Solved Need Asus travel router...

  • ATTENTION! As of November 1, 2020, you are not able to reply to threads 6 months after the thread is opened if there are more than 500 posts in the thread.
    Threads will not be locked, so posts may still be edited by their authors.
    Just start a new thread on the topic to post if you get an error message when trying to reply to a thread.

htismaqe

Very Senior Member
I just bought an RV and I need a travel router that can take a USB 4G/5G modem. I know a decent Asus router with RMerlin firmware can do this.

My primary need beyond that is decent OpenVPN throughput between this device and my Asus RT-AX88U sitting at my home. I plan to have two server groups - one for smart devices that will split tunnel directly via 4G/5G and only use the VPN for accessing stuff locally at my home and one for this travel router which will redirect everything back through the VPN because it will be using 4G/5G only when upstream wifi is not available. In most cases, we will be using campground/hotel wifi so I want everything encrypted.

It also needs to be dual band as 5Ghz will be the only option. Campgrounds are crowded and 2.4Ghz is a non-starter.

I can't really think of anything else I need other than those things.
 

htismaqe

Very Senior Member
This looks like the lowest-cost option that supports Merlin. Any other suggestions?

RT-AC66U_B1
 
Last edited:

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
I was a little concerned when the link states 'RT-AC66U', but, being an RT-AC66U_B1, that should be a great choice.

I'm not familiar with USB 4G/5G modems, but as long as the models are compatible with each other, the rest of the hardware should be more than enough for an RV. :)
 

htismaqe

Very Senior Member
Yeah, I could get a true travel router for a little bit less but it is running OpenWRT and isn't optimized for OpenVPN. Throughput would be like double using Merlin Asus-to-Asus vs. running something else.

I don't really see anything else for under $100 so I will probably go with the B1.
 

dropilikeitshot

Occasional Visitor
I believe support comes from stock firmware. ASUS list

BTW
1) isn’t 3g being phased out.

2) I saw other solutions / suggestions on the forum , get a cellular access point with built in WiFi or if you need more range a lan connection to link to your router.

3) I have a WiFi ranger on my RV it was one of the “gimmicks” that model year. Since my RV is essentially an aluminum can, it does help having the access point / repeater on the roof. I guess if you connect the usb cellular modem to the router and it’s by a window then reception might be Passable. I know the custom rv / trucker solutions are pricey but you need to consider how much internet access means to you / your budget / situation. A lot of full timers have 2 of the big 3 cellular access points / or phone on one provider, access point in another to maximize cell coverage.
 

htismaqe

Very Senior Member
Yeah, I've looked at the compatibility matrix. Merlin doesn't support anything that stock doesn't AFAIK, it's more about me being familiar with Merlin and wanting some other features there that stock doesn't provide.

  1. I didn't say anything about 3G. ;) Near term would be 4G LTE but likely upgrade to 5G when it becomes more available in the areas I visit. I have 5G at home now.
  2. I already have a cellular access point with built-in wifi. It's kind of simplistic. Performance isn't great and it doesn't support VPN. It also doesn't support wifi or ethernet uplink, just cellular. I really need the ability to offload to wifi when it is available.
  3. I actually have a Winegard antenna package already installed (trailer came with a universal kit, UHF/VHF TV, satellite, and cellular) and there's TS9 connectors hanging from the ceiling. I wasn't able to find a jetpack/cellular AP with built-in wifi AND external 4G antenna connectors. Which leads me to my final point:
I work for one of the big 3 wireless providers. There's a huge benefit to decoupling the cellular modem from the router because approved devices change frequently. Having an external modem would allow me to utilize my external antennas, upgrade to a new device when they become available, and continue to get support from my wireless provider (they absolutely will not support the all-in-one AP I have now, they told me as much).
 

htismaqe

Very Senior Member
By the way, I have no idea what kind of RF interference I'm looking at. The trailer is made from a fiberglass composite called Nyglass, which I'm guessing is some amalgamation of nylon and fiberglass. It's not aluminum though so that's good, I guess.
 

Adooni

Senior Member
Asus do not care about 4G/5G modems I would not consider any new Asus router for it. Router with OpenWRT will be much better choice.
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
Yeah, I could get a true travel router for a little bit less but it is running OpenWRT and isn't optimized for OpenVPN.

GL.iNet travel routers will give you similar performance in much smaller size, much better power efficiency, better external modems and phones compatibility (hit/miss with Asuswrt), Wireless ISP (something Asus routers don't have), standard USB 5V power supply (compatible with portable power banks). You are familiar with Asuswrt GUI and want to adapt what you know to what you want. It may not produce the results you expect.
 

htismaqe

Very Senior Member
GL.iNet travel routers will give you similar performance in much smaller size, much better power efficiency, better external modems and phones compatibility (hit/miss with Asuswrt), Wireless ISP (something Asus routers don't have), standard USB 5V power supply (compatible with portable power banks). You are familiar with Asuswrt GUI and want to adapt what you know to what you want. It may not produce the results you expect.
Thanks for that. I was actually posting at the same time you were. I've been looking at GL.iNet. My buddy has one and he uses his iPhone to tether. That may actually be my best bet from the sounds of it.
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
So something like this?

Yes, but it's a newer model and I don't know much about it. I purchased one Slate to see what it is and it's an impressive little thing. Beryl is perhaps even better. They run OpenWRT based firmware with beautiful and easy to manage GUI. Wi-Fi is enough for a good size room, should be fine for your RV and close spaces around it. The main advantage is you can connect to camp site Wi-Fi on 2.4GHz and create your own 5GHz network, VPN protected if you wish. This will save you mobile data. You don't need much speed when travelling, you need connection. You won't be working in this RV, I guess.
 

htismaqe

Very Senior Member
The Slate (GL-AR750S) is what my buddy has and he loves it. I think I'm going to go ahead and do the GL.iNet. Thanks again everyone!
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
Buy one from Amazon, test what it can do for you before you hit the road. If it does what you need - great. If it doesn't - send it back.
 

htismaqe

Very Senior Member
Buy one from Amazon, test what it can do for you before you hit the road. If it does what you need - great. If it doesn't - send it back.
That's the plan. Thanks!
 

sfx2000

Part of the Furniture
Beryl is perhaps even better

Beryl is a bit unstable right now, but they are aggressively working on it.

B1300 is not much bigger than a travel router - IPQ4028 qualcomm Wave2 chipset - very solid, and a good performer.

For honest to goodness travel router - the GL AR750 is quite nice, and it's fully supported by OpenWRT 21.02.0_Stable - the X*Y*Z dimensions are about the same as a Raspberry Pi
 

htismaqe

Very Senior Member
So would you opt for the Slate over the Beryl?
 

sfx2000

Part of the Furniture
So would you opt for the Slate over the Beryl?

Both are ok...

I would go with the Slate for the following reasons...

1) Slate is more mature, it's been around now for a couple of years
2) Slate is QC-Atheros, and the OpenWRT baseline, Atheros has a lot more development behind it
 

htismaqe

Very Senior Member
Thanks man!
 

htismaqe

Very Senior Member
Looks like the GL.iNet devices support WireGuard. I could get better VPN performance if I set that up but for right now, OpenVPN should be fine.
 

Latest threads

Sign Up For SNBForums Daily Digest

Get an update of what's new every day delivered to your mailbox. Sign up here!
Top