Apple AirPort Time Capsule Review 2016
The Best External Hard Drive From Apple – AirPort Time Capsule
The AirPort Time Capsule is a network based storage device created by Apple. This wireless external hard drive can efficiently backup huge volumes of data stored on any or all computers within its range. Ideally, it is used together with Time Machine, the Mac OS X’s backup software program.
The Apple Time Capsule certainly has several positive attributes:
- An eye-catching design
- Better wireless capability for enhanced performance
However, it also lacks certain qualities that can leave users wanting for more. This is due to the limited number of enhancements from the earlier model.
The Apple Time Capsule is ideal for people who already have 802.11ac-enabled Macs. But advanced users may look for certain features like options for non-Mac platforms and the capacity for household media streaming.
Compared to other network attached storage devices (NAS), the Apple Time Capsule is admittedly pricier. Hence, the majority of customers who would likely purchase it either are looking for an upgrade or are simply have the money for it.
Buying the Apple Time Capsule as an upgrade is typical for Mac fans. However, purchasing one also makes a great gift idea especially if given to a fellow Mac enthusiast.
Alternatively, a user may opt for a cheaper network attached storage drive like the Seagate Go Flex Home. It is cheaper and can be used on either a Mac or PC. Non-Apple fans looking for a device with a similar price tag can seek out the QNAP TS-251.
Depending on your requirements, you can purchase the Apple Time Capsule offering capacities of either a 2TB or 3TB hard drive. Both capacities work with Time Machine in OS X and iOS, which makes backing up any Apple device a worry free process. Both feature a Wi-Fi base station that offers the 802.11ac technology. The current design of the device also allows better signal distribution.
Like other Apple products, the standard one-year warranty is provided for the time capsule. The warranty applies to hardware and accessories contained within the original packaging.
It is important to note that the warranty provided by Apple does not apply to products not sold under the iconic brand name. This pertains to hardware or software packaged with any of its own products. Examples of which are consumable parts (i.e., batteries), cosmetic damages, or obvious misuse of the product.
The updated design of the Apple Time Capsule is referred to as the new top-down approach. From its original square form, it now measures 6.6 inches in height and 3.85 inches in width.
While it retains the same level of style for which Apple is known for, the device’s footprint is significantly reduced. The estimated weight of the device is 1.48 kg or 3.26 pounds, which is half the mass of the previous version.
In line with the company’s environmental practices, the Apple Time Capsule features a PVC-free AC power cord. At the same time, it is brominated and flame retardant-free. Even the packaging used for the device offers greater efficiency that significantly reduces material footprint when the product is shipped.
A tiny status light is situated on the front face of the device. It glows a steady green light to indicate that everything is running smoothly. Problems with the device are indicated by a change in its color or its continuous blinking.
A vertical line of ports and connections is located at the back of the device. It offers the typical LAN ports that can connect to a wired client and an internet source. Each port offers data speeds that reach up to 1,000Mbps.
Given its current form, many have noted that more ports could have been added. Furthermore, notably missing from the device is support for USB 3.0. Hence, the Apple Time Capsule is still unable to host other devices like a printer or another external hard drive similar to its predecessor.
Perhaps most challenging for users is the lack of support by the current model for AirPlay, in contrast to earlier models.
The overall performance of the Apple Time Capsule is quite promising for users. From set up to continuous management, a limited number of problems can be expected to take place.
Because of its 802.11ac technology, Wi-Fi speed is three times faster and the signal is clearer and stronger. The six antennas placed at the top allow for better signal dispersal.
The device also transmits at two frequencies with three antennas of 2.4GHz and three of 5GHz. Hence, wireless devices can readily connect to any band for the best possible performance.
Unfortunately, the device does produce a significant amount of heat as the power supply of the Apple Time Capsule is incorporated within its enclosure. It shares its living space with the 802.11ac chipset and the hard drive.
To remedy this problem, a fan was placed inside to keep things from heating up. But the sound is distracting when the device is turned on in a quiet room.
Aside from overheating, complaints such as slow transfer rate and inaccurate time estimates have also been reported by customers who purchased the Apple Time Capsule. Extreme cases reported a total failure of the device without prior warning in a matter of months.
Apple Time Capsule Specifications:
|Storage:||3 TB and 2TB|
|Compatibility:||Interoperable with 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n, and 802.11ac-enabled Mac computers, iOS devices, Apple TV, Windows-based PCs, and other Wi-Fi devices|
|Security:||Wi‑Fi Protected Access (WPA/WPA2); WPA/WPA2 Enterprise; MAC address filtering; NAT firewall; 802.1X, PEAP, LEAP, TTLS, TLS, FAST; time-based access control|
|Setup and Administration:|
The principal software used in conjunction with the Apple Time Capsule is Time Machine. As such, it is used on Mac based platforms. However, it can also be used with Windows.
What do others think?
Overall, the performance of the Apple Time Capsule is commendable and well worth the expense provided that you really need a network storage device.
If you do intend to purchase this particular model, it would be best if you already have a wireless device on hand that supports 802.11ac, or you plan to buy one shortly. Otherwise, you can save money on an older version that has similar features.
Each package includes:
· Apple Time Capsule
· Power supply with cord
· Printed documentation
In most cases, customers also bought the AirBase that can be used for mounting the Apple Time Capsule securely to the wall or ceiling.
Time Capsule Review Conclusion
In general, the Apple Time Capsule could have a greater potential. A particular concern is the lack of ability to customize its options, unlike other similar devices. To manage your expectations and minimise heartaches, it is best to learn beforehand what you want or do not want from a network attached storage device. Biggest problem with new Time Capsule is its price.