In my experience, the 3x3 Airports are helpful if you have multiple devices connecting simultaneously. They are really helpful if you have a mix of 802.11n and 802.11g devices, as one antenna will devote itself to 802.11g, leaving the others on n. They are EXTREMELY useful if you decide you want to extend a network wirelessly. So much so that I recommend against doing so unless you are using a multi-antenna, simultaneous dual-band type.
With one antenna, the head router gets overloaded. With a single band, the firmware tends to prefer 5GHz, which then locks the entire network at 5Ghz across all routers. With simultaneous dual band it will join routers at 5Ghz but allow clients at 2.4, which gives maximum range and performance simultaneously.
They are not useful if you just want higher throughput. In my area (urban), we have so many competing wifi networks in range that I'm interference limited, not hardware or wifi standard limited.
I use Linux, OS X, iOS and Windows. Let the OS wars die.
Thanks for the info. I hadn't realized that one antenna is dedicated to the G band. Useful to know. I'm pretty lucky with our neighborhood layout. The houses are pretty far apart thus interference is at a minimum. I do see 4 other networks but the signals strengths from each are pretty low.
I converted over to Apple products when the first gen iPod came out and I was hooked ever since. Before that I was strictly a windows guy. I still have a Windows unit but it has become a paper weight of sorts. Apple products are so easy to set up and maintain. As the saying goes, just set it and forget it.
I have read so many reviews about the AE5 and how stable and robust they are.
I can't wait to see what the Gen 6 version has in store. Thanks again for providing the useful information.