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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
O.k., I don't need this right now, but may in the near future. I wired my home with Cat5e to an 8-pin jack and patch panel. The phone lines are then patched into a 66 block with the lines from the telco (this way they convert easily into network drops). I've thought of many options to use, but wanted to get your thoughts on which may be preferred or accepted.


Say, line-3 coming in you wish to run for a bedroom. However, the phone at that location is only a single line phone. What would you do? Would you do something different if the line connected to only a punch down block and no patch panel?


I actually have a similar situation now where I need to split a single jack for 2 seperate single line stations (different lines).


Thanks!

George
 

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I am having difficulty with your language but I think the following will answer your question.


You can either make a custom brake out cable with a RJ-45 on one end and separate RJ-11s on the other or you can change your RJ-45 to multiple RJ-11 keystones. In this way you can cross connect any CO ( central office line ) to any pair of wires on you 110 block.


If your question is how to cross connect to the patch panel then the custom RJ-45 to 4 RJ-11 break out cable is the best solution.


For those who keep asking this is why I prefer to use CAT3 for voice and leave CAT5 for data or distributed audio and video.


Alan
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply. My parents house was wired in a way similar to what you describe. They have 1 Cat5e going to 2 RJ-45 keystones (2 lines each). In my case I figure my best bet would be either a custom patch cable to the punch down block or custom patch cable to the handset.


I know the situation in my office will require a custom rollover cable going to a modem. We have 1 Cat5e jack for phone, but need 2 seperate lines for 2 single line devices (phone and modem). My office is wired with 6 Cat5e jacks on 2 walls (4 &2), but I need them all. Too bad this all just came about yesterday. I just placed an order for more goods and could have just bought one more jack. Although a custom cable is cheaper and even easier.
 

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Actually I would argue that you should not use RJ-45 keystones for voice but RJ-11 keystones. Does it matter? No. But I like to keep things consistent. RJ-45s are for data so when you see one you should think data, not voice. It would be a very bad thing for your Ethernet card were you to plug it into a voice outlet. There is at least 51v AC on a POTS line and that would fry your Ethernet card.


I like to separate my connections logically. Voice take RJ-11 keystones and data RJ-45. I will also use different colored keystones. If the cover plate is white than the voice keystone will be white and the data beige.


There was something called CBus, which was a communications protocol that never got off the ground. However, the recommended cabling for the protocol was brought to market and can be very useful. A number of companies brought to market distribution or termination boxes and many builders liked them because they gave a neat fit and finish to the installation. The problem is that the termination boxes were based on the CBus protocol which said that everything would be the same throughout the house. Every station would have line 1 or 2 or 3 and so on. The idea that you might want line 3 in area a and f and no line 1 and 2 there was not thought of. So cross connecting through one of these systems is a problem. They also use 110 punch down blocks and these are nightmarish to cross connect to and from. Again why I prefer to keep voice on CAT3 and data on CAT5. And the builder also could ( falsely ) claim that he had wired your home for data. Even with 10baseT systems where you only need 2 pair of wires, you cannot run voice and data on the same cable. Why? The 51-100v that exist on the POTS line effect the data on the other pairs.


Alan
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Alan-


I understand everything you are saying and you make some good points. However, I would still run Cat5e for phone instead of Cat3. Cat5e will terminate just as easily to the RJ-11 keystones giving the ability to upgrade to new technology down the road that may require faster cable.


Thanks.

George
 

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Since CAT3 will carry speeds up to 10 mbs might you tell me what new technology for voice exists or might exist that requires faster speeds than Eithernet. Have you any idea at what speeds the fastest digital telephone system runs at? The military uses fiber not because of speed but because it is more difficult to intercept and immune form electro magnetic interference ( such as an atomic bomb blast ). Cat 5 will terminate easily at the keystones. And how about the punch down blocks? Yes, you can punch CAT5 down on a 66 block but as it has a much tighter twist there is a greater tendency for it to break but not so as you will notice. Why waste the speed of a data wire on voice? Of course, you can run voice on CAT5. You can also drive a Ferrari in mid-town NNC traffic. Why would you want to do this?
 

