Long-distance camera limitation questions

K119J58

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I would like to install a camera at the end of my driveway which is approximately 1200' long. I've read that I can use direct-bury Cat5e and POE outdoor extenders in a serial fashion every 100m to do this however I don't know if there's a limitation on the number of extenders that I can use OR if this config will even work. Looking for suggestions on how to solve this one...
Thx!
 

K119J58

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You'd need power at the far end, but a dedicated, encrypted, RF link like the Ubuity Nano Loco M5 would work with no problem.

Power is the problem at the end of the driveway. That's why I'm looking at a POE solution. Let me know if I missed something, though in your suggestion.
Thx
 
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No, you would need power. Getting PoE that far may be a problem, but I think Dahua ePoE might help solve it as well. I think that will go 800 feet. If you were to use daisy chained switches, where would the power for those come from?
 

K119J58

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No, you would need power. Getting PoE that far may be a problem, but I think Dahua ePoE might help solve it as well. I think that will go 800 feet. If you were to use daisy chained switches, where would the power for those come from?
The power would come from the NVR and I would daisy chain 2 - 3 outdoor POE extenders such these: Amazon.com : poe extender outdoor

Would this work?
Thx,
 
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It might. The spec for the first one says up to three can be daisy chained for a total of 400M so it's definitely in the ball park. A PoE camera uses about 7 watts, generally, with the IR on. I wouldn't bury them, though. Maybe use 4" PVC conduit standpipes, say two or three feet with a cap (maybe cap the buried end as well and waterproof the cable entiries) to keep them above ground and even then use coax seal and some good quality electrical tape, 3M 88, on top of that to make sure the connections remain water tight. Using dielectric grease on the connectors is a given, as well.
 

K119J58

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That's how I read the spec as well. I appreciate your added suggestions and tips! Thx!
 

samplenhold

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You would be at the very max for the extenders. I have seen threads where people have had success using two, but have not seen anyone using three.

If you are running cat5e out to there, why not run a 100vac line? If you could have power there, you could use fiber in a conduit rather than cat5e, which would negate any issue with lightning getting into the Ethernet and burning up your equipment.
 

K119J58

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Thx samplenhold (great name BTW - I'm a EE). I may be forced to do just that - run an AC line. I may also reduce the length of the run to approx 300 ft. We live in the country and my goal is to capture the license plates #s of vehicles that come down my driveway. I recently had a car zoom up/ down the driveway and then spun a doughnut in the grass at the end of the driveway.

Thx for you advice.
 
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General rule of thumb is that if you need to run a cable for ethernet to reach a long distance with no remote power you may as well run AC as well and get some electrical isolation. Much safer for your network and potentially far less expensive in the long run.

Have a look in the LPR thread if you haven't already - LPR
 

samplenhold

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Here is a thread you might be interested in.

 

K119J58

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Thanks - read through it and it's very interesting. In fact, this may have pushed me over the edge wrt running an AC line vs a POE solution. In the thread biggen stated..."I for one don't want to go to the trouble of building out a network and running cable past 100m on the off chance it might work. I only want to go through all that trouble knowing it will work." This is probably the best case for running the AC, not to mention the lightning issues I would undoubtedly encounter. Our house has been hit by lightning twice in the last 15 years (had protection system installed as a result) so I KNOW that it would only be a matter of time...

Thx again
 

Kevin_Essiambre

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You would be at the very max for the extenders. I have seen threads where people have had success using two, but have not seen anyone using three.

If you are running cat5e out to there, why not run a 100vac line? If you could have power there, you could use fiber in a conduit rather than cat5e, which would negate any issue with lightning getting into the Ethernet and burning up your equipment.
This is the solution I would recommend, however, voltage drop on a 1200' run is the biggest issue. To keep voltage drop under 5% on a 15 amp circuit at that length (15 amp so he can use that power for other stuff too), he'd have to install #1 copper or 3/0 aluminum. The cost of that cable, it would be cheaper to go solar with a battery system, even with the cost of replacement batteries. I'd still run fiber to avoid unnecessary components along the way.

If he just wants to run the camera and nothing else at that end, I'd run 240 volts (240 will give you less voltage drop, and if it's ONLY powering the camera gear, voltage drop will be minimal, 5% voltage drop with a 4 amp load at 240 volts means he only needs #10 copper or #8 aluminum) out there along with fiber, and get a switch mode power supply that works on 100-250 volts to power the fiber to PoE adapter/injector.

Just my 2 cents. I always, always avoid unnecessary components in a Long run, but that's just to keep maintenance down (less failed parts/connections)
 
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The reality is that the load would probably be under 20 or 30 watts total for either a network switch, the camera and a fiber converter or RF link. I don't think voltage drop, at that low a load, would be much of a factor. Four amps is a 440 watt load at a nominal 110 volts.
 

Kevin_Essiambre

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The reality is that the load would probably be under 20 or 30 watts total for either a network switch, the camera and a fiber converter or RF link. I don't think voltage drop, at that low a load, would be much of a factor. Four amps is a 440 watt load at a nominal 110 volts.
This is 100% true, 4 amps @ 240 volt is well over what may ever be used out there, but I like allowing for future additions of some sort.

There's no sense in running 120 volts out there to only support a 50 watt load. If he ever tries to run anything else at that end and voltage drop isn't accounted for, it can damage some equipment (maybe not the fiber converter, but possibly what they're trying to use).
 

K119J58

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Thx for the discussion. I've decided to dramatically reduce the wire run from 1200' to 250' - 300'. I neglected the voltage drops and potential issues caused by lightning which were brought to light by several people on this thread (thanks). At 250', the voltage drop on a 120vac 12/2 line is more than 2.5%, assuming the camera's the only device on the circuit. I estimated that it would draw no more that 4A...is this correct?

Kevin_Essiambre I hadn't given any thought to using the circuit for anything else however, the wife's previously suggested Xmas lights down the driveway. :facepalm:

So assuming I power the camera w/120vac, I've seen suggestions for running fiber for video/ data connection. I've not tackled anything like that before. Can I buy premade (250' - 300') fiber w/the ends? If so, I'll assume that I have to put it in conduit? What cameras take a fiber input? Any suggestions?
 
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If you add an LED post light, or two, you're only adding another 10 or 20 watts. Maybe you can't power a leaf blower or circular saw, but for modern stuff today, lighting and electronics, the power needed is quite low. That said, I'd go with 10 gauge to help minimize the drop.

Fiber can be bought pre-terminated and rated for direct burial. I'd use conduit with direct burial to give it protection from any leaks and any shovels that might find it. If you go the fiber route, make sure you order the right connectors to match the fiber converters/transceivers.
 

Kevin_Essiambre

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Thx for the discussion. I've decided to dramatically reduce the wire run from 1200' to 250' - 300'. I neglected the voltage drops and potential issues caused by lightning which were brought to light by several people on this thread (thanks). At 250', the voltage drop on a 120vac 12/2 line is more than 2.5%, assuming the camera's the only device on the circuit. I estimated that it would draw no more that 4A...is this correct?

Kevin_Essiambre I hadn't given any thought to using the circuit for anything else however, the wife's previously suggested Xmas lights down the driveway. :facepalm:

So assuming I power the camera w/120vac, I've seen suggestions for running fiber for video/ data connection. I've not tackled anything like that before. Can I buy premade (250' - 300') fiber w/the ends? If so, I'll assume that I have to put it in conduit? What cameras take a fiber input? Any suggestions?
The camera should only draw several watts. A media converter (such as fiber to copper) will also only draw several watts. It should only be 2-3 amps max for the camera and converter.

As for running power 300', I'd definitely size if for a 15 amp load (you may never actually load it to 15 amps, but its possible... especially with such a long road in, think of all the Christmas lights you can put up!).

15 amps at 120 volts for a 300 foot run is only 3.78% voltage drop with 12/2 copper.... which isn't too bad. IIRC the NEC doesn't actually have voltage drop requirements so 3.78% will be fine (I'm in Canada and have strict rules on voltage drop). If it were job, I'd use 10 gauge copper.

Fs.com sells premade and custom made fiber cables. With or without pulling head on them. Heck, because it's fiber, as long as it's the non-conductive type (no metal in/on jacket) you could pull it in the same conduit as the power, but I'd recommend a second conduit just for the fiber to prevent damage to it.

Rather that trying to source a camera with a fiber port, I'd get either a fiber to copper converter, or a small network switch with an SFP port and get a matching fiber transceiver. I'd go for a network switch if you want more than 1 camera there. At the house end, either a fiber transceiver if you have an existing network infrastructure that has an SFP port, or just use a fiber to copper converter and use a copper patch cord.

FS.com is where I purchase most of my fiber gear, they have very reasonable prices. One of these days I'll have a core alignment fusion splicer so I can avoid bringing in a 3rd party to terminate cables for me.
 
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