Wiring my home questions

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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Dec 22, 2004
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322
Yes, I saw the thread below me, but I didn't want to hijack his thread. Basically my dad is going to be remodeling parts of the house so this has given my the excuse to punch some holes in the walls to try and run some cable.

So I'm basically starting from ground zero as I have no tools or cables so I'll basically need to be buying everything. Since I've never done this before I'm only going to be wiring a few places in the house.

Basically 2 RJ45 jacks in 4 rooms, and 4 coaxial cable runs in 4 rooms. One room actually already has one coaxial cable that I'm probably just going to end up rerouting and cutting the cable shorter once I figure out how to do that.

Making the cat5/6 cable looks simple enough, just need the cable, crimper and boots from what I remember from my Cisco class since its been a while. I don't remember the wiring combinations but that I can easily look up I guess. Would you recommend cat 5 or 6?

Since I figure everything is probably cheaper buying online what I need are links to places you've bought your supplies from, from coaxial cable, cat5/6 cable, tools, wall plates, ect.

I've Googled a few places myself, but I thought I would ask for recommendations from places you personally tend to buy from.

I've never dealt with coaxial cable so what kind should I buy? How exactly do you make them?

Also at the moment I'm not exactly sure which route I'd go, whether I'd mount the cabling in a box on the wall, or just a rack or cart. Any links to sites you use specifically would be helpful.

Thanks
 

Xilikon

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A place to start would be to read http://www.swhowto.com/ since this page has helped me really to understand what is needed. I ran wiring and installed outlets everywhere in my whole house during construction last year and it's the best money I ever spent :)

Read it and if you have questions, don't be shy to ask :)
 

movax

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Key: Make sure you have proper crimping tools! No sliding by with "Generic Purpose" or similar.

Other than that, it really is very simple. Purchase the proper type of cable (Plenum, etc) from Home Depot or online, cut the length you need, run it (<--- EFFORT), and take care of the ends (one end to the keystone jack that goes in the wall, the other end to a patch panel, or switch if you don't plan on converting to a phone jack any time soon...).

That's grossly oversimplified though, you should check out the previously mentioned website.
 

liquidcypher

Weaksauce
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Jun 15, 2003
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Xilikon said:
A place to start would be to read http://www.swhowto.com/ since this page has helped me really to understand what is needed. I ran wiring and installed outlets everywhere in my whole house during construction last year and it's the best money I ever spent :)

Read it and if you have questions, don't be shy to ask :)

Awesome site...

Not to hijack, but to echo the original request, where does everyone buy their equipment from?
 

tacticus

Limp Gawd
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Feb 5, 2006
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Run more cable than you need now :)

Do a proper job with a patch panel and a small home built rack in one room it is worth it in the long run.

I buy my patch leads as it costs less than making them.

Plan your network first
get the house plans and work out where the rack is going then get a drum\box of cable and just run it out of there it would be easier if you can get 2 or 3 boxes of cable and a roll of string\wire to run along side

then you can just pull them out and use some electrical tape to hold them together then draw them through in a bundle

one idea is to tape the cat5 cable together and lay the draw string next to them so that you can pull more through later (of course pulling another draw string)

the info on that swhowto site is good but i would definitely not just run the solid core cable into rj45 males patch panels exist for a reason

if you can build the rack area with a enough space for your router and maybe a small computer although you might not be planning to have one ATM you may wish to invest in a small computer in the future to do nice stuff like gateway voip email serving a simple home web page and other cool stuff like MRTG, or One Wire :)


Run your POTS connection into that rack as well(if you have one) as standard phones work fine over cat5 cable and if you setup a patch panel to be wired into your POTS line you can just patch any port in at any time

Just remember the real cost in building a good network at a home is not the immediate financial expenditure. It is the money and time you spend later making it larger or fixing areas where you decided you didn’t really need to run a draw string or other stuff like that

most of this advice was stolen from http://www.hardforum.com/showthread.php?p=1029542221
 

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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So if I wanted to add phone jacks I don't have to buy special phone cable, I can just use the same cat5 cable as well?
 

liquidcypher

Weaksauce
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unimatrixzer0 said:
So if I wanted to add phone jacks I don't have to buy special phone cable, I can just use the same cat5 cable as well?

Correct. check out the pic from the above mentioned howto page. hxxp://www.swhowto.com/images/CableColorsT568BStraight.gif Look at the blue wires on the top graphic. Even though it looks like white/blue goes to blue, the numbers show blue to blue, and white/blue to white/blue 4 to 4 etc.
 

movax

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unimatrixzer0 said:
So if I wanted to add phone jacks I don't have to buy special phone cable, I can just use the same cat5 cable as well?
In fact, I think you can run 2 for sure (maybe 3 or 4) phone lines over Cat5 if you wanted, since it does not use all 8 wires.
 

