CAT5 wire for in-wall A/V?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Chip_E, Mar 25, 2001.

  1. Chip_E

    Chip_E Agent

    Sep 11, 2000
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    I'm planning a wire pull in my existing home.
    My electrician has already made most of the access holes
    and after fishing through the insulation in one room (dropping from the attic) he'll be ready to pull the wire.
    Planned wiring is 2 runs of CAT5 (voice/data) and 1 run of Coax for cable TV and 1 run of Fiber for the future. Since I have 2 DVD players (Panasonic RV30 for Region 1 and a Region Free Apex) I'd like to be able to view DVD from the other rooms. I had planned to run 12gauge speaker wire for the A/V (Left, Right and Composite Video) but I was wondering if there's any reason why I couldn't use another run of CAT5 and terminate it as the 3 RCAs for A/V?
    Thanks in advance,
    - Chip
  2. Westly T

    Westly T Second Unit

    Oct 5, 1999
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    I tried using phone cable (twisted pair) once, but got way too much interference. The signal was so bad it was of no use (about 30 feet). I ended up using a multi room unit from Radio Shack that sends Video and stereo audio through a phone line. I only use the audio part of this device, because I get better video from my modulator and Coax cable. There was still a little noise in one channel, but only I seem to notice it. The sound is very acceptable for music in my game room.
    On the other hand, the coax cable will work quite well for audio if you have the space. You could also get some thinner coax or audio cable for this as well.
    - Wes
    My Home Theater
    The MMG were replaced with 1.6QR's and added Marantz MA-700's. SVS on the way!
  3. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

    May 22, 1999
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    If you search, you can find some "Smart Home" cable from CoastCom or ComCoast (I can never remember which). This stuff has 2 Quad shielded RG6 coax cables and 2 Cat5 network cables in a single bundle for about $0.50/ft. You can buy the bundle with an optional fiber-optic cable, but it bumps the price up to $0.75/ft.
    You run this stuff in a "star" pattern from a central location in your home. At the central location, you place your hub/switch, and a coax distribution panel/amp from You also run dual RG6 from a sat dish to this location, and your main CATV feed.
    Now you can run CATV to every room, and direct the DSS signals to the room with the DSS receiver using the second coax run.
    You use one Cat5 cable for computer, and the other makes a dandy 4-line telephone cable.
    Viewing sources from another room: Go to the channel plus web site. They had some very good pages on how to do just this (although the emphasis is on DSS rather than DVD). It involves the use of modulators that take the DVD audio/video and converts it to a un-used CATV channel which is injected back into the CATV feed for your house.
    Speaker Runs: I dont think you want to use Cat5 cables for speaker wire. Cat5 cables are designed to carry mili-Volt digital signals long distances. Speaker wires are power cords designed to carry watts of analog power to a motor (your speakers ARE a motor). I dont think it would work.

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