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Alan


Think future. Not what is available now but 5 years down the line. The home owner I'm sure doesn't want to replace the wire just because it was outdated in the construction phase and could have installed better wire. The price difference it not even a factor here. I'm also the 'less SKUs' the better type of guy. CAT5e for all my phone/data needs. Put in the best today right


Dave
 

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How much has the technology for voice changed in the last 50 years? What are the odds of Telco's seriously upgrading their infrastructure. T-1 lines are installed on 50 year old copper. How likely will it be for the Telco to run fiber to your door? Ok, let's assume that what every expert has predicted comes true and fiber is brought to your door. Will you need CAT5 for simple voice? No way. Voice technology has not changed one bit in 50 years. The electronic parts in the components may become better but the essential technology has not. I never said not to run the CAT5, only to run additional CAT3 for voice. I have said that it is a waste of capability to devote a CAT5 for voice largely because I think you will need the extra CAT5 capability in the future. If you use CAT5 for voice you will have no way to utilize that wire for anything that actually requires the speed.


So think future. What is being imagined that a 10mbs wire cannot handle for voice? Remember, 16 bit CDs require only 1.5 mbs. What are you losing by using a CAT3? I think CAT3 makes for an easier, faster, more certain voice installation. You lose nothing by using CAT3 for voice and you gain an extra CAT5 in the process. What is wrong with that?


Alan
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Alan-


You are obviously educated in this area and anything we say isn't going to change your thinking. I think what both of us were saying is, Cat5e is basically the same cost of Cat3. So, why not run it anyway? Hey, maybe one day that jack that was used for phone could now be used for an internet appliance of some kind. Or how about VoIP? What about video phones that actually work good, but require a fast connection? All just a bunch of what-ifs.


audiblesolutions:
Quote:
I have said that it is a waste of capability to devote a CAT5 for voice largely because I think you will need the extra CAT5 capability in the future.
Wouldn't running a Cat5e now for phone give you the "extra" Cat5 for "some type of future use", if a POTS line is no longer needed?


George
 

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Here are my reasons again for preferring CAT3 for voice.

1. It's impractical to just run an additional CAT5 for everything although we could end this by saying 3 CAT5s instead of 2. So George you are correct. Run one more CAT5 and conversation is over.

2. I may think I know what is happening but as in the case of Digital video recorders I may forget something crucial like Dish and D* are in the DVR business so high definition DVRs which I thought were far off are, in fact, coming to market. You guys or someone else may have information that I do not or have forgotten.

3. It is easier to sort out your wires when voice are CAT3

4. It is easier to terminate these wires at the head end- as you are going to terminate them to keystones it makes less difference that the voice wire is CAT5 but it will still be faster with CAT3.

4b. because of the tighter twists on the CAT5 it takes longer to strip and untwist.

4c Because CAT5 is more brittle than CAT3 the wire can brake without the insulation braking. This means more potential time trouble shooting.

4d If one follows the original thread, CAT5 are often punched down on 110 blocks and these are difficult to cross connect different COs. Yes, you could separate your CAT5s into voice and data and punch down the voice on a 66 block. But see 4b and 4c.

4e. CAT 5 is much more difficult to pull than CAT3 and it will kink much more quickly and easily than CAT3. Again due the tight twists it can result in broken or damaged wires.


5. You are dealing with a wire that is capable of 10mbs, which is more than ample to run most of your computer networks. How much traffic does the typical residential home network have? Many businesses can work on Ethernet networks. I am assuming here that we are referring to 4 pair CAT3 and not to 2 pair as per original category specifications.


My suggestion of 2 RG6Q, 2 CAT5e and 1 CAT3 will probably require that you use all of those wires now. DVRs require a network connection ( 1 CAT5), you may need to send audio/video back to or from the head end ( CAT5#2). You want a satellite receiver at that location but it requires a POTS connection for its internal modem.


II. You have a computer you wish to place on the network and then decide you want to add an additional network device, like a networked printer or scanner. You could add a switch but if you have two CAT5s you do not need the additional hard ware. Where there is a computer there needs to be a phone to call tech support when it fails or to setup the network. Perhaps a fax machine as well-oops- I need the additional wire.


