Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12

Thread: reto fit home with data cables - advice needed

  1. #1
    Automated Home Lurker
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    4

    Default reto fit home with data cables - advice needed

    Hi All,

    I have been searching the forums and other sites for the better part of 2 years now, and a lot more recently as we are nearing completion on our first home.

    I am looking to reto fit the house for data cables and generally bring its electrics up to scratch, when doing this I want to lay cat 5e cable and just wanted to check that the info that I have been taking in over the past year is still current and up-to-date as some of the info is 5+ years old now.

    Should I be considering cat 6 cable? or Fibreoptic cable? over Cat 5e

    Any advice on other things I should consider when doing renovation work to the property to future proof or make my life easier in the long run?

    I am also open to a wide range of automation tech as I have none currently but I am leaning toward z-wave, but is this a good choice?

    Cheers

    D

  2. #2
    Automated Home Lurker
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Posts
    5

    Default

    Hi,

    With the data cable I would be installing Cat6. Cat5e is an older standard now (although still widely used). I would futureproof yourself though and go for Cat6.

    You will need to look up information on installation though, as there are a number of requirements about bend radius' and distances from mains cables etc. If I can find a list of requirements I will post here.

    Fibre Optics are expensive and not worth it outside of the enterprise. The installation costs are extremely high, and most household items are going to be using cable anyway, so you would just end up buying lots of converters. Fibre switches are also considerably more expensive.

    Haven't got any advice to offer on the automation systems though.

    Hope this helps.

  3. #3
    Automated Home Legend chris_j_hunter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    North Lancashire
    Posts
    1,711

    Default

    we've just done our house 50/50 in Cat-5e & Cat-6 ...

    Cat-5e for point-to point, Cat-6 for network ...

    when it came to it, the Cat-6 cable & patch panels were more expensive, but the Cat-6 outlets were less expensive ...

  4. #4
    Automated Home Lurker
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Thanks guys.

    I was thinking that fibre optics would be over kill and cost too much, looks like it would be well out of my budget anyway.

    tbh I have not dealt with Cat6 at all over my years working with PCs and know little about it. I have done some more research this weekend and found that it is capable of speeds of 10Gb if using the Cat6a standard, but if all your devices are limited to 1Gb there seems to be little benefit over using Cat5e. Plus alot of places say that the RJ45 connectors do not fit the cable, don't know if anybody here who has used can verify?

    I know this seems very negative towards cat6 but it is probably due to less understanding of it, but I am willing to be shown the way as it were.

    D

  5. #5
    Automated Home Legend chris_j_hunter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    North Lancashire
    Posts
    1,711

    Default

    if you're cabling, have a look at Idratek, for the HA system - it's what we went for, after looking at the many many options ...

    wired solutions are generally thought more reliable, but wireless is better than it used to be !

    others that could be worth a look (working at various levels, depending on how involved you want to get) include EIB KNX, C-Bus ... EnOcean, Niko, Dupline ... Comfort, AlertMe ... Velleman VBus ... Netiom, xAP ... Arduino, Velleman, Cebek ...

    there are lots more ...

    looking at a wide range of options was at least good for ideas & understanding, we found, before talking the plunge !
    Last edited by chris_j_hunter; 11th December 2011 at 03:47 PM.

  6. #6
    Automated Home Guru Geps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    136

    Default

    It's not that often you fit RJ45 connectors onto the cat6. You tend to have punch down connectors at the wall sockets and patch panels....

    Device->wall socket
    and
    Patch panel->switch

    can be done with short lengths of Cat5 without worrying about losing a gigabit speed rating.

    As previously stated the thing to be careful of is the installation method but realistically Cat6 is installed to a higher spec because you've after the higher speeds. Therefore it's fair to say regardless of the cable you're using you should observe these guidelines.

    I went the same route as Chris, both with Idratek and a mixture of Cat5 and 6, the latter too being used only where high bandwidths are needed (namely streaming HD).

    One thing I always recommend is to install trunking and conduit that's easily accessible. It's not future proofing in my eyes if you install thousands of cables but can't ever change or upgrade them. My personal opinion is it's better to wire what you need at the time + 50% extra, then flood the place with as much conduit as you can with conveniently placed access panels.

    A home you can completely rewire when fully decorated is my idea of future proofing.

  7. #7
    Automated Home Legend chris_j_hunter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    North Lancashire
    Posts
    1,711

    Default

    >Cat-6 ... RJ45 connectors do not fit the cable ...

    we've just bought a load of RJ45 connectors & boots, to make our own patch leads - so we hope that's not right !

    ready-made patch leads are not expensive to buy, but the typical 500mm minimum length was too long for us ...

    >conduit & trunking ...

    we used lots, mainly to protect cables from heavy hands & feet during the building work ...

    adding cable later, into existing populated conduit & trunking is fraught with problems, even if very generously sized - lots of snagging & damage to delicate cables seems a certainty !

    because of this we, too, laid a lot of spares, instead ...

    we did run a few empty ones, though, to a few places, with string in them, to allow us to run fibre optic, when / if the price comes down !
    Last edited by chris_j_hunter; 11th December 2011 at 04:57 PM.

  8. #8
    Automated Home Lurker
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Thanks again all!

    It all sounds like great advice.

    If I am able to I will run extra empty conduit through to key places my only concern with this is that it seems that UK law has changed and it is against the 17th Ed. regs to bury cables in the wall. Being in Wales myself there seems to be even more confusion over it as laws are slightly different here, so I will make a note to ask our electrician about this when he comes to put in a few new sockets for us.

    Z-wave does seem like a good wireless solution for a lot of reasons and the way I was leaning, however a few negatives are the reliability of messages getting through specially seeing as the house has solid brick internal walls, the system would have to work pretty well to keep the wife happy as she's not great with tech, any tech that does not work properly usually meets a painful "death by wall". Hence a wired solution would be better, chris_j_hunter has given me a whole host of different solutions which I must now go research :P

    Please feel free to keep the info coming. I'll be sure to post pictures of the entire reto fit once we start as I am sure it will be an interesting journey!

    D

  9. #9
    Automated Home Guru Geps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    136

    Default

    You can still run cables in wall - you just have to protect them with various methods.

    The legislation doesn't come into play unless the cable is live......so you can run disconnected cables to your hearts content

  10. #10
    Automated Home Legend chris_j_hunter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    North Lancashire
    Posts
    1,711

    Default

    if we were starting again, rather than conduits & trunking, we'd try to find a way of using cable-trays, as a way of making updates easy ... we did use some in the plant-room, and did something similar between beams in basement & garage, but using them more widely would have been good !

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •