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Distributing line level audio?  

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Am I asking for trouble if I distribute line-level audio around my house with twisted-pair cable such as cat5?

When we're playing a set of CD's on the upstairs two-channel system, we want to be able to use the audio on the downstairs home theater system. Likewise if I'm playing a DVD audio disk downstairs.

I could simply route line outs from each of the two stereos into unused inputs on the other. Is that a really bad idea for unbalanced audio?

Alternative would be to install cat5 wiring and use the Terk Leapfrog units, or the CATS a/v distribution system (for which I can find no prices or dealers). But if the Terk system is overkill, I don't know why I should bother.

I'm not planning on distributing video.

Mojo

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Morris Jones
San Rafael, CA
mojo@whiteoaks.com
http://www.whiteoaks.com
post #2 of 6
I prefer the AudioControl balanced line driver products, BLD-10, BLR-10, and BLX-10. There are a number of others, including ADA, Sonance, Audioplex, I'm sure I'm missing some. Finding an AudioControl dealer should be significantly easier as well.

jcmitch
post #3 of 6
Interconnecting systems is a common practice. I use a cable consisting of several, individually shielded pairs of wires. Other then RCA connectors, that's all you need.

I'm in San Rafael too. That electronics store on 4th St. ... what's it called... Electronics Plus? They should have it. If not, or you're unsure, e-mail me, I have some long pieces. It should run about $.30/ft. for 2-pair. Oh, we're talking Electronics Plus. They'll want $.50+/ft!

Good luck.
post #4 of 6
This is an area of limited expertise for me, BUT I understand that Cat5 or similar twisted pair wires are not well-suited to line-level audio. I used shielded audio cable (Belden 8723 - 2 pairs, each pair shielded).

Regards
BB80301
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the great replies! I'll look into the balanced/unbalanced converters as well as shielded pairs.

Mojo

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Morris Jones
San Rafael, CA
mojo@whiteoaks.com
http://www.whiteoaks.com
post #6 of 6
Cat5 does indeed make a great line level wire. Several mfgr's now recommend it for multi/room, multi/source installs. Leviton now makes an A/V dist block for Cat5. Elan has a wall plate system that will pass low level audio and ir on Cat5. NHC makes a very good Video balun as well.
if you are having trouble finding any of these products contact me.
Brent McCall
Tsunami HT
(800) 221-0932 #230
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