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Author Topic: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install  (Read 1511 times)

frank kayser

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HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« on: December 10, 2020, 06:01:53 pm »

New to this section of the forums.  I'm hoping folks can help me move in the correct direction.


Situation: Rewire bar (three physical areas) for 24 50" sets.


We're home-running Cat-6 from each TV back to the closet.  We looked seriously at Cat-6a, but at nearly double the cost, it was out.  We will stay well within the Cat-6 range of 55meters for 10gbps, so the Cat-6 is future resistant.


Which leads to budget.  I specced out a HDbaseT "switcher", but that was too rich for the owner's blood.  Also looked at SDVoE.  Same same.
The owner believes he will not need for the foreseeable future anything more than 1080p from a bank of DirectTV receivers, with iPad control via WiFi to a DirectTV controller.  4k is not a feature he is willing to pay for.  IR relay is also not necessary.

So I'm looking for a low-feature HDMI over Cat-6 "balun"; a transmitter-receiver pair. Propriarity protocol is OK.  Given I need 24 T/R sets, price becomes important.  Silly me, I'd like a reliable unit, one produces good picture quality, and POE/POC.  At a reasonable (cheap) price.


Amazon and eBay are full of cheap who-knows-who-designed range of about five unique looks and endless clones of those units.  Many of those sellers have no USA offices, and mostly no warranty.


What have you used that works? 


frank
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Ben Lawrence

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2020, 06:53:32 pm »

I have always had good luck with Kanex and Kramer products. I have tried several of the cheapo generic ones with mixed results which is a total pita.
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Erik Jerde

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2020, 01:43:34 am »

Iíd stick to HDBT standards.  Iíve had good luck with Kramer and Key Digital products.  Going with HDBT puts you in a good place should the owner ever change their mind and want a matrix.  Pretty much everything is 4K now so you wonít be paying extra for that.
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frank kayser

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2020, 10:03:26 am »

Thanks Ben and Erik.  Looking into these and I think they may have the budget friendly units I can sell to the owner.


Any experience or heard anything about
Ocean Matrix?
JTech?
Vanco?
Expert Connect?
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Erik Jerde

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #4 on: December 12, 2020, 12:11:49 pm »

I've only heard of vanco.  I've used their catx patch panels when I need a budget alternative to leviton.  No idea on their electronics.  The patch panels are fine for the money.  I'd still prefer leviton but I haven't had any failures with the vanco.
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Nathan Riddle

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #5 on: December 12, 2020, 03:13:37 pm »

I've used tons (maybe 30) of these with good success. They can sometimes be finicky, but 99% of the time it is due to the cable quality (not cat6 or shielded, cat6A is even better).

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00OZV04BK/ref=cm_sw_r_apa_i_Zms1Fb0BCJKHR

I'd highly recommend cat6a because while relative it might be double its still cheap in an absolute sense. You only run cable once, why not do it for the next 20years. Not to mention your headaches will be minimized greatly.

Use the cost savings to buy some spares and Cat6A.
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frank kayser

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2020, 10:43:09 pm »

I've used tons (maybe 30) of these with good success. They can sometimes be finicky, but 99% of the time it is due to the cable quality (not cat6 or shielded, cat6A is even better).

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00OZV04BK/ref=cm_sw_r_apa_i_Zms1Fb0BCJKHR

I'd highly recommend cat6a because while relative it might be double its still cheap in an absolute sense. You only run cable once, why not do it for the next 20years. Not to mention your headaches will be minimized greatly.

Use the cost savings to buy some spares and Cat6A.
We discussed at length "future proofing" using Cat6a cable.  The labor to install the wire is so large compared to the cost of the cable itself, I'm surprisedI lost that argument.  I could see the boss ready to "put on the bars".   As the runs will be less than the 55meter limit of the UTP Cat6 cable, it *may* support 10gbs on our runs with hyper-precise terminations.  I did some reading up on Cat6 and above termination - a different animal from Cat5e.  I'm practicing up on my skills now... I have a cable speed verifier that I'll be checking every run with.  I do hope my partner got solid copper vs copper clad aluminum.


I had looked at the Cable Matters boxes you recommended...they looked interesting. I had to develop a culling method to whittle down the list with some type of dispassionate criteria.  These lost due to no USA presence, and no stated warranty, though they are eligible for the paid 4yr protection plan from Amazon.  I've had good luck with Monoprice and Amazon Choice items, such as cables and other small gear, however spending MY MONEY is one thing, and something else altogether hanging my hat on an unknown product when it's someone else's money.

It is good to hear that despite my culling criteria, these have worked well for you. That may give the Cable Matters boxes a second look...
Thanks, Nathan!
frank
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Nathan Riddle

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #7 on: December 12, 2020, 11:55:17 pm »

We discussed at length "future proofing" using Cat6a cable.  The labor to install the wire is so large compared to the cost of the cable itself, I'm surprisedI lost that argument.  I could see the boss ready to "put on the bars".   As the runs will be less than the 55meter limit of the UTP Cat6 cable, it *may* support 10gbs on our runs with hyper-precise terminations.  I did some reading up on Cat6 and above termination - a different animal from Cat5e.  I'm practicing up on my skills now... I have a cable speed verifier that I'll be checking every run with.  I do hope my partner got solid copper vs copper clad aluminum.


