Hi all,

Not sure if i posted this in the right forum, mods please move it if it isn't.

Currently looking at trying to fix up my current multi-room BUDGET video distribution system to make it a bit more user friendly.

My goal is to have a system whereby I can watch my videoís that I have downloaded (legally of course) and TIVO shows in any room in the house and have full control over all the units. Currently I can do that, well sort of, I can watch anything the person is watching in the lounge from the kitchen or master bedroom, but audio levels arenít that good and I donít have any IR control. Also I want the ablity to watch something different to my wife in another room if need be.

My other issue is finding the right setup for me, as I am not after fantastic video quality or audio quality (all remote tvs are mono-crtís and I have NO componet/s-video/HDMI souces !!) I have looked at a couple of cheap matrix switches either 4x2 (4 in-2 out) or the 4x4ís which I think I might get, itís just working out the best means too push that signal too the rest of the house !!

Iím I better off buying a couple of UHF, stereo modulators and just tuning the TVís in at the other end, or would it be best to keep buying the RCA-Video over RJ-45 units ? what are there limits on distributing signials are they one to one normally or can they do one to many ?

I also thought, why not put a XBOX in each room and do it that way, but the problem then is if you are watching something in the lounge and you want to goto the kitchen and make something to eat and continue watching what you just paused.

(Below is a list of my current setup.)

List of rooms, (Note : all rooms have THREE RJ45 points and TWO F-Type QUAD Core RG6 points in each of them)

Lounge (Theatre... one day)
* Large CRT TV
* Amplifier used as the switch for the Tivo and XBMC
* Digital STB
* Tivo, hacked of course
* Xbox hacked as well and running XBMC, accesses all my video and audio on my file server in the attic

Master Bedroom
* Small LCD TV (actually just a PC LCD with a RCA to RGB converter on it)

Bedroom 1
* Small CRT TV

Bedroom 2
* Small CRT TV

* Small CRT TV

Wiring cupboard
* Full patch panel
* ADSL Modem and wireless router
* Phone patch panel
* RJ45 video sender patch panel

* File Server

Currently running a couple of those RCA to RJ-45 converters at the moment. It carries the signal (from either the XBMC or TIVO from my Lounge to the patch panel in the wiring cupboard, from there it splits off into two locations, the master bedroom and the kitchen. I am reasonable happy with these things at the moment, but since I donít have any high quality TVs (HD ones) at the moment the quality isnít really a issue. The only problem I have noticed is the audio level isnít anything fantastic on the remote tvs in the bedrooms.

Future plans in order of priority
1. IR control in ALL rooms, looking at a simple XANTECH system at this stage, as I know it works with TIVO, and running the IR siginal over the spare RJ-45 points in each room.
2. Would like a matrix switch, either a 4x2 or a 4x4 would be better, but this build is on a very low budget at this stage $$ and still thinking that I will distribute the video over Cat5, as doing it over a modulator could become expensive. At this stage I have 3x RCA to RJ45 units.
3. Maybe buy another XBOX, as the XBMC interface is fantastic !!
4. Moving away from the TIVO and finally get around to setting up my computers with multiple turner cards, but still havenít worked out a good front end unit that I can play all the media on. Maybe use the XBOX, not sure on this yet, need to do a bit more research.
5. Would like to put some speakers for audio in the kitchen and also the balcony, which are right next to each other.
6. Audio in the bathroom this is where those Xantech keypads would be handy.
7. Also like the idea of some lighting/HVAC/security controls etcÖ but this isnít a big priority at this stage.
8. Have seen a couple of people staying to develop iPod touch interfaces too control there home systems, now this would be cool.

Does anyone have any ideas on what I can do to make this a little bit easier to use ???? I know there is a lot of information


PS. I have posted this on a couple of other HA sites, sorry just trying too get a few good ideas from other members on budgets.