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Item#: N82E16833168119

EnGenius ENS500EXT Long-range 5GHz Wireless N300 Outdoor AP

  • Up to 300Mbps Wireless Data Rates
  • IEEE 802.11a/n
  • Ethernet Port
  • 5.18 - 5.825GHz
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Learn more about the EnGenius Technologies ENS500EXT

Quick Info

Warranty

  • Limited Warranty period (parts): 1 year
  • Limited Warranty period (labor): 1 year


Customer Reviews of the EnGenius Technologies ENS500EXT

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  • Avery S.
  • 12/11/2013 7:49:38 AM
  • Tech Level: Somewhat High
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsAwesome small campus WiFi

Pros: POE included, only one cable to run. Range is great. I'm getting 50MBps between 3 different buildings, one 300' and the other 600' from my AP, both going thru trees. I'm using this to stream video from a server to the other buildings. I've had 5 HD streams going at once without a hiccup. 802.11a also means I'm not competing for frequency with everyone's phones, laptops, etc that are 802.11g currently. Ability to have multiple SSID's is a huge plus. Lastly...weatherproof. I just put these up outside, fully exposed to the elements and they have not had any issues. They have been exposed to near teen temps now for a few days, ice, snow, lots and lots of rain. Not even a slow down.

Cons: None at the moment.

Other Thoughts: I'm buying a couple more just to keep on the shelf in case Engenius decides to stop making these. You cannot beat the price.

Did you find this review helpful? Yes No

4 out of 5 eggsQuality Outdoor 5GHz AP

Pros: I compared the signal strength of this device with a dual-band AC router. When setup in the basement, measurements were taken from the first floor and outside on the opposite side of the house. When setup in an open window, measurements were taken at various points around the yard. The ENS500EXT was consistently stronger with a difference of 4 - 8 dBm, and difference grew the further away from the routers I was (as measured by inSSIder).

Outdoors and at about 70 feet from the router I had a strong signal and easily streamed content from the internet.

5GHz access - this cuts both ways. It's great to have outdoors because so few people have 5GHz routers, and those that do are typically inside homes and business so the signal is less likely to seep very far outside. (Your mileage will definitely vary here though depending on your neighbors.) On the potential downside, it doesn't do you any good to setup an external 5GHz network if your devices do not work over 5GHz.

The PoE (Power Over Ethernet) injector is a great alternative to running a power cable outside in the elements. Setup the injector indoors, or in a properly protected environment, and expose just the ethernet cable and this device to mother nature.

IP65 rated weatherproof housing - this means its solid particle protection is rated dust tight (the highest ranking) and its liquid ingress protection is rated against water jets (stopping shy of powerful water jets and immersion). See IP Code on wikipedia for more information.

The two omni-directional 5dBi MIMO (Multiple In/Multiple Out) antennas are detachable.

Cons: WiFi may be 300Mbps, but the ethernet connection tops out at 100 Mbps. While you may be hard pressed to receive 300Mbps wireless speed, and many internet connections will be less than 100 Mbps, I still find it a shame that you are limited by the ethernet connection on the device. To take full advantage of the potential, they should have put a Gigabit ethernet connection on here. However, I believe this was probably a chosen trade-off; in other words, they couldn't deliver their (proprietary) PoE and gigabit ethernet and (relatively) low cost - as the saying goes, pick 2.

Speaking of the PoE, if you are already invested in PoE network solutions, you may not appreciate this proprietary solution.

The admin interface and options available are powerful. However, it is not very standard and consumers with low tech experience may find it challenging. The marketing material positions this device as a business solution, and as a result those more familiar with network admin or engineering might feel right at home.

I upgrade the firmware from factory-shipped 1.3.1 to the publicly available 1.3.5. The process was smooth and error free. However, I was a little annoyed that the only download files available were saved as a RAR package, and not ZIP, which required me to download a compression utility. (Yes, I was also surprised to find I didn't have a copy of 7-zip already installed on my testing machine.)

