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wiring "enclosure" suggestions

642 Views 4 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  robertmee
With my renovation far enough along for me to move back in it's time to get cracking on organizing my wiring. First, some necessary background to help you answer my questions.

I've wired 10 locations with 2 RG6 QS / 2 cat5e and 2 locations with 2 cat5e. That brings a grand total of 20 RG6 and 24 cat5e runs. I plan on setting it up to have 10 out and 10 in for video, and to split the cat5e runs to have 12 for data and 12 for phone. The data will hook up to my cable modem and wireless router.

I have plenty of space in my basement and don't need a structured wiring panel like the Leviton, OnQ, etc. I plan on creating my own enclosure - most likely out of plywood unless someone suggests otherwise. I don't plan on actually "enclosing" it, just making the connections accessible and very neat.

Question 1 - how should I go about making the final connections for the phone and data? What have you guys done and what would you do in my situation? I've read through every thread and resource I could find and came across a range of opinions. From 66 punch down blocks to 110 blocks to patch panels to direct connections to an ethernet switch. The Channelvision phone block looks interesting. I only plan on having 1 phone line.

Question 2 - what do you guys suggest for the video distribution? Channelvision seems to be the most popular from what I can see and they make a nice 1 in 8 out distribution (I don't have to hook up all 10 locations at the same time)

Question 3 - how far away from an electrical sub-panel should this enclosure be? Unfortunately the electrician chose the same general location for the sub-panel as I was planning for this wiring enclosure. I have some flexibility (I can go a few feet below it and to the side of it). Any suggestions would be helpful. I was careful to run just about all the low-voltage wiring away from the electrical and left plenty of extra at the end to create this enclosure where I need to.

In the future I plan on adding a whole house audio system (something like niles or russound) and have all the speaker runs coming into the same location. The alarm wiring comes to the same spot as well.

Thanks in advance for any and all suggestions on how to set this up and to robertmee and semigolfer for all the good info they've posted on this subject already.
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1) Punchdown Patch panel for both Phone and Data...Offers the most flexible solution, IMHO.

2) 3x8 Channel Plus....You might decide to add some modulated channels later.

3) I'd try for at least one stud bay away, two if possible.

I would rethink your speaker wiring coming to the same spot. Bring it to your equipement rack that will house the sources for your Russound multizone amp. Otherwise you'll end up with an intermediate patch panel like you see in my signature.

.....Oops....I didn't even notice that you'd referenced some of my stuff already, so the above may be repeat...But glad I was of some help anyway :)

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Thanks. Any suggestions on patch panels? I meant to include Channel Plus along with Channel Vision. The 3x8 is something I'll definitely take a look at. I don't need modulation now but it's something I've thought about.

As far as the speaker wiring - I plan on having the equipment rack set up right next to all of the wiring as well - so no intermediate patch panel. I have an area that is 6'Hx6'Wx2.5'D to work with to set up the rack and wiring. No studs in there, just a few drain pipes, so I'm free to set it up as I please. Creates a real nice area to hide everything. Just wish the electrician hadn't followed me into that spot.
What I did was build my own "enclosure" out of particle board. I like it because its splinter free. I built the box with all of the walls except a door, which could always be added later. I would use conduit to the joists.

1. I also decided to punch all data lines to patch panel as it does offer the most flexibility. From there, data goes to routers/switches and phone goes to a punch down block.

2. I'm currently using the Channel Vision 1x8 with great results. My modulated signals are hitting the block after the amplifier so distribution works well in that regard.

3. What robertmee said
Originally posted by wolverines
Thanks. Any suggestions on patch panels?
I like the Leviton stuff myself. They're of good quality and plentiful on e-bay. I bought a 12 port one for my phones and two 6 port ones for data off of ebay. I did happen to also like them because I was using the SMC enclosures, but I would still use them on a plywood back or something different.
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