do I need to buy an airport extreme base station if it is already built into my new imac?

  • Asked by Michael R from Somerville
  • Feb 7, 2010
QA AirPort Extreme Base Station

QA AirPort Extreme Base Station

Product No Longer Available

3 Answers from the Community

  • Best Answer:

    It depends on your needs.

    Which scenario are you?

    1. I will use my iMac to connect to the internet via a wi-fi source that is already available for my use - if so, no base station needed

    2. I will use my iMac to connect to the internet via my cable mode/dsl/other high speed internet via my iMac's ethernet port - if so, no base station needed

    3. I have high speed internet as in number 2. - but I'd like to share it with other devices (computers, iPhones, wi-fi printers, etc) in my home - if so, you can SHARE your high speed connection VIA the iMac's built in Airport (you can set this up under System Preferences -> Sharing) - OR - you can buy an Airport Extreme Base station to do the same and likely give you wider coverage in your home compared to the built in Airport on your iMac.

    4. I have high speed internet as in number 2. - but I will have more advanced needs like port forwarding, a shared USB external hard drive, a shared USB printer, multiple devices that need an ethernet connection, etc that I'd like on a network and available even when my iMac is powered off. In that situation you will definitely need a router and the Airport Extreme Base Station will allow you to do all those things and more.

    • Answered by Eric T from San Diego
    • Feb 16, 2010
  • No, when you need a wireless base station of any kind you'll know it.

    There is no need to buy an AirPort Extreme Base Station (which creates a full-feature wireless network supporting up to 50 devices) if your new iMac with a built-in AirPort Extreme Card (which can create only a limited wireless network) can already do everything you need it to do.

    • Answered by Andrew H from Carmel
    • Feb 7, 2010
  • Your imac may have a wireless card built in but it doesn't have a base station built in. So yes you will need to purchase either the Extreme or Express station in order to use the internet wirelessly.

    • Answered by Zac H from Madison
    • Feb 7, 2010