I had looked at the Cable Matters boxes you recommended...they looked interesting. I had to develop a culling method to whittle down the list with some type of dispassionate criteria.  These lost due to no USA presence, and no stated warranty, though they are eligible for the paid 4yr protection plan from Amazon.  I've had good luck with Monoprice and Amazon Choice items, such as cables and other small gear, however spending MY MONEY is one thing, and something else altogether hanging my hat on an unknown product when it's someone else's money.

It is good to hear that despite my culling criteria, these have worked well for you. That may give the Cable Matters boxes a second look...
Thanks, Nathan!
frank

For me its less about future proofing and more about future headache removal.

You asked for cheap ;)

The number of hdmi over catx solutions out there are endless and most are crap, I bid you good luck sir.

Here's a pinned post I did in my discord for installs and such for the networking channel.

Cat6A Keystone High Quality
https://falcontech.us/products/leviton-6asjk-rl6-cat6a-rj45-quickport-atlas-x1-jack-module-shielded-blue

Cat6A Keystone Med Quality
https://www.amazon.com/Listed-Cable-Matters-Shielded-Keystone/dp/B00CLVAJCK

Keystone 1RU patch panel
https://www.snapav.com/shop/en/snapav/patch-panels/wirepath-trade%3B-rack-mount-24-port-blank-patch-panel-wp-bpp-24

Unshielded Cat5e ezRJ-45 connectors
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07D3DX6NG/

Shielded Cat6A (non HDBaseT) ezRJ-45 connectors (must use enhanced crimp tool)
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07C2FSQ2P/

Shielded Cat5e ezRJ-45
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0052V6WGS/

Cheap poe switch (unmanaged) [useful for ME boxes, must use 100BaseT connection]
https://www.amazon.com/BV-Tech-Switch-Gigabit-Ethernet-uplink/dp/B01MQHD54L

Cat6A ethernet patch cables monoprice
https://www.monoprice.com/category/cables/networking-patch-cables/cat6a-ethernet-cables

Cat6A ethernet patch cables cable matters
https://www.amazon.com/Cable-Matters-Snagless-Shielded-Ethernet/dp/B00HEM57ZU/
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Erik Jerde

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #8 on: December 13, 2020, 08:18:23 am »

Keep in mind that ez plugs will void some warranties.  Creation is one IIRC.  I just donít use them at all anymore.  Apparently the problem is that on poe type systems you can get shorts from the exposed wire ends to shielded jacks.  The risk is highest when ez connectors are terminated with a standard crimp tool and then the protruding wires are cut with a razor blade or similar.  There are ways to terminate that reduce the risk but by then you may as well just use normal connectors.

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Nathan Riddle

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #9 on: December 13, 2020, 09:19:46 am »

Keep in mind that ez plugs will void some warranties.  Creation is one IIRC.  I just donít use them at all anymore.  Apparently the problem is that on poe type systems you can get shorts from the exposed wire ends to shielded jacks.  The risk is highest when ez connectors are terminated with a standard crimp tool and then the protruding wires are cut with a razor blade or similar.  There are ways to terminate that reduce the risk but by then you may as well just use normal connectors.

Thats interesting, did not know that!?

FWIW, we use thousands of them at work and never had an issue.
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frank kayser

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #10 on: December 13, 2020, 09:52:43 am »

For me its less about future proofing and more about future headache removal.

You asked for cheap ;)

The number of hdmi over catx solutions out there are endless and most are crap, I bid you good luck sir.

Here's a pinned post I did in my discord for installs and such for the networking channel.

Cat6A Keystone High Quality
https://falcontech.us/products/leviton-6asjk-rl6-cat6a-rj45-quickport-atlas-x1-jack-module-shielded-blue

Cat6A Keystone Med Quality
https://www.amazon.com/Listed-Cable-Matters-Shielded-Keystone/dp/B00CLVAJCK

Keystone 1RU patch panel
https://www.snapav.com/shop/en/snapav/patch-panels/wirepath-trade%3B-rack-mount-24-port-blank-patch-panel-wp-bpp-24

Unshielded Cat5e ezRJ-45 connectors
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07D3DX6NG/

Shielded Cat6A (non HDBaseT) ezRJ-45 connectors (must use enhanced crimp tool)
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07C2FSQ2P/

Shielded Cat5e ezRJ-45
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0052V6WGS/

Cheap poe switch (unmanaged) [useful for ME boxes, must use 100BaseT connection]
https://www.amazon.com/BV-Tech-Switch-Gigabit-Ethernet-uplink/dp/B01MQHD54L

Cat6A ethernet patch cables monoprice
https://www.monoprice.com/category/cables/networking-patch-cables/cat6a-ethernet-cables

Cat6A ethernet patch cables cable matters
https://www.amazon.com/Cable-Matters-Snagless-Shielded-Ethernet/dp/B00HEM57ZU/


Wow!  Thanks, Nathan!  Perfect.  Though I may have implied cheap :-[ , I meant to communicate trusted manufacturer and their lower end product.  I am worried about choosing crap - it's soo easy.


