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 Post subject: Cable Length Questions for Cable Modem
PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 4:29 am 
8086
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Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 4:12 am
Posts: 6
I just switched to Comcast High-Speed Internet from Verizon DSL and will be installing the cable modem myself when the kit arrives. I had a couple of questions though.

Here is my problem. I only have one cable jack coming into the apartment which is in my living room and my computer is on the other side of the apartment, some 80' away. Normally this would be a perfect situation to set up a wireless router from the living room. The problem is that as it is right now, I can't get a stable wireless signal throughout the apartment for some reason, and whenever my cordless phone rings, it drops the wireless signal. That's not good for online gaming. So I figured I would just hardwire my network.

Now for the questions:

1. If I place the cable modem in my office, I'll need to run about 80' of coaxial cable (actually 100' because that's the size it comes in) across my apartment to my office. If I did this, would there be a significant amount of signal degradation that would cause a problem? I plan on using RG6 Quad-shielded cable. What is the maximum length of cable that I can run without a noticeable difference?

2. Would it be a better solution for me to keep the modem in the living room and just run 100' of CAT5 cable from the living room to the office? My wife has her computer in her office so it would go into a router in my office and split off from there (we already have that set up).

Thanks in advance for the advice.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 7:05 am 
Hired Gun
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Either method should work. Cat 5 you can run 100 meters without signal degradation, I am not sure the max on Coax, but I do know its more then 100'

I looked it up, its 500 meters from the trunk.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 7:31 am 
8086
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Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 4:12 am
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Awesome, thanks for the help Hitman.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 6:34 pm 
Beta Tester
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just to reinforce this, there should not be any problems with either coax or Cat5 at that length.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 8:35 pm 
Million Club [PC]*
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Location: Motor City, folding for Mom
That said, Cat5 is a ton easier to route and hide. Smaller, thinner, lighter. Real easy to tuck along the edge of the carpet.

But, advantage to coax: it's easier to pull UNDER the carpet, and is less susceptible to chrushing injuries (like can happen if the cable goes across a door opening.)

Advantage to Cat5 (if you want to drill holes, and can terminate the cable): smaller hole needs to be drilled in the wall. Easier to hide now & patch later.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 9:02 pm 
Coppermine
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Location: In the hills of San Diego
Enter the cable guy

The length of coax you want to run should not be a problem unless you have RG59 coming into the apt. I regularly run cable much longer than that for Internet. Just don't use a cheap Radio Shack splitter it will cause problems at some point. Also go with triple shield instead of quad. I have heard of issues with quad and internet.

As to the problem with your router dropping when the phone rings try changing the channel on the router, default is chnl 6 go to 10 or 11 that should take care of the phone issue.

If all esle fails call you cable company to come run the coax for you. It may cost you a few $$ but at least you know it will have good signal strength and will work. I know the company I work for charges $30 for a dat relocate, which is not to bad considering the tech does the work and supplies the cable and good splitters.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2007 5:34 am 
8086
8086

Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 4:12 am
Posts: 6
Thanks for all the good tips. It's good to know that I shouldn't have trouble running either cable. Now, I just have to decide which one. I'm leaning towards the coax mostly so I don't have to run into the living room to see if the modem is blinking. Also, I believe that I have RG6 cable coming into the apartment since I had the cable installed fresh less than a year ago, but that's no guarantee.

Thanks Xman for the tip on triple-shielded. I just assumed more shielding is better.

My landlord doesn't care if I drill holes in the wall since he's gutting the apartment whenever I move out, but since it's a really old building, I'm hesitant to do so since I have no idea what's inside these walls. Monsters, I'm sure of it :)

As for the wireless signal dropping with my cordless phone, I have tried different channels to no effect when I first installed my Linksys Router (WRT54G). But since I get spotty reception anyways we've just found it easier to stay wired.

Thanks again for all the replies, I love MaximumPC magazine and am happy to see so many helpful people here on the forums.


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