2.0GHz, 2.3GHz, or 2.6GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor (Turbo Boost up to 3.8GHz) with 6MB shared L3 cache.

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Can I use its 802.11ac AirPort Card on my RMBP 15 (mid2012)?

Is late2013's 802.11ac airport card fully compatible with mid2012?

I have a new airport time capsule, and I'd like to see backing up faster.

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So basically someone needs to get the 3 antenna AC card and test it to see if it works and how good/bad is the throughput.

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Yep, thats the deal. And even then getting it as a spare to even replace it will be quite awhile, remember this is a custom Apple part.

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Yes, and this is a difficult test. Someone needs to get the card, the base station and some computer with some SERIOUS storage hardware to provide file loading and Ethernet transfer speed more than 1Gbps. Or get a internet connection way more than 450Mbps to get accurate results

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It's not that difficult, iperf will do fine.

SSD inside RMBP is 500MB/s up, so it won't be a problem, either.

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You'll need more than that as you need to sustain the load long enough to test things. Remember the cart is in front of the horse here. No one really needs this throughput currently.

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Hi, Everyone. ^^

As you know,

RMBP 15" Mid 2012 had installed Airport card, BCM94331CSAX (Support 802.11a/b/g/n)

RMBP 15" Late 2013 has installed Airport card, BCM94360CSAX (Support 802.11a/b/g/n/ac)

BCM94360CSAX has same demensions(? looks same), 3-antenna ports, and interface connection between BCM94331CSAX.

I just installed BCM94360CSAX in RMBP 15" Mid 2012 basic model, last weekends.

Wi-Fi Link speed is 1Gbit/s with ac mode, right now. (450Mbit/s with n mode, past)

It works very well and still using AC mode without problems.

As a results,

RMBP 15" Late 2013's 802.11ac airport card is compatible with RMBP 15" Mid 2012.

But, I don't know there are any technical issues.

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My router is RT-AC66U and supports 1,300 Mbit/s with ac mode.

but, Link speed indicated 1 Gbit/s on the network utility's informations.

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James thank you for your basic testing. So we know know the card works and we know the link speed is listed at 1 Gbps. The next thing James is to run it though a battery of throughput tests to see it is can sustain the throughput of 1 Gbps. This is were your network and server (other system) and there limits can influence the throughput. Try this app out and let us know what you discover Speedy Net. If you really want to do some real testing give this tool a try HELIOS LanTest. Try both wired directly (Ethernet) between your systems (via the routers ports) and then when one system is on the WiFi (keep the location the same and try close by and far away to the router). If you can try using the n card in the new MBPr as well as the ac card in the older MBPr system and then again each in the systems they came in. See if the results stayed the same.

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One loss of functionality is internet recovery. In that mode, the firmware's drivers only support the older card. It's not serious as you can still recover OS X from a boot drive but my point is that not everything is perfect. It's very near perfect though. For most cases, this will not be a problem. It's not like we recover every week without a USB boot stick.

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Just wanted to comment that I just replaced my Airport card in my Early 2013 13" rMBP with a BCM94360CSAX purchased on Amazon at the same time I upgraded my SSD and I used Internet Recovery to install my OS on the new SSD and WiFi connected at 1 GB/s with the new Airport card no problem. It even automatically connected to an existing SSID which means it must store some information regarding WiFi networks somewhere other than the primary storage device.

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I have a Macbook Pro Retina Mid-2012 that I upgraded to the newer WiFi-AC card and it works correctly at the higher speeds, but you cannot use it to do Internet Recovery as Nelson pointed out.

However, you can use the Thunderbolt Ethernet adapter to successfully do an Internet Recovery for Mac OS.

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No, its not really workable.

The issue is more than the ability to plug the unit in (slightly different sizes). The issue is the antennas the way 802.11ac works requires waveform shaping to gain the throughput your systems antennas can't offer this as they are designed to support different bands.

Testing has proven there is no benefit swapping it out (in fact it tested out worse throughput) Techctrir - Does it work?