Xilikon

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movax said:
In fact, I think you can run 2 for sure (maybe 3 or 4) phone lines over Cat5 if you wanted, since it does not use all 8 wires.

Phone jacks can have 3 lines for sure but you can also hack so you wire 3-4 phone jacks off 1 wire, but it's not advisable.

Mine is crimped to support 3 lines off a cat5e cable. A indirect advantage is that in the future, when phone lines is phased out in favor of ethernet phones, we can just cut the wire and recrimp to the proper layout in both ends.

In my home network, I used yellow cat5E for ethernet and green cat5E for phone lines, just to help me know what a line is for.
 

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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Since ebay seems to be the place of choice when it comes to buying cable is there anything I should look out for? Can I get by with Cat5e UTP or do I need STP? Should I settle for nothing less than RG6 Quad Shielded cable?

http://cgi.ebay.com/Compression-Too...843QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem?hash=item150069520167

Is there anything wrong with the items in this auction for the tools, or is this stuff to cheap and I should go for higher quality?
 

Xilikon

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Don't bother with STP cables since it's very rare and expensive. UTP is fine but make sure it's cat5E or cat6 for futureproofing your network. For RG6, quad shielded should be the only choice but it's affordable so you can get a few hundreds of feets without emptying your wallet.

The compression connectors seems fine but you will need a special tool to crimp them so account a extra 30-50$ for a good tool.
 

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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Hmm, question... well I've finally started running wire to various rooms in my home. Well, just one room so far... lol. I intend to wire at least four more places so its a start. This room happen to have all the walls exposed so it was easiest to do first.

So on to my questions, instead of drilling holes in the cieling studs I just zip tied the cables onto a water pipe that has piece of foam padding covering it. This isn't bad is it?

Also are there any draw backs to zip tying all the cables together? It looks a lot cleaner than just letting them hag there. I think some where on that swhowto.com website it suggested not to, or maybe it was someones network thread on here, but I don't see why not. I mean even if the cable went bad you could just leave it in the wall and not pull it out and still run a new cable if you wanted.

Also in my basement there are power cables almost everywhere in the path I'm taking with my cat5e UTP and quad shield RG6. Is it bad to have these cables running close to each other?

Thanks.
 

PTNL

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unimatrixzer0 said:
Hmm, question... well I've finally started running wire to various rooms in my home. Well, just one room so far... lol. I intend to wire at least four more places so its a start. This room happen to have all the walls exposed so it was easiest to do first.

So on to my questions, instead of drilling holes in the cieling studs I just zip tied the cables onto a water pipe that has piece of foam padding covering it. This isn't bad is it?

Also are there any draw backs to zip tying all the cables together? It looks a lot cleaner than just letting them hag there. I think some where on that swhowto.com website it suggested not to, or maybe it was someones network thread on here, but I don't see why not. I mean even if the cable went bad you could just leave it in the wall and not pull it out and still run a new cable if you wanted.

Also in my basement there are power cables almost everywhere in the path I'm taking with my cat5e UTP and quad shield RG6. Is it bad to have these cables running close to each other?

Thanks.
On the drilling question ... it may not cause an issue, but it screams of sloppy. You sound like you've been going through a lot of effort to learn how to do it right, so don't shortcut your work. Try to see if there's a better way to route the wire that doesn't have you drilling a long sequence of holes through the floor joists.

On the zip-tie question ... keep the cables together is a good thing. If you've got a bundle of wires together and they're running parallel with a joist or stud, then look at your hardware store for plastic cable ties (usually in the electrical areas of hardware stores). It looks like a "C" shaped piece of plastic, with a nail or two at ends. Plus, that gives you something solid to run more cables through if needed, instead of cutting and using new zip-ties.

On the RG6/UTP question ... Others in the forum may have more input as to signal interference issues on various wire proximity against UTP. However, if you can't wait (or find) a more detailed answer, then don't have the RG6 and Cat5 cables run parallel closer than 12-inches with each other -- if it's unavoidable, then crossing the wires perpendicularly should be fine.
 

Frank4d

Gawd
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PTNL said:
On the RG6/UTP question ... Others in the forum may have more input as to signal interference issues on various wire proximity against UTP. However, if you can't wait (or find) a more detailed answer, then don't have the RG6 and Cat5 cables run parallel closer than 12-inches with each other -- if it's unavoidable, then crossing the wires perpendicularly should be fine.

Same goes for proximity to power wiring.

