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61 posts

Master Geek

#100500 12-Apr-2012 14:11
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First time posting after lots of reading! We are renovating our house and whilst I dont need or want a full on whole house network we have an opportunity to make some improvements. I don't know much about this sort of stuff so would be grateful for any suggestions!

Currently we have only 1 working phone jack which is connecting naked broadband to a wireless router which we use for all our connections except the TV which has an ethernet cable going directly to the router.  All our computers are laptops and use the wireless. We don't have a landline - just mobiles. Our setup works for what we need, but is rather unsightly.

We are adding an office so my plan was to put another phone jack in there and move the router to the office and run an ethernet cable through the wall to the tv. We are using bunny ears for the tv at the moment so we're going to run coax to a new rooftop aerial as well.

I don't imagine we will connect to fibre anytime soon (although it is in my street!) but I would like to understand if there is anything I *should* be putting in now to suport this?

Should I be using a standard phone jack and cable for the new point, or is there a better option?

Thanks for any tips. 

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3556 posts

Uber Geek


  #608262 12-Apr-2012 14:32
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How extensive are your renovations? To be honest you are better to go for the full structured wiring if you can. With UFB coming, wireless isn't going to cut it and depending on where the ONT is installed you will need to run a cable from there to your router anyway. The cable isn't expensive and this is the kind of thing you can do pretty easily yourself.

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61 posts

Master Geek

  #608296 12-Apr-2012 15:08
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Thanks for the input. I'm interested to hear more... when you say wireless won't cut it - are you meaning due to speed? Can't see myself going back to wired, but I'm not a particulary heavy user i guess.

Fairly big renovations - adding a new office and master bedroom, and the lounge and one of the bedrooms will have the wall linings replaced - so now is the time to run cables.  We are DIY-ing hence why i'm looking for ideas! (preferably cheap ones)

I assume I would need to figure out where the ONT would be put to get the cables starting in the right place.  Is it the same type of cable that would be used inside the house for fibre that would also be useful to me now, or would it be another set/type of cables?  


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Uber Geek


  #608375 12-Apr-2012 17:41
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Like Zeon says, structured cabling is the way to go. You say you are re-dong the office? Could be a good place for a basic patch panel. The garage would be even better as then you could make it a tad bigger to fit all sorts of stuff in it. I know what you are saying in terms of going back to a wired connection, but just remember a cat5e cable isn't just a data cable. Could be used for a phone, hdmi distribution, IR extenders etc.
So look at your office and say to yourself, well in here I will have a computer, printer and a phone. Thats 3 cat5e's, so why not make it 4. Would you ever be putting a TV in there? Add an RG6 to mix. So just go through each room and just say, what might I want to this in this room? And try not to think purely for yourself but what others might use if you decide to move on in 10 years time. Run all the rg6 back to the same point as the cat5e's so that everything is in the same place. Then get a couple of new rg6 from that point up to the roof, one to be used for your UHF aerial and the other for a sky dish. Might as well run speaker wires too will you are at it just in case you felt like putting in a home theatre system.
In regards to UFB have a look where your current copper cable comes in to the house, it is more than likely that is where the fiber will come in. Run two cat5e's to this point. One to use for now and one to use for later. Obvioulsy, one cable would suffice but the stuff is so cheap so run two.

My 2c.

Hopefully Cyril, jumps in here in a second as he can word much more elegantly and probably make more sense lol

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Uber Geek


  #608584 13-Apr-2012 00:40
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You might be interested in reading these two useful blogs posts about structured cabling from Hazza earlier this year:

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Uber Geek


  #608608 13-Apr-2012 08:36
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You really do have a great opportunity here which if you waste you will regret. It is so cheap easy to do with no wall linings so you really should run cables while you can.

If you are tight on budget run the cabling into flush boxes but don't terminate them, just leave them sitting in a flush box. Once you're ready to use them then you can cut out the flush box and terminate with plates etc.

The key is to label your cable runs and take very good measurements of where the flush boxes are in the walls.

Total cost to run a whole house is under $200 ($170 for a box of CAT5e, $30 for flush boxes and electrical tape).

The other thing you need to make sure of is where ever you run your cables to you have power there as well so when you do eventually terminate the cables you have power for a switch / router etc.

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Master Geek

  #608662 13-Apr-2012 10:45
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Thanks so much for all the replies. Will study those linked blogs closely this weekend!

Ok i'm sold on running cables. Will think about whether to actually install the patch panel or not, but will run the cables at least.

I originally thought that the panel had to be right by where the phone line comes in (or where the ONT would be) but sounds like that is not the case. We don't have a garage (although are thinking about closing in the carport) so I'm going to have to think about where I would put such a thing. The office may be suitable as we plan to run the existing phone line to there anyway. Will ensure I have enough power points too.

Sorry if this is a stupid question - but the cat5/cat6 can just be used as a normal ethernet extension cable right? ie. if I put a cable from a port on the modem to one end of wall cable, I could then connect a computer to the modem by plugging into the other end?  This is my immediate requirement so I can connect our TV. 

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Uber Geek


  #608820 13-Apr-2012 16:03
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Sorry if this is a stupid question - but the cat5/cat6 can just be used as a normal ethernet extension cable right? ie. if I put a cable from a port on the modem to one end of wall cable, I could then connect a computer to the modem by plugging into the other end?  This is my immediate requirement so I can connect our TV. 


And in terms of patch panel placement.... Are you building cupboards in to your office? The top cupboard is always a good place. Would just make sure there is enough room for a decent switch, maybe a NAS and maybe a UPS. Then there is always the hallway cupboards, laundry cupboards. I put my 6U patch panel under a bench in the laundry and have just built cupboards around it. You wont need to go a full 19" rack by the sound of it. Sounds like a 12-port mini panel would probably do what you want to do.

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