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This is a different situation. Macbook Pro with Retina Display actually comes with the 3 dual band antennas needed. And the new wifi card actually has 3X3 MIMO instead of the 1 antenna port for 5G used on the Macbook Air. If the cards can be swapped, the only issue is RF impedance matching, which is highly likely to work well

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Nope same issue, you don't have a matched set over the same bands and the location within the system also matters.

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But this time we have a matched set. Both models have 3 dual band antennas that is very similar, if not identical. (Judging from the techctrir test, the card from MacBook Air works with the MacBook Pro antenna) And the new wifi card has 3 dual band ports for them. When you put a card from the Air into the Pro, only one port is available for 802.11ac band, which gives you 450m on ac. 802.11n on the Pro already does 450m, so no improvement. But now we have 3 antennas on the ac band, which gives you 1350m bandwidth. I am almost certain that this will work

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You only have two antenna ports on the AirPort 802.11ac board and the location of the antennas are not at the correct location (and size) on the displays lid. Still won't give you the wanted data rate so why are you swapping it? just so it says 802.11ac in the hardware listing or do you want the throughput? Basically its a waste of time & money.

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You must be looking at the ac card from Macbook Air. That card only has two antenna ports, only one is for the 5G ac band. Which explains why you'll only get 450m on RMBPs. That is a waste all right. But he is trying to put the 3-port ac card from the late 2013 RMBP into the mid 2012 model. That should work a lot better.

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This actually looks promising. The physical dimensions of the cards seem to be exactly the same. They could be using the same interface, so it is highly likely to be compatible.

And both models have 3 dual band antennas, so the performance benefit will be significant, from 450mbps to 1350mbps

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I have just upgraded my network card to ac on my rMBP 13 inch (A1425)

I am getting ac connection with my 6300v2 and Airport Capsule and link speed is 1 Gbit/s :D

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While people can get better performance 1Gb/s is just not possible. Please review this benchmark from PCWorld - Netgear r6300 on the limits of the Netgear router.

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Hi there would you please provide me the details on the card i need to purchase for my MBP Retina 2012 A1425 for the wifi ac upgrade. Appreciated!!

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can i use that for macbook pro 2012 non retina 13 inch?

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my chinese friends have already replaced it,

correct card model: BCM 94360csax (FOR NEW PRO 2013 late)

BCM 94360cdaX (for IMAC 2013 LATE)

BCM94360cs2 (for new air)

bcm94360CSAX have already swapped to BCM 94331CSAX (mid 2012 RMBP)

my friend told me the dealer contact way

QQ: 1669665064 (liky skype, chinese most popular chat tool, free download)

email: 1669665064@qq.com

it's cheap for this card, about 40Usd, but the problem is the delivery charge, maybe more than 70USD.

pls see

http://bbs.weiphone.com/read-htm-tid-734...

a japanese friend got it from chinese taobao...

Update

i try to contact that dealer, she said she have several BCM94360csax, but how to make this deal, i cannot register chinese taobao chat tool that need chinese tele No, only way is i transfer $ to her account, than she deliver it to me, oh...god, high risk.

Update

look at this test info,

tools: newest Time Capsule

test approach: compare time that copy files beteen time capsule and NB through wireless, old card VS new card

the speed is truely faster, but the guy said the there is some limites on SSD under TC mode (30M/S max)

http://bbs.weiphone.com/read-htm-tid-732...

another guy:

using NAS, and AC routing, download speed is up to 60M/S

http://bbs.weiphone.com/read-htm-tid-727...

iam confused, if i do so, what is the difference between new RMBP (late 2013) and my old book? it's faster on newest pro?

