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Coax or Cat5 Off Topic

Discussion in 'Off Topic Threads' started by ljutic73, Feb 4, 2011.

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  1. ljutic73

    ljutic73 Well-Known Member

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    Cat 5.....built mine in '84 and wireed the whole house with coax....it might work OK for SAT. according to my Sat. Tech guy but cat 5 is better so why not use it?
     
  2. trapperpg

    trapperpg Member

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    Run both. I would suggest at least 3 RG6 quad shield cables and 2 CAT5e cables per outlet location. Cat5 will not support Sat feeds from LNB/multi-switch, but will work for internet,video,audio,etc.
    PG
     
  3. grntitan

    grntitan Well-Known Member

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    Can somebody explain Cat5? I have not heard that term before. Thanks.

    Matt
     
  4. trapperpg

    trapperpg Member

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    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category_5_cable

    pg
     
  5. kfbagt

    kfbagt Member

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    I wouldn't waste the time running cat 5 unless you plan on a home theater setup. Anything that uses the Internet will be wireless. If you're going to build a media room then you could preplan for your equipment room but otherwise what would you possible run off of a cat 5 cable? Your just going to bring your cable or dsl modem to your wireless router and let it go from there so I don't see the point. You can use it for telephone wire but that's an expensive way to go just for telephone outlets.

    Paul
     
  6. Quack Shot

    Quack Shot Active Member

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    Cat 5E at the minimum if using for data. Cat 6 or 6e is better. That would be assuming you are trying to connect data devices or computers. Coax for TV and type depends on what you have coming in. You can run both, using coax for TV and Ethernet for Data.
     
  7. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Don't use Cat 5. At this point it's a waste of time and money. It's obsolete. Cat 6 is ten times faster. Cat 6a is even faster (double Cat 6), but I doubt there is going to be much in the way of equipment for the average consumer that can utilize that speed.

    As for whether to use Cat 5e, 6 or 6a over wireless, for most home uses the wireless is all you need, because your Internet connection simply is not going to be fast enough to take advantage of the cabling.

    Hard wiring excels at three things. Security. General immunity to interference or distance issues. And data transfer.

    For security, no one is going to be able to mirror your router or LAN card and copy your files or eavesdrop on your Internet connection. Whether this is a big issue or not depends on what you are doing. If you're doing a lot of, say, stock investments, taxes, business work involving patents, legal issues, etc., it might be an idea to utilize the security of hard wiring.

    For interference or distance issues, in a normal sized home, Cat5e or Cat6 cable is far superior to wireless. Often wireless needs a repeater, and poor quality fluorescent lighting, motors, large amounts of metal, etc., can cause problems. Large homes with the wireless router at one end and the computer at the far end, especially in a basement or upstairs, can have issues. While there is a limit to length, it's 100 meters, and few homes are going to have a 330 foot cable run. And if you happen to own a mansion and need a 660 foot run, you can always put a switch in the middle to act as a repeater.

    For data transfers, wireless at this time cannot match hard wiring. If you are routinely transferring large blocks of data or large images, etc., or are having friends over to play networked video games, or are doing audio/visual over a LAN, then hard wiring is what you want.

    Drawbacks to hard wiring... This wiring is not like wiring your telephone. You cannot get away with shoddy work, and the tools are not cheap. The wiring and connectors, etc., aren't cheap either. Test equipment to ensure the wiring meets spec is spendy. It is far more expensive to use hard wiring than wireless. And when the day comes that hard wiring becomes obsolete, it takes a lot of work to upgrade it. Far simpler to upgrade wireless. And cheaper too.

    There are some new wireless specs out there that sound impressive, like Wireless-N (802.11n), but trust me, do not go and get a wireless card that advertises specs beyond Wireless-G (802.11g). Because the standards for anything faster have not been finalized at this time, and they simply won't work well. Most cable company wireless setups aren't going to be any faster than Wireless-G anyway. And some of the faster cards are actually slower when throttled back to connect to Wireless-G router than if you had used Wireless-G card. I know because I tested some (802.11n) and found they were slower when connected to a Wireless-G spec router.

    As for coax cable, use that for TV. Don't use it for the Internet. For most computer purposes it is obsolete. (That the cable company uses it for their Internet service has nothing to do with you using it in your home for the Internet.) If you do run new coax for TV, try to use RG-6, not RG-59. And find out if the RG-6 has a solid copper core or a copper coated steel core. The latter is cheaper, but if you are running any distance or are running to a location where you are splitting out to multiple devices without an amplifier, then you can get too much attentuation. You can snip a piece of the cable center and see if a magnet attracts it. If it does, it's steel core. For short runs, it doesn't make much difference. Steel core works fine. In practical terms, steel core works fine in a one story home. In a McMansion, I'd use copper core.

    Cat5 & Cat5e Specs

    Cat6 & Cat6a Specs

    Wireless Specs (802.11)
     
  8. lbshootin

    lbshootin Active Member

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    I work for T-Mobile......we are in the process of going from 3G to 4G, that said, the main point of the infrastructure change is the removal of the CAT5 and upgrading the copper to CAT6E...not that much more cost wise, but look forward in your construction, not rearward...LarryB
     
  9. pyrdek

    pyrdek Well-Known Member

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    Brian has pretty well nailed all the reasons and wherefores of the various cable connections.

    I am a firm believer in WIRED connections over wireless. As you increase the wireless loads by more hookups and/or more intensive files, remember that wireless will share the bandwidth among all the using devices while wired devotes the full bandwidth to each connection. Ten devices on the same wireless router using the connection at the same time will only be running at about 5 meg (based on a G series router). This can happen when you start streaming video or such to multiple computers.

    With the ever increasing demands for Internet service the problem will only get worse. The demand for internet service has become so large that the last block of available internet addresses have been assigned and the old IP v4 blocks are now all distributed (but not totaly used). The move is definitely on to IPv6 because of the need for more addresses.

    One thing mentioned briefly above is the need for proper installation methods and connection. Watch out for sharp bends in the cables of either type, avoid stapling the wire to beams and such because this could create problems in transmission (use hangers or such when possible), avoid running parallel to power lines as much as possible, avoid running near areas of electrical motors or other devices that may generate electrical interference (SCR dimmers, fan speed controls etc.), if running in plenum areas be sure to use plenum rated cables (Fire codes could mandate this in your area), avoid areas where water or dampness could be exposed to the cables unless the cables are rated for outdoor/wet environment use, avoid chemical and solvent areas (degradation of insulation), avoid as many connectors or splices as possible. use proper jack fields if it is needed to accommodate changing wiring needs and make sure all insulation displacement connectors are properly installed with adequate strain reliefs and insulation cut backs and maintaining twist rates.
     
  10. ljutic73

    ljutic73 Well-Known Member

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    Another point....if you're considering a PVR in any location, be sure to tune 2 cables to each of those locations....
     
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