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#48414 - 02/11/05 04:20 PM Custom Builder  
rowdyrudy  Offline
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 169
Mascoutah, IL USA
Yesterday evening I had a visit from an area custom home builder, who built my home 11 years ago, and his EC. I did my own electrical. They are establishing standards for their construction and visited to view my set-up. All possible locations for TV to have two quad-shielded RG-6, one Cat-5, and two quad receptacle on separate dedicated circuit. Computer locale two RG-6, two Cat-5, and three quad receptacles each on separate dedicated circuits. RG and Cat to thermostat. RG and Cat to security system and intercom system. Dual RG to site security cameras. RG to site lighting controller. All RG-6 and Cat go to central location in basement on plywood mounting boards with all cables identified as to termination point. Spare cables and branch wire terminated in accessible attic spaces. The quad receptacles are a result of TV, DirecTV (or cable box), DVD, Stereo, etc, at TV locations. The quads at computer areas (3, mine, wife’s, and grandkids when they visit) handle Direcway, wireless, computer, two printers, scanner, external devices, lamp, etc.
Don and I both wonder how other custom builders do it.

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#48415 - 02/11/05 05:31 PM Re: Custom Builder  
Joey D  Offline
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 259
Arlington MA U.S.
Sounds like your into overkill, not a bad thing in your own house but unless it's speced like that and you give a price for a job how you would do it you will be very high dolar wise.
If I have a say in it I do,
3 cat 5e to each computer
2 quad cable's and 1 cat 5e to a TV. I run all wiring back to a media center where routers and spliters are configured. You can set up a whole house where they run a common printer in the house if you like or you can play a DVD or movie from a computer on any TV in the house. Lots of options with the media cabinets exist.
Each location doesn't need a dedicated recpt but can't hurt. Most high end TV systems run a remote rack in a closet or something. All the equipment gives off heat and takes up space which most don't want in thier living rm or TV room. I have done systems where each speaker in the room required a 20 amp dedicated cir, acual draw was 12.5 amps. Ended up with 6 speaker cir, 2 rack cir. It's tough to set up the perfect house unless you know the system.

#48416 - 02/11/05 06:20 PM Re: Custom Builder  
hbiss  Offline
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 886
Hawthorne, NY USA
Sounds like this should be moved to the VDV forum.

To say you are into overkill is an understatement. RG-6 quad shield and UTP CAT5 to thermostat, intercom, light controller and security system? Why and why quad shield?

Sorry, but I sure hope those guys understand that they will go broke if they follow your advice. Much of this is not needed to begin with.


#48417 - 02/11/05 06:47 PM Re: Custom Builder  
Ron  Offline
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 582
White Plains, NY
If your looking for standards, why recreate the wheel. ANSI, Telecommunications Industry Association and the Electronic Industries Alliance have a "Residential Telecommunications Cabling Standard" 570A.
It establishes 2 different grades of cabling, which are 2 levels of installation scope and quantities of locations within the home. As you might guess, grade 1 is minimum and grade 2 is most extensive.

[This message has been edited by Ron (edited 02-11-2005).]


#48418 - 02/11/05 08:10 PM Re: Custom Builder  
George  Offline
Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 375
A 30" LCD TV is only 180 watts. Fast plump computers with LCD monitors are under 500 watts.

Wireless does away with network cables.

While quad (or more) recepts appear to be useful, often times the appliance cords are too short and a power strip is a better solution.

Your plans are foolish.

#48419 - 02/11/05 08:41 PM Re: Custom Builder  
SolarPowered  Offline
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 625
Palo Alto, CA, USA
There's not a whole lot of benefit to bringing multiple Cat5e data cables to one location. If the owner ends up with multiple pieces of equipment at a location, it's easy to use a $20 switch to support multiple data connections. Cat5e will support a full gigabit trunk connection, which should be plenty of bandwidth for pretty much any conceivable residential application. (Excluding those who decided to set up a web hosting company in their home, but that's a whole 'nother animal.) Multiple Cat5e cables might simplify things slightly by allowing all the switching to be done at one, central location, but not having multiple cables doesn't rob you of any capability that you would have had with multiple cables.

#48420 - 02/12/05 06:40 AM Re: Custom Builder  
rowdyrudy  Offline
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 169
Mascoutah, IL USA
A full detailing of my system would require too much space and time. All cables are in use with the exception of a third RG in MBR. The way the system is configured, loss of any cable, interface, router, etc, does not result in the loss of any function. Entire system from security, thermostat settings, TIVO, telephones, to starting coffeepot is controlled from computer, including laptop carried in vehicle. Many services and components have been added over the past 11 years and I probably will add more as additional technology becomes available. At the present time I am checking out whole house satellite telephone systems.
BTW, Don has never had to bid on a project. All are negotiated. When he built for me it was cost plus fixed fee.


#48421 - 02/12/05 04:11 PM Re: Custom Builder  
hbiss  Offline
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 886
Hawthorne, NY USA
Whatever floats your boat I suppose. If you keep up with trends you will see that the "smart house" concept never really took off so I wouldn't expect too many people to be interested in your version even if they were willing to pay the price.

Another point is that your design may make perfect sense to you but as professionals we have to realize that at some point we will be out of the picture and somebody else will have to figure out what we have done. If we reinvent the wheel nobody is going to want to service it which leads to angry customers and eventually the system being abandoned.


#48422 - 02/12/05 05:41 PM Re: Custom Builder  
rowdyrudy  Offline
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 169
Mascoutah, IL USA
Hal, I think you are partially correct in your observations. However I meet with a group and at the University regarding what used to be called "smart houses". Many persons my age (73) aren't much into modern technology as I am but the surprise is the extent folks are wiring their "tract houses". Even those in apartments are going wireless to a great extent. Try attending a class, or preferably a tech meeting, at a nearby University and I believe you will be pleasantly suprised by what the younger generation perceives in the future of home high tech.

#48423 - 02/12/05 07:45 PM Re: Custom Builder  
Tom H  Offline
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 74
Milford, Ct, USA
You need to meet your clients needs when it comes to data cabling. Wireless is not standardized yet and and IP [internet protocol] based products are soon to flood the market. Telephone, video, audio, security, power-over-ethernet devices all run on cat5/6. Lutron home controls can in a pinch use cat5. Crestron home controls thrive on cat5

Home audio systems use cat5, and lots of it.

You need to discuss the options and don't be afraid to call in an AV dealer for info and suggestions.

My basic spec style jobs get a cat5/rg6 to all bedrooms and living spaces, better homes get a bannana peel [2cat5/2rg6] to all plus some bonus areas. The more custom homes can rival high voltage wire in their quantities. It just comes down to what the customer wants.

Your method sounds good as it covers all bases, just make sure it is spelled out to who ever pays you, as a phone only opening could end up costing $300+ And power outlets can get crazy as well. My AV partners run all TV and audio equipment power back to a single source, then run it thru power quailty equipment. A bit overkill but it works for them.

[This message has been edited by Tom H (edited 02-12-2005).]

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