We use this solution for conference rooms, lunchrooms, hospital waiting rooms and nearly all-custom Home Theater projects. It’s the bang-for-buck theory. HDMI, IRE and Ethernet from one cable save time, costs and headache.

When you add up the cost of twin CAT5 x5 for typical baluns and Ethernet equivalent plus an IR Repeater you’re WAY higher than the cost of this single unit.

Review - Long-Runner HDBASE100MSW HDMI Extender

Michael Palm | TechGuys

November 2011

Review - Long-Runner HDBASE100MSW HDMI Extender

Author: Michael Palm, TechGuys

We use this solution for conference rooms, lunchrooms, hospital waiting rooms and nearly all-custom Home Theater projects. It’s the bang-for-buck theory. HDMI, IRE and Ethernet from one cable save time, costs and headache.

When you add up the cost of twin CAT5 x5 for typical baluns and Ethernet equivalent plus an IR Repeater you’re WAY higher than the cost of this single unit.  

 

List of Products Used:

KanexPro HDBase100MSW – HDMI Extender
CAT6 cables – (76-100 feet runs)
2 x 6’ HDMI cables
Blu-ray Player
60” Plasma
Baluns

Tell us about a project in which you used this product?

Two-Part answer. We first tested this in a customer’s home. It was a retro project with a 76’ run of twin CAT6 to a 60” Plasma. While testing Blu-ray, we noticed static on the screen as well as a flicker.

We tested both CAT6 lines, which were perfect and identical length.  We then checked all settings in the BDP, which were all correct. Further troubleshooting promoted a stable image when the BDP was set to 1080i.

There was our answer…the Baluns were rated to produce 1080P at 100’ on CAT5 but failed at 76’ on CAT6. We went to our backup, which has similar ratings, it failed as well.

Both worked fine at 1080i but the core responsibility of any Custom Integrator is to deliver the best quality possible at a reasonable cost. It was at this time that I remembered I had the KanexPro sample with me.

We set the BDP to 1080P, installed the KanexPro HDBASE100MSW on ONE of the CAT6 cables and BAM! Beautiful 1080P without flicker or image irregularity.  I realize this particular product is rated to work at a longer distance.

That said, when you’re on-site, it’s critical that the products you’re working with work without issue. Bottom line, the KanexPro product worked as specified. The other brands did not.

The second phase of testing took place on a test bench. See notes in “pros” section.

 

Which of the product’s specific features or specs were instrumental in your decision to use this product versus another solution and why?

The ability to offer 1080P with 3D support over great distances with IRE and Ethernet over a single CAT5e/6.

There are other brands that offer this but in many cases the control units are larger. This module has attachable mounting hardware and is less than an inch thick making it easy to hide.

 

For what types of applications do you recommend this product to other commercial integrators and why?

There are many reasons why running actual HDMI cables at distances greater than 30’ is not a good idea. This solution makes a much easier run and offers far more than HDMI alone.

We use this solution for conference rooms, lunchrooms, hospital waiting rooms and nearly all-custom Home Theater projects. It’s the bang-for-buck theory. HDMI, IRE and Ethernet from one cable save time, costs and headache.

When you add up the cost of twin CAT5 x5 for typical baluns and Ethernet equivalent plus an IR Repeater you’re WAY higher than the cost of this single unit.  

 

Explain how difficult or easy the installation of this product was and anything unique you think other installers would want to know before they install it.

Installation consists of running a CAT5e/6. Terminating the ends, mounting and plugging in the modules. I recommend using CAT6 over 100’ (but that’s just me).

Regarding Ethernet, on the Transmitting side, you only need to plug one cable in (any port). This sends Ethernet to all three ports on the Receiver side.

 

Can you name (and explain) the three biggest benefits – “pros” – for an installer using this product?

Repeats from above:

  • Easy Installation – Ability to offer 1080P with 3D support over great distances with IRE and Ethernet over a single CAT5e/6
  • Value – HDMI, IRE and Ethernet from one cable saves time, costs and headache.
  • Reliability – We left the set running on a bench for over a week. We even heated up the modules and tapped them with a rubber mallet. They NEVER failed.

 

Can you name (and explain) the three biggest negatives – “cons” – for an installer using this product?

  • The IR Emitters are too big and not aesthetically pleasing. – Though we understand the capture aspect of the design, the shape, color and size may not fit will in certain applications.
  • The cable length of the IR Emitters is WAY too short. – Due to the small size of LED-LCDs and custom nature of hiding equipment, these cables would have to be extended in nearly all cases.
  • It would be beneficial to have Ethernet at speeds faster than 100 Mbps.  
  • Power Cords could be a little longer as well.

 

Feel free to add anything else you feel commercial integrators should know about this product.

The product does everything it claims to do. It’s a difficult sell to customers sometimes but when you explain that it’s actually cheaper than the hardware equivalent they get it.

It’s also beneficial to some customers to be able to “take their equipment” if they move. This cannot be done with traditional hardwiring.

 


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