2.7. AirPort Express and AirTunes
The AirPort Express, which resembles a PowerBook AC adapter after a few months of gym workouts, is a handy-dandy 802.11g Wi-Fi base station for a wireless network, just like its big brother, the AirPort Extreme.
"So," you say, "Why do I care about wireless networking in a book about my iLife '05 programs? I just want to learn how to use iTunes."
This is why: AirPort Express was made with iTunes in mind. Thanks to a built-in feature called AirTunes, you can wirelessly stream your iTunes music from your Mac, through the air, and out from your home stereo speakers (which are plugged into the AirPort Express)all without tripping over a long and pesky cable connecting your Mac upstairs to your home audio system downstairs. All you need are these:
Once you buy the pocket base station, some set-up software gently guides you through the chores like naming the base station and getting iTunes ready for its broadcast debut. Make sure to plug the AirPort Express into an electrical outlet close to your stereo system and use the proper cable to connect the two.
After the setup process is finished, a new little pop-up menu appears at the bottom of your iTunes window (Figure 2-8), displaying the name you just bequeathed to AirPort Express. Choose that and then click the iTunes Play to start broadcasting.
Tip: The AirPort Express also has a port to connect a USB-enabled printer, which lets all of the computers on your wireless network share the same printer.