One very important thing I haven'e seen addressed in the thread, so I will add it. Cat5 has four pairs of twisted wires. It is crucial that RJ45 pins 1&2, 3&6, 4&5, 7&8 are pairs. Wired any other way will cause networking problems.
 

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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Hmm, so just to clarify a few things. Its better to try running the cable if possible without having to drill multiple holes in the joist or studs, so my approach with just zip tying my bundle of cables to an insulated copper water pipe was better than having to drill holes in the ceiling joists.


On the RG6/UTP question ... Others in the forum may have more input as to signal interference issues on various wire proximity against UTP. However, if you can't wait (or find) a more detailed answer, then don't have the RG6 and Cat5 cables run parallel closer than 12-inches with each other -- if it's unavoidable, then crossing the wires perpendicularly should be fine.

Do you mean I should have my bundle of cat5e and QS RG6 cables 12" apart from each other or 12" away from any electrical wiring? In my situation its unavoidable in the basement as there is electrical wiring running in all directions.

Thanks.
 

Xilikon

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unimatrixzer0 said:
Well I ended up just leaving the RG6 and cat5e bundled together were going to be drywall put up today. Hopefully its on since that person on http://www.swhowto.com/ had his cables crossing near each other as well.

PTNL is wrong... RG6 is quad-shield so there is no risk of interference with the cat5. The official regulations was relative to RG6/CAT5 versus power lines. You indeed must try to keep both 12 inches apart and if you can't, cross them 90 degrees.

At work, we have a big network of RG6 and CAT6 running to feed a few multimedia courtrooms and they are bundled together without problems. Power lines is kept 2 feets apart.
 

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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http://www.superioressex.com/products/premises/marathon_cat5e.htm

Thats the kind of cat5e I have. Can anyone figure out if its solid or stranded? Even after looking at the PDF I'm still a little confused.


I also didn't know you need different modular plugs depending on if it was solid or stranded cable.

I haven't made patch cable in maybe 4 years and this is what I remember is being like.
http://www.lanshack.com/make-cat5E.aspx

Now with cat6 I see this new style of modular plugs,
http://www.lanshack.com/make_cat_6_cable.aspx

and there there is also this new sleeve or boots to go on the end
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dl...Sell_LogicX&refwidgettype=cross_promot_widget

I'm not exactly sure what to buy at this point, but would ebay be a good place for these parts?
 

jeffmoss26

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I would NOT attach cables to any pipes or anything. Drill holes and run the wire through that. Do it properly.
That cable is solid. But you should not just put mod plugs on the end. You should have jacks at the outlet and a patch panel in the central wiring area.
Some of these questions seem like you might be over your head. It is one thing to make cables, it is completely different to wire an entire house. You need to know a lot more than just color codes and pinouts. There are standards and specs you need to follow.
 

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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I would NOT attach cables to any pipes or anything. Drill holes and run the wire through that. Do it properly.
That cable is solid. But you should not just put mod plugs on the end. You should have jacks at the outlet and a patch panel in the central wiring area.
Some of these questions seem like you might be over your head. It is one thing to make cables, it is completely different to wire an entire house. You need to know a lot more than just color codes and pinouts. There are standards and specs you need to follow.

Solid? Thanks.

I do plan to have jacks at the outlets. Not sure what kind of box I'm going to be buying yet for the central wiring box.

Why wouldn't you run cables near a pipe?
 

horndog

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One of my best tools for troubleshooting connections is a toner. Plug it in a jack, and tone it out at the breakout box. I solved all my problems when I had CAT5e ran throughout my house(phone) and COAX. It will even give you a red light if the wiring is backwards or a green light if its wired correctly.

This was extremely helpful when changed out the 66 block to a 110 block,and a patch panel(I am such a geek) It sure looks good now!

I actually just picked up my tools @ homepdepot. They have the toners, punchdown tools, distrubtion blocks, etc. I even bought a box to put it all in.
 

jeffmoss26

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It's just not good practice to have your cables attached to pipes. I am sure if you looked it up this would violate building codes too.
 

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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Here is something I'm still a little confused on. If I have to cross electrical cabling I know I'm suppose to do it at 90 degrees. But do I have to have the two wires touching at 90 degrees, or space allowing, can I have then crossing at 90 degrees at a distance where the wires aren't physically touching yet. Does it make a difference? Would this rule out gigabit for me?

http://img83.imageshack.us/my.php?image=dscn04854yg.jpg

Also looking at this persons setup, in the bottom left corner of his wiring panel is that a ground for the coax? Is that something I have to work into my wiring panel? I didn't notice such an accessory on http://www.hometech.com

And I'm also questioning his CatX wiring. I thought the pairs of cable coming from the CatX isn't suppose to exceed something like 1/2 an in. but those cables seem to come out the black housing atleast an in. or more on his wiring. According to swhowto.com any way.

