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Use cat6 cable instead of USB?

Last response: in Networking
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November 13, 2012 7:40:01 AM

I'm thinking of making a security system for my house (and possibly selling and setting up for others) based off usb 1080p webcams. I read online the max length of a usb cable is 5m before you need a hub to act like a repeater. Could I simply buy a cat6 (or 7) cable, splice the usb into it, and then unsplice at the computer as a workaround?

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November 13, 2012 4:12:23 PM

The trouble is, USB operates at 5V. Even if you tried to send that 5V through Cat5/6, it would not get very far because the cable itself has some resistance and it will reduce the voltage down to a point where it won't be usable very quickly.

Honestly, I wouldn't bother with USB cameras for a security system, mainly because of this limitation. USB can only send the signal up to 5m.

I would suggest buying IP cameras instead and then power them via POE. You just need a POE switch to send the power, like this one: http://www.panoptictechnology.com/pse-8-smart-switch/

And then you can either buy cameras that support POE, or buy POE adapters like these to power non-POE cameras: http://www.panoptictechnology.com/network-smart-adapter...

It makes the install nice and clean since you only have to pull one cable out to each camera.
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November 14, 2012 5:11:40 PM

1zacster said:
I'm thinking of making a security system for my house (and possibly selling and setting up for others) based off usb 1080p webcams. I read online the max length of a usb cable is 5m before you need a hub to act like a repeater. Could I simply buy a cat6 (or 7) cable, splice the usb into it, and then unsplice at the computer as a workaround?


It's not an issue with the cable itself but with how USB works. If you are fat in a blue shirt, would simply putting on a green one make you skinny? Same thing with your thoughts about the cable.

Get IP cameras as in the post above.
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November 16, 2012 12:12:12 AM

hometownfl said:
The trouble is, USB operates at 5V. Even if you tried to send that 5V through Cat5/6, it would not get very far because the cable itself has some resistance and it will reduce the voltage down to a point where it won't be usable very quickly.

Honestly, I wouldn't bother with USB cameras for a security system, mainly because of this limitation. USB can only send the signal up to 5m.

I would suggest buying IP cameras instead and then power them via POE. You just need a POE switch to send the power, like this one: http://www.panoptictechnology.com/pse-8-smart-switch/

And then you can either buy cameras that support POE, or buy POE adapters like these to power non-POE cameras: http://www.panoptictechnology.com/network-smart-adapter...

It makes the install nice and clean since you only have to pull one cable out to each camera.


how about usb>poe>usb connection?
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November 16, 2012 10:05:37 AM

Nope PoE is just method to deliver power it is still ethernet. If you search long enough they do make devices that will convert USB to ethernet but cost wise it is waste of money. I suspect the only reason you want to use USB cameras is because they are cheaper than IP cameras. Once you spend another $100 per camera to buy these converter boxes IP cameras are cheaper.
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November 16, 2012 11:51:35 PM

john-b691 said:
Nope PoE is just method to deliver power it is still ethernet. If you search long enough they do make devices that will convert USB to ethernet but cost wise it is waste of money. I suspect the only reason you want to use USB cameras is because they are cheaper than IP cameras. Once you spend another $100 per camera to buy these converter boxes IP cameras are cheaper.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... possibly throw in a repeater in the middle is needed?
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November 25, 2012 9:36:15 PM

hang-the-9 said:
You linked to a bunch of ethernet cables, but did not say why. Are you still trying to use them with USB?

Yeah, have a usb male on one end of the ethernet cable (soldered in to several wires) then at the other end splice the ethernet cable back into the camera.
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November 27, 2012 1:37:40 PM

1zacster said:
Yeah, have a usb male on one end of the ethernet cable (soldered in to several wires) then at the other end splice the ethernet cable back into the camera.


Did you happen to read all the other posts that said this won't work?
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