You need the larger pipe that a CAT5 affords to handle bandwidth issues down the road. This may be your sending recorded shows from 1 DVR to an other over the LAN. You may be installing a centralized file server and than you network traffic will increase. Perhaps you will be using this network for A/V and control. This is the future. At present most people use a LAN to share an Internet connection and gain access to a few devices like printers and scanners. Ethernet is more than capable of handling all of this, including video phone- which is currently low speed; although you may be right and it could require higher speeds in the future


Again if you want to run a third CAT5 to handle voice then this is a somewhat moot issue as we are then speaking about an extra 10 minutes.

But as I do not believe that ring voltages will disappear from your home, as even in the case of digital telephone systems you must devote the wire solely to it, then you must have more than 2 CAT5s to " future proof" your home. I prefer CAT3 for the reasons I sited above. It is more than fast enough to accomplish Ethernet networks but I advise using it to carry POTS voltages. So George, you are correct. If you use a third CAT5 you will have 1 extra for future use. And all it will cost you is some extra time sorting it out form the data lines, some extra time stripping it and untwisting the pairs to punch it down to a 66 block, and maybe some time trouble shooting if one of the wires breaks while punching it down.


And what do you gain? Nothing save perhaps the convenience of not having to purchase of second type of wire. You cannot combine voice and data on the same wire so it becomes a question of using the correct wire for the job. You can use RG6Q for base band video. There will be some performance issues but it will work. So you will use 100,000 gallon tank to transport a couple of quarts of milk. It's overkill but it will work.


If any of you work in an office bring a screw driver with you to work and remove the voice/data jacks. Look at the wire that is used for voice and the wire for data. I doubt you will find CAT5 used for voice. If those guys are using CAT3 - and businesses will invest in this type of infrastructure- why do you think it inappropriate for your homes? Why are voice/data contractors making these choices? And you are correct it is not because of the price of the wire. These are typically digital telephone systems. Yet they are run on CAT3. If you guys are correct and a bigger pipe must be better why are data/Tel professionals not following your logic?

Alan
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Alan-


Again, you are correct in many regards. Businesses do still run Cat3 for phone and Cat5 solely for data.


Two things though:

1. At my place of employment we were tossing around the idea of using VoIP mainly to interconnect all of our buildings. Will this technology share the existing Cat5 running to the computer? Yes. Will it still work when we make our move to 1000-T? No. Is this move feasible in the near future? Yes (my work spends money like crazy and all of our desktops are coming equiped w/1000T cards). So, having another Cat5 gives you that headroom. I'm not saying were going to go ripping out all our Cat3. Just if we were starting from scratch, that would be the way to go.


2. You mention the use of a 66 block for termination. Who said that you can't use a 110, especially for home? I have a single Cat5e coming from my demarc to my distribution box. I can say you are correct though...I have it punched down with a 66 block. Why? Because the telco guy gave it to me. Did I have plans on picking up a 110 block...yes, but not now.


Thanks for the discussion.

George
 

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We are parsing this into smaller and smaller portions. With all of this advanced technology, like VoIP, do you think that traditional telephones will vanish? But again, if you were to tell me that you would run a third CAT5 our argument would vanish into one of personal preference.


You cannot cross connect to a 110 block. Actually there is a way to do it on some blocks but it is a pain and I wouldn't recommend it. Look at your original post. How to break out a RJ-45 into individual pairs to cross connect. A 66 block makes this much easier. They also make 66 blocks that can be used for CAT5 terminations but unless you are using 25 or 50 pair CAT5 wires I would not recommend using a 66 block.


Much of what I am posting here comes form Data/Tel contractors who have criticized me for using a CBus wiring scheme. They feel it is inappropriate to run voice on CAT5. I have come around to their opinion and now run voice on CAT3 wires. But it is just your last comment that you are thinking about VoIP that motivates me to post. It keeps me abreast of what businesses are doing and it is businesses that drive the voice/data business.


Alan
 
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