The status/indicator LEDs are on the back of the device - not very useful if you mount the device flush against something. Plan accordingly.

Other Thoughts: Having tested a handful or routers recently, it was a joy to use one that just worked. Yes, the interface is more complex. But I didn't find it that off-putting. And having access from the corners of my property was very convenient (for room-layout reasons my indoor router sits in the basement and its signal barely reaches past the confines of my house).

The first time you set it up you’ll want to connect it directly to your PC, & your PC must have an IP address of 192.168.1.x (where x is anything but 1), if it doesn’t, assign it a static IP.

I ran three transfer tests - copying 1,221 files totaling ~3.5 GB through the device. The total times ranged from 7 minutes 43 seconds to 7 minutes 57 seconds. The average transfer rates were all 3 between 7.7 MB/s and 7.9 MB/s. I observed periods of 11 MB/s transfers but never saw anything higher than 12 MB/s. Although I did not keep a constant eye, this is where the 100 Mbps (12.5 MB/s) limitation comes into play.

If you have need of an external router or AP, this is a device worth your consideration.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

5 out of 5 eggsGreat performance. Setup is some work

Pros: First off, the rating is more about the product performance and less about the install. Have had the product for exactly two weeks as of today.
Wow, this device adds wifi to a huge area. Houses two over were getting two bars of coverage! The product replaced a NetGear bridge that failed after six months.
Water resistant: and they mean it as the product held up to falling to the pavement due to high winds and survived two days of constant rain, followed by 96 degree heat.\
Wireless n speed of 300.
SSID-to-VLAN Tagging: allowed for different account access.
Both bridge and access point options.
Signal didn't vary though out the day, like my old bridge.
Able to work well with walls, but does lose a bar when it has to go through two walls. Tried inside the house too.
The large amount of RAM really made a difference over my old bridge.
Easy security setup.

Cons: The install: Manual setup of a static IP address to be able to use the device. Was able to find a manual online that helped with the setup. I figured they designed the product for businesses, not consumers, so making it easy to setup was not what was planned. I have done a lot of IT work, so it was more of just added time.
Changes to setting require a reboot of the entire system, which is a huge pain when it should be just hitting 'apply'.
No cables came with the box.
No 802.11ac compatibility!! Would have been nice to use with my new laptop ac wireless.
Lights came on when connection was established with my wifi.

Other Thoughts: My setup: ZyXel Wifi, Core2Due3.14 PC, Dishnetwork wifi Netgear adaptor duel-band, HP Elite Laptop and iPad. Have a D-Link camera, but it cannot use 5Hz.

Everything worked better and faster on this bridge. Was happy to toss out the old NetGear plastic junk bridge.

Install and setup were not as easy as NetGear, but this is designed for businesses, and they have IT people.

My 5Hz band is wide open, so I was able to pull off some from my 2.4 band.

Was able to get tech support on the line and they were VERY helpful. Nice people, making a great product.

The product has made surfing outside the house easy and fun, without the constant dropping of connections.

Watching shows on DishNetwork no longer has buffering issues.

This is the most useful product inside or outside the house.

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4 out of 5 eggsDecent outdoor AP..

Pros: This device is capable of being installed in an outdoor environment where it is not as affected by the elements.
Packaging was decent.
Has a separate POE Injector in order to power the device though the network cable, so the power port can be plugged in indoors rather than outside.

5.0Ghz range with decent outdoor range.
2 Tall antennas for range.
Pretty simple look and feel for the most part. Doesn't feel like something that would just fall apart in a couple months.

I did not mount it to the side of my house yet, debating on location at the moment, however setup in a temporary setting outside and seems to be offering decent extended range for my backyard. (I can use WIFI to play music from my phone in the yard now) 15 feet from the house I still had signal on my phone. (Samsung S3) My wifes iPad for work worked as well.

