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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am wiring my new home for a multi-room setup. I have my rack in the attic, and am running about 55 ft of shielded cat6 cable to my living room on the main floor. The cat6 is very high quality, and the length is well within the posted specs of the baluns that I bought from monoprice ($20 a pair). However, I'm only able to get 1080i to work, if I try 1080p, I might see a flash every once in a while, but that is it. Strangely enough, when I tested these cables at 100 ft (before putting them in the wall, cutting and recrimping them), they worked with 1080p, albeit with sparkles. I figured once I shortened them that they would work. Can someone recommend a decent balun that will work for less than $200?


I would just use a long HDMI cable, but have to drill through brick (run out side the house), and really can't afford to make the hole big enough to fit the HDMI cable. I read that you can cut the cable, and then wire the cable back together once it's pushed through. Is this true? I'd rather know if it's even possible before cutting an expensive 60 ft HDMI cable.
 

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No, you cannot cut an HDMI cable and then splice it back together. And no, you cannot get high quality HDMI Baluns for under $ 200.00. The only ones we trust because they give us no issues are Ethereal's. They retail for alot more then $ 200.00 but they work every time.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Schindler /forum/post/16909592


I am wiring my new home for a multi-room setup. I have my rack in the attic, and am running about 55 ft of shielded cat6 cable to my living room on the main floor. The cat6 is very high quality, and the length is well within the posted specs of the baluns that I bought from monoprice ($20 a pair). However, I'm only able to get 1080i to work, if I try 1080p, I might see a flash every once in a while, but that is it. Strangely enough, when I tested these cables at 100 ft (before putting them in the wall, cutting and recrimping them), they worked with 1080p, albeit with sparkles. I figured once I shortened them that they would work. Can someone recommend a decent balun that will work for less than $200?


I would just use a long HDMI cable, but have to drill through brick (run out side the house), and really can't afford to make the hole big enough to fit the HDMI cable. I read that you can cut the cable, and then wire the cable back together once it's pushed through. Is this true? I'd rather know if it's even possible before cutting an expensive 60 ft HDMI cable.


That is strange you are having problems with Monorpice HDMI cables, I also tested with 100 feet of cat6 and it worked fine. Did you try to re-terminate your Cat6 wires?


Also, you are using 2 Cat6 wires right?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·

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Originally Posted by mrted46 /forum/post/16914984


That is strange you are having problems with Monorpice HDMI cables, I also tested with 100 feet of cat6 and it worked fine. Did you try to re-terminate your Cat6 wires?


Also, you are using 2 Cat6 wires right?

Yes, I'm using two cat6 wires from monoprice. I had to cut the ends off them to run them through the walls, and then reterminated them. The cat6 tester that I am using shows that everything is ok. I'm a bit reluctant to reterminate, as I had a hell of a time terminating them the first time (23 gauge solid core is not easy to crimp). I even tried using a pair of 25 ft shielded cat6 from monoprice just to see if the baluns would work with a shorter run, but no dice. Overall, it's been a huge disappointment and a lot of wasted effort, drilling holes, running cable, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Greg, are these the ones:
http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_...HDMI-CAT5.html


$300 is a bit steep, but if they are they are the least expensive ones that will work, I may have to bite the bullet this time. Fortunately this is the only long run that will need to go over cat6, the rest can get away with using high quality HDMI cables.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg C /forum/post/16914888


No, you cannot cut an HDMI cable and then splice it back together. And no, you cannot get high quality HDMI Baluns for under $ 200.00. The only ones we trust because they give us no issues are Ethereal's. They retail for alot more then $ 200.00 but they work every time.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Schindler /forum/post/16915885


Yes, I'm using two cat6 wires from monoprice. I had to cut the ends off them to run them through the walls, and then reterminated them. The cat6 tester that I am using shows that everything is ok. I'm a bit reluctant to reterminate, as I had a hell of a time terminating them the first time (23 gauge solid core is not easy to crimp). I even tried using a pair of 25 ft shielded cat6 from monoprice just to see if the baluns would work with a shorter run, but no dice. Overall, it's been a huge disappointment and a lot of wasted effort, drilling holes, running cable, etc.

Did you run your tester recently? Before plunking down $300 I would re-terminate them.


Also, although unlinkely since the balun is passive, Is it possible you have a defective balun? Contact monoprice and have them send you a new pair to see if that fixes the problem. 55' is not long and they should work flawlessly.
 

