50ft too long for composite, SVid, DVI, and/or Component

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Joseph S, Feb 17, 2004.

  1. Joseph S

    Joseph S Cinematographer

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    I finally purchased my first projector, Sanyo Z2. Within the next 1 to 1.5 yrs, I do plan to move so cable lengths need to give me some flexibility. As such, I would like to spend a little extra to get the cables long enough for no matter what future location they may be in.

    How far is too far? I guess I could probably go with 40ft if that is markedly better, but I would like the option of 50ft if need be.

    Please let me know if this is just going to be a disaster be it with just one of the cables or all. I wanted to go with DVI-I to allow Analog/Digital, but it seems no one offers a 50ft length of DVI-I.

    Thanks. After this all I need is a screen and someone to take my HDTV out of the picture. [​IMG]

    Video Sources:
    HDTV - HTPC x2, Cable
    DVD/Computer - HTPC, Mac x 2, Pioneer DVDA/SACD combo
    LD - Pioneer Elite DVL-91
    Analog - OTA/Cable

    Most Likely Cables
    Blue Jeans - SVid, Component, Composite
    RAM Electronics - DVI-D
     
  2. Joseph S

    Joseph S Cinematographer

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    Well, RAM electronics has now up'd the price of the DVI cable from $150 to $200.

    In addition to questons on whether or not my plan is feasable...

    Any other cheaper sources for quality 15m/45ft DVI-D cables????
     
  3. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    Joseph, with regards to SVideo and component cables, you can most certainly run those 50 feet without any problems. Look for cables made with an RG59 type coax for those lengths to minimize attenuation losses. An alternative which you may or may not find attractive would be svideo.com. With regards to DVI, which you've already found to be pricey, the specification for the cable states a maximum length of 5 meters or about 15 feet. Now people have reported success with longer lengths but my general gut feeling here is that it depends largely upon the resolution they're pushing down the cable.

    Recently I had a talk with a manufacturer of DVI cables and they were pushing their silver model and stated that they guaranteed performance at 50 feet. I forget the price, but it wasn't inexpensive. I have my doubts as to the success at maximum resolution.

    Personally, I'd recommend that you hold off on the long lengths until you really need them, especially the DVI. It's a fairly new type of connection and I'd suspect that prices will come down as the marketplace gets more saturated. Another alternative would be pacific cable or even ebay. Sometimes planning for the future is too far away and you may need some special considerations with regards to the type of cable you can run as per your local building codes.
     
  4. Joseph S

    Joseph S Cinematographer

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    Thanks for the tip.
     
  5. David WS

    David WS Stunt Coordinator

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    ......

    Actually DVI is already the "Old" format for connecting digital signals. The new format is HDMI. I'm not saying that DVI is going away but HDMI is the "replacement" technology. I'm sure DVI will be around for quite a while.

    HDMI can carry 1080p signals, 8 channels of audio and control signals. It supposedly still has 50% of its available bandwidth in use with all this stuff. The cables are designed to run very long (the HDMI Website has info on how long but its much longer than DVI.) It is also backwards compatable with DVI digital signals. There is no analog version. And for the lengths avaiable right now, they appear cheaper than DVI cables of the same length. I tried to figure out if I could run a 30 ft. HDMI cable to my projector and then use converters to switch back to DVI. It would be possible but would be very expensive at the moment. I couldn't find anybody that sold a 30 ft HDMI cable. One seller told me to buy two 15 footers and buy the $60 repeater. I didn't want to have the signal broken inside a finished wall so that was out of the question.


    Having said that, I just ordered a 7.5 meter DVI-D cable from Ram this morning. They had the best prices I could find and claim they have reached 50 ft with 1080i. I'm hoping they are legit but the "quality" they state and the price they offer was too good to pass up. If anybody has dealt with them before they could tell you how good thier stuff is. I won't be able to tell for a little while yet.
     
  6. Jerzy

    Jerzy Extra

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    I recently had similar questions regarding DVI connections and my solution follows: I installed a 30' DVI-D cable (from Ram Electronics) as well as a comercially available 5 core coax cable made by Standard Wire & Cable (E 57891 Type CL-2), with those 2 cables I can run DVI-D, Component and S- video signals. The picture through the 30' DVI cable is fantastic (720p). The picture through the analog cables, both S-Video and Component portions of the CL-2 cable is also outstanding with no sign of any signal degredation. I used BNC crimp connections for the component wires and solder joints for the S-video (very fiddly)
     
  7. Joe fernand

    Joe fernand Auditioning

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    Hello all

    Joseph S - the Z2 seems to be pretty fussy with DVI; we've had a few customers not managing to get anything working with any DVI cable over 5m.

    We have had success with other Z2 owners using Molex and BetterCables HDMI and DVI cables via Gefen HDTV Hubs and Switches to drive DVI up to 14m with a Z2; so it can be done.

    We get great results using the BetterCables DVI cables up to 9m - so far we've only received 5m HDMI and HDMI to DVI cables; the longer lengths have still to arrive.

    If you find a marked difference with your YUV, S-Video or Composite signal once you introduce the long cable runs you may require a signal amp between the source and the Z2.

    Introducing long cables is in itself not the problem (as long as you use well manufactured cables) - its the driver circuits in your source kit; they are not generally designed to drive the long cables; we normally don't go much past 10m without having some form of buffered or active amplifier to drive the signals.

    Best regards

    Joe
     

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