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Fishy - Your friend was not able to get any improvement in performance in his testing if I read the Chinese correctly here "Wireless uplink speed 10 m 2013-12-02 is sick at heart. Due to changing back the old module, so for speed, exclude the AC module problem. I also tested the lightning cable network adapter directly copy files, read and write about 100M, also excluded is the possibility of my HP N40L black swarm light problem. Take should be a routing problem, my router is a Netgear R6300 is the official firmware version V1.0.2.70_1.0.50, which is the highest version. On WZR-HP-G300NH out my old router, wireless read/write speed is around 18M, seems to be a routing problem. So I brushed dd-wrt.v24-22118_NEWD-2_K3.x_mega-R6300 July 24 release, tested wireless uplink speeds down to about 40M, but down speed of 50M, on the problem should be the firmware. Taking into account or read a file a little more, and toss back to the official firmware. Now want to change routing, toss this"

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So its a risky venture even if you do get the correct part.

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The link PHY mode is 802.11ac and the rate shows 1300mbps, so the card is properly recognized and operated, but the TC is limited at 30MB/s, so another more accurate test is needed. Even apple didn't unlock the full potential of the new time capsule so this upgrade is probably still way too early than what is needed.

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which card would work in an A1278 13" mid-2012 I5 macbook, the NON-Retina model? :)

can anyone pinpoint a card model? (the one above I've already read that only works in the Retina model)

Thanks.

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Fishy you're bring up a few different issues here: For now lets put aside the WiFi part of the question.

We use the term 'Link' to denote the connection between two systems {System A the interconnection between it and System B}. In this Link the slowest part of the link is the limiting factor of the entire link. So if System A & B are equal but I have two connections to pass through and one connection is slower than the other, the entire link is limited to this slower connection. Hopefully that makes sense ;-}

OK, now lets expand this, When System A is sending it is Faster than what System B can accept (again both systems are equal). This is a factor on how HD's or even SSD's work. So in order to do any testing you need to have un-equal systems where one is able to accept the data flow faster than the other system is able to sent it.

OK, lets tackle the next issue, the transmission of the data flow can't be competing with other data flows over the 'Medium' or slowed by transmission conversion. So as an example an Ethernet cable you plugged directly between two systems back to back can't be interfered with by other competing data flows and there is no conversion taking place (i.e. WiFi to Ethernet).

Now the hardest point here the effective data rate of a device and the standard it complies with does not need to be the same. So as an example if you look at the SATA connections of hard drives you'll note none of the current drives achieve a sustained rate of the standard (i.e. SATA III 6.0 Gb/s).

This last point may or may not effect you. Here in the states our cable providers offer asymmetric services so the data rate is different depending on the direction. So our download speed is what they brag about in the media as being the fastest but in truth the send speed is pitifully slow! often a 100 to 1 ratio! And to add to this they don't offer you this fast rate only the node your neighbors share with you (maybe 50 or more houses). Talk about bate and switch!

So lets put this together the 802.11ac standard offers a data rate that is faster than the interfaces currently on the market. The best one can get though is a burst of a few milliseconds of data that the receiving system can cache as the storage it has can't possibly handle a stream of data that is longer. In the real world competing data flows across the Internet will prevent even the fastest web site to send the data at you at this rate, let alone the limits of the connection your provider offers you locally.

Even if you have your own server locally you still have to contend with others around you stepping on your WiFi band so your interface needs to alter its signal and the limits of your own AP also become a factor.

I still didn't get into the limits of the system its self here or even the OS and TCP/IP protocol.

Bottom line here: While its a nice check off when your buying new equipment so you have future head room, our current needs and offerings can't support it yet. Will it? Sure, but thats still 3 ~ 5 years from now. And upgrading ones WiFi card in todays systems doesn't make much sense. While its a fun thing to do its not on my list of things I need today.

Not trying to be a downer here Fishy, I've been in this business for over 30 years. Yes, there were times when a new standard made me gleeful as I was hitting the wall of the previous standard and the equipment could leverage the new standard (i.e. 802.11g to 802.11n).

I do still get a thrill when I hear of something new that I didn't expect. Sorry this is not one I was hitting or see others hitting.

