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Tech Helproom


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What Ethernet cable to install in the home


Parker1234

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Can you help me with what is the best cable to buy for home networking as the Internet itself is mind blowing.

Ok what we are trying to achieve is . Set up a home network around the house (hard wired) and want to attach a network drive in a different room to where the pc is.  

So what to buy and install,  cat5e or cat6 solid cable, shielded or unshielded 100mhz or 350mhz to max the performance in the house. 

I don't want to spent loads of cash on the cable, but want quality. The cable routing in the house does pass copper water pipes and a ring main.

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robinofloxley

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Forum Editor

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Use unshielded CAT6 cable. Shielded cable is more expensive, and in a home environment it's not necessary, provided you observe a few simple rules ...

Try to run the cable so that it doesn't come into close proximity with mains electricity cables. If you have to cross mains cables at any point try to do it in such a way that the Cat6 and the mains cable cross at right angles. ( I know you say that it won't come near a ring main, but it's quite hard to avoid that happening under floors, and I assume you'll run under floors where possible).

Make all bends as slow as possible - definitely no kinks, and avoid pinching the cable with clips. Don't pull the cable tightly - plenty of slack where it passes under floors is a good thing.

If you can, terminate the cables in network outlet wall boxes.

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Parker1234

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Thank you for your reply... that has made things simple. I was going to buy the cat 6 cable, but then though is it just me wanting the best every time, but reading your reply, cat 6 is best for using other connections such as video etc.

Another question overall if you are allowed to say ... where is the best place to buy the front plates in white that are quality connections

Would you say use modular or fixed plates in the installation.

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robinofloxley

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Depends if you want to mix'n'match or change your mind/future expansion.

I find Screwfix quite adequate at good prices.

B&Q and local Electrical Factors also supply or High St DIY shops.

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Input Overload

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I used to buy Networking bits from here http://www.qvsdirect.com/_search.php?page=1&q=cat6 but it was a while ago.

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SimpleSimon1

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If you want the advantages of a wired connection but don't want to mess around with CAT6, using Homeplug devices is a good compromise (and much cheaper).

They're an absolute doddle to set-up (just plug them into your mains sockets) and seem reliable. If you want to punt media files around the place with no lag, use the 200Mbps versions. If you're only ever going to want to move docs around, you could go for the 85Mbps versions but there really aint much difference in price

There are loads of different suppliers but I suspect that most of the leading brands are much of a muchness. Don't try to mix brands - it might work but then again might not and all the suppliers will just say that it's the other blokes fault!

Whilst you'll never get the full-rated speed out of them, they do the biz and being able to simply move a connection by unplugging from one power socket and plugging in to another is absolutely brill!

Of course, you might like struggling with cable reels, wire cutters and cable runs.....

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Muergo

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I agree with SimpleSimon having used a version of "Homeplug very successfully after trying long runs of cable and also wireless modems which wouldn't work in my house.

I bought mine from Maplin but Amazon has a good range of everything and both companies will take goods back if they don't work provided you unpack/repack carefully.

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The Kestrel

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I agree with Simple Simon 1 and Muergo, use powerline adapters rather than a wired connection. I have these adapters from ebuyer http://www.ebuyer.com/276602-extra-value-200mbps-powerline-adapter-twin-pack-pa304w-p3p and they work perfectly, even through an external wall into an extension.

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