The use of Power over Ethernet, or PoE, equipment and systems has been growing rapidly in recent years and shows no sign of slowing. This growth is at least in part due to three powerful trends: the explosive growth in the use of IP data transmission for a wide range of devices across all industries and markets, the increasing simplicity and flexibility of IP cabling and networking, and the improved power efficiency of intelligent IP devices.
With the support of well-proven PoE standards, these trends allow for intelligent devices to be deployed more efficiently than ever before. In fact, PoE is a popular choice for system deployments and enhancements because the use of PoE delivers four primary benefits:
1. Installation cost savings
PoE endpoint devices such as video cameras and wireless access points can be quickly installed by running a single low-voltage cable, and may even be able to reuse nearby existing cabling. No 120V power connection is needed at or near the endpoint, and in most cases, no electrician is required.
2. Flexibility and simplicity
Without a need for hardwired power, the exact position of the endpoint device can be adjusted easily. A single standard modular connector is all that is needed to connect and power a new device!
3. Centralized power management
Managing power at the head end of the system gives administrators more visibility and more options in terms of monitoring system health and performance. It also supports select remote actions, such as troubleshooting and power cycling, saving time and reducing errors.
4. Fewer points of failure
Overall system reliability is improved because all the separate power supplies that were needed for each end point device are eliminated by the use of PoE.
With all these benefits, it makes good sense to consider PoE for any new electronic system deployment, whether that system is for video surveillance, environmental monitoring, access control, building automation, or any other IoT application.
Extending PoE transmission distances
One of the key system design considerations for PoE implementations is the maximum transmission distance, which per IEEE specifications, is 100 meters, or about 328 feet. If a device is located more than 328 feet away from the system head end, then you will need additional devices to extend the PoE. In this case, extenders or repeaters will be necessary to boost the data signal so that it can be accurately received up to another 328 feet away. For long distances, several extenders can be used to achieve the total required distance.
Using extenders brings some additional unwanted complexity to the system implementation. This is because every necessary extender adds another cost and installation item to the system, as well as another possible point of failure. Fortunately, DITEK has introduced a PoE switch into the market utilizing a unique feature called “Extend Mode”, which is currently available in the DITEK Networks DTK-SW8PL 8-Port Gigabit Ethernet PoE+ Switch.
In operation, this Extend Mode functionality is able to limit the data transmission speed to 10 Mbps, in exchange for extending the PoE transmission distance up to 250 meters (820 feet). With this functionality, systems that are able to take advantage of the longer transmission distance can see significant reductions in equipment cost, installation cost and complexity, and improved reliability over traditional PoE equipment.
For context, most IP video surveillance cameras do not require any more than 10 Mbps of bandwidth, but are frequently distributed over large distances such as educational or business campuses. Such a system would be an ideal candidate to take advantage of this new functionality, eliminating the need for at least some hardware extenders.
We are ready to help. DITEK Networks provides a range of networking solutions that are ideal for professional installations at educational, retail, government, and business facilities of all kinds.