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Dan, i've been looking at your comments here recently and I wonder how one person can constantly provide answers that are rarely correct. Must be your aplomb, I suppose.

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iskra - If I've error'ed please correct me instead of trash talking without any hard facts to support it.

Also, realize some of these older answers where based on what was known as well as what was available at that time point (2013) three years ago.

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would this work on an iMac 2010 i7 2.93 ghz 27" or 2010 MBP 13" C2D 2.4 ghz Looking at ifixit teardown of the iMac yes in a sense they look the same compared to the new 2013 model teardown

i hope some one can let us know asap and then were to get the new ac wifi card. i know that the new wifi card has bluetooth 4.0 in it and my model has it separate which i dont really care for the luetooth stuff

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Tom Chai said the card is available in China for $15 - anyone know of the vendor he is referring to ? Wouldnt mind buying a couple and doing some real-world tests ...

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taobao.com, Chinese equivalent of eBay. Many part suppliers also sells parts for repairs

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This is BCM94360CS2, the 2 antenna version for macbook air

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Just contacted that taobao seller and they said it will not support A1425 :(

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So Tom, you seem to be saying that the 802.11ac airport card from the latest Macbook Pro is available on Taobao for $15 (and should work in the previous, late 2012/early 2013 model - I have an A1398), but the link you provided is for the Macbook Air card, which you say is not the same. ? Could you please post a link to the Pro card? And, what are the chances of finding an English speaker if one contacts Taobao or a seller on it? Thanks!

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Cards for MacBook Pro is not yet available, probably need a few more weeks. As for the English speaker, try your luck

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Thanks.

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I found a friend who knows Chinese and ordered off of taobao. I will try it out and see if the antenna from the a1425 model is compatible with the a1398 model. Cheers!

Update

The part is here on taobao if anyone else is interested...

http://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=a230...

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It's very similar but I don't think it's the same as Apples AirPort board. If you review the images of the two boards their layout is very different.

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BCM94331 is the old 802.11n card, and new MacBook Pro 15 Retina has the same model number (A1398) as the old ones.

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Your should look for BCM94360CS which has 3 antennas. BCM94360CS2 is the MacBook Air's dual antenna version.

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This is the 802.11n card used on older models. New 802.11ac cards use BCM94360 chip.

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Even if it fits/works, this is the original N card, not the new AC card, isn't it?

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I was comparing it the the new ac board, so it could be the older n board which is not what is wanted here.

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Someone (cc941201 - Tom Chai perhaps?) sent me a link to the right card on Taobao. Thanks! I followed the link and found the card, but couldn't see any way to work with Taobao or contact the seller without signing up, which apparently requires a mainland China telephone number. ?! And when I just tried the link again, it no longer took me to the right page. Would you be willing to help me out with this? I would certainly appreciate it greatly! Rick

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anyone who knows where to buy a BCM94360CSAX?

I don't understand the sites that are linked above.

If they work, could someone explain how to order one?

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Managed to get one BCM94360CSAX from Taobao last week for my 2012 MBPR, had trouble to get a screwdriver for bottom case before, so I haven't had chance to post a result.

Anyway, just got a screwdriver today, and done the replacement.

This is what i got:

Current Network Information:

Airport Extreme:

PHY Mode: 802.11ac

BSSID: 90:72:xxxxxxxx <- hide

Channel: 36

Country Code: AU

Network Type: Infrastructure

Security: WPA2 Personal

Signal / Noise: -49 dBm / -92 dBm

Transmit Rate: 1300 <---------- it was 450 before

MCS Index: 9

Yeah!!!

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Don't forget this is what the hardware can do not what the system can do! And you still have the link limit to the other system. So the rate won't be this. Think of it this way: You have a very fast Porsche that is limited by the speed limit of the road that you're on and if you are in the city you have to deal with all of the traffic. Networking is not much different.

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At least it proved that the wifi card for late 2013 MBPR is compatible with previous MPBR. I am happy with the result. The download and upload speed is faster than before. Btw I am using the new AirPort Extreme.

