====== Cable Splitters ======

Splitters are used to "split" the cable signal so that more than one device can be connected and receive signal. It is very important that ANY splitter used be rated at 5-1000Mhz only. 5-600Mhz and 5-900Mhz splitters are not adequate and should not be used. If a splitter does not give it's rating then don't use it. It does not really matter where the splitters are located as long as they are all in the same place (however many splitters are used). It is prefered that all the splitters be indoors and out of the eliments (but this is not manditory). Alot of apartment buildings will have the cable splitters located at the tap (or "lock box") outside. This does quite often create problems for proper configuration. For best quality, you want the fewest number of splitters possible to get the job done. Meaning, when your only going to have two tv's and nothing else...use a 2way splitter and NOT a 3way or 4way splitter. Quality splitters DO have a defined 'input' and 'output' so putting a splitter in backwards (or reverse) will only create problems. If you have more than one tv or you have a tv and a modem...you DO have splitters somewhere. Sometimes splitters do go bad (like anything else) and need to be replaced, but a quality splitter should last a fairly long time unless it's damaged physically or by voltage spikes. All connecters should be tightened to 35 inch pounds (more than just finger tight...good and snug), using a 7/16 wrench. Splitters should NEVER be cascading...meaning that you should not have a 2way at one end of the house feeding signal to a second 2way in the middle of the house and then feeding a third 2way at the other end of the house. ALL splitters need to be in the same place as to allow for a proper configuration that will give every cable outlet the correct amount of signal. This is also important if the home owner decides to change things or upgrade their services.

The most common splitters are:

The 2 way splitter:

Signal is reduced by 3.5db
on each output
The 3 way splitter:

Signal is reduced by 3.5db on one
output and 7db on the other two
The 4 way splitter:

Signal is reduced by 7db on all outputs

Splitters can be placed anywhere in or around the home. The most common places are in the attic, outside where the cable attaches to the house, or in a special low voltage distribution panel mounted in the wall (usually in a closet). A distribution panel might look something like this:

Sometimes, splitters are found inside the wall behind a cable wallplate (this is not a good place):

splitters like these should NEVER be used:

Splitter/Combiners like these are often used to insert signal from security cameras and tend to cause problems with the signal from the cable company. The lines for security cameras and for cable should ALWAYS be seperate. Satellite feeds should be on seperate lines aswell.

A splitter should NEVER be used in place of a barrel:

Any splitter or connection outdoors should use weather boots or rubber seals to protect against water intrusion/corrosion:

Terminaters like this are sometimes used on splitters or wallplates. If a terminater is used, then the wrong splitter is being used or the cable outlet should be deactivated (by changing splitters):