Keep in mind that ez plugs will void some warranties.  Creation is one IIRC.  I just donít use them at all anymore.  Apparently the problem is that on poe type systems you can get shorts from the exposed wire ends to shielded jacks.  The risk is highest when ez connectors are terminated with a standard crimp tool and then the protruding wires are cut with a razor blade or similar.  There are ways to terminate that reduce the risk but by then you may as well just use normal connectors.


Interesting point, Erik. I did read EZ Connectors could be problematic.  I have not read that they could void warranties - though many of the cheap :-[  boxes did not have a warranty anyway. One theory was pulling the strands to seat the jacket deeper in the connector, and the cable naturally pulling back creating a less-than-perfect connection.  One particular post was over two years old... True Cable discussed some design improvements based on some complaints about the EZ connectors being unreliable, especially in the video distribution world.  They talked about three prong piercers and how that would support the wires more side to side, and improve pull resistance. 


The cut of the extra protruding wires has been an issue with, as you mentioned, using an older non-trimming tool, and trimming - somehow, whether by razor or flush cut wire cutters, or some other way altogether.  I could see sloppy cutting could indeed cause POE/POC shorting.  I've recently invested in a True Cable install tool.  I've been lucky thus far installing 5e with EZ connectors and a razor knife.  Time to upgrade.


So, I see you've abandoned the EZ Connectors, but I do wonder how current the warnings are and whether the redesign of many cat6 and cat5e connectors has alleviated the problem.  I anticipate keystone at one end, and a patch panel at the other.  Should be very little RJ45 connectors that are not part of a pre-made jumper.


frank



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Brian Ingwell

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #11 on: December 13, 2020, 01:43:38 pm »

Frank,

FWIW, weíve been using the Platinum Tools EZ connectors (Cat 5 and Cat 6, UTP and STP) along with their crimping/trimming tools with no issues for many years.  All of our production network cable (both inside racks and Ethercon cables are terminated with them.  Weíve also used them on installs with no problems.

I definitely find it easier to keep the twists tight right up to the pins with the pass through connectors.

I have had people cringe when I tell them thatís what we use, but I have never had an issue.  Perhaps some of the knock off brands have issues or if you donít use the intended and proper crimper/trimmer, I could potentially see issues.

Just wanted to share our experience.  As always, YMMV.

Cheers,
Brian
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Nathan Riddle

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #12 on: December 13, 2020, 03:00:16 pm »

If you're not using proper ezrj45 crimper's and instead trimming by hand you might as well not use them...
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Brian Jojade

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #13 on: December 13, 2020, 03:01:38 pm »

HDMI over cat 6 can be a nightmare.  Have you considered HDMI to SDI converters?  I've personally had much better luck with that.

Or, another alternative is modulate your channels to ATSC.  This lets you then just run and split regular old coax and now you pick which receiver your TV gets to see by picking a channel right on the TV. In some cases, it's easier to point the remote at the TV you want to change than have some other box.  Although with 24 units, that might be a bit of a hassle.
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Dave Garoutte

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #14 on: December 13, 2020, 04:49:57 pm »

They make HDMI fiber optic cable that can run 100 meters.
The converters are built in and powered by the source.
They work great.
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Nathan Riddle

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #15 on: December 13, 2020, 05:05:40 pm »

They make HDMI fiber optic cable that can run 100 meters.
The converters are built in and powered by the source.
They work great.

The monoprice ones I've used and they're quite good and reasonably priced.
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Erik Jerde

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #16 on: December 13, 2020, 11:06:28 pm »

HDMI over cat 6 can be a nightmare.  Have you considered HDMI to SDI converters?  I've personally had much better luck with that.

Or, another alternative is modulate your channels to ATSC.  This lets you then just run and split regular old coax and now you pick which receiver your TV gets to see by picking a channel right on the TV. In some cases, it's easier to point the remote at the TV you want to change than have some other box.  Although with 24 units, that might be a bit of a hassle.

HDMI to SDI is likely to introduce HDCP issues.  Some gear respects it (and won't transmit video) other gear does not and strips it.  At the price point Frank is looking at it would probably be a crap shoot.  I love SDI but it's probably not the right solution here.
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Caleb Dueck

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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
« Reply #17 on: December 16, 2020, 12:38:45 am »

HDMI to SDI is likely to introduce HDCP issues.  Some gear respects it (and won't transmit video) other gear does not and strips it.  At the price point Frank is looking at it would probably be a crap shoot.  I love SDI but it's probably not the right solution here.

Agreed. 
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Re: HDMI over Cat6 - Sports Bar install
¬ę Reply #17 on: December 16, 2020, 12:38:45 am ¬Ľ


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