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Up to a point... Yes, the AirPort connector and the OS is able to access it. The antennas are still a question here if they can offer the needed services to the new ac WiFi card. Yes, you can connect to the new AirPort Extreme which is a good sign! What we need is a good test run and comparing between the two systems side my side (as close as possible matching configs) New MBPr with the new ac board old MBPr with the old n board. Then swapping them so the older system has the new ac board and the newer system has the older n board using the exact same network connection to the same target server, then using a standard performance test suite. Things that can alter the tests is other systems concurrently access the network (and WiFi frequencies) to the target server. If you can do this is would help a lot here putting the question to bed. Lastly, the availability of the new ac board is still very tight so people need a good source to get it, IF it really offers a real benefit given the connection type.

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But the link between the computer and a current model, 802.11ac Time Capsule will be at that rate, will it not?

Anyway, MrZxy, zenchong, what's the secret? How do you get it? And how much was it? Please!

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The WiFi link will be limited by the environment the signal has to pass though (not what the transmit rate claimed - 1300 Vs 450). The full link limit is the slowest element in the pathway the data is traveling from start to end. In this case it will likely be the SATA I/O & the HD in the Time Capsule. Think of it this way: the highway is like in the middle of the night Vs morning rush hour the speed limit is 65MPH but the cars are only going 35MPH - Transmit rate Now think you're on a fast highway and need to get off the exit ramp and you need to slow down in the city - full link limit.

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So like everything else, the theoretical speeds are not real-world. But you seem to be saying that there is no point/advantage under any circumstances to the 802.11ac in the Time Capsule. i.e., Apple included it for no reason whatsoever, unless purely as a come-on; and as disappointed as I am in them post Steve, I very much doubt that. Anyway, hopefully someone will provide actual transfer speeds between the TC and an AC equipped, SSD Mac, so then it will just be a question of how much faster than N, in real-world terms, it has to be to be worthwhile.

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Ah - You want a pure Back & White answer here ;-} Sorry not that simple, many shades go grey here. 1 - No, not saying its a waste it will be (note the future tense in this statement) beneficial. And yes, some people will gain some performance gains using 802.11ac in a local network (note the word some not all). 2- Given the availability and the costs the gains are not really worth doing the retro-fit in any older system. It does make sense buying a new system with it, not upgrading an older system. - Confused??? Hopefully this clarifies things a bit.

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This is the review after installed the AC card , it's all in chinese , use google translate , here is it :

http://bbs.weiphone.com/read-htm-tid-732...

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Anyway, I just change my RMBP 2012 to 802.11AC BCM94360CSAX. feel like the internet speed faster than b4... Transmit Rate up to 878 ( of coz I know max is 1300 ).

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Your just teasing people here. You need to do the testing to prove it is getting this rate not the connections theoretical rate which is what you are listing here. - Let me put it this way, I have a very fast car on a dirt road I can't get the theoretical speed the car can do (based on the car spec sheet or what the max of what the speedometer can go) as the road I'm driving on limits my speed. So you need explain your road (network & the remote systems specs) and then you can tell us what you can achieve on this road (running a known test suite).

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@zenchong where did you get the card? I don't see a PM button anywhere :)

I can test the card with extreme internet speeds. Ofc only if I could get my hands on one.

Thanks in advance

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I can feel it's faster. I m using TC 2T now. Anyway Jacky, I have the seller contact . Pm me @ zenchong@outlook.com if u need a unit .

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why so many guys intresting in it?i got one from china taobao. but i dont feel much faster...if you actually need this card.contact seller skype:qingyijian126 i got it from him...

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Blinded by the specs top speed thinking that is what they can get. Forgetting the fact the systems limits can't possibly leverage the 802.11ac connection. I.e. trying to run their Kia Soul on the Formula 1 raceway thinking they have a chance on taking the cup ;-}

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i have another confuse. why apple release ac card if there is no any advantage?

