Lightning strike? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 26 Old 06-22-2019, 07:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Lightning strike?

Couple weeks ago we had a bad lightning storm. Had one hit super close to the house. Not sure where but REAL close.

Had the receiver on at the time, but not the amp for the subs (iNuke300DSP). It fried the one HDMI input that I have the sattelite receiver plugged into. I changed to a differant input and it seems fine.

Problem is now whenever I turn the amp on to jam out I have the worse hum coming thru the subs that its un usuable.

So, is my problem the amp, the sub outputs on the receiver, or the subs themselves?

Thanks guys.

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post #2 of 26 Old 06-22-2019, 07:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stroker548 View Post
Couple weeks ago we had a bad lightning storm. Had one hit super close to the house. Not sure where but REAL close.

Had the receiver on at the time, but not the amp for the subs (iNuke300DSP). It fried the one HDMI input that I have the sattelite receiver plugged into. I changed to a differant input and it seems fine.

Problem is now whenever I turn the amp on to jam out I have the worse hum coming thru the subs that its un usuable.

So, is my problem the amp, the sub outputs on the receiver, or the subs themselves?

Thanks guys.

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Does the hum go away if you disconnect the signal cable going to the AVR?

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post #3 of 26 Old 06-22-2019, 09:17 AM
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Or when plugged into something that wasn't on the grid at the time?

They make optical HDMI cables, less than 100 on amazon. Might be worth buying one now that you know this is one of the main weak spots.

You may need to buy a new AVR and inuke. It doesn't really matter if it was powered on or not, the surge may have still come cross the signal wires into the inuke, cooking it.

Generally once lightning is in the system, it spiders out to all paths that lead to ground (which is every device in the house pretty much, since they all have a neutral and/or ground), all you can do is hope that there was nothing important in the way of the path.

With that many devices it creates a very low impedance (a good connection) to ground, unfortunately there is absolutely no way to avoid that without violating every electrical code and building code that exists.

When you are dealing with a bolt of energy that intense it ALSO acts like a weak local-EMP, inducing power in circuits that are completely air gapped and thus not connected to the point of origin. But that induction is generally FAR less intense than a direct-conduction (and more rare & unpredictable).

Last edited by BassThatHz; 06-22-2019 at 09:21 AM.
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post #4 of 26 Old 06-22-2019, 12:11 PM
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Trying to use non-conductive connections and other attempts at insulation are typically not very effective. Lightning has no problem traveling through a mile of air before reaching your house. A few inches or feet of extra air, glass, or whatever else isn't a barrier.

The best approach is to go the other direction and offer lightning the best conductive path with high ampacity and low relative resistance and hope it takes that path only or primarily preferentially to any electronics you have. This is done through whole house grounding rod schemes. Do it right.

Beyond that, the best function of surge protectors and such is the warranty they may carry.
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post #5 of 26 Old 06-22-2019, 02:28 PM
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Disconnect the AVR and power on the inuke, if the hum is there the amp got hit too.


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post #6 of 26 Old 06-22-2019, 03:00 PM
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We get quite a few storms too since we are so close to the ocean.

I just received this whole home surge protector from Amazon. The main reason is to protect these sensitive Wink wall switches that keep burning out but it will be nice not to worry about everything else.

I still might explore the grounding rod option for the same reason you had an issue.

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post #7 of 26 Old 06-22-2019, 04:54 PM
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Whole home surge protectors certainly have a role. These are for "not so close" strikes that send a modest power surge down the lines to multiple homes. They do their job well.

My comments were regarding direct strikes. There isn't anything you can do. We have been hit before... down the tree, out the roots, into nearby water line, into house, exploded (literally) hot water heater, into electrical system, lost every TV and half the other electronics. Maybe a grounding rod would have attracted the strike sparing a lot of that, maybe not, but it's about the only hope.
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post #8 of 26 Old 06-22-2019, 08:22 PM
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If you read the fine print on those whole-house units, they still let 300-600volts through, which is a LOT lower than SAY kilo-volts/mega-volts.
It will absorb SOME amount of juice, but it still (LIKELY) might not be enough...

