wired directly to the Extreme then a bit of reconfiguration will be required.

1 Like

I ditched my Airport Extreme and airport express extender for a Ubiquiti Amplifi HD Mesh system and it’s been great so far. So good I no longer have to wire my Muso to the network and can rely exclusively on Wifi for multiroom and stand alone. I’m in the states.

I replaced my Airport Extreme with two TP-Link Deco M5’s and couldn’t be happier. It is so much better and faster. I also solved the dropouts I was having with a secondary airport express used for streaming that was connected to my Oppo 205 via optical by moving to a Apple TV connected with ethernet in & HDMI out. Sound quality improved too.

On this, as in most naim-related stuff I’m with @Simon-in-Suffolk.

I am in oz and moved from an apple airport environment when the children discovered YouTube and 4K streaming. I initially used google wifi but abandoned that after a few annoying niggles. I now use ubiquiti amplifi HD. I have four access points around the house with one near the NDX2 for the last hop to my streamer.

It is rock solid and fast. Easy to configure and maintain with an app on your phone. Should be available in NZ too.

Interesting! I quite like Google Wifi, and I think it is quite user friendly.

Nothing really wrong with google wifi. Not bad at all and yes to user friendly for the most part.

I grew a bit frustrated with the software especially when I tried to take the network down and rebuild it when I found the devices refused to release their old settings and I couldn’t easily remedy it. They were way better for house coverage than my patchwork airport network.

I moved to the amplifi network mostly as they had more Ethernet ports per device so I could service a few game consoles and media centres and they are actually working better and faster for me. I prefer the app too.

Thanks Simon… which particular model from Ubiquiti, would you recommend?

Thanks :grinning:

I use the UAP-AC-Lite models with wired connections, and the UAP-AC-M for wireless uplink mesh infill.

Awesome… thank you :grinning:

1 Like

This topic was automatically closed 60 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.