New House Network/Audio setup..?

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Building DIY' started by dmossop, Apr 4, 2016.

  1. dmossop

    dmossop
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    Hi, buying a new house off plans, I have at least a month (2 realistically) to organise what I need to do. I have permission from the builder to run whatever cabling I want during first fix. I just need to work out what I want and would love some input. Under the stairs will be the media hub. Telephone line will be there.

    CAT7 cable to tv room (1 or 2 or more?)
    CAT7 to kitchen for small tv (2? or should I run another and leave spare for perhaps future security camera?)

    CAT7 to office room and attic bedroom and maybe the other bedrooms?

    I have some Sonos speakers for music in rooms but for the TV room I am tempted to run speaker cable around for 5.1, couch will be against the wall though :/

    So, intention is to use the CAT7 for HDMI conversion. While I would manage all the hardware with the help of a buddy, I'm out of touch somewhat with the technology going on.

    What do ppl recommend for the ethernet to HDMI conversion? Ideally nice neat wall plates are in my head but completely open to ideas and help!! I'm sure I have missed heaps of things and it's my only chance to get this right! Is running conduit to certain rooms from the media hub overkill??

    What else does everyone have in their media centres?? A PC for music? Network storage?
     
  2. Maverick567

    Maverick567
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    Hi,

    What is your reasoning for Cat 7?? Yes it is the latest and greatest but the higher up the cat numbers the less tolerant cables become and more complex the install plus more expensive. For any home install Cat 5e is sufficient but Cat 6 will be more than enough for any future development. I would suggest any TV location has a minimum of 4 ethernets.

    It is worth noting HDMI over Cat works best with one continuous run so may be worth run two separate cables to those locations and but those through a brush wall plate, that will still look neat.

    Definitely run speaker cable to any location you may need it, you can get wall plates to terminate this at for neatness.

    Consider two coax cables at each TV location for possible cable/ sky distribution.

    Think of possible wifi coverage and maybe have a socket for a access point upstairs to maximise coverage.

    More and more music is streamed from the likes of Sporify and Apple Music, consider Sonos locations and run Ethernet to those points. As a rule if your running one cable run two provides redundancy.

    If you buy two reals of CAT cable it makes life quicker to real out both at the same time.

    Not something I know a lot about but some will suggest network cable to every light switch for future home automation.
     
  3. dmossop

    dmossop
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    Outside of cost, is there a downside to installing CAT7 over CAT5/6? I wouldn't have thought so and I'm hoping to call in a favour for the supply of that...
     
  4. Maverick567

    Maverick567
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    CAT 7 is more sensitive to bends in cables and the rules for wiring are stricter so to get a compliant install is more difficult. One thing to also think about is 1gbps switches are fairly cheap, 10 gbps switches much more expensive.
     
  5. Member 581642

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    Cat6 everytime, Cat7 is a pain to terminate run and overkill for domestic install
     
  6. 28061

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    Agreed. Stick with cat6. We've recently had a discussion with someone else asking similar questions to you here, the cat6 vs cat7 info may be useful to you, and save a lot of repetition :p

    I've recently moved into a new build, and was also fortunate enough to have the opportunity to run cables at first fix stage. Bit of advice:
    • Make sure there's plenty spare at both ends. Mine ran a bit short and JUST about fit round the cable management rails at node 0, and some were a bit tight at the socket ends - not leaving much room for termination errors!
    • Wire for 5.1 or even more. Wiring after is much more difficult. Spend the money now, lay the cable!
    • Lay 2 x coax to each TV location
    • Don't forget the sub cable!
    • If your tv is in a different location to your AVR, and your using HDMI over Cat6, don't forget that ARC doesn't work, and you'll need to consider how you'll return TV audio to your AVR (I forgot, and will now have to purchase an optical>cat6 balun).
    • Make clear diagrams for the electrician (or whoever installs the cable), including distances from walls (for say, front left and right speakers), heights etc.
    • Don't terminate or patch the cables you intend to use for HDMI distribution. Then read the HdBaseT termination guidelines here
    • DO NOT use CCA! - Use decent quality cable.
    Leigh
     
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  7. dmossop

    dmossop
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    Thanks Seb and thanks Leigh. I know the issues have been covered many times and I'm trawling over so many other threads and fair play to ye to replying each time.

    Looks like this so far:

    Non CCA CAT6a cable (ordered)
    Wall plates to be sourced (is there noticeable degradation with these?)

    Inputs would be most likely

    2 x STB
    1 x PS4
    Media Server
    Internet

    Outputs:
    3 TVs
    1 projector

    Might need to extend the WiFi. I'm learning but not up to date yet with what kind of switching/splitting matrix I need to set up yet :(
     
  8. 28061

    28061
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    - It varies. Contrary to the wiring guidelines, I do use wall plates and have zero noticeable degredation. However, that may become apparent when I upgrade to 4k. Just in case, I've left more than enough cable in the wall to bring through and use a brush plate if needs be.

    Depends on whether you want the ability to have different sources displayed on different screens, and distance between node 0 and your individual destinations. (Provide these and you'll get more advice!)
     
  9. Member 581642

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    I wouldnt have even used Cat6a just cat6.

    It's more likely with plates that you won't get degradation In quality just dropped signal. A very basic rule of thumb is each connection adds around 2m to the length.
     

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