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Multi-channel cabling

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carolyn entricht
Multi-channel cabling
on Sep 10, 2012 at 7:18:33 pm

I am looking for a solution for what I am calling a video snake. I have 5 cameras that I want to send audio/video/com/rs422/return feed signals from a control switcher to a distribution point 300-500 feet away. At the distribution point the signals will be converted back to original format and distributed in 5 shorter directions. (example: football game control room to football field with 5 cameras on field. The majority of the cable run distance would be in one or 2 snakes). I have looked at fiber... the connectors and conversion devices seem to be prohibitivly expensive. Is that the best way to go or have you tried other methods? Thank you for your help!!


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Bill Davis
Re: Multi-channel cabling
on Sep 10, 2012 at 10:25:30 pm

Very, very slowly - but also very surely - the classic multi-conductor snake approach is fading away.

Multi-core is expensive, HEAVY, and if you have six feeds needed and a six wire snake - and ONE wire breaks, you have to replace the whole thing. That sucks.

The more modern approach is to digitize and multiplex all the signals and send them over a data cable - typically Cat 5.

But it's not perfect yet with latency issues and other things that make it an imperfect solution.

As the tech industry continues to pack more data into smaller cables, this will eventually get solved, but right now it's a bit of a mess. Do some searches on Video over IP to start learning about the issues - that's where it's likely going.

The relatively new Thunderbolt protocol also will potentially have a huge impact on this since the optical implementation on the horizon is so darn fast that it likely will allow multiplexing as many digital signals as you like on a single optical cable - then you just have the issues of power distribution to deal with.

That oriental curse deal - "may you live in interesting times" looks wiser and wiser, huh?

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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