Speaking of which...
http://www.swhowto.com/images/109_0910_text_small3.JPG
He doesn't even use patch panels in his setup. Although I might have to end up doing the same to save a little time/money on supplies.

http://www.hometech.com/pdf/le-47603c5.pdf
Thats a product on hometech.com that I'm thinking of getting to put in the leviton structured panel I'm probably going to buy but I'm having a hard time figuring out if this will support a gigabit network. After seeing the twisted pairs exposed so much in this pic
http://img83.imageshack.us/my.php?image=dscn04854yg.jpg
and then remembering reading all this stuff on how gigabit is very picky to keeping to spec and not exceeding certain lengths on exposed pairs of cable.

http://www.lanshack.com/make_cat_6_cable.aspx
Also a question that didn't get answered before, I have cat5e cabling but noticed that the connectors for cat6 cabling use this little bar to hold the wires in place. Any benefit in me getting the cat6 style connector having cat5e cabling or it doesn't really matter in my case.

Last question would be how would you handle a power outage with a structured wiring panel?
 

jeffmoss26

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1. In the box, if the wires are close, it won't be the end of the world. But in the actual runs, you want the wires to be spaced out.
2. You do want to have a ground for Coax...preferably to a cold water pipe. However, if the cable company grounded the line outside, then you are probably ok. Two ground wires, going to different earth grounds can cause issues.
3. I always recommend some type of patch panel. it just makes sense. Even for small applications, there is always some chance of upgrades/future expansion.
4. With anything Cat6 and using Cat5e cable, it will be downgraded to Cat5e performance.
 

tacticus

Limp Gawd
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Patch panel > *

http://www.swhowto.com/images/109_0910_text_small3.JPG don't do this

run everything into a patch panel then you just have cat5e(or6) cables running around

If you want to patch in a POTS port its just a simple matter of connecting a .25 or .50 m cable between 2 ports
to patch into the switch you just connect another one

the cable that goes in the wall is further protected and everything comes out looking neater

Plus you can do nice colour coding of your connections (red= server, green = router, blue=normal boxes, yellow=POTS, beige=voip phones etc.)
 

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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http://www.hometech.com/techwire/coaxconn.html

GC-GRB23G

I ended up buying this ground for the coax. My question is do I need it or can I do without it? Also can any one tell if it is rated for outdoor use since thats where I'd have to place it instead of inside the box. Read below why.

In any case I guess my real question would be can I do without a continuous coax line from outside utility pole to my structured wiring panel? Since I called both Comcast, which I use for TV, and RCN, which I use for broadband. Both told me I'd have to wait atleast until sometime next week until I could schedule someone to come in and run new lines of cable. Not possible for me since drywall has to go up by monday in the basement.

I already have my broadband figured out. Just going to take the short length of cable that already goes into the basement from a splitter outside and use that for broadband by routing the cable to the box RCN installled on the outside of my house.

So what I plan to do with the main line from comcast which right now stops short outside my house at a splitter is remove the splitter and use that GC-GRB23G ground I mentioned above and link the main line and then drill a new hole into the basement with new RG6 cable.

Would this work? Whats stopping me is I don't know if that ground is rated for outdoor use and if not having a continuous line would degrade my signal some how.

http://img83.imageshack.us/my.php?image=dscn04854yg.jpg

This person doesn't have a continuous line so I would hope signal is not impacted much.

One other quick question is in terms of the phone wiring, what would you recommend using to connect to seperate pairs or phone wires? Just twisting the wiring together and duct tape or other recommendations?

Last thing is I noticed that the old style thing on the wall that all the phone cabling links back to has a cord thats plugged into a power outlet to the yellow and black wires. I thought phone cables already carried their own low voltage?
 

jeffmoss26

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Typically the cable company grounds the line with one of those before it enters the house. If it is grounded outside, you do not need to ground it again. But yes, they do use those outside all the time.
As far as phone wires go, get a 66 block or better yet a smarthome type distribution panel. If you don't know much about phone wiring, those panels are easier to work with. But PLEASE don't just twist wires together!
 

JBark

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I looked at that picture, thought it looked familiar, then realized it was my basement. :)

As for the couple questions you had:
1) Low volt crossing high volt. As long as you cross at 90 degrees, the cables can touch without a problem. I've got plenty of runs in my house where the cables are close to touching, but as long as you're at 90, you don't have to worry about any induced current in the low voltage cables. Try to give it at least 12" if you have to run parallel, 16" would be even better.

