after 250 days the rain came. and with the rain I can finally report that testing the outside router (with rain) is complete. the TP-Link Omada N300 is made to play outside. the cable compartment seals keeping casual water from leaking inside. I very much doubt that it would survive being sinked (synced is fine). and if you have gale force water you have other problems besides needing outside WiFi.
 
design wise, it seems well thought out. where wire connects closes from the underside. the cover has a gasket like fitting. tab traps around the cable seem to be made with water in mind. and there is a “keeper” tab connected to the cover as I am sure that covers were dropped during test installations. “yes, we should fix this because climbing up and down this pole is not fun.”
 
as you may not remember the point of the outside router was to power up the Tree House. signals to there suck from both the carrier and the inside WiFi. why? most San Francisco flats are full of LEAD paint making even the strongest transmitter a challenge. and NiMBYs don’t want transmitters even though they complain about bars (as if that is a measure of anything).
 
installing the N300 was straight forward. drill a hole in the side of the house. pull cable in hole. add cable cover. goo in place to seal. crimp RJ45 connectors. configure router. there is a version of this router that could be a wireless AP… however, you still need to power it which means a cable which means you might as well just ethernet for simplicity.
 
the other version of this router (AC1200) supports more modern AC WiFi. it also has more range. for the tech I have nothing would take advantage of this more. meaning better is not always better. make sure your tablets, laptop, and other devices support AC before you throw down double more money.
 
one thing that I very much like about the N300 is it can be scheduled. the time that I would use the Tree House is limited. there is no need to have blaring TREE HOUSE 24/365. the open hours are from 9PM until 2AM.
 
who needs an N300? if you have a backyard workshop or corner deck plop one on the side of your house to extend or fix your notwork. music streaming won’t kick or your enjoyment of reading will increase because you won’t have dead stops in coverage. the range claims 200 meters. which I can tell you is true. I can hobble to the stop sign on the corner to rock without hiccups. once around the corner it stops working because of rock (actual rock not rocking rock), lead, wood, and glass in between. of course it fails like that.
 
speaking of FAiL. for $40 if it does ghost after 6 months because of elephants I will not be bugged about replacing it with another N300.
 
SSiD: Tree House
the password is: g.r.o.s.s.
 
affiliate link to the N300: