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Ethernet Cables

Discussion in 'Sound, Music, and Intercom' started by Russell Reed, Oct 11, 2018.

  1. Russell Reed

    Russell Reed Member

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    Hi,
    I am trying to find a good bulk Ethernet cable to make cables to hook up digital snakes (X32 and S16) and Net3 DMX Nodes. I'm pretty set on Cat 6 Shielded Twisted Pair with stranded conductors (as these will be coiled and uncoiled a lot). I was wondering what outer jacket material would be recommended for these uses.

    With the cat 6 cable do I need to use the Neutrick CAT 6 connectors or can I just use the normal Cat 5E connectors.

    Also, does anyone know if any manufactures sell multi channel Ethernet "snakes"?

    Thanks,
    Russell
     
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  2. SteveB

    SteveB Well-Known Member

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  3. JohnD

    JohnD Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    If memory serves correctly, I believe the Neutrik connectors are required for the shielding to be effective with the X32 and M32 used with stage boxes. Perhaps member @TimMc will chime in.
     
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  4. josh88

    josh88 Remarkably Tired. Premium Member Fight Leukemia

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    I have no doubt it's recommended, but the production company I worked with would regularly send it out with whatever we had. If we ere out of ethercon, it would go with duracat or a just a reel of cat 5. I suspect its like mic cable for 3 pin dmx, it will work till it doesn't, but I never heard about any issues with using a lesser connector. I'd go Ethercon all day long if possible.
     
  5. MNicolai

    MNicolai Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    There was a product design flaw that required the ethercon connectors to mitigate static buildup issues between the console and the stage box that would interrupt the audio signals. Think they've since done a little reengineering on how they build the units but it's still highly recommended that you use the shielded ethercon connectors with STP cable to avoid these issues. Ordinarily shouldn't have been a problem, but Behringer...
     
  6. FMEng

    FMEng Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    The thing is a crash due to static electricity can easily damage speakers. Use shielded cable and you won't regret it. You have to use the Neutrik Cat 5 connector. The Neutrik Cat 6 connector does not fit an X32 because it is bigger in diameter. Ethercons are not optional because they are an integral part of the shield ground.

    I make my cables out of direct bury cable, which has a thick, black, outer jacket, and a second, inner jacket, plus a heavy foil shield and drain wire. It is pretty solid stuff and can take some abuse, but cheap enough to toss without regret.

    Any brand of Cat 5 cable should not be expected to last long because all it takes is one kink or heavy wheel rolling over it and it's toast.

    It isn't well marketed, but Behringer makes a rugged cable on a nice reel, and the price is good. I make my own because I need unusually long cables.
     
  7. Aaron Becker

    Aaron Becker Active Member

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    I wish someone had started this thread like 6 months ago. I'd been looking for some good rugged ethernet cables, and some general advice on this subject as I'm still largely in the analog world... though now that I think about it, I've seen plenty of rigs run without shielding on the connectors and it mostly goes off without a hitch, of course, until it doesn't.
     
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  8. MNicolai

    MNicolai Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    This issue is specific to these consoles and stage boxes. Ordinarily there is no reason to use shielded CATx cable for audio.
     
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  9. Aaron Becker

    Aaron Becker Active Member

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    I've used it primarily for future expansion planning purposes and preventative reasons more than anything on some longer runs where it was longer parallel runs with some speaker cable bundles. I don't know for a fact that it's helping, but I know it's not hurting, and I wasn't about to pull new cables a third time after replacing the old analog runs.
     
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  10. JohnD

    JohnD Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

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    For those playing along at home, and who don't follow the real-name-required legit audio forums, shortly after the s16 stage box was finally available the issue popped:) up. At that time Behringer had a number of designated boffins assigned to the various forums to assist the end-users with problems. At first one of their boffins said that UTP worked just fine, that is what they used. After much argy-bargy and reports from end-users that using STP solved the problem for them. Then a higher ranking Behringer boffin posted that of course you had to use STP, (it is audio after all) and in fact, Behringer never said that UTP was suitable (except when they did).
     
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  11. cekren

    cekren Member

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    IIRC Behringer now states that the official recommendation is STP/FTP Cat5e with the shield bonded to the shells of both EtherCON connectors. Best to verify continuity between each side to be absolutely safe.
     
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  12. Ben Stiegler

    Ben Stiegler Active Member

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    Curious ... does the 100 meter Ethernet length limit apply here, or is the protocol not true Ethernet?
     
  13. EdSavoie

    EdSavoie Well-Known Member

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    In this case, not true ethernet.
    X32 uses the AES50 standard, which operates on the physical layer (1) of the OSI model. This is below everything but the bit encoding used on the cables itself.
    (In english, it looks like ethernet, it talks like ethernet, but it isn't ethernet.)

    Dante on the other hand, is a protocol that operates on a standard network. Not that it's recommended to put it on a network with anything else...


    (EDIT: for the purposes of your question, yes, it's electrically the same as Ethernet, the length limit still applies.)
     
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  14. Marty ContraSound

    Marty ContraSound Member

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