Cables coming into equipment room - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 01-14-2013, 12:26 PM - Thread Starter
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In an equipment room where all the cables come in and go out, what is a best practice for using or not using wall plates? I have, at last count, 38 cables that will go into or out of my rack going to various places around the room, or, coming in from the outside.

I've always used wall plates in houses before, but, never had a theater room. Wall plates would allow me to label each connector. However, it also adds another connection point to each cable. Sure would look good though. I know I can get custom plates from Redco to make it very organized. They also have the advantage of not having to make custom connectors and for future use, esp. with cat6 wiring for unknown purposes. Without a wall plate, I would need to know in advance what the end needs to be, say serial vs network and have the correct cable purchased. With a wall plate, I could simply have a CAT6 8 wire jack, and, fashion an adapter to make any connector I wish from that, such as a RS232 connector from the RJ45 jack. Same applies to other connectors this is just an example. Without a wall plate, I suppose I could end the cable in a RJ45 connector, and, attach an adapter to it when needed, but now the room will be filled with adapters on top of the cables, seems more of a mess.

But maybe not. What is a best practice, if there is such a thing? Obviously, many connectors have specific purposes, like speaker wire, etc. But I have around 5-10 that will be of unknown future use, the only thing relevant is I know what cable wire would be needed.

Just curious as to what people do with 38 cables coming into the equipment area?

I've seen wall "plates" where all they are is essentially a trimmed hole and you feed whole cables through them. I don't like them for the reason of not knowing what end is needed, having to precisely know how long I will need each cable in advance, and, having to adapt the ends in a number of cases. Also, don't like the hole into the wall for bugs. Seems like you'd need way more loose cable lying around as well.

But, maybe that's the best way?
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post #2 of 6 Old 01-14-2013, 12:34 PM
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For 8+ Cat6 I would probably use a patch panel, especially if you are using a 19" rack. For speaker wires it is more personal preference; I dont like HDMI plates at all (Especially for 25FT+ HD). I'm sure other will have a different opinion and it really is a case of what suits and if you are willing to sacrifice 0.1% of sound quality for convenience and neatness.
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post #3 of 6 Old 01-14-2013, 01:59 PM
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Put the cable bundle into conduit, running from the drywalled ceiling to the rack. Keep the bundles neat, and you can skip the conduit.

Here is a google image search of the remotecentral.com site for the keyword rack:

https://www.google.com/search?q=site:remotecentral.com+rack&hl=en&tbo=d&rlz=1C1CHFX_enUS501US501&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=cH30UKQxyarQAde3gPAG&ved=0CAcQ_AUoAA&biw=1056&bih=1141

Here is a nice one:



Read this thread, especially post #6.

http://www.remotecentral.com/cgi-bin/mboard/rc-custom/thread.cgi?19075

Find a space in the wall or ceiling for extra cable slack, aka 'service loops'. The extra cable may come in handy down the road, when revising the rack.

Another relevant thread from remotecentral.com:

http://www.remotecentral.com/cgi-bin/mboard/rc-custom/thread.cgi?20321

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post #4 of 6 Old 01-14-2013, 02:00 PM
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Wall plates are very neat, but no visible cables is even neater.

Although neat, this does not appeal to me:


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post #5 of 6 Old 01-14-2013, 02:23 PM
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If you're set on patching cables at the wall, maybe you can hide the connections inside a flush mount low voltage enclosure.

If you put some effort into it, the bundled cables may appear perfectly acceptable.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FY1XB0rrYes

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cFToZt_KzI&playnext=1&list=PLD9EEEA4E0B6211B2&feature=results_video

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post #6 of 6 Old 01-15-2013, 04:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neurorad View Post

Put the cable bundle into conduit, running from the drywalled ceiling to the rack. Keep the bundles neat, and you can skip the conduit.

So, you gave some very good links, thanks! I went through them all. I agree the plates look bad. I want to keep bugs and stuff out though, and air "circulation" between attic and room to a minimum. Using a conduit, or several, I can see bringing all the cables in that way, all 38+. However, what kind is useful such that I can fit a lot of cables, yet, seal it off mostly so bugs can't get in or out? I can see all cables coming in in the back corner of the closet and I think that would look fine. Just need a good way to get them in through the ceiling and allow for the slack. Have any good pictures or ideas?
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