Examining Mx2Wire

Published Sep 12, 2009 00:00 AM
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Mx2Wire [link no longer available] enables existing building wiring to support power (PoE) and network transmission of IP cameras (read the Mobotix sales deck [link no longer available] and the Mx2Wire manual [link no longer available] for details).

These units can eliminate the need for pulling new Cat5/6 network cable and powering cameras on a remote side of a building. These units are part of Mobotix's Home Automation line.

The performance and capabilities depend on a number of factors including the type of wiring used and the distance of the wiring. While the maximum bit rate is 30 Mb/s and maximum distance is 500m, actual performance can be much lower. For example, .6 mm telephone wire is only specified for a maximum of 200m, 10 Mb/s with no PoE. Specifiers should carefully review the documentation.

Mx2Wire is sold as a pair of units. Each unit has an RJ-45 interface for connecting to network devices (switches, IP cameras, etc.) and a 2 wire interface that connects the two units. The cable (telephone, coax, etc.) needs to be groomed to connect to this interface. Specifically, coax cable requires significant grooming that will require tools (see page 21 of the Mx2Wire manual [link no longer available]).

Additionally, the units only support up to 7 watts of power (as additional power is needed to power the remote unit). This will support a single Mobotix camera however, it will likely not support most third party cameras that use heaters/blowers nor PTZs.

Mobotix positions this product for use with their cameras and additionally for connecting PC, wireless routers, videoconferencing units.

The units cost $548 USD.

Contrast to Veracity who offers a range of devices with broader support and lower prices (see overview). While this product will certainly work well with Mobotix's products, it faces significant competition for broader use.