Advantages of IP-Over-Coax
IP-over-coax has been around for several years, but more dealers/integrators are now using it as awareness increases. It’s less expensive to transmit Ethernet signals across existing coaxial cable with Ethernet adapters than installing new structured cable. IP-over-coax can provide a cost edge when bidding on a competitive job and could mean the difference in winning the project or not.
Using existing coax infrastructure to transmit IP signals also saves the expense of having to remove unterminated wire from a jobsite, which may be required by building codes. The labor of removing existing coax is in addition to the cost of pulling new structured cable for Ethernet. These factors can substantially drive up the cost of an installation.
There are functional advantages, too: Coaxial cable can transmit Ethernet signals further than category cable without needing repeaters. The distance advantage can provide a reason to pull new RG-59u (coax) cable to a warehouse or light pole that is more than 328 feet away. IP-over-coax can transmit data at distances up to 1,500 feet (or five times farther) on RG-59u. It’s a much less expensive option than the alternative of fiber cabling and fiber transceiver modules for longer distances.
IP-over-coax also provides additional bandwidth using a single cable, which allows multiple cameras to use one coax cable. Supplementary cameras can be added to an installation without the need for more cables, which is another way to reduce costs.
In short, IP-over-coax can help dealers/integrators secure more jobs as a result of lower costs to the end user. They can also save money by using fewer installers on a project, perform installations faster to increase customer satisfaction, as well as perform more projects using their existing workforce.
The Path to Higher Profits
Education and training are critical elements for any dealer/integrator looking to take advantage of these new technologies to increase business, efficiency and profits. Training is often available directly from a manufacturer or through a local manufacturer’s rep firm or distributor.
Dealers/integrators that take advantage of training from multiple manufacturers can better understand how each supplier uses these new technologies in its product lines and provide knowledge that can help them choose the best options for their customers. Local reps can often visit an integrator’s business to train employees about a supplier’s product line.
These new technologies are more useful in some markets than others. For example, larger installations are more likely to leverage PoE technology, so being proficient in using the technology can help position dealers/integrators to bid on larger jobs.
In the case of IP-over-coax, the better economics of the technology can position a dealer/integrator to bid more competitively on more jobs, especially retrofit jobs that are replacing analog video systems with IP devices. In either case, both PoE and IP-over-coax solutions can effectively help dealers/integrators expand their businesses.
Ronnie Pennington is a National Accounts Manager for Altronix Corp.
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