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Author Topic: In-wall Category wire for Analog Audio  (Read 661 times)

Peter Kowalczyk

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In-wall Category wire for Analog Audio
« on: April 08, 2019, 02:36:46 pm »

Hey Folks,

Working on spec'ing some low voltage wiring for a new multipurpose venue.  I'd like to 'future-proof' the space by planning for analog signal distribution between different rooms, so I was going to run something like West Penn 25291B shielded twisted pair.

http://store.nexternal.com/westpenn/25291b-p8.aspx

The IT / AV / Security folks suggested just using the same Shielded Cat 6 that I'm going to spec for digital audio distribution.  I know folks have successfully transmitted analog audio over Category wire before, but I'm concerned that the individual pairs are not shielded, only the overall 4-pair bundle. 

Should I be concerned about it lacking separate shields, or is this a non-issue?
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Rob Spence

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Re: In-wall Category wire for Analog Audio
« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2019, 05:44:04 pm »

Hey Folks,

Working on spec'ing some low voltage wiring for a new multipurpose venue.  I'd like to 'future-proof' the space by planning for analog signal distribution between different rooms, so I was going to run something like West Penn 25291B shielded twisted pair.

http://store.nexternal.com/westpenn/25291b-p8.aspx

The IT / AV / Security folks suggested just using the same Shielded Cat 6 that I'm going to spec for digital audio distribution.  I know folks have successfully transmitted analog audio over Category wire before, but I'm concerned that the individual pairs are not shielded, only the overall 4-pair bundle. 

Should I be concerned about it lacking separate shields, or is this a non-issue?

The only real issue is with phantom power.
If it gets used for line level Audio, no problem.




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rob at lynxaudioservices dot com

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Hal Bissinger/COMSYSTEC

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Re: In-wall Category wire for Analog Audio
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2019, 11:24:47 pm »

Normally I don't like to use data cable for something like this or listen to IT guys. But because of what you said about future proofing, it makes sense. Not only do you have 4 pairs, it could be used for digital audio or data should the need arise.  You won't do that with a single pair/22.

-Hal
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Joseph D. Macry

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Re: In-wall Category wire for Analog Audio
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2019, 08:16:13 am »

Hey Folks,

Working on spec'ing some low voltage wiring for a new multipurpose venue.  I'd like to 'future-proof' the space by planning for analog signal distribution between different rooms, so I was going to run something like West Penn 25291B shielded twisted pair.

Should I be concerned about it lacking separate shields, or is this a non-issue?

Line level audio can travel quite well through Category cable if you use a proper extender transmitter/receiver set. The twisted pair and a decent CMRR keep noise out. Transformers or active preamps buffer the audio on each end. As mentioned, it will not pass phantom power. But it might pass power over Ethernet (PoE).
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Joseph Macry,
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Erik Jerde

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Re: In-wall Category wire for Analog Audio
« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2019, 09:09:18 am »

Hey Folks,

Working on spec'ing some low voltage wiring for a new multipurpose venue.  I'd like to 'future-proof' the space by planning for analog signal distribution between different rooms, so I was going to run something like West Penn 25291B shielded twisted pair.

http://store.nexternal.com/westpenn/25291b-p8.aspx

The IT / AV / Security folks suggested just using the same Shielded Cat 6 that I'm going to spec for digital audio distribution.  I know folks have successfully transmitted analog audio over Category wire before, but I'm concerned that the individual pairs are not shielded, only the overall 4-pair bundle. 

Should I be concerned about it lacking separate shields, or is this a non-issue?

There’s a whole category of 4ch analog snakes that run over shielded catx cable.  Rat makes one that comes to mind.  They share ground (shield) and handle phantom just fine.  A gigabit Ethernet signal is going to be much more sensitive than analog audio, I wouldn’t worry about lack of individual shielding.

If you do want to worry about it then spec catx cable that has each pair foil wrapped.  It’s out there.
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Caleb Dueck

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Re: In-wall Category wire for Analog Audio
« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2019, 08:46:46 am »

I'd go with Cat6(A) cabling.  The future is more likely to be something like an Atterotech Dante endpoint than an analog mic. 
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