The device has a sticker for the mounting holes for easy installation.

Offers several operation options and I tested both bridge and access point. Both functioned as expected. You can also set it up as an router with DHCP as well if you just wanted an outdoor router.

Cons: Instructions were very basic, they tell you how to hook up the connections and briefly on how to connect however the average user would struggle. (really only for IT users only in my opinion)
Does not come with any network (Cat5) cables, and you will need several.

There does not seem to be any help topics within the GUI, so if you look at the different options and settings, there isn't anything further to explain if you are not familiar with the terminology.

Does not offer 2.4 Ghz band, as some older devices do not support 5Ghz.

There is a user manual, however you have to search online to find it.

An annoying thing is after you make changes you have to go back to the top menu to reboot the device in order for the changes to actually apply, just hitting apply is not enough.

You have to manually setup a static IP on your device to initially connect to the GUI. I understand why.. but it is a little annoying having to go in and do that.

Other Thoughts: The User Interface is quite simplistic which, has an older style feel to it, but it seemed to run rather smooth.

5Ghz works better in an area without walls, so keep that in mind if you are thinking about placement. Depending on your house setup and where you want the extended range, placement can be key.

Also keep in mind when setting up outside, you will need cables long enough for placement, and cat5 cable meant for exterior applications would be highly recommended.

Overall it's a pretty decent functioning device if you understand and know how to set everything up. I did not try the tech support as I was able to do everything I was trying to do, so I can't vouch for the quality of support, however their website does have the user manual and some decent information. Range is good as well, so i'm happy with it. Just keep in mind the cable length and placement of the device!

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2 out of 5 eggsNightmare of Cables & Poor UI

Pros: Excellent wi-fi antenna, good packaging, comes with wall mounts and screws which is nice.

Cons: Initial setup requires two Ethernet cables, you'll also need a 3rd if you want to monitor your router at the same time. There aren't any included in the box, plus you'll need one for power, so you'll need some spares! Messy setup; requires you to manually change DHCP settings on your LAN adapter to even access the setup page.

I don't see any Factory Default settings on the device, which means if you mess up the IP Address/Gateway for the configuration page, it's lost forever! So if you have to change those settings to work on your router, make sure you write down the IP address.

Setup page is poorly designed, like a website from the 1990's. You have to globally apply settings each time you're done configuring, the process takes up to 1 minute each time. When you're done changing settings, make sure you go to the "Save/Reload" section and apply your changes!

The "auto" detected settings shown in the wireless options didn't actually match the settings being shown on the status page. I ended up manually applying the correct settings, which ended up making no difference. I'm still not entirely sure which settings it was actually using.

Adapter never attempted to make a connection with my router, despite detecting it through scan. There's no feedback on wireless connections so I can't even troubleshoot what the issue is. You just have to setup the router and wait for it to 'automatically' connect. Wireless indicator lights never actually lit up, so maybe it wasn't even trying to connect to my router. I have no way of knowing. I assumed it was an issue with WPA, even after disabling wireless security nothing changed.

Power plug is on the external PoE adapter, which then requires an ethernet cable for power. Why? I had to dig up 3 ethernet cables just to set this thing up, along with power cable. It's a mess. I imagine actually using it after setup is just as messy since it requires an Ethernet Cable, a standard power cable/adapter, and the PoE Injector to run.

Other Thoughts: My router is a D-LINK DIR-850L. I've used access points in the past and already have multiple devices connected to it, so I don't know what this EnGenius adapter was doing. Matched settings with my router, detected in the scan, but still no connection.

There's no way of monitoring the wireless connection apart from the status page, which just has basic IP/Signal/Frequency information and no actual information about the connection status itself. If it doesn't work immediately as plug-and-play then you just have to start trying random settings and hope it works eventually.

If you're looking for a wifi extender I would look into more user-friendly products, as this one makes the entire process a challenge.

