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Thread: Cable to Wire Repeaters

  1. #1
    Authorized Lutron Contributor
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    Cable to Wire Repeaters

    We thought this information was useful for the forum when installing the Repeaters in a RadioRa2 system

    If you need to spread the Repeater signal over the wireless limit, you can wire the Repeaters in a daisy chain configuration.

    The cable to use for this application is the GRX-CBL-346S. Please be aware pin 2 should not be connected and will not power the repeaters; they will still need the plug in adapter.

  2. #2
    We had a similar situation in an existing home with a detached "pool house". There was no easy way to get the 4-wire between the structures, but there was and existing (working) Ethernet connection. Lutron Tech. suggested we could add another Main repeater and connect over wired Ethernet, though it would require inclusive programming. The cost was prohibitive for the purpose to our client so they opted not to. We never tested it, but this could work if you have inclusive rights and 2 main repeaters.

    Please do not confuse this to the original post. You cannot connect and main and aux. repeater over CAT5, you need to use the MUX link over the specified or comparable wire.

  3. #3
    Although I 've never tried it's possible to use the 4 unused conductors of the CAT 5 or 6 that is already run to the pool house. Ethernet only uses the orange and green pairs if you're not supplying POE so the blue and brown pairs are unused and may not cause any noticable interferance if done right. You could also probably find a serial server that would allow the link to be sent over ethernet. Another option would be to use a point to point wi-fi bridge using directional antennae for data at the pool house and then using the CAT 5/6 for your link.
    VAV
    Danbury, CT

  4. #4
    Authorized Lutron Contributor
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    It is not recommended to use Cat5 or cat6 wire when wiring the repeaters together.
    Using a Wi-Fi bridge should not be used as it will not allow the repeaters to properly communicate due to the timing that is needed for the repeater communication.

  5. #5
    Not recommended doesn't mean it won't work reliably over cat5/6. Lutron has always wanted larger conductors and shielding that's not used but that's really just an over engineered best practice wish list. Every Lutron training I ever attended has said cat5/6 can be used in a pinch if needed and distances aren't excessive. The link looks like typical RS485 pin out and that usually works fine over cat5/6 over great distances.

    The wi-fi link suggestion wasn't to carry the link but to free up the cat5/6 so it could be used as the link exclusively.

    I can see serial server having timing issues, has Lutron done any testing? The main reps com over TCP/IP to pass data between each other so it would seem possible for 485-IP serial server could work.
    VAV
    Danbury, CT

  6. #6
    We use cat5 all the time for aux repeaters, works great. Amx and crestron use this as a rs485 and it's flawless. The lutron wire is a over kill. However I like the robust- ness of it. The aux repeaters need a network jack. It ridiculous that it does not. I understand the distance will be limited to 328 feet. However it would jack into most homes that have multi port jacks. I am not saying get rid of the mux link, I am asking for both...
    I am not as dumb as you look..

  7. Thanks Craig W. thanked for this post
  8. #7
    Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scottydont View Post
    We use cat5 all the time for aux repeaters, works great. Amx and crestron use this as a rs485 and it's flawless. The lutron wire is a over kill. However I like the robust- ness of it. The aux repeaters need a network jack. It ridiculous that it does not. I understand the distance will be limited to 328 feet. However it would jack into most homes that have multi port jacks. I am not saying get rid of the mux link, I am asking for both...
    I'm thinking I'd like to use my home's currently installed Cat5 infrastructure as well. The tiny little wires in there do concern me a bit (and for this particular run, I don't actually need the cable for anything else), so does anyone think there would be a problem with basically using all 8 wires, pairing up the colors (blue/bluewhite, orange/orangewhite), etc. I'm thinking of just twisting them together, and tinning the tips and then straight into my patch panel, and doing the same at the other location.

  9. #8
    That depends on how the wiring is setup and currently used.
    Gigabit ethernet uses all 4 pairs.

    If you're intending to use TCP/IP over a spare cable already routed to a punch down block, use the existing pattern (e.g. TIA/EIA 568-B).
    Both the main and aux repeaters should be connected to a router/ switch. Daisy chaining will not work for ethernet.


  10. #9
    To elaborate further - ethernet based TCP/IP networking requires a star topology which is different from daisy chaining. TCP/IP (and ethernet networks) is very different from serial communications.

    Daisy chaining would likely work for serial communications, depending on the length of the cable, ... Using a dedicated cat 5 line for serial would work just fine with the necessary precautions.

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