2) Exposed twisted pairs. Not a big deal, the key is to keep the pairs themselves twisted as much as you can. If you look closely, none of pairs are actually untwisted until right at the punchdown points. The outer cover doesn't really do anything, other than just hold the cables together. I suppose I could have maybe left a little more of the cover on, but it would have been pretty tough to punch it down.

3) Ground stuff. I needed that grounding block so I could could ground a rooftop antenna later on (which is now installed), and the cable coming into the house was too short to reach where I needed it, so I just use the grounding block as an extender. I really don't need the cable grounded there, since the cable is grounded outside. Note that adding ground blocks/connectors doesn't affect the signal much, if at all, so that's not a worry.

If you are going with the leviton stuff, I do have a few more (older) pictures here:
http://www.thebarricks.com/images/low_volt_cables/

I should probably get a few updated pictures, since it's pretty much done now. Also, if you have any questions about the leviton stuff, PM me and I'll see if I can help. Note that it is pretty damn pricy, but I got all my stuff on ebay for a lot less than places like HD charge.
 

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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Thanks a lot for those answers, I've actually ordered all my leviton stuff, but I went with the 42" so I could fit everything inside since I noticed you ran out of room for your modem and router. I should have all my stuff ready to start my install over the weekend.

Typically the cable company grounds the line with one of those before it enters the house. If it is grounded outside, you do not need to ground it again. But yes, they do use those outside all the time.
As far as phone wires go, get a 66 block or better yet a smarthome type distribution panel. If you don't know much about phone wiring, those panels are easier to work with. But PLEASE don't just twist wires together!

http://www.hometech.com/techwire/47689b1.jpg

I actually bought those to put inside leviton distro panel I'm getting today. You might have misunderstood me though. I'm going to be using that block for the new cable runs I made for the phones since those cables will reach inside the leviton box I bought.

However, the old phone wires where I also still need to wire up are in a different part of the basement so I was saying I would need to extend those lines some how to the leviton box since the original phone wiring is to short a length to reach. Thats why I asked how exactly should I go about extending the lines, by either just twisting the wires and electric tape or something more fancy? I have no idea.

Another idea is to just leave the old phone wiring intact where it is and just branch off from the main line to the wiring panel with new cable. But then my original question still remains. How should I connect the two piece of cabling together?

And then I still have no idea why they wired the black and yellow phone wires into a power outlet. I thought phone wires carried their own voltage.
 

jeffmoss26

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I get it now. You can get Beanies which are small crimp splices for phone wire. That same site should have them. As far as the black/yellow being plugged into an outlet, that is probably for some old phone with a lighted dial. The transformer supplied power to the dials on those older phones. You can probably disconnect it.
 

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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I'm having a slight problem. When I'm watching TV every so often the video will cut out or freeze then resume, even on the tv's without a cable box/dvr. Then sometimes its just the audio that will cut out for a few seconds. Seem to get glitches on HD channels every so often as well.

Could a bad amp be causing this or just a weak signal?

I'm using the Leviton LE-47692GSM amp found on this page http://www.hometech.com/techwire/lvcoax.html

Just want to see if anyone recognizes these symptoms so I can get an idea on what might be wrong before I call Comcast to check my levels. Or I might just put out an ad on craigslist to see if anyone with the same testing equipment can check my levels. Which ever is cheaper. Just getting a truck out here is probably no less than $50.

Thanks.
 

maxpower1119

Limp Gawd
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I'm having a slight problem. When I'm watching TV every so often the video will cut out or freeze then resume, even on the tv's without a cable box/dvr. Then sometimes its just the audio that will cut out for a few seconds. Seem to get glitches on HD channels every so often as well.

Could a bad amp be causing this or just a weak signal?

I'm using the Leviton LE-47692GSM amp found on this page http://www.hometech.com/techwire/lvcoax.html

Just want to see if anyone recognizes these symptoms so I can get an idea on what might be wrong before I call Comcast to check my levels. Or I might just put out an ad on craigslist to see if anyone with the same testing equipment can check my levels. Which ever is cheaper. Just getting a truck out here is probably no less than $50.

Thanks.

What kind of box are you using? If Motorola you can check the signals by turning the box off by hitting power then select select. Check here for more info. http://cjhengineering.com/hdtv/cablehdtv/dctdiag.htm
 

unimatrixzer0

Limp Gawd
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Dec 22, 2004
Messages
322
Thanks, I checked out the link and my SNR & AGC numbers are basically whats in those pictures (Unless those pictures are examples of bad levels). I have values in the Correctable field and nothing in the Uncorrectable field. I'm wondering if its a bad Levi amp or something on Comcast's end.
 
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