Signal distribution / Control

TECHNOLOGY SHOWCASE: Cable and Power Infrastructure

9/24/2017 7:42 PM Eastern
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Sound and video content, playback, recording, and display have all enjoyed remarkable advances in technology and ease of use, but their signals still must get from point of origin to destination device. Fortunately, that technology has advanced right along with that of the devices themselves. One thing that remains a constant is that they all need power. And getting the right power to the right place can be as much of a challenge as ever unless the right power distribution scheme is available. Here, we have a look at the latest ways to get power, sound, video, and communication where they need to go without picking up uninvited signal hitchhikers along the way.

The most challenging side of the cable trail is normally the user end and Altinex has some innovative answers. Among these is the CNK600 Cable Nook, where each line is retracted and held, showing its format to the user as soon as the flush-mounted lid is opened. Once any cable has been extended, it can be used with the lid closed. Customization options include the SP2116SC mounting plate with its dual 12A AC connectors and USB ports, or the SP2117SC with dual international AC connections. Each unit features 12 ports for snap-in cables in any combination suitable to the user. The black aluminum unit is installed from the top of the table with the hex-L-key that is included. It is designed for tables from 0.5in. to 3.5in. thickness and extends about 7in. below the table.

The TSD-SEQ6 Sequencer Controller from AtlasIED is designed to smooth power-up and avoid speaker thumps. The unit has six sequenced outputs, and it has two separate output sequence time-delay trimmers ranging from 1 second to 10 minutes (Sequence 1). Sequences 2 through 6 can be adjusted for a delay time from one second to one minute. The power requirement is 100mA, so any of the TSD power supplies, sold separately, can be used to run it. Each of the outputs can be configured individually as either a 24VDC output or hard switch contact closure. The ESD-SEQ6 can be operated on the front panel or remotely by a hard switch contact closure, momentary contact switch, or a DC voltage. There is an emergency power down port and a voltage output for remote LED status display.

The 4K UHD Media Cable from Belden is specifically designed for optimal performance in HDBaseT transmission. These shielded cables deliver 4K content up to 100 m in a unique, small, sleek design. When paired with REVConnect Connectivity System, it significantly reduces installation time. This performance is backed by a first-of-its-kind Belden HDBaseT System warranty which provides component and labor coverage for 25 years when the cabling system is installed by a PartnerAlliance AV Installer.

For USB 3.1 Type-C cables, Black Box Network Services offers the USB3C10G-1M, which is 1 meter long with a tinplate nickel plated USB-C male at each end. They also have a USB Type-C plug to USB 2.0 MicroB plug cable in 1- and 2-meter lengths, USB Type-C plug to USB 3.1 Standard-A plug cable, USB Type-C plug to USB 3.1 StandardA receptacle pig-tail, USB Type-C to USB 2.0 Mini B, USB Type-C to USB 3.1 Gen MicroB, USB Type-C plug to USB 2.0 Standard-B Plug cable in 1 and 2 meters, along with a USB Type-C to USB 3.1 GEN1 Standard-B cable.

The range of fiber optic cable from Cleerline Technology Group is extensive and it is made with a smaller glass-cladding layer for easier cable runs and it is designed for quick termination. They offer Simplex cable in Riser, Plenum, and LSZH jackets as well as Duplex composed of two strands of OS2 in a zipcord style with the same jacket options. Also in the Cleerline SSF lineup are Micro Distribution cable, Breakout cable with a combination of individually jacketed fibers, Aluminum Interlocking Armored cable for extra protection, Armored Direct Burial cable, Tactical Cable for especially harsh environments as well as the Bundled Fiber Cable including fiber and category lines.

Crestron has a power controller, conditioner, and surge protector all in a single rack space with the PC-300. When turned on from the front panel, the eight switched outputs are delay programmable and they can be individually operated through an external Crestron control system or through a web browser. With Crestron control, the unit can be operated with a touchscreen, keypad, remote, or with a mobile device. The power situation can be monitored with an extensive web interface but the front panel on the unit may be used also. For safety, there is an auto-shutoff of the rear panel outlets if the voltage on them rises above an adjustable threshold. Both long-term equipment degradation and sudden failures can be avoided through the PC-300’s ability to sense ambient temperature inside a rack or cabinet. Equipment that has failed or dropped off the network is detected with regular ping monitoring and auto reboot. The unit not only monitors events but logs them and it can be set up to send email notifications.

