Basic wired networking advice required


Active Member
Have bought a house and doing renovation work to it now.

So here's the numpty question:

what's the best way of wiring up the rooms from the broadband connection so that I maximise speed around the house for laptops, PS3, streaming HD films etc. ?

I think my options are:

- 1Gbps homeplugs. Unfortunately Belkin appear to be the only people I can see that manufacture these and customer reviews are poor

- find a way of getting really long ethernet cables and running these around the house. Is this actually a feasible option?

- running cat5 wire around the house. I have read the forums and understand this may be a solution but need links to posts to understand how this would work.

Apologies if this has been asked before.


Novice Member
forget about the 1Gbps homeplugs - they are a misnomer if anything...they have a 1Gbps ethernet port on them, that is all, the homeplugs themselves are barely 20-30% quicker than the older 200Mbps ones (if that)

the best way is to buy yourself a reel of Cat5e cable for £40 ish

run it around the house - one length into every room, all of them back to a central location where you will have an ethernet switch in a cupboard, and maybe a patch panel if you wish

you can get a punch down tool and wall plates, just like regular electrical outlets

its as simple as that really - just make sure you dont have >100M cable runs (doubtful in the avg home)


Active Member

Thank you very much for replying so quickly. I am going to show my complete ignorance here so can I just clarify:

For Cat5e cable, would something like this do? TC-5050E - 50m CAT-5e Reel RJ45 UTP Cable 10/100/GbE Solid

And would this do for an ethernet switch? 8 Port Netgear GS608UK "White" Gigabit 10/1000 Ethernet Switch

or perhaps something like this (which seems more cost effective)

AD-Tek Products(Network-cabs) Patch panels

Would this ethernet switch be fed from the broadband box (sorry for the stupid question)?

Also, how would I attach the Cat5e cable to the ethernet switch (as presmably I need to buy some kind of ethernet "plug"? Is that something like this?

Re: wall plates, any idea where I might get them from (or what I need to search the internet for to find them)?

Thanks again for the advice - very cost effective!


Novice Member
yes that cable is fine

the switch is fine too, although you may want more than 8 ports, and you may want one you can wall mount

the patch panel is not a replacement for a switch, its in addition to - it answers the question you ask next - how you connect to a switch

1) you punch down into the patch panel, and then use short patch leads, ready made from panel to switch

2) you fit RJ45 plugs onto the ends of the cables and plug direct into the switch

thats down to personal choice really and tidyness of install, future expansion capabilities I guess

lots of guides on the internet to how to install a cat 5 network, with pictures...far more detail than I can post here

Automated Home - Wiring Guide

QuickTechTriX Tool Survey

Cat5 Wiring Diagram

dont make your own cables unless you have to - the odd one or two is fine for specific purposes, but I wouldnt want to do dozens of them myself (although early in my career Ive done hundreds in a day LOL )

most electrical wholesalers will stock basic kit these days, or Scan as youve already found :smashin:


This is a good thread where a member also planned and installed a setup similar to what you also hope to acheive.

Here is his web page showing his writeup and installation.


Standard Member
Can I suggest if you haven't started yet that you pull the skirting boards and run the cable behind it? Much tidier.

Great advice from the guys


Active Member
Guys, thanks very much for this. Can I ask a further question?

Can you transmit optical signals over cat 5e/6 as well? The only reason I am asking is that I would like to have a PS3 in a central room and then connect it via the Cat 5e/6 network to three rooms: all three rooms have "old" amps i.e. no HDMI inputs and "new" displays (with HDMI) so I thought I could transmit the audio and video separately.


Standard Member
An optical wire is completely different.

but why would you transmit your ps3 over 3 different rooms?
i think you mean the nas to 3 different rooms. the ps3 is merely the system to connect you your nas which could be anywhere and play media.

Get a good nas with fast data transfer and a good switch. Look to get these devices 1000mbps.


Distinguished Member
What kind of "optical" - just as there are numerous types of formats that can be transmitted over copper wires, there are various optical formats to choose from.

Whatever it is, you'd need to find some kind of "box" that will convert your "optical" to something suitable for transmission over copper UTP and back again at the other end.

Unless you convert to ethernet, such connections cannot share a cable run with anything else. For example, you couldn't fire SPDIF down the same cable as your ethernet data network.

By the time you've found all the kit to do (if it exists) and gone through the heartache of getting it working, I can't help thinking it'd be cheaper and easier to buy a media player for each room.
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Active Member
Ah this is a good point. You are both right. What I need to do is connect the NAS.

I would prefer to have a wired connection (because the builders say they will do all the wiring) rather than have a wireless connection which I have sometimes found to "drop".

I need to go away and think about what I need.

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