I installed a new Airport Extreme (6th generation) on our home network yesterday. We haven’t run Cat5 through our whole house the way we did in Arlington, so our primary FiOS WiFi router has to live in the basement right next to the FiOS network box, and its signal is unacceptable in about a third of the first floor and almost all of the second.
We had been limping along with an Airport Express in the upstairs bedroom as a second network, but it didn’t really have enough signal strength to solve the problem. I experimented with substituting in our old Airport Extreme (dating from around 2007), but it had weird range problems, with range and signal strength dropping unexpectedly. So we decided to bite the bullet and get a new router.
Man, am I glad we did. The range and speed from the new router are incredible; I even get WiFi out at the kids’ bus stop now. And things that used to give the old network fits, like running the microwave, are no longer an issue.
I was talking about it with Lisa last night and we realized that we bought our first AirPort router before most of the planet had WiFi. We had the original “flying saucer” model back in the fall of 2000—so long ago, the base station had a dial-up modem in it. We’ve come a long way.