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We frequently install Cat5E or Cat6 cabling along with coax in our remodels. Customers ask for specific cabling and locations. We always discuss wireless with those customers. Optical is coming, neighborhood by neighborhood, and I'm wondering whether we should be offering to install optical cable inside the home, even if well in advance of the provider getting to that neighborhood.

I'm asking the business, service, sales question, not the install/technical/trade question. Does it make sense to have optical inside a home at all?
 

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Personally, I don't think it would be worth it at this point in time. Most Fiber will be to the curb, or to the home (like a switch), but after that, most people and their equipment will still be copper.
 

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The Ultimate Wire Hider
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One thing that I'll add is that there are various standards, formats, and sizes when it comes to fiber. Unless you are terminating the cables, your efforts would be futile. Whatever you install today might be obsolete tomorrow simply because the original manufacturer might not be in existence by then or they might have changed to a different system making it impossible to get a termination kit and connectors.
 

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It's pointless except for a network backbone.

Copper has a single major advantage over fiber...it can carry current, this makes it infinitely more flexible in it's applications than fiber.

I don't think we will ever see fiber used for data at a standard consumer level...if we do it will be junk like toslink.
 

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I have done fibre to the desktop in 1 job, it was still an RJ45 patchcord out of the media convertor into the PC so I dont see unless you have security issues like the job I did why you would spend extra on running it several meters through your house and still end up putting copper on the end of it in most instances.
 

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The Ultimate Wire Hider
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Optical has its purpose for a backbone (as inner stated) if you are running a connection all the way out to your detached garage on rural land where the house is 400 feet away.

But if you are thinking of optical cable because you want to future-proof the house, the best thing to do is run smurf tube. Run 1 or 2 3/4" pipes on the opposite sides of each room and hook it up to a single gang box. Run all of your upper rooms into the attic and run the main/lower level pipes into an unfinished area of the basement. Then run a couple of 2" pipes from the unfinished part of the basement to the attic and to the garage.
 

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Our phone and internet provider is in the process of running fiber to our homes. Mine is to the house, but it's not hooked up yet. After that's done, I have a box of cat 6 and I'll see then about running that through the house. It'll sure beat the hell outta the the 2 tin cans and string we have now:laughing:
 

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Optical has its purpose for a backbone (as inner stated) if you are running a connection all the way out to your detached garage on rural land where the house is 400 feet away.

But if you are thinking of optical cable because you want to future-proof the house, the best thing to do is run smurf tube. Run 1 or 2 3/4" pipes on the opposite sides of each room and hook it up to a single gang box. Run all of your upper rooms into the attic and run the main/lower level pipes into an unfinished area of the basement. Then run a couple of 2" pipes from the unfinished part of the basement to the attic and to the garage.
Nothing I love more then working on a home that already has the home run from the basement to the attic piped by the builder.
 

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The thing about pre-wiring anything is that nothing is future proof. Standards change all the time, and even if you put in fiber today, it might not be the right type for future use. For example, a lot of building around here have 62.5 MM fiber runs between MDF and closets, and while you can run 10gig over 62.5, the optics are more expensive, won't go the same distance, and seem to be less available than optics that run over 50 micron Single mode.

Who knows what 40G and 100G, and in the future 400G will use. If fiber is installed and you have the right type of encoders/mux at each end, odds are you can put just about any type of service across it from a bandwidth perspective, but the termination equipment will be very expensive. I have already pulled out early generation HDMI cables and replaced them with 1.4 cables.
 

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The thing about pre-wiring anything is that nothing is future proof. Standards change all the time, and even if you put in fiber today, it might not be the right type for future use. For example, a lot of building around here have 62.5 MM fiber runs between MDF and closets, and while you can run 10gig over 62.5, the optics are more expensive, won't go the same distance, and seem to be less available than optics that run over 50 micron Single mode.

Who knows what 40G and 100G, and in the future 400G will use. If fiber is installed and you have the right type of encoders/mux at each end, odds are you can put just about any type of service across it from a bandwidth perspective, but the termination equipment will be very expensive. I have already pulled out early generation HDMI cables and replaced them with 1.4 cables.
Conduit.
 

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Optical in my opinion is complete overkill for any home for anytime in the next 20+ years. While there is all of the buzz about "fiber to the home" for faster speeds, etc, at the end of the day, I believe that the FTTH rollouts are occurring because it is actually cheaper for the network operators than Coax. The ability of fiber optics to throw a signal 10+ miles means, that a network operator than have significantly less nodes to cover a region. Coax would need a node within a 1 or 2 for any type of reliable, fast service. Optical can basically allow a single node to cover a theoretical 100 square miles (theoretical as it is based off of "ideal" fiber paths without inefficient twists and turns) whereas copper/coax would basically cover around 10 square miles from a single node.

Cat6 supports 10Gigabit Ethernet up to most distances that would be run in the majority of homes. I can't imagine the need for that type of speed inside of any home, but if it were present, that would be enough bandwidth to 2 stream 2 completely UNCOMPRESSED HD videos simultaneously (which I also believe would be overkill as I doubt any consumer will stream anything completely uncompressed to the home anytime in the next 50 years.
 

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The Ultimate Wire Hider
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It is overkill.

'Fiber to the Home' was a concept that the phone company was going to roll out over 30 years ago until the government stepped in and broke up the monopoly. Not long before that point in time, Ma Bell owned every single telephone in America and they were about to be the only cable TV company.

Of course that gave a lot of people the scary "big brother" scenario and they had to put their plans on hold until other competitors could get into the market. So having said all of that, anyone with a house that's 30 years old isn't really that far behind the technology curve.

5e will do well for the next 30 years.
 
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