Preview: Boost your outdoor wireless coverage with the EnGenius ENS202EXT

Access points are a good way to create a wireless network somewhere, provided you can also get an ethernet cable there. Sometimes it's possible to use the signal from your wireless router, but it's not always powerful enough. Take your garden, for example. Installing an access point there isn't always straight-forward since it has to be able to withstand the elements. Such devices do exist, for example the EnGenius ENS202EXT. We tried it out.

A repeater can also help boost your wireless signal, but an access point is always preferable if that's an option. The bandwidth you can get from a decent access point is significantly better than that of a repeater. That's because an access point doesn't lose half the bandwidth when transmitting the signal, as it has a wired connection unlike a repeater. An access point only needs to send, and doesn't have to receive at the same time like a repeater.

The EnGenius ENS202EXT is designed for outdoor use and is IP65 certified, meaning it can handle dust and rain. You can tell by the protective covers on the network ports. It comes with a pole mount set for hanging it on a wall, along with the necessary screws and plugs. The way it's designed you can also attach it to a pole with zip ties. It's a single-band access point, which means it only supports the 2.4 GHz frequency.

With a price of £87, it's an interesting option if you want more than your standard access point.

The fact that EnGenius ENS202EXT offers more than a usual access point is obvious from the two large antennas you attach to it. They're omni-directional antennas with a 5 dBi gain. That's more than what most routers and access points have. Of course you can buy even more powerful ones and use those instead. According to the specs, the access point offers a signal strength of 26 dBm, or 400 mW. You can read rest of the EnGenius ENS202EXT preview on Hardware.info.