DVIGear has added a new power distribution unit to its lineup. Both the new +5 VDC model (DVI-7525-PDU) and the existing +12 VDC model (DVI-7520-PDU) are engineered from the ground up for 24/7 mission critical applications. These units offer an unprecedented level of reliability with an MTBF of greater than 220,000 hours. The units each have an overall power reserve of 200W, as well as 8x outputs. Each output is rated for 25W. These features allow system designers and facility managers to optimize power management through more efficient use of rack space, which makes these units ideal solutions for a wide range of professional applications. Both the DVI-7520- PDU and DVI-7525-PDU are shipping now.

The FSR Huddle BLOX simplifies charging and power by providing an attractive alternative to dangling cables and crowded AC wall outlets. With a surface on which to place laptops and mobile devices, the Huddle BLOX offers AC power on the side panel along with USB and QI charging for any QI charging compatible phone. The unit is a 22in. cube that is available in several different finishes to blend with any room or space that needs to offer a charging station and quick, easy connectivity.

The CN-2400S SmartSequencing Power Conditioner from Furman Sound protects equipment investment by powering up devices in the correct order and it is capable of very simple operation by staff without special training. Using the Furman SmartSequencing technology, it can communicate with other units bidirectionally up to 1,000ft. away to spread control capability as needs expand. To integrate seamlessly with a control system, it includes RS232 ports. The serial control can be converted to LAN control through a serial to Ethernet adapter sold separately. The full IP addressability enhances control options to include Telnet links, smartphone, tablet, PC, or through Panamax/Furman’s BlueBOLT power management system. Diagnostic lights on the front panel allow the user to directly monitor power conditions and its power filtering reduces line noise. The unit offers nine rear outlets and an extra one on the front.

Hall Research provides a solution for extending HDMI past its normal limited reach with its 4K Javelin Active Plenum HDMI extension cables. These are a fiber/copper hybrid that take HDMI to 330ft. or more. Supporting DDC, EDID, and CEC, the cables feature active conversion inside the HDMI connectors and this operates on only 0.25W of HDMI bus power, eliminating the need for any external power supply. The detachable connectors allow the cable to be fished through small openings and for long runs. If the connector has been damaged through heavy use it can be replaced without the need to run a new cable.

For durable connectivity, the Hosa Technology Pro-Connex Stage Box Snake has 8, 12, and 16 line versions with XLR sends and four 1/4in. TRS returns using 24AWG conductors. These are foil-wrapped with heat shrink on the cable ends for additional security. The boxes are heavy-gauge, rolled-steel with black enamel textured finish. The PDX Power Distribution Cord can take power from points A to B and provide taps along the way using NEMA 5-15R and 5-15P connectors at the ends. The power taps along the cable are illuminated.

The reliable RX Series of power products from Juice Goose is highlighted by the CQ 1520-RX that serves with power filtration, sequencing, and surge protection. The seven outlets on the back have a total capacity of 20A. Output one is unswitched, while the others are grouped in sequenced pairs. Each unit can serve as the master or slave in a power control and sequencing system using its RJ-45 port. The front panel can be used for sequence monitoring.

Kramer Electronics designed the TBUS−1Axl to be recessed into a conference table and house a customized group of six different “TIAF” inner frame options. These can include as many as four power sockets, six cable passthrough or connector inserts, one long insert, and up to three Kramer Tools. Offering a variety of power connectors, the enclosure has a lid that flips to open and close. Options include TBUS Brackets, K-Able Box Cable Reels, Step-In Modules, and Controllers.

The InteGreat All Power Table Box provides the power end of things on the conference or meeting table with an outlet mounting plane that can be adjusted up or down in 1/2in. increments. LeGrand-Wiremold equipped it with four top surface AC outlets, two more on the underside and a template is provided for installation. When raised, the lid slides back into the table so that outlets can be reached from any direction. The brushed, anodized cover is available in black or aluminum finish.

Lowell Manufacturing has put an eight-step sequencer with full or alternate sequencing modes into a single rack space with the SEQR-8K. Securely operated with a front panel key switch, the unit has LED indicators on the front and eight barrier strip control outputs on the back. Using DIP switches, sequencing can be customized through selectable outputs and operation can be overridden through an alarm interface.