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Fishy, Re-read what has been posted here again. in a nutshell the newer systems ('13) can leverage the newer AirPort board, the older systems (<'13) not as much, and others not at all. You still need to have an AP which has ac services and the down-range server (yours or the companies you connect with on the internet) and network need to be able to support the added speed (This is an issue here in the states as our cable networks to the internet can't and many servers have flow controls limiting a given users session). So for now only a few people's local servers can offer out the data fast enough, many will need to rebuild their networks and upgrade their servers which is the other side of the issue before you can take full advantage of the higher speed.

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Look at it this way: Buying a Porsche is nice but if you can't run it at full speed on the speed limited highway its a waste. Maybe in the future the highway speed will go up so you can go a bit faster, but you need to wait. If on the other-hand have your own racecourse you could race around it at any speed you would like to.

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That's why nobody buys Porches, eh? Maybe you don't have to run it at FULL speed for it to be worthwhile? Look at it this way, Dan: Apple and others are selling AC routers, obviously for improved LAN speeds by and large, and the new Macbook Pro comes with an AC Airport card. So someone like myself, with the latest, AC equipped Time Capsule and a recent generation MBP (mine's an "early 2013", not even a year old) that can support that card are interested in the possibility of upgrading to it. I would agree that it's not worth spending a lot of money on at this point, and, not being Chinese, I don't see a way to get it at a low enough price at the moment, so I'm not jumping on it.

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Don't get me wrong here, I love Porsches too! For now it's more of a statis symbol than functional for many. The current AirPort Extreme is still throttled to 45Mbps so you still need to wait until Apple updates the firmware or comes out with a 2nd gen. of the device. For now it's a waiting game.

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Remember we're still waiting for someone to test out the new ac board with a credible test setup comparing the two systems. While it would be nice of Apple to offer the part for the older models so far they haven't and we don't know if you can get that much benefit given the cost (which clearly you agree with).

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Hi there!

This is a really interesting thread I have to say!

I just managed to order a BCM94360CSAX card from zenchong (thanks again ... :-).

As soon as it is built into my mid 2012 MacBook Pro I will post some testing results here.

I am using an AVM FRITZ!Box 7490 which offers 802.11ac on the 5GHz band.

The testing I will do with HELIOS LanTest. I will create some screenshots and post them here. Any other suggestions regarding tools to use?

Best,

Jeeosch

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Hi Jeoosch,

Did you find a compatible card 1 year ago?:)

If so, can I ask which?

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I think anything that proves that this card is worth buying would be fantastic Georg. I'm debating buying it also, but only if it actually brings this bad boy to gigabit.

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Remember your HD or SSD SATA III I/O is 6Gb/s) will limit you to around 350 MegaByte per sec (MBps) {not bit} if you can sustain it. Most single spindle HD's and SSD's can't get there, you'll need a striped RAID setup.

Now the sad truth you'll need three 802.11ac data streams (each running around 400 Megabits per sec). to reach the theoretical maximum of 1.3 Gigabit per second (Gbps). Even still hitting a full Giga Byte connection is unlikely for now.

Just to give you some framework: Streaming a HD vid is around 250 MB/sec. 4K vid stream will need close to 750 MB/sec.

Which is one of the reasons the 802.11ac standard came out.

Here's a good writeup Gigabit Wi-Fi: 802.11ac is here: Five things you need to know

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Hi Matt,

I am still waiting for the device. It's treated by German customs at the moment, I believe.

So we need to be a bit patient.

I'll post my findings as soon as I know more!

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hi..guys. i find a new source to buy it

www.aliexpress.com

that much cheaper than ebay. if you need it ,you can buy it on that web

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Hi there ... this is sort of ... well ... embarrassing.

Somehow it slipped my attention that this thread is about the Retina models. I do not have one ... I moreover have the last "normal" Unibody MacBook Pro.

As a consequence I am now selling the card on eBay as it doesn't fit into my laptop.

Someone interested?