Manufacturer Response:

Dear Valued Customer,

We appreciate your time in posting your comments and feedback.

We understand that you had some difficulty setting up the ENS500EXT. The ENS500EXT can be reset back to factory default settings by pressing the reset button at the back of the device for 11+ seconds while it is powered on. The default IP address is 192.168.1.1. The ENS500EXT was designed to be powered by a proprietary PoE injector so that you can keep the power adapter and PoE injector inside the building and just run an ethernet cable from the injector to the device. This is to avoid exposing the PoE injector and power adapter to the elements since the ENS500EXT is primarily an outdoor unit. The signal indicator LED on the ENS500EXT only lights up when there is a wireless connection and when the device is set up as either a Client Bridge, a Client Router or a WDS station. You are correct in that this is not usually a plug-and-play device.

Please allow us to do some troubleshooting with you. You may reach us through our number at 1-888-735-7888 and ask for me or e-mail us at support@engeniustech.com.

Thank you for your patience and we look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely,

Mike
Engenius Customer Support Team

0 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

5 out of 5 eggsFantastic Outdoor AP

Pros: BUILD QUALITY
Build quality is superb. Even though it is primarily constructed from plastic, it has a good weight to it and feels very solid.

In addition, all the necessary wall mounting equipment (screws, etc) is provided for you. Very nice.

RANGE
This was the highlight of my testing. I plugged this in on my back deck, and had fantastic signal strength (80%+) everywhere in my yard (up to about maybe 80 feet away from the AP). I also suffered no significant degradation in signal speed, though I do not have an internet connection fast enough to push the 300 Mbps limits of this extender.

Handled a pair of laptops and smartphones (4 devices on one SSID) effortlessly.

The 5 GHz band is really ideal for an outdoor AP, as you don't get any walls in the way, and so signal strength does not degrade as quickly as it does in a building.

EASE OF USE
The admin interface is great for this device, much like that of a high quality router (though less complex, obviously). Configuration is very simple, and it takes just a few seconds to switch operating modes.

Their PoE (Power over Ethernet) feature is really nice - you don't have to rely on an external power outlet to power the AP.


I imagine that the ability to broadcast multiple SSIDs (up to 4) will be VERY nice for business use. It broadcast both my regular (secured) and guest (unsecured) network flawlessly.

Cons: Three very minor things and that's it:

1) No ethernet cables included in the package.

I understand that decision, because I don't think that's going to be a con for most business users (whose IT departments probably have boxes full of unused ethernet cables laying around), but for a home user it's a bit annoying, since you need two ethernet cables to use this extender (one from modem/router to the PoE injector, one from PoE to the AP).


2) No 802.11ac compatibility

Again just a minor quibble, but I would have loved to see 802.11ac support rather than just 802.11a/n. I'm not sure how many businesses are adopting 802.11ac yet, but this device clearly has the range to cover a decent area, and if you are going to be connecting dozens of devices to it, I expect that the 300 Mbps limit of 802.11a/n will become oversaturated quickly.

3) 5 Ghz single band means older 2.4 GHz devices are out of luck.

Many laptops and smartphones released in the last couple years only operate on the 2.4 GHz spectrum, and anyone with one of those devices will (obviously) be unable to connect to this AP. Only you know if that will be an issue for your intended use.

Other Thoughts: Overall, I was impressed by this AP and highly recommend it to any home or small business user who needs an outdoor AP for the 5 GHz band.

It's definitely a bit of a niche product - it's more than most home users need, and because it is single band 5 GHz instead of dual band 2.4/5 GHz, it's not ideal as an indoor AP for a large building or building-to-building networking (in fairness, it's not marketed as such, either).

That said, for its intended function - outdoor 5 GHz 802.11a/n access point - it's dang near flawless.

Now, I'm going to go get back to watching some HD youtube videos out by the fire pit in my yard :)

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

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Item#: N82E16833168119
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