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Splitting Camera Video?

Mark S.

Active Member
I currrently modulate my security cameras onto my cable TV. But I would also like to run those same cameras into an IP video server. My modulators have no loop through.

Can I simply use some kind of Y connector to split the camera output to feed both the modulator and the IP server? Any problems with that? Anybody doing it?

Mark
 

electron

Administrator
Staff member
I am using a Y connector to split the feed , one goes to my computer , and one goes to my TV, no problems at all.
 

smee

Senior Member
You can run into signal level problems and it may completely mess up your impedance values. Other than that, I'd try it. Like Electron, I've done it before with no visible problems.

If you do split it, you should keep the runs as short as possible. If you split and then run 50 feet of cable, you will probably notice it. For long runs or more splits, it's a good idea to use a distribution amplifier.
 

Shawn

Member
"I currrently modulate my security cameras onto my cable TV"

Mark, I wonder what you use to do this?

I would like to put my cam feeds onto my house cable which is currently fed by satellite (DishTV). Haven't really explored my options yet.

Thanks.
 

Chakara

Active Member
I can see a use for inserting channels on my existing house cable system. Are there modulators that are afordable to do this and where would ya find one? (needs to insert above the existing, but below the Internet access)

Thanks!
 

smee

Senior Member
Until I rewired my a/v distribution (still ongoing), I was distributing a composite video and stereo audio signal from a central location (in addition to using modulators). These were for runs of 50+ feet. I was using one of these:
CELabs AV700
This is a more expensive version of the device skibum recommends but it also splits the audio. It's overkill for your application, but I thought I'd toss it in.

I paid less than the prices in the links below (but still more than skibum's recommendation).
AV-700 at www.partsexpress.com
AV-700 at www.smarthome.com

The devices skibum linked to are primarily designed for use in cars - and are a lot cheaper than the ones designed for home use.

I'm moving away from using modulators and going with distributed composite video. All of my target displays have composite input and several don't have tuners so they won't work with modulators. There are quite a few threads here on CocoonTech and on HomeSeer's boards discussing using modulators.
 

electron

Administrator
Staff member
Skibum said:
Never EVER split a video lead. (Pay no attention to our fearless leader)

NEVER EVER!

Use a splitter.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewI...5765230342&rd=1
*shrug* I hope you aren't talking about me here, considering it works just fine in my case. I have a channel vision distribution block as well, and don't see a difference in the picture quality.

As for the channel modulators, it seems to be hard to do when using digital cable (and maybe satellite as well?), so keep that in mind when evaluating that option.
 

Skibum

Senior Member
Yes... It was you I was referring to...:blink:

Not to say that you are hard of seeing or anything.... lol.

I have tried it here, and the difference is dramatic! Perhaps with lower resolution cameras it is not as noticable?

Anyhow, I'm sure you must know by now that most of my comments are in jest. (cause thats the way that I am...)
 

Skibum

Senior Member
smee said:
The devices skibum linked to are primarily designed for use in cars - and are a lot cheaper than the ones designed for home use.
I was a bit wary at first, but these inexpensive devices have proven to be fine. I have 12 volts all over the place, so power was not an issue.
 

electron

Administrator
Staff member
Skibum said:
Yes... It was you I was referring to...:)

Not to say that you are hard of seeing or anything.... lol.

I have tried it here, and the difference is dramatic! Perhaps with lower resolution cameras it is not as noticable?

Anyhow, I'm sure you must know by now that most of my comments are in jest. (cause thats the way that I am...)
It's the VisionTech cam I have mentioned in other threads and the chat room before. I figured a 56" TV would show any potential issues with splitting this camera feed :blink: But this is only a temporary solution as I need to do another 'split' so my TV in the bedroom can see this feed as well, so will probably just use a dedicated rg6 distribution block for this.
 

smee

Senior Member
Skibum said:
smee said:
The devices skibum linked to are primarily designed for use in cars - and are a lot cheaper than the ones designed for home use.
I was a bit wary at first, but these inexpensive devices have proven to be fine. I have 12 volts all over the place, so power was not an issue.
Just meant as a comment, not an "attack." :blink:

I don't really understand why the car ones are so cheap. With a lot of this stuff, they price it for the market. While I can understand that they think that home users must be serious to need a 7-port distribution amp - and therefore are willing to pay for it , why do they think that the people putting 7 LCD displays in a car wouldn't? Not that I want to complain and make them raise the prices.

I've never looked inside either kind so I don't know what they are using to drive the signals. It's also possible that the home ones will do a better job driving long cables than the car ones - you're a lot more likely to do a 100 foot run in a house than in a car.
 

Skibum

Senior Member
electron said:
I figured a 56" TV would show any potential issues with splitting this camera feed :blink:
So would I! If I remember, you are not currently using RG-6 either are you?
I think that you were using cat 5 with no transformers if I remember... Possibly the high frequency was already gone, so you saw no difference.

I have tested here using 100 foot runs of:
Cheap combo cables
Cat 5
Cat 5 with Balum
Cheap RG-6
RG-6
Pre-Amp cable
High End Pre-Amp cable

And ther differences are quite obvious. The most amazing one, and one that I did not expect was the camera inthe other room from the computer... short run, maybe 25 feet. I was using audio cable, and while installing other cams decided to switch to RG-6. I was blown away by the difference in high frequency response. (video)
 

Skibum

Senior Member
smee said:
I don't really understand why the car ones are so cheap.
Nor did I... In fact I almost did not even consider it. But.. for $20 I figured it was worth a try!
 
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