They are basically just bigger/more-robust versions of the power strips you use, nothing more. (Same components: MOVS)
They DON'T block continuous-overvoltages, like that found in an E3 wave of an EMP or a Carrington event. (Neither does the EMPShield products I might add.)

An entry-level to mid-grade UPS will block SOME of the continuous overvoltages, again if you read the fine print it will still let through about 140-170volts (if it even says at-all...)

Normal metallic HDMI doesn't help AT ALL, it can pass THOUSANDS of watts briefly before melting, WAY more than the chips can handle on both sides of the cable. Optical blocks just as much voltage (or more) than the smaller glass insulators holding up big power lines.

A lot of places like NORAD have gone all-optical, or mostly-optical. That is not by accident.

It's about layers of protection...
Every metallic cable adds great risk.
But doing nothing at all, is a guaranteed way of protecting nothing.

But for-sure, if you live in a lightning-prone area and if you have a bit of money to burn, you can implement a grounding grid all around your house. That's just another layer of protection. (It's all gonna do something, maybe... )

It's not uncommon for lightning to hit the edge of a house and flow down the water drainage systems as they are tin and (nearly) a direct-ground path, often blowing off the side of the house where it hits on its way.
Also solar panel systems or any roof heat-capture piping, that's our reward for trying to be green!

In summary:
The power of lightning is simply unstoppable. You either get lucky and the layers "do something" (or not... )
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post #9 of 26 Old 06-22-2019, 08:49 PM
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For my system:
All of my HDMI cables are optical as of this year.
I did that to eliminate system noise (ground loops etc) in my DSP rig;
and secondarily to add yet another layer of surge protection.

All of my fridges are protected by SurgeX QC's, and my HT rack with their 20a EV and SA units, and then mid-grade CyberPower UPS's.
The internet and TV is also optical, and APC on the power-line side.
Half the LAN is air-gapped wifi, the rest has Ubiquiti arresters on them. (I'd like to do full optical on the LAN, but $$$...)
Both the main panel and sub-panel has whole-house units on them as well.
It's never perfect, but it's definitely "something".

SurgeX protects against mid-tier surges, E2 and continuous E3. (Each of their models differ greatly in capabilities, so read the fine print.)
Not sure how well they'd withstand an E1 wave, or other blast-inductions. (and I hope the Earth never finds out!)

The higher-grade APC and CyberPower stuff works fairly-well too, but perhaps not quite as deluxe in regards to the surge-handling components.
Their entry-level BestBuy step-modified stuff is better than your basic power-strip, but still mostly-garbage in comparison...

I'd also trust Furman and TrippLite over Monster, if it came down to actually getting the job done; just because... they sound like the Bose of surge protection. Just sayin'

But direct-lightning, you are pretty much SOL in all cases...

Last edited by BassThatHz; 06-22-2019 at 08:54 PM.
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post #10 of 26 Old 06-23-2019, 06:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the advice guys. I will do some testing today and find out.

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post #11 of 26 Old 11-04-2019, 05:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Bringing this back up.

Did some testing and I think the amp got hit to. Hums something feirce when its plugged in to input A.

Even when its unhooked from the receiver. The hum goes away if i swap over to input B but i cant get it to work with only that hooked up.

Looks like i will be getting a new amp for by 2 vbss.

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post #12 of 26 Old 11-04-2019, 07:32 PM
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As mentioned:

Buy all this stuff.
It's worth every penny...

Then with a bit of luck, you won't have keep to re-buying stuff after every storm.

Install this:
https://www.amazon.com/Siemens-FS140.../dp/B013WINMK6

Replace all the HDMI cables with this (especially the coax\sat tv feed).
https://www.amazon.com/DTECH-Fiber-O.../dp/B07J4HZK7W

Put one of these on the subwoofer amp, and another on the low-power stuff.
These are rated for 1000+ surges up to 6000V and 3000A with no degradation, no ground contamination and no load failures, and they have overvoltage cutoff, and a warranty (but you'll have to follow the fine print.) Also made in USA.
https://www.amazon.com/ESP-Digital-P.../dp/B074XJ8NJF
https://www.amazon.com/ESP-Digital-P.../dp/B074XJ5P49

In the whole-house units, like that Siemens, are just a bunch of MOVs, one good strike and they are useless.


