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Cat6 cable?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Installation/MDU Discussion' started by Italfra1, Jan 3, 2008.

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  1. Jan 3, 2008 #1 of 28
    Italfra1

    Italfra1 Godfather

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    Is Cat6 cable what I want to network my computer to my HR20-700.

    I want to run a direct cable from my office to my T.V. room. I found a 50ft length of Cat6, 500 Mhtz for $7.53 at Monoprice. That seems cheap to me.

    Anyone see a problem with using Cat6?

    Thx.
     
  2. Jan 3, 2008 #2 of 28
    Michael D'Angelo

    Michael D'Angelo Lifetime Achiever

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    Cat6 or Cat5e will work great.

    But you do know you need to run it from a router not your actual PC correct?
     
  3. Jan 3, 2008 #3 of 28
    jimb726

    jimb726 Icon

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    At the risk of sounding stupid whats the difference between cat5 and cat6?
     
  4. Jan 3, 2008 #4 of 28
    e_identity

    e_identity Cool Member

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    Cat 5, Cat 5e, and Cat 6 refer to specifications for ethernet cable (i.e. data or networking cable). Higher Category number generally means higher data rates. All are backwards compatible.
    Specs at a site I can't link to: lanshack [dot] com/cat5e-tutorial.aspx
    Scroll down a bunch and there's a table.

    Also from the Site I can't link to:
    "Category 5 cable may be able to run Gigabit Ethernet, but Category 5E is recommended (for gigabit). As for the second part of the question, the answer is that it can only help, and it cannot hurt. The fact is that the weakest part of any category-5 link, are the patch cables used. I suggest that every one who is responsible for a network should use the very best grade of patch cable available. I highly recommend the Custom Category 6 Patch Cables which are "state of the art"."

    e_identity
     
  5. Jan 3, 2008 #5 of 28
    oenophile

    oenophile Godfather

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    Northern...
    See here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cat6
    and here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category_5_cable#Category_5e

    My advice: If you are running long cable runs (which you might want to use for years) you should use the Cat6 not Cat5e cable. Cat6 will support Gigabit ethernet; Cat5e won't. In about 5 years all products will be Gigabit--you'll wish you'd ran the 50' cat6.
     
  6. Jan 3, 2008 #6 of 28
    Italfra1

    Italfra1 Godfather

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    So I'm o.k. running the Cat6 500 Mhz are do I need to upgrade to some kind of state of the art Cat6 is as earlier posted my someone?

    The cable I'm looking at with Monoprice is $7.53 for 50ft. I do see other companies selling a much more expensive Cat6 cable.

    Thx.
     
  7. Jan 3, 2008 #7 of 28
    Italfra1

    Italfra1 Godfather

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    Yeah, I get that much but I still have quite a few questions.

    In our office we have our laptop running through a Linksys Wireless G 2.4 GHz router. Basically so we can work in other rooms with the laptop.

    The router is connected to a Speedstream 5100 modem.

    I've read alot of the networking posts but I'm unclear as to whether the current router I have will do the job or do I need to upgrade the router in the office.

    Any suggestions on a better router, modem, etc. I want the best connectivity as possible.

    Is it o.k. to run my Cat6 cable from a wireless router in the office to the DVR or should it be running from a non wireless router? I'm confused here.

    Thx.
     
  8. Jan 3, 2008 #8 of 28
    phat78boy

    phat78boy Hall Of Fame

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    Cat5e will support gigabit transmissions just fine.

    Being that the cost is pretty much the same, I would just use a Cat6 cable.
     
  9. Jan 3, 2008 #9 of 28
    Italfra1

    Italfra1 Godfather

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    Thx. Any suggestions on what type of router I should use. I just want to do this right with the best equipment the first time around.

    I mainly want to download music on my computer and play it through my home stereo. This will allow me to do this, is that correct.
     
  10. mjones73

    mjones73 Icon

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    Just connect from the HR20 to one of the available switch ports on the the wireless router, it's more then sufficient for streaming from a media server to your DVR. For On Demand you'll never surpass the speed of your internet connection which is a lot lower then what the switch in the router can handle.

    Don't forget you need a media server application on your PC also to stream music, you can find more information in the HR20/21 forums on media servers.
     
  11. e_identity

    e_identity Cool Member

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    Italfra1 asks, “So I'm o.k. running the Cat6 500 Mhz are do I need to upgrade to some kind of state of the art Cat6 is as earlier posted my someone?”

    I think, from my hobbyists perspective, that Cat 6 is Cat 6 is Cat 6. If it meets the specs for Cat 6, it’s equivalent of other Cat 6 cables.

    oenophile posts some helpful Wikipedia articles and advises using Cat 6 in part because “Cat6 will support Gigabit ethernet; Cat5e won't.”

    I basically agree with oenophile, but would correct a small error. The Wikipedia articles to say that:

    Cat 5: Cat 5 “is most commonly used for 100 Mbit/s networks, such as 100BASE-TX Ethernet, although IEEE 802.3ab defines standards for 1000BASE-T - Gigabit Ethernet over category 5 cable.

    Cat 5e: “Although 1000BASE-T was designed for use with Cat 5 cable, the tighter specifications associated with Cat 5e cable and connectors make it an excellent choice for use with 1000BASE-T.”

    Cat 6: “Cat 6, is a cable standard for Gigabit Ethernet and other network protocols that is backward compatible with the Category 5/5e and Category 3 cable standards. . . . . The cable standard provides performance of up to 250 MHz and is suitable for 10BASE-T / 100BASE-TX and 1000BASE-T (Gigabit Ethernet). It is expected to suit the 10GBASE-T (10Gigabit Ethernet) standard, although with limitations on length if unshielded Cat 6 cable is used.”

