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Setting Up AirPort Express Base Station For Wireless Music Streaming

Setting Up AirPort Express Base Station For Wireless Music Streaming

Published by Carlos
03-27-2006

Wi-Fi Setting Up AirPort Express Base Station For Wireless Music Streaming

Here’s your problem. You have a ton of music on your computer. Your computer speakers sound ok but music from your Itunes software would sound a lot better playing through your nice home stereo in the other room. If you run a cord all that way from your computer to your home stereo your house won’t be featured in Architectural Digest because it won’t look aesthetic. Solution? Connect an AirPort Express Base Station to your home stereo and play your Itunes music wirelessly. Sound difficult? It really isn’t. I connected one for a customer of mine some time ago. You will however need the right equipment and it goes as follows:

Your computer needs Windows XP or Windows 2000 , or Mac OS X 10.2.7 or later.

***This tutorial is written for Windows XP***

Go to Untitled Document for a diagram of what it looks like when hooked up.

Your computer needs a wireless adapter. If it’s a desktop machine or a laptop I recommend a Linksys WUSB54G - Wireless-G USB Adapter 802.11G. If you are more tech savvy and don’t mind opening up your desktop computer’s case, definitely go with a Linksys Network adapter - Wireless-G PCI Card .

You’ll also need the AirPort Express Base Station.

Since Apple’s website does not tell you, I had to call to find out that the airport does not come with the cables you need to hook it up to your home stereo. To connect the Airport to your stereo, you’ll need either a mini stereo to RCA cable or if you’re stereo has the input, a toslink to mini digtal fiber optic cable.

Last you will need Itunes, which is a free download.

Once you have the necessary equipment you are ready to go.

1. Near your stereo receiver, connect the Airport to a power supply to give it power. Connect either the RCA cables or the fiber cable from the airport to the appropriate input on your stereo receiver.

2. At your computer, load the Airport Express CD that came with your Airport into the CD drive and install the software.

3. Once it is installed, go to Start > All Programs > Airport Express Assistant

4. You will be asked if you want to set up a new base station or make changes to an existing one. Choose to set up a new base station.

5. If the computer can connect to the base station, the software will tell you that it has found a new Airport Express named “Base Station xyz” . Click Next.

6. The next screen asks if you want to create a new network or connect to an existing one. If your computer does not already connect to the Internet through a wireless network, choose “create a new wireless network”. Note: If your computer connects to the Internet through an existing wireless network, follow the different steps for this scenario below labeled “If your computer connects to the Internet through an existing wireless connection that you already have”.

7. Name the new wireless network, you can call it something like “Apple Airport”. Choose a name for your base station. You can leave the default name or give it a new name like “Living Room Stereo”.

8. Finish by clicking the appropriate button (”‘finish” or “update”).

This should create the new wireless network. You now need to have Windows XP connect to this new wireless network connection that you created if it does not do so automatically (near the clock in lower right hand corner right click on your wireless network adapter icon, choose view available Wireless Networks, and join the new wireless network you created.)

9. After Windows XP connects to the new wireless network, open Itunes.

10. In itunes in the lower right hand area you should see a button showing how your music is being heard (it may say “computer” if you are listening with your computer speakers). Click this button and you should see the name of you base station. Choose it.

11. If everything has gone well and your computer is connecting to the airport, you should now be able to play your Itunes music through your stereo wirelessly.

There is a short video on connecting to your Airport using Airport Express setup located at iTunes Tutorial: Apple - iLife - Tutorials - iTunes - Play Your Music Wirelessly from Your Stereo (video is for Mac OS X).

**Note**If your computer connects to the Internet through an existing wireless connection that you already have follow the above directions up to step 6, then continue here.

6. The next screen asks if you want to create a new network or connect to an existing one. Choose “Connect to my current wireless network.”

7. Be sure that “Extend the range of my AirPort wireless network” is not selected (unless you are using WDS.)

8. Click Next; AirPort Express Assistant will scan for your existing wireless network. Once it finds it, click Next again.

9. Choose the correct network (there may only be one) from the Wireless Network Name menu. If the wireless network is password protected, you will be prompted to enter the password. Enter the password and then click Next to continue (it may take a plain password or hexadecimal, or you may not have a password on your wireless network. At this point things could get a little tricky if you are a novice computer user. If you have a password on your wireless and are having trouble getting the password right, you may try reading this article from Apple AirPort: Joining an encrypted wireless network.)

