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Re: Component video over cat 5 or 6 ?

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Richard CrowleyRe: Component video over cat 5 or 6 ?
by on Aug 14, 2011 at 8:37:05 pm

Yes, you can use an inexpensive balun to send composite or Y/C or component video over Cat5 cable. Something like this...
http://www.tripplite.com/en/products/model.cfm?txtModelID=4596

Depending on many other factors you have not revealed here, it might work to your satisfaction, or it might not. We can not predict whether you would be satisfied with the performance or not.

But Mr. Zelin is correct that sending any kind of video over Cat5/6 cable is a low-end compromise compared to the "right" way of doing it, which would be to use proper coaxial cable.

Note that if you are talking about a fixed location where you have enough room for cable runs, and depending on the cable run lengths, the kind of RG6 cable that is used for cable and satellite TV systems is more than adequate even for HD-SDI (at least up to ~100m) and certainly for any varieties of analog video.

I have installed systems where I used RG6 for both analog and digital (HD-SDI) video runs out to camera locations. And additional wires as needed for power, intercom, tally, remote control, viewfinder return, etc. etc. When terminated in a wall plate with the proper connector(s) to interface to the camera, the type of cable inside the wall is immaterial to the actual performance.

RG6 coaxial cable is good up to many times higher frequency than is required for base-band analog or digital video. And it is DIRT-CHEAP. A few months ago I bought six 1000 foot rolls for $20 per 1000 foot roll from a guy I found on Craig's List. And he has as many more rolls as I could ever need. But, of course RG6 is to big and stiff for connecting directly to a small camera. Although it would be fine at the Tricaster end.

I use RG6 for my "suitcase-pack" HD-SDI video production unit. I have 100m cables for my cameras and have never had the slightest problem with this ultra-cheap cable even for the highest resolution digital video.

Note that you asked this question in the "Broadcasting" forum where the discussions tend to be about higher-end equipment. Perhaps you would have got a different reaction if you had asked this in the "Corporate Video" forum. I thought at one time there was a Newtek and/or Tricaster forum here, but I don't see it now. Note that things like good lighting may actually make more difference to the quality of your video than what kind of camera cable you use.


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