It's here: http://www.ebay.com/itm/301099428552?ssP...

One thing: if someone wants to buy the item from outside Germany, please kindly accept that I will charge shipping costs.

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Here is one for sale. I bought one of these and works great!!

http://www.ebay.com/itm/AC-Airport-Card-...

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Dan you must be really bored lol.

I'm sure everyone here knows what you are talking about so repeating won't be necessary.

People are not stupid as you may think and there is distinctive benefit over the "limitation" you are talking about.

it still gets better than the old 802.11n card in every way :D

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We've now tested both n & ac units via a ac router to a local RAID'ed file server and we've also tested via home connections to the same server. Sadly, only with a directly connected setup did we see enough of an improvement and only when we had a good SNR (early morning, late at night in a office building). The next generation of units should offer better band bonding which should improve local file transfer. But the biggest issue still remains the limits of the internet connection and the far servers ability (offering) the data flow. Not everyone will allow an un-throttled flow to their server, nor will that have the access to an unfettered internet connection. If it makes you feel good to buy an ac board to swap out your n board I'm not stopping you, I just think I would put my money into a better internet connection first. We're holding off for now.

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I don't think the internet connection is biggest issue. I believe the biggest concern here (most people would have) is the local file transfer.

Even the Gigabit Ethernet is capped by the "internet speed" so you think upgrading to Gigabit is also "pointless" upgrade ?

You are not stopping us but you seem to be giving us same lesson over and over every time someone post. I guess we all know that and there are still significant advantages over it but you never mention it :)

1. Better local file transfer rate (HD streaming, yeah!!)

2. Bigger internet bandwidth (only if it was limited by the old wireless connection)

3. Feeling amazing by taking on the latest tech

You are basically telling us two things

1. We will never going to get the "Gigabit" bandwidth locally

2. Wait until they introduce better internet connection to match

We all know that !! and maybe next WiFi standard will come out before the better internet option for some regions. (like where I live)

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You'll need to go back and re-read what I stated from the get go. Your limit is your local servers drives and in the case of the wireless the SNR you face at your location. Most people's local servers are single spindle drives Vs RAID'ed drives (which is what we used in our test), so the limit is then drives limitations in your server (review your drive specs). The next limit is number of streams your system & AP can support and the signal quality. Again, your setup will be different, as I pointed out ours was very noisy during the day which impacts throughput. Also most of the ac devices out there now are single stream the next generation of ac thats just introduced will allow more streams (2 and 3) per node. But the issue of the bandwidth of your local connection and the server box still comes in as the limit. Having a Gig WiFi and Ethernet connection is all nice but if your systems can't leverage it whats the point? Think of it this way an old Ford model T car running down the Autobahn. ;-}

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Min - Sure I'd love to get more throughput with my users WiFi connections to our local servers but it currently doesn't make sense yet. Swapping out WiFi cards in older systems for us given the little benefit it's not worth the costs today. We'll need to upgrade our nets and our servers with better storage solutions to even give our users the ability to leverage the faster speed. Even at home my setup is better than most (I don't even have competing data flows to contend with & I have a RAID'ed HD's with SSD caching). The few seconds I gain in download or upload to my local server is not enough alone to warrant the swapping out my current n boards. If my internet connection was better then I would jump (we have crappy service). BTW - I stream my movies and TV shows via my media server without any problem.

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Here's something to sink your teeth into on the ISP issue: There’s “no congestion,” Verizon says, despite continued Netflix problems. Note the slide ware shows the download link is only 75 Mbps on an optical Vs a coax network!

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Recently got 500mbs download speed from ISP. Have a 2012 MBPr. I also have a Zenbook that has wireless AC but it caps at 867. I reached 420 via wireless on the Zenbook (wrt1900ac router) yesterday. But mostly it's between 200 and 300mbs via wireless on the Zenbook or the MBP. My question is would anyone know if the 1300mbs link (maybe the card being discussed) would draw closer to the full 500mbs down that I receive when plugged into the router? Really thinking of returning the Zenbook for a newer MBPr and giving the wife the 2012 instead.

