Friday, September 17, 2010

Airport Express or Airport Extreme?

        Cons to getting an Airport Express:
           1.  Airport Express will only handle 10 wireless connections at a time instead of 50 for the Extreme. However, 10 is more than enough for the typical household. So, the limit of 10 is not really a disadvantage. 
           2.  The USB port on the Airport Express can be connected to only a printer, whereas the USB port on the "Extreme" can also handle a hard drive for a central backup drive for several household computers. But, if network backup capability is not needed this is not really a disadvantage.

        Pros for getting an Airport Express:
          1. The Airport Express is less expensive (i.e. $99 compared to $179).
          2. The Airport Express has an additional feature called "AirTunes" which is not included with the Airport Extreme. This "Air Tunes" feature allows you to play iTunes music from any Mac thru your home stereo system (or whatever).  There is also an App for the iPhone which makes the iPhone a remote control for song selection, volume, etc.  However, you need a single audio cable connection running from the Airport Express (audio output jack) to the home stereo system (any audio input). This would be an easy connection if the Airport Express were in the living room. But the ethernet internet cable (and USB printer cable) also needs to connect to the Airport Express. So, to use this "Air Tunes" feature you would need to route an audio cable thru the wall (or floor) into the living room (or buy a 2nd AirPort Express).

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