The RLNK-SW415R-SP from Middle Atlantic allows remote power control and monitoring in a half rackmount power control, sequencer, and surge protector with four individually controllable AC outlets. Providing over/under voltage auto shutdown and recovery, the unit also monitors all vital power variables along with temperature and notifies users of events outside the preset limits. It allows export of log files in CSV format, and these log files can be extracted to third-party databases via IP or RS-232. There is also an integrated web server for browser-based access and control.

Inducted into the TEC Hall of Fame at NAMM, Neutrik’s dependable favorite connector for heavy-duty speaker cabling is celebrating its 30th anniversary. The speakON line includes the NL2FX [2 pole-SPX Series], NL4FX [4 pole-SPX Series], NL4FRX [4 pole right-angle-SPX Series], and NLT8FX [8 pole-STX Series]. The SPX line features a tough plastic housing and the traditional Neutrik chuck-type cable, while the STX models feature an all metal housing. They have all been made to operate in a high-current, inductive-load environment.

Among the latest products from Opticis are the HDFC-200 fixed-end and HDFC-200D detachable-end HDMI Active Optical Cable in addition to the DPFC-200D DisplayPort 1.2 Detachable Active Optical Cable. These new active optical cables can transmit a 4K 60Hz signal (full color range of 4:4:4) up to 100m (328ft.) over plenum grade and LSZH (Low Smoke Zero Halogen) hybrid cable. The HDFC-200 and HDFC-200D have high-retention connectors with an easy-locking feature. The detachable models offer easy cable runs through tight places.

The Panamax VT4315-PRO BlueBOLT enabled vertical rack power conditioner has a practical design with widely spaced outlets and flexible mounting options for professional mission critical applications. It provides 12 protected and filtered outlets in eight controllable banks, and it will all fit into most racks at least 12RU in height. There is web-based remote monitoring and control along with local panel lights indicating voltage, power, protection status, and BlueBOLT connection. Preset alerts and commands can be scheduled as well.

RapcoHorizon has a range of audio snakes from which to choose in the S Series and the S24x8 typifies the robust construction with its protective raised edges on the steel box and metal mesh grips. Each 24 gauge conductor is hand soldered and each cable pair is individually jacketed and shielded. The S Series snakes are available in a wide assortment of configurations and in lengths from 50 to 200ft. There is a metal mesh cable bale on the fan end and channel number ID markers behind each connector.

SnapAV has equipped the WattBox IP UPS Kit (KIT-UPS-IP12-1500) with a separate UPS that can be placed in a more appropriate location for large, heavy gear while allow - ing the IP power conditioner and its outlets and panel indicators to be more conveniently mounted. They are connected with a single cable and for existing WattBox installations, the UPS can be added. The conditioner has 12 independently controlled outlets. The UPS can be accessed by PC through its USB port.

The UPS-1000-OL is a battery backup system that was designed by SurgeX to provide power to critical systems such as telephone networks, servers, and point-of-sale equipment. It can be set up as a tower enclosure or in a rack with hot-swappable, user replace - able battery trays. These can allow scalable runtimes up to 18 hours. Equipped with USB and RS232 ports, the system can control its individual outlets and it is monitored through UPS software. Load and battery information are available on the front panel LDC.

The PDU 4/4 - Remote Power Distribution Unit from Thinklogical can manage power to as many as eight separate pieces of equipment while providing sequencing and out-of-band access for control and management. Each of its outlets offers individually programmable reboot time delay and its expandable configuation provides installation options. There are user-definable port names and port groups and redundant DC power supplies. The front panel has a menu driven LCD for flexible local operation.

Tripp Lite offers a wide range of products including fiber patch panels. One example is the N48K-15M8L60-B 50/125 Breakout Fiber Patch Panel composed of five breakout cassettes in a single RU space. Each one of these includes 12 LC duplex ports and three built-in two-meter MTP multimode cables. Featuring Base8 wiring with built-in MTP trunks, the N48K-15M8L60-B enables longer duplex link distances. The unit’s color-coded magenta OM4 cables are easy to see and the front panel folds down to protect the LC patch cords.

Whirlwind offers the PLR series Distros completely assembled in a customized configuration and ready to bolt into a fixed or rolling rack for either permanent or road use. The unit can contain any combination of input panels, main breaker, combo, output, and metering panels. The rack ears on the back of each unit are removable. With this concept the product can be made to suit any individual power environment or set of requirements.

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