^^^
and THAT, is why I own multiple SurgeX's.
My system costs like 6 figures. At this point... I can't afford NOT to!
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post #13 of 26 Old 11-05-2019, 07:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks BassThatHz. I looked at all the good stuff and I see why your system is 6 figures. Haha.

Im planning on stopping at Sweetwater on the way home from work and picking up a new NX3000D. Although, Im still not 100% sure the amp is toast.

It doesnt make sense to me that if turn the knob on the front all the way down the hum goes away. It also doesnt make sense that if im plugged into Input B there is no hum, but when plugged into Input A, even when unhooked feom the AVR the noise is still there. I originally thought it was my RCA to XLR cable but had a spare that does the same thing.

Admittingly, I aint real slick with electricity and dont understand how all this works. What are the odds that the subs are damages? I guess if the new amp does the same thing the subs are the only thing left.

Sorry for the long post

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post #14 of 26 Old 11-05-2019, 08:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stroker548 View Post
...It doesnt make sense to me that if turn the knob on the front all the way down the hum goes away. It also doesnt make sense that if im plugged into Input B there is no hum, but when plugged into Input A, even when unhooked feom the AVR the noise is still there...
It actually makes perfect sense, if one thinks about it. Something in the input stage or power supply is fried, causing the hum. The hum is being amplified, and goes away when you attenuate the input, just like program material would go away. Take the amp to a reputable repair shop, and let them fix it.

EDIT: Try a different source first. It is possible the hum is coming from your AVR. Of course, if this is true, you'll get the hum on your new amp as well.

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post #15 of 26 Old 11-05-2019, 08:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Stroker548 View Post
...The hum goes away if i swap over to input B but i cant get it to work with only that hooked up...
That's because you have it in Bi-Amp mode, which uses Input A to feed Output A and B (Input B is disconnected). If you put it in Dual Mono mode, and use Input B, you should get output on Output B. Output B may or may not work either, however, due to the same lightning damage. Also, see my edit in my previous post.

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post #16 of 26 Old 11-05-2019, 08:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks guys. Gonna pick up a new amp and give it a shot.

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post #17 of 26 Old 11-05-2019, 01:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stroker548 View Post
Thanks guys. Gonna pick up a new amp and give it a shot.
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I'm sorry to hear about your strike. FWIW, a hit like that weakens the circuits and especially low-voltage stuff like transistors and ICs. These can be damaged at a microscopic level and still work for a bit, but eventually they will fail. It might be weeks or months or years... I had a Sony TV fail about year after a strike which got some other things. The tech reported that it looked like a lightening strike based on the damages and I had not even told him about the prior hit.

I highly recommend SurgeX products as well. I've been using these in AV setups for 15+ years. I generally layer starting with hard wire-in branch circuit units at the panels and then the 1U units in the cabinets / racks which may be 100' + away.

FWIW, if patient, you can locate good quality used units on eBay for much less than retail. But, you won't get the original warranty or coverage so read that print. For me, all I need is for the units to work as designed and if not, that's when insurance takes over.

Search for the SX1115-RT and SX1120-RT models which are 1U models. The RT models have more of their features such as COVUS, ICE etc.. The 1120 requires a 20 A power socket unless someone builds a converter cord or modifies the power cord, which I see often on used units - buyer pay attention!

You can also find plug-in units from "BrickWall" and one more player who's name escapes me. All of these are series-mode units which license the same patented circuits. The SurgeX units usually add around that with things like COVUS and ICE. Biggest thing to check for is if the unit conforms to UL STD 1449 Third Edition on the unit's sticker. The 2nd edition is OK for me as well. The vids above should be required watching for AVers. All surge units are NOT crated equal. I'd not run my AV setup without them. I banned MOV units from my house long ago. YMMV. Peace.

