New home, less wiring the second time! - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 09-01-2014, 07:14 AM - Thread Starter
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New home, less wiring the second time!

I recently purchased another home and am doing major renovations to it so a lot of walls are wide open for access to run wire everywhere. But this time around, I'm not going to wire a fraction of what I previously did. Sounds crazy, but I've been reading a lot on the forums again and I can't see the need for it.

In my prior home, an addition about 8-9 years ago opened up walls and I wired the standard 2 RG6 and 2 Cat5e to as many locations as possible. Walls were open, do it once, right? It was a mass of wire and the reality is 90% of it wasn't used and probably never will be. Wireless changed all of that.

So with the walls wide open in my current house, which is larger and has many more rooms to deal with, for the bedrooms I'm going to run just 1 location with 1 RG6 and 1 cat5e. The kids all watch shows on their ipads or laptops, and all of their devices are connected to the network wirelessly. The will probably never need wired, but 1 of each should take care of the just in case situations. For the kids playroom, the family room and probably our master bedroom, in the 1 location that will have the TVs (and tivos, roku, xbox, wii, etc.) I will run 1 RG6, 2 cat5e and 1 cat6. So that should give me the chance to wire those devices if I want to instead of using wireless. The end result should be about 1/4 of the wire that I ran in my first house, which is 1/2 the size of the current one. I will run speaker wire to every room on the 1st floor and outside for whole house audio (sonos) as well.

Any thoughts or something that I'm missing? Thanks!
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post #2 of 8 Old 09-01-2014, 09:55 AM
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Why not just run a 1 1/4" flexible innerduct to all locations and your covered. Just pull the wire you need in it when you are ready. When things change or need updating just pull a new cable behind the old one and your done.
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post #3 of 8 Old 09-01-2014, 11:56 AM
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Originally Posted by ELECTRICDON View Post
Why not just run a 1 1/4" flexible innerduct to all locations and your covered. Just pull the wire you need in it when you are ready. When things change or need updating just pull a new cable behind the old one and your done.
I've thought about going that route with my new build, but it seems unworkable when you get to a certain number of locations. My current LV wiring plan has 35 distinct locations that some sort of cable is going to go to. Some of those are single POE Cat-5 (Wifi APs and IP Cams), and others are WHA speaker and keypad locations. Dropping those from the list I end up with 16 actual multi-cable locations. Is that too many to try to manage in the head end (AV) closet?
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post #4 of 8 Old 09-01-2014, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by wolverines View Post
They will probably never need wired, but 1 of each should take care of the just in case situations.
One cat5e/RG6 drop in each bedroom is certainly a minimum - I would add another cat5e drop location if needed to allow for wired coverage around all four walls. Most bedrooms need two drop locations to ensure you can get a wire to any usable location without crossing a door frame.

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Originally Posted by wolverines View Post
For the kids playroom, the family room and probably our master bedroom, in the 1 location that will have the TVs (and tivos, roku, xbox, wii, etc.) I will run 1 RG6, 2 cat5e and 1 cat6. So that should give me the chance to wire those devices if I want to instead of using wireless. The end result should be about 1/4 of the wire that I ran in my first house, which is 1/2 the size of the current one. I will run speaker wire to every room on the 1st floor and outside for whole house audio (sonos) as well.

Any thoughts or something that I'm missing? Thanks!
The conduit to key AV locations is a good future-proofing move. Probably don't need to do that everywhere. I would suggest more cat5e locations (see above), including keypad drops for any room with WHA / speakers. Also main hallways or other spots a future 'smart home' automation touchpanel would be handy...

Jeff

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post #5 of 8 Old 09-01-2014, 06:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ELECTRICDON View Post
Why not just run a 1 1/4" flexible innerduct to all locations and your covered. Just pull the wire you need in it when you are ready. When things change or need updating just pull a new cable behind the old one and your done.
I've thought about the conduit but in a 150 year old house the space to run it just doesn't really exist. I will try to do it in the family room as there should be access from the basement below. And I may have a place to get close to the 3rd floor in one location. Do you think the 1" is enough (that's readily available locally)?

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One cat5e/RG6 drop in each bedroom is certainly a minimum - I would add another cat5e drop location if needed to allow for wired coverage around all four walls. Most bedrooms need two drop locations to ensure you can get a wire to any usable location without crossing a door frame.

...I would suggest more cat5e locations (see above), including keypad drops for any room with WHA / speakers. Also main hallways or other spots a future 'smart home' automation touchpanel would be handy...
Jeff - yes, the 1 of each is bare minimum for sure. I ran 2 of each to multiple locations in my prior house and except for the tivo in our master bedroom, not one of them was used. Every device is wireless, including the imac. I've thought about the keypads, speakers, home automation, etc. In the prior house I ran cat5e to a potential speaker control but my wife doesn't want them and the sonos doesn't need them, so those aren't needed. I'll run 1 or 2 cat5e to the front door and side door, just in case. But I can't think of any other locations that are needed. Anything we'd do on the automation front would all be controlled via our iphones/ipads. I think I have to do some quick scouring on the vera forums as that's my most likely automation route.

Thanks!
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post #6 of 8 Old 09-01-2014, 09:54 PM
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Every device is wireless, including the imac.
Don't limit yourself to only wireless solutions for the future.

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I've thought about the keypads, speakers, home automation, etc. In the prior house I ran cat5e to a potential speaker control but my wife doesn't want them and the sonos doesn't need them, so those aren't needed.
And if Sonos came out with a cool wall-mount touchpad next week? Run the wires. Bury them in the wall at logical keypad locations and document them, so you don't have to look at blank plates.

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Anything we'd do on the automation front would all be controlled via our iphones/ipads. I think I have to do some quick scouring on the vera forums as that's my most likely automation route.
Mobile device control is great, but not the only answer, and not the answer for everything. Don't lock yourself into one path when many others are known. And this industry is changing rapidly...

Jeff

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post #7 of 8 Old 09-03-2014, 10:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Jeff - I hear you. I know that my family didn't want keypads or anything like that. It was only when control made it to their iPhones that usage picked up and they'll never go back. I'll probably heed your advice to a degree and put some cat5e in a few locations buried for the you never know moment. But I'm going with 1/1 to most bedrooms. The TV locations can get some more runs, especially of cat5e or cat6. Thanks.
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post #8 of 8 Old 09-03-2014, 10:43 AM
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Jeff - I hear you. I know that my family didn't want keypads or anything like that. It was only when control made it to their iPhones that usage picked up and they'll never go back.
In terms of "go back" to keypads - there's a huge difference between simple keypads with source selection/volume and display keypads with metadata. The latter provides the same functionality as the mobile apps (though generally not as pretty), and keypads are always available and stay put in the room.

Just don't lump future touchscreen / keypads in with partial function volume control & source selectors of the past... Of course you'd rather use the mobile app if you can't browse content on the keypad...

I believe the best solution for audio control is "both" - fixed keypads for many locations, mobile devices for places where you're nowhere close to the wall. Meaning - keypad probably better for the bathroom, mobile device better used from the family room couch.

Jeff

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