Old phone connections w/ DSL coming

Old 10-17-03, 05:58 PM
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Question Old phone connections w/ DSL coming

I recently bought an older home and am in the process of having DSL installed. I had the phone company come in and install a new line from the street to my home and they put in a new box outside the house. The problem is that the wiring inside the house is quite old and I don't want to run into poor signals through the house with the DSL. The point where the outside line comes in the house and all the indoor extensions meet looks ancient and I want to make sure the connections are as solid as possible.

If you look at this picture I took maybe you can recommend what I should do with the wiring in the house. At the very least I would like to upgrade and replace the meeting point of all these wires with some kind of more modern box unit. If you could please take a look and let me know what you think I should do (and buy) I would greatly appreciate it.

Last edited by SafeWatch; 10-17-03 at 10:40 PM.
Old 10-17-03, 06:28 PM
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Ah, Flashbacks of my childhood in my parents basement!!!( Nice Pic )
To ansewer your question, the best possible way to get the most bang for your buck, is to run Cat5 or above to the locations of the computer,( but existing phone line T22/4 will work, It depend's how close you are to the local Bell operating companies switch as to how fast you will operate) there are several nice structured wireing systems avaible out there on the market, ( On-Q, Leviton,DSC,GE-Interlogix,Open House, Home Director ) the list goes on and they all are unique in their own way but accomplish the same outcome.
You have the ability to "network" your entire home on a Lan , utilizing the incoming DSL modem the going through a DSL/Cable modem switch, What I am trying to say is there are complex ways and basic ways to accomplish what your needs are, I would be more then willing to assist you in designing the most appropriate and cost effective system to suite your needs, In addition there are several other members of this site that can also add their valuable input.

Best of luck, If I can help , let me know!
Old 10-17-03, 08:41 PM
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Thanks for your reply.
Actually, I am fine on the networking side. I already know how the computers will be connected together. I am going with the 802.11g route since I can take advantage of the fact that we have 2 laptops and one desktop machine.

But I am concerned with the actual wiring of my house. The wiring is old and I am not sure how well the connections are made thoughout the house. I assume that since they came in and rewired the main line into the house that what I have left to worry about is the extensions and how they are tied to the main line.
The desktop machine will be the one that has the modem and wireless basestation/router attached to it and that is on the top floor of the house. Therefore I am trying to ensure that the lines leading up from the basement are as structurally sound as possible. I am not sure if I will be able to run Cat5 all the way upstairs but I welcome advice on that. (will shielded cable even make a difference for the DSL frequency coming in through those lines?)

I really need help with is that "box-junction thing" I have pictured on the first photo. I am not even sure what that thing is as I have never seen a connection made in that manner. I am certain I need to replace that and update it with something that is easier to work with and troubleshoot.
Old 10-17-03, 09:54 PM
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You can take a look at this:


for reference.

I would make sure the run from the old block you have to the connection for the DSL modem at the base computer for your 802.11g access point is a straight run. Many telephone wiring arrangements in the past were strung from one outlet to another in what is called "daisy chain."

This can cause deterioration in the signal. Not much of a problem for telephone, but might be for DSL. Although you don't have to use Cat5 cable for telephones, you may find it more available now than the old 4 wire telephone cable. If you daisy chain off of the back of the terminal where the DSL is connected to the other telephones, it won't be a problem for the telephones on the rest of the chain.

Without knowing what splices or taps may exist in the current wiring, replacing the run to the point where the DSL will be would be a good move.

If you need anything else, just post back.

Hope this helps.
Old 10-17-03, 10:34 PM
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Your inside "junction" is actually an old Demarc, of sorts. It's not really a Demarc, as there is no way to test each side of the line, but it's what the phone company used to use back before Demarcs.

Now, it is just a junction - really that's all they are anyway, except that they have a grounding screw in the middle, which most junctions do not have.

If you just want to update and replace it with something more modern, take a trip to the local hardware store and get a good phone junction box. There are several types to choose from - anything is better than what you have.

Now, as for the DSL issue - I would highly recommend at least trying to run a separate Cat5 cable to the DSL jack. That will give you the best speeds and performance from your modem.

Good luck!
Old 10-23-03, 09:43 PM
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I have to agree with Brandon.

There is nothing really wrong with what you have in the picture. Just run a dedicated new line from the terminals to a standard phone jack near your DSL router. CAT5 is nice, but not necessary. It's not CAT5 running from your house to the neighborhood junction box.

However, if you have to run a new cable then at least a CAT5e for when the world migrates to VOIP or when the phone company starts offering video to your house over their new cable infrastructure they have been replacing all over the country lately in anticipation for this.


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