    I have puzzled through some of this stuff on my own, and I think its worth putting some of this in perspective:

    If what you are planning to do is stream content from the internet to your DVR, keep in mind the speed of your internet connection. My dsl connection is a measly 1 mbps. Verizon Fios someday hopes to provide 100 mbps. For streaming content from the internet, Cat 5 cable (“most commonly used for 100 Mbit/s networks”) will be sufficient for a long time to come. Your router almost certainly already supports 100 mbps over ethernet cable and, if it has basic 802.11g wireless, it will transmit data over the wireless connection at 54 mbps. So, both the wired and wireless parts of the router are more than adequate to handle anything streamed over any contemporary internet connection. From the point of view of the cabling, Cat 5 cable will handle anything an 802.11g wireless router and 100baseT wired router can dish out, and, while not ideal, may even work with the gigabit routers that oenophile says will soon be standard.

    If you are moving large data files around your LAN (i.e. from DVR to PC), then the limitations of your internet connection are not relevant. In this scenario, you could transfer data at the fastest rate your system will handle. When I transfer a recorded program from one of my Series 2 TIVOs to the other Series 2 TIVO via the USB port (54 mbps max speed IIRC) to a USB/Ethernet adapter, via Cat 6 wires and a 100 mbps router, the program transfers slightly faster than I can watch it. (I use the USB port b/c the S2 TIVO has no ethernet port.) While a slightly faster transfer rate would be better (I’d like to be able to skip commercials without getting ahead of the transfer), I’ll bet a full 100 mbps transfer speed would be sufficient for most purposes. Disclaimer: I have no idea whether factors other than network speed may be limiting the transfer rate from TIVO to TIVO.

    All that said, as phat78boy notes, “Being that the cost is pretty much the same, I would just use a Cat6 cable.” I did for that reason and I am looking forward to installing a 10 gigabit network someday! But understand that your system is likely to work just fine for a long time to come with Cat 5 or 5e.

    hope this helps,

    e_identity
     
  12. phat78boy

    phat78boy Hall Of Fame

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    For just music, you would be fine with a 100MB switch or router. Although, if you ever plan on streaming video I would recommend paying the extra money for a Gigabit switch or router. They aren't really that much more expensive and will have a longer life then their 100MB counterparts.

    With the advant of 10 megapixel cameras and HDD camcorders, moving large files for the standard home user is a very real problem. The Gigabit switch will make this easier and will also allow for streaming in HD if you choose so in the future.
     
  13. oenophile

    oenophile Godfather

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    Northern...
    Yup, you're right (my op isn't). Cat5 won't work with Gigabit; Cat5e will. Cat6 has better shielding and will work better at longer distances. Given the insignificant price difference, I would always go with Cat6 (especially on a long run).
     
  14. carl6

    carl6 Moderator Staff Member DBSTalk Club

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    Cat6 is slightly larger and has much tighter twisting. If you do not properly terminate it, you will lose virtually any benefit of using Cat6. It is somewhat harder to properly terminate than is cat5 or cat5e. Connectors used, patch cords, etc., all need to be cat6 rated - your network speed will be no greater than the weakest link in the system.

    Carl
     
  15. mjones73

    mjones73 Icon

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    "For just music, you would be fine with a 100MB switch or router. Although, if you ever plan on streaming video I would recommend paying the extra money for a Gigabit switch or router. They aren't really that much more expensive and will have a longer life then their 100MB counterparts."

    What he has is fine now for communication between his PC and the HR20 since the HR20 only has a 100 Mbit ethernet port. Upgrading to a gigabit switch between the PC and the HR20 would be a waste of money.

    Now in the future if the OP wants to add more PC's to his home network and transfer large files between them or stream video off a fileserver to another PC I could see upgrading.
     
  16. phonedrn8

    phonedrn8 New Member

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    put it simple your computer and other equpiment cant process that much info at 1 time over a certin time span .004 sec vs .008 sec can u see the diffence
     
  17. phat78boy

    phat78boy Hall Of Fame

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    I agree. Which is why I said if he ever planned to, just spend the money now on a Gigabit switch. They are for the most part only a 10-20$ more then the 100 MB switches. Seems like money well spent now rather then purchasing another router a year later. I think video streaming will be a very popular thing this year.
     
  18. Italfra1

    Italfra1 Godfather

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    Thanks for all the advice guys. I've ordered my 50 ft Cat6 ethernet cable.

    Sorry for the stupid questions but when you say Switch are you referring to the Router?

    Like I had stated earlier I have the Lanksys wireless 2.4 Ghz Model WRT54GS.

    Sounds to me like you are saying that my current is sufficient for streaming audio but If in the future I want to stream video or larger files I should upgrade now to a Gigabit switch?

    Is a Gigabit swith replace the Lanksy's router or work along side it?

    Thanks for walking me through this. Appreciate it.
     
  19. phat78boy

    phat78boy Hall Of Fame

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    A switch and router are 2 different things, but can be combined into one item. Hope that didn't confuse you. What you have is both a switch and a router. You could purchase a gigabit switch to work with what you have now, but I would recommend you just get and all-in-one solution. Linksys, as well as others, makes some fairly descent gigabit router, switch, and wireless units much like you have now. Keeping them all together just makes it easier for you. Less wires, power cables and things to configure that way.

    As for right now, it sounds like you have everything you need. Good luck.
     
  20. Italfra1

    Italfra1 Godfather

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    But I don't have a Gigabit all in one router as of now. Are you saying I should purchase one and do away with the Lanksy's wireless router that I currently have?

    Is running the ethernet cable from the wireless router in my office directly to the DVR the best possible connection? Seems like it is to me.

    Thx
     
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