Last edited by gattaca; 11-05-2019 at 01:26 PM.
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post #18 of 26 Old 11-05-2019, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Stroker548 View Post
Thanks BassThatHz. What are the odds that the subs are damaged?
Connect a multimeter to it. It is reads between 1-16ohms, then the cone is "probably" fine.

As other members have mentioned, it's probably a dead input-stage or a dead AVR,
and putting a new amp in will rule that out.
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post #19 of 26 Old 11-05-2019, 10:00 PM
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Originally Posted by gattaca View Post
You can also find plug-in units from "BrickWall" and one more player who's name escapes me. All of these are series-mode units which license the same patented circuits. The SurgeX units usually add around that with things like COVUS and ICE. Biggest thing to check for is if the unit conforms to UL STD 1449 Third Edition on the unit's sticker. The 2nd edition is OK for me as well. The vids above should be required watching for AVers. All surge units are NOT crated equal. I'd not run my AV setup without them. I banned MOV units from my house long ago. YMMV. Peace.
I recall Tom's Hardware reviewing a ZeroSurge vs SurgeX, and if memory serves the SurgeX beat it by 50 volts less let-through. So I'd just stick with them.

SurgeX is UL 1449, 1283, CSA 22.2 certified; and a few of them like the SA models are GOV A-1-1 certified too.

In fact, they mentioned that not only do they pass all of these tests, but that they FAR exceed them.
However, they aren't allowed to rate it any higher "themselves".
Even though SurgeX only lets 0-8volts through of the 6000v they asked UL to certify it higher, but they refused (UL considers 330V of surge let-through sufficient for a 6000v surge. Which is nearly the equivalence of plugging a 120v device into 240v!)
If a $10 walmart power strip can pass UL 4th edition, then UL isn't an overly high bar. Yet it is the only "common" bar there is.

There are a few military-grade surge tests, such as MIL-STD-461-RS105. Which is specific to EMP hardened devices and structures. www.empshield.com But unless your house is in a NORAD-like faraday cage, such products won't help you at-all, as EMP travels through both wires and air, with equal intensity, zapping dead everything not in a MIL-grade faraday cage.

Direct lightning strikes DO transmit an EMP-like signal within the first 0-50ft of the blast radius. But unless you have NORAD's budget, you can't do much about it!
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post #20 of 26 Old 11-05-2019, 10:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BassThatHz View Post
For my system:

All of my HDMI cables are optical as of this year.

I did that to eliminate system noise (ground loops etc) in my DSP rig;

and secondarily to add yet another layer of surge protection.



All of my fridges are protected by SurgeX QC's, and my HT rack with their 20a EV and SA units, and then mid-grade CyberPower UPS's.

The internet and TV is also optical, and APC on the power-line side.

Half the LAN is air-gapped wifi, the rest has Ubiquiti arresters on them. (I'd like to do full optical on the LAN, but $$$...)

Both the main panel and sub-panel has whole-house units on them as well.

It's never perfect, but it's definitely "something".



SurgeX protects against mid-tier surges, E2 and continuous E3. (Each of their models differ greatly in capabilities, so read the fine print.)

Not sure how well they'd withstand an E1 wave, or other blast-inductions. (and I hope the Earth never finds out!)



The higher-grade APC and CyberPower stuff works fairly-well too, but perhaps not quite as deluxe in regards to the surge-handling components.

Their entry-level BestBuy step-modified stuff is better than your basic power-strip, but still mostly-garbage in comparison...



I'd also trust Furman and TrippLite over Monster, if it came down to actually getting the job done; just because... they sound like the Bose of surge protection. Just sayin'



But direct-lightning, you are pretty much SOL in all cases...
Do you ever do mid-level installations!?!! I always look at the clock before reading your posts.

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post #21 of 26 Old 11-06-2019, 04:51 AM - Thread Starter
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Great info guys. Appreciate it.

I went to sweetwater and picked up a new amp. Good news is that it totally fixed my hum, so the old amp was toast. Bad news is that I dont have a windows computer at my house to load the VBSS tune I wanted to try, so Im doing it all by the front panel.

Thought I had it all in correct, but I must be missing something as my bass is severely lacking compared to the old amp. I dont remember the settings I had in there, but I do remember that LTD02 helped me with it a few years ago. Ugh. It will take me a long time of tweaking things back in to get back what I had.

I did have a question on the settings tho. Under the limiter tab, I am supposed to put in 87 volts, but all that is there is a threshold that measures in db. Am I missing something?

Also, the DEQ is suposed to have some numbers in Band 1. Is all the PEQ settings supposed to be off or just at factory setting? I went thru and turned them all off except for Band 1. Thanks again guys. Couldnt figure this out without your help.

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post #22 of 26 Old 11-06-2019, 06:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BassThatHz View Post
As mentioned:

Buy all this stuff.
It's worth every penny...

Then with a bit of luck, you won't have keep to re-buying stuff after every storm.

Install this:
https://www.amazon.com/Siemens-FS140.../dp/B013WINMK6

Replace all the HDMI cables with this (especially the coax\sat tv feed).
https://www.amazon.com/DTECH-Fiber-O.../dp/B07J4HZK7W

Put one of these on the subwoofer amp, and another on the low-power stuff.
These are rated for 1000+ surges up to 6000V and 3000A with no degradation, no ground contamination and no load failures, and they have overvoltage cutoff, and a warranty (but you'll have to follow the fine print.) Also made in USA.
https://www.amazon.com/ESP-Digital-P.../dp/B074XJ8NJF
https://www.amazon.com/ESP-Digital-P.../dp/B074XJ5P49

In the whole-house units, like that Siemens, are just a bunch of MOVs, one good strike and they are useless.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cRurSc9QKLA
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6miJSh6Ncw
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sk8WgpiLgYw


^^^
and THAT, is why I own multiple SurgeX's.
My system costs like 6 figures. At this point... I can't afford NOT to!
I always thought that optical HDMI cables still had a single ground wire that was carried through. Have you verified that the metal shielding on one side is not continuous with the other using a meter?

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post #23 of 26 Old 11-06-2019, 08:39 PM
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Check that your coax into the house is tied to a real ground. Very simple. When we got to the new old house, built 92, they clamped the coax ground (and electrical panel) to the copper pipe. Good right? Well except if your incoming water line is pvc and the copper is only inside the building. Just sayin it’s 5 mins to look 8)’
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post #24 of 26 Old 11-06-2019, 09:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Stroker548 View Post
I am supposed to put in 87 volts, but all that is there is a threshold that measures in db. Am I missing something?
You can calculate the voltage, given the coil resistance and desired watts by using Ohm's Law.
There are online calculators for this. Google it.
http://www.sengpielaudio.com/Formula...ngineering.htm

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Originally Posted by Stroker548 View Post
Also, the DEQ is suposed to have some numbers in Band 1. Is all the PEQ settings supposed to be off or just at factory setting?
From factory it should all be zeroed. But no big deal if it ain't. Just set it to zero.

The only difference between DEQ and PEQ, is that DEQ lets you set the upper and lower limit and the compression ratio (and PEQ doesn't.)
It's only useful if you are trying to boost dynamically without clipping, or soft compress, or noise gate (If it has those options...)
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post #25 of 26 Old 11-06-2019, 09:54 PM
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Originally Posted by markmon1 View Post
I always thought that optical HDMI cables still had a single ground wire that was carried through. Have you verified that the metal shielding on one side is not continuous with the other using a meter?
Dammit You're right!


I just partially wasted like $300.
Tell me at least the rest of the wires are fully optical?
Now I'm gonna have to make HDMI shield lifters. Bloody hell!!!
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post #26 of 26 Old 11-07-2019, 08:51 AM
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^^^ Before doing cable surgery, examine this breakout for another cable -> https://www.amazon.com/FIBBR-Support...5WX75XE54&th=1

IMHO, if the cable is not entering a box to do the electrical to optical conversion and it's not GLASS fiber cable connecting to a similar box on the other end, then it's opto/electrical. They may be using this to deliver power the boxes (if that's part of the setup). I think that's what you showed. Trust but verify - you did!

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