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Note also that if you use the Ethereal units you must reterminate to its color code (Not 568 A or B). It is however IMHO the best balun set on the market (of course I am biased)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Some of the baluns I looked at have a requirement of keeping the cable lengths within 5 inches of each other in length. While I didn't go out of my way to have different lengths, there is a possibility that one cable is 6 inches shorter than the other, as I wasn't trying to have them be exactly the same length. Do you think that skew caused by different cable length could be the issue?


I have a 2nd set of baluns, and I can try them (I accidently ordered two pairs since I didn't realize that they came in pairs). I terminated them last Sunday, and they seem to test fine, but HDMI is much higher bandwidth than anything a network tester will throw at it. When crimping cat6, you simply crimp on the ends, right? I noticed yesterday that some of the other cat6 RJ45 plugs have special wire harnesses to hold the wires in place before doing the crimp. That would have made crimping much easier, but the shielded RJ45 plugs that I was using didn't have them. I'm wondering if maybe I untwisted the wires inside the sheath a bit too much in my efforts to get them straight before crimping.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrted46 /forum/post/16916020


Did you run your tester recently? Before plunking down $300 I would re-terminate them.


Also, although unlinkely since the balun is passive, Is it possible you have a defective balun? Contact monoprice and have them send you a new pair to see if that fixes the problem. 55' is not long and they should work flawlessly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·

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Originally Posted by Brent McCall /forum/post/16917773


Note also that if you use the Ethereal units you must reterminate to its color code (Not 568 A or B). It is however IMHO the best balun set on the market (of course I am biased)

Ouch, I wouldn't look forward to that. One thing I can say is that I can crimp cat5 in a minute, but the cat6 wires took me over 20 minutes. Part of it was figuring out a way to get the wire separater that is built into the cable out of the way. The problem with cutting it is that if you do that, it still keeps the pairs completely separate inside the sheath, which makes straightening the wires nearly impossible. I finally found a technique of grabbing the separater with needle nose pliers, and stretching it. Doing this would cause it to become very thin, inside the sheath as well as outside the sheath, to the point where I could move the pairs around inside the sheath. Before doing this, the wires did not want to stay straight when I inserted them in the plug. They are a ***** to crimp.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Schindler /forum/post/16920550


Ouch, I wouldn't look forward to that. One thing I can say is that I can crimp cat5 in a minute, but the cat6 wires took me over 20 minutes. Part of it was figuring out a way to get the wire separater that is built into the cable out of the way. The problem with cutting it is that if you do that, it still keeps the pairs completely separate inside the sheath, which makes straightening the wires nearly impossible. I finally found a technique of grabbing the separater with needle nose pliers, and stretching it. Doing this would cause it to become very thin, inside the sheath as well as outside the sheath, to the point where I could move the pairs around inside the sheath. Before doing this, the wires did not want to stay straight when I inserted them in the plug. They are a ***** to crimp.


What type of cat6 are you using? Cat5 and Cat6 take me about equal time, I first cut the middle seperator and untwist the wires in pairs from top to bottom until i have all 8, I then take the stipped piece and put it over each of the 8 wires 1 by 1 and straighten them the best I can. I do use a "harness" so that they can be kept in place.


Here is a REALLY good website:
http://www.lanshack.com/make_cat_6_cable.aspx


I've never heard of keeping the cat6 equal distance, if this is true I will have a NIGHTMARE when I finally do my ends because they are 100% not equal distance. I hope that is not true with the monoprice baluns (I will test this weekend).
 

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I can't speak for other HDMI-Cat/5 Baluns but with the Ethereal unit there is no need to keep the two category cables the same length.

One cable is High Speed (Picture/Sound) and the other is EDID and since each type travels at different rates and is independent equal distance in is required.
 

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I've been usig various Monoprice Baluns for the past year....

On like 30 or so jobs...


Was using Minicom originally and they are great w/ 3 year warranty, but expensive..

Started using Hall Research, no problems but bloody expensive.

Monoprice for the most part have been good, but there have been a few RMAs. 3 out of 30 is bad, but still not good enough. Time is money and an RMA = a huge loss and an unhappy customer.

Here I am searching for a perfect balun that is reasonable.. less than $200 dealer price for a kit.


For the record have seen many reputable brands fail as well .. i.e. Key Digital
 

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What type of cat6 connectors are you using? If they are the EZ plugs, then don't use them as most baluns do not like those as the connections aren't as reliable.

Maybe have someone else do the connectors if you are uneasy about doing it yourself. The connectors should not take more than 4 minutes each.


You also want to keep the HDMI cables on each end as short as possible, maybe 1 ft if you can handle it.
 
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