Don Johnson's Website

My Personal 'Stuff'

I had my fibre connection routed to an upstairs spare bedroom (my ‘study’) where my main PC is located so that I can connect it (and my printer) using the ethernet sockets to get maximum speed on my PC - typically 194/284 Mbps.

I have three Amazon Echo units and four Smart Plugs that use wi-fi, and an LG smart TV and Sky box that need to access the ‘net for Netflix, etc., and to enable voice control of the Sky box.    Avril has an Ipad and I have a Surface Pro 3 that also need to connect to the ‘net.   All but one of these units are downstairs.

The wifi speeds will always be slower, and I could only get a weak Truespeed Ultra (5Ghz) signal downstairs, so tried using a dual-band Range Extender, but that did not make much improvement.   However, the Smart Plugs were 2.4 GHz units, so they and the Echos worked fine on the slower Truespeed ( 2.4 Ghz).

My problems came with the TV and the Sky box – they COULD be connected using the 2.4GHz  signal, but the links were rather unreliable and kept giving problems.   Also, having a 200 Mbs connection in the house, I was keen to get all that speed to the TV, which meant that I needed an adjacent ethernet connection to avoid using wifi.  I therefore decided to run an ethernet cable from my study to the corner of the lounge where the TV is located.  

I found that there was a TV co-ax connection right where it was needed, but when I got in the loft and tugged the co-ax cable upwards with a cat6 ethernet cable attached to the bottom, the attachment came unstuck just at the last moment, so that ideal cable route was lost, and the air was a little blue for a while.   I could squeeze into eaves of the loft to get at the cat6 cable fed through a hole in the ceiling of the study, but could not get sufficient access to make a hole to get the cable out of the loft through the soffits in the area directly above the corner of the lounge.   I found a hole in the roofing felt just where I was working, so decided to just feed the cat6 cable out under the tiles, and down the outside of the house.  This worked OK – although the cat6 exterior grade cable was a pain to use as it would tangle incredibly easily because it wanted to stay in its coiled-up shape.
 
I was puzzled by the hole in the felt, which perhaps had something to do with the fact that the tile just above was broken in two, so perhaps someone had tried to effect a repair at some time.   Anyway, I shall (have) had the broken tile replaced.

The cat6 cable makers recommended using ethernet face plates to terminate the cable, with flexible patch leads to associated devices, so that was the route I took – luckily I still had a Krone connector punch (that I used in my days as an IT Director) to fix the wires, though I did have to use the ‘net to refresh my memory about which coloured wire went where.  
   
As I wanted to use ethernet connections for both the TV and the Sky box, I could have run two cables (a pain), or used data splitter adapters at each end of one cable (you can get two Ethernet connections thru’ one 8-wire cable).   The alternative was to have a dual-band wireless router in the lounge, which would have several ethernet sockets, as well as delivering strong 2.4 and 5 GHz wi-fi signals downstairs, so this is what I chose.

With the new router in place, and ethernet links to the TV and Sky box, the ‘net connections to both now seem quite reliable, and hopefully can take full advantage of the high-speed signal from Truespeed.   The 2.4 GHz wifi from the new dual-band router is used for the Amazon Echos and the Smart Plugs, and also for Avril’s Ipad as she does use it both upstairs and downstairs - so the slower, but stronger, signal is best.   I can use the 5Ghz wifi in the lounge for my Surface Pro, but I only (?) get around 80 Mbps.   However, how can I feel sad about that when I have the full 200Mbps on my main PC, and TalkTalk gave me 1 Mbps at best, and Broadband South West around 10 Mbps!

I’m very pleased with Truespeed and my installation.

The items I used:
Cat6 cable -           External CAT6 Outdoor Use Ethernet Network Cable 50m - £21.70 Ebay
                                 (I actually used about 20m)

Modem - TP-Link Archer C50 AC1200 dual band wireless cable router - £31 Amazon

Faceplates (2) - RJ45 Network Cat5e Cat6 1 Gang Modular Face Plate Back Box Keystone Jack Lot -
                                   £2.95 each Ebay

Patresses (2) - Surface Mounted Back Box 24mm Wall Pattress Single 1 Gang Electrical Socket -
                                   £3.95 each Amazon

Punch - MyArmor Professional KD-1 IDC Insertion Punch Push Down Tool
                                  Telephone Socket Network RJ45  RJ11 Cat5e Cat6 Telecom Phone Network Cable
                                  Impact PunchDown Tool - £2.99 Amazon

Cable Clips - Tower Coaxial Cable Clips Black 7.0mm Pack of 100 - £1.59 Screwfix