10. Enter the name of your Base Station. You can leave the default name or give it a new name like “Living Room Stereo”.

11. Click Finish. Airport restarts and tries to join your wireless network. Once AirPort Express has had a minute or so to restart, it should join the existing wireless network, as indicated by its status light.

12. Once connected open Itunes.

13. In itunes in the lower right hand area you should see a button showing how your music is being heard (it may say “computer” if you are listening with your computer speakers). Click this button and you should see the name of you base station. Choose it.

14. If everything has gone well and your computer is connecting to the airport, you should now be able to play your Itunes music through your stereo wirelessly.

Carlos Cabezas writes regularly about home technology at High Tech Homes - Atlanta Computer Support. His business, High Tech Homes, helps work at home professionals, families and small businesses with their technology issues.


  #1  
By Unregistered: SwaFly on 06-01-2007, 06:55 PM
Default Trouble doing this with VISTA

Hello,
thanks for the set-up tips but I bought a new HP Media Center with VISTA and cannot get the software to detect the airport express, nor have itunes detect any remote speakers: please help !
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  #2  
By Unregistered on 06-18-2007, 09:15 PM
Default

I have the same problem. Please help
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  #3  
By Unregistered on 06-19-2007, 05:52 PM
Default Worked around Vista

This may or may not help. Sorry, but I could not get my daughter's new laptop with Vista to load or run the AE's setup program. After a fruitless search for help online, I gave up and loaded the software on my XP machine. I used XP to configure the AE and set the WiFi settings. I then set my daughter's Vista machine to CONNECT to the AE using those same WiFi settings just as I would any other WiFi box. My daughter's ITunes saw the AE and was able to transmit audio to it without any other tinkering. The AE configuration program (not the setup program) did "run" on the Vista machine, but did not see the AE until I entered the AE's IP address and password. Once I did that, I was able to see the AE's configuration on Vista. Since I intend the daughter to take the AE to college and use it as an access point, I needed to leave it set to DHCP. That means I'll probably not be able to use the config program until I search down the new IP address of the AE that the school's router creates. Fun.

I haven't installed the printer, yet. After all that crap, I stopped and had a celebration beer.

The whole purpose of me buying the AE is so the princess can use her laptop at college without connecting a bunch of wires that she'll eventually break. Network, audio, printer--that's everything except power, right? PERFECT! Except the whole installation software experience has been terrible, and I'd take the thing back if someone else made something similar. In the end, I think I made it work--but it's doubtful many people would have the patience to do what I did. When and if Apple makes the setup software work for Vista, this will be a great device for the 99% of people buying a new laptops right now.
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  #4  
By Unregistered on 07-01-2007, 08:16 PM
Default No support for Vista...

I found out from Apple that Vista cannot be used to configure your AirPort Express. I was told to configure it with one of the XP machines on my network.
Once the Airport was properly configured, the Itunes detected the additional set of speakers from my Vista machine.
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  #5  
By Unregistered on 07-05-2007, 03:37 PM
Default vista and airport express

i used a pc with xp to setup my airport express on my network. i then found i was able to use my laptop running vista to play music via itunes and even print out after using apples bonjour printer software
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  #6  
By Unregistered on 08-15-2007, 03:18 PM
Default A work around

I spoke above of my effort to connect "The Princess" through her new Windows Vista laptop to an Airport Express. Apple has still not offered configuration software for Vista, but someone described a way to load a working program into Vista. I had to follow these steps, but it did work and I now have a working AE setup tool on her laptop. Also, search for the beta version of Bonjour--it also works on Vista for printer support.

Here's the work-around answer: Apple - Support - Discussions - Install Airport Utility 5.0 without the ...
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  #7  
By jmueller on 07-06-2009, 11:06 PM
Default Dell Dimension Desktop

That was the best explanation on how to set up your computer for the airport express. Can't believe Apple does explain it better on their own website.

Two questions:

1. I have a Dell Dimension L733r Pentium III 733 MHz with a noisy power supply - what model of power supply can I install that is quiet

2. I need to install a wireless G card but looks like I am out of slots. Can I remove the telephone dial-up modem card?

Thanks.
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