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getting the cat 5 outside


slipperyclam
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I was wondering how everyone is getting outside to there controllers. I am looking at finding some type of outdoor cat 5 wall plug for outside on the side of the house and putting a wall plug  on the inside were my computer will be. been trying to find something with a cover to protect it from the snow.

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I use the DCMP3 controller to run my show. I set it up in the garage and run the cable under the garage door. I know a lot of other people that set their computer up in the garage and do the same thing. If your computer is inside you can run it out a window and just use paper towel and some tape to seal up the little gap that it would leave. My suggeston is don't over think it.

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I was wondering how everyone is getting outside to there controllers. I am looking at finding some type of outdoor cat 5 wall plug for outside on the side of the house and putting a wall plug  on the inside were my computer will be. been trying to find something with a cover to protect it from the snow.
I run 2 cat6 lines out of a small access hole in the back of my house. I try to use direct runs to avoid any failures.
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Last year I ran mine out the window.  I used the Styrofoam insulation that goes over the thin PVC water lines, kept the cat5 from getting damaged.  This year everything is in my backyard shed, just drilled a hole in the floor and ran the cat5 to the controller from my DCMP3 Showtime Director that's mounted inside along with my FM transmitter. 

 

But I also have a computer in the shed for doing sequencing and the USB485B if I need to disconnect the MP3 Director and use the computer to test out a new or modified sequence.   

 

I also filled the hole around the cat5 in the shed with silicone to prevent any critters from getting into my shed.  Just means I'll have to dig out the silicone if I ever need to change out the cat5, but was a lot cheaper than trying to install cat5 jacks inside and out.

 

Just how I did it.   BTW: I also use the Styrofoam PVC pipe coverings in my controllers as well.  I cut small pieces and put them around the cat5 cables at the bottom opening and inside where the cat5 exits.  This has kept the critters out of my controllers and prevented any magic smoke from escaping,   Before I did this, I found a fried lizard in one of my controllers one year, fortunately no damage to controller, but that lizard definitely got electrocuted in there.   So now with this method I don't have any crawling inside my controllers.   Just some added protection.

 

You find these Styrofoam PVC coverings at your local Lowes or Home Depot.  I think they are around 6' in length and the cost is less than $2.00!   So you get a lot of protection for little money!

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I initially wanted to go wireless too.  I liked the idea of isolating the computer from outside and possibility of lightning strings coming through the CAT5 connection.

 

I decided against wireless when I was told that a 900mhz wireless phone in the vicinity can conflict with the th ELL.

 

Jerry

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I have my computer downstairs where I have the common wall to the garage. I put an outlet box on the inside of the wall and did the same on the garage side of the wall (same stud space, but lower than the box on the inside). Got cat 5 connectors and the wall plate for both outlet boxes. Used a couple of short cat 5's to connect the inside and outside boxes. I plug the LOR adapter from my computer to one of the cat5 plugs on the inside, then run my cat 5 from my controller under or the upper corner of the garage door to the cat5 plug on the garage side.

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I initially wanted to go wireless too.  I liked the idea of isolating the computer from outside and possibility of lightning strings coming through the CAT5 connection.

 

I decided against wireless when I was told that a 900mhz wireless phone in the vicinity can conflict with the th ELL.

 

Jerry

I have run several ELLs for the last few years with no issues.

This year I am adding a wireless router for my E1.31

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Keep it simple run it through the window

Yes.. drill a 1/4" size hole through the bottom part of the glass, run the cable thru the window and install the connector once outside!     :P

 

 

OK.. OK.. just kidding!   couldn't resist!

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The CAT5 goes through a hole in the sill into the garage and connects to the controllers on the wall inside the garage. The SPT cords all go through a brass mail slot to the front yard. The controllers are nice and dry and secure.

 

The mail slot had to be labeled "Not For Mail". I kept finding piles of junk mail in the garage. :unsure:

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I have a rather large amount of PVC conduit from inside the house to the front yard and all around the yard.  Everything is in conduit.  Makes it much easier if I make changes later on.  Keep in mind that I using LOR for year-round landscape lighting.

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I have two cat-5e jacks on a wall plate, with the cat-5e cable going up through the attic and out under the eaves, where some of my controllers are mounted.

 

Before and after the Christmas season, I stick the cat-5e cable back into the attic where it is dry.

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If you need lightning protection.  http://www.l-com.com/surge-protector-outdoor-10-100-base-t-cat5-lightning-surge-protector-shielded-rj45-jacks

 

Otherwise just mount an exterior grade box with an RJ in it

 

Excellent idea and thank you for that. Here where I live, there's lots of lightening which is always a concern. I've only been here 3.5 years and already this house has been struck once which took out all the phones and a multifunction printer.

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Here's a related question. Does anyone know if we "have to" daisy-chain the controllers or like in "viennaxmas's" picture above, can these be broken out at a junction box? If it was TCPIP then I know the answer but this is RS485 and "I think" we can run parallel paths from a single breakout box but will the controllers allow this? With RS485 there is usually a termination or terminator at some point.

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You will change the impedance running in parallel. This will lead to noise and weakened signal. Also you will start to get SWR or echos that will bounce all over the place. Part of the reason I said your signal will have noise and weaken the signal. Best thing I would say is to read the white papers on RS-485.

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