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Hi Dan, You'll need to wait a bit more for the next gen. of 802.11ac boards which will offer this kind of throughput. The current crop of systems and AP's on the market right now are 1st gen. 802.11ac. Maybe Apple will intro some newer gear this fall.

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Much obliged and helping me save some time and money (for now). :)

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Also FYI - Checkout the post just above yours here URL link.

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Interesting. I often still find buffering on Netflix and wonder about this issue. At times it's pristine, but other times it fights to brings full hd picture which means connection is suffering. Believe me, it's not an issue particularly with my speed, but when Youtube and anything else opens INSTANTLY, it's weird that Netflix still is "congested".

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It all depends were you are and the server which is offering the stream (data). In my case here in Boston we have a private connection to our HQ in Chicago which then connects to the internet there. So the connection between my office and home is via Chicago (In the corporate world this is how it's done). This connection crosses two Tier-1 connections can you say slooowww ;-} Here's a good writeup on how the world is wired Internet Backbone

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Dan, I took the plunge just for curiosity and purchased the wireless ac card for my mid 2012. I figured if it doesn't work, I will just get the late 2013 model. Anyhow, something interesting is happening. My speeds have degraded. On any device in my house, wireless AC, wireless N, etc, I average between 200 and 300 mbs (remember I have fios 500 mbs speed. However, with the new card in this mid 2012 macbook, I have 1ghz link rate, but SLOWER speeds. It won't get over 100 mbs down. Do we know of any additional steps I could have missed? I MADE SURE ALL 3 antennas matched up. Addionally, also keep in mind I am running the linksys wrt1900ac router and it's direct wireless to the laptop. I know you warned of this, but servers, routers, etc, shouldn't be my issue. I think it's what you mentioned that the macbook mid-2012 isn't prepared for this card??? Your thoughts?

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Sorry - There is no magic here. It is what it is ;-(

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Ah but there is! Happy to report I had an antenna fall off when installing. Averaging 370 down, I'm sure it can do better during a slow time here at the house.

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Hi all

I got the ac card from Taobao. Some professional contacts in China ordered it for me and sent them out for me.

So I installed it, The form factor is exactly the same as the previous one. It's recognized as an ac card without a problem.

Now I had to bring the mac back to the apple store because f some strange coating peeling off the screen. They agreed to change the screen (after over 2 years of ownership) for free. The tech man called me at some point telling me the wifi card wasnt recognized. I explained why and he didnt make a fuss about i, wich is great.

He just told me to watch out : The card I have isntalled doesnt have the thermal insulator the original had, and it could be a problem if the wifi cards started to heat and could damage the motherboard.

So I guess I'm going to peel off the insulator from the original card and put it on the new one...

Just be warned.

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I have just upgraded my router to the Asus AC3200. My MacBook Pro with Retina only had N WiFi card and I was getting about 50 MB / sec ( yes MegaByte ) on local file copy transfers. Once I purchased the new AC card and installed it I am now able to copy at OVER 90Mb / sec. Not only did it make a difference it almost DOUBLED my speed over wifi. I now have Gigabit speed over WiFi. So I can verify that this upgrade IS worth it.

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Can you confirm that NetBoot is broken? I can't see any wifi ssid in that box. I suppose there is no driver for this ac card in the efi firmware.

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Chance, where did you get the card?

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Here's the newest info: Continuity Activation Tool with the needed P/N's. You'll want to be running Yosemite to gain the performance as the drivers was the real issue when this was written.

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I just replaced my airport wireless card on my mid 2012 MBP retina with airport wireless card AC standard and works GREAT !!!!!!!!! With out any problems,just make sure that you have AC ROUTER to take full advantage of higher speeds.

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hi jack where u bought airport wireless AC card?

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I did the same thing just now, here are iperf tests using Linksys EA6400: http://i.imgur.com/3UkpN0N.png

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