Do I need a power over ethernet splitter?

imgp2734It’s a simple question, so let’s try to provide a simple answer:

Many network devices such as network cameras, VOIP phones and wireless access points are POE ready. This simply means that they have the circuitry built within them to accept power supplied to them via the data cable. Therefore, they can be supplied with both power and data via a single network cable.

However, this does not mean that because a device is not ‘POE enabled’ it cannot be supplied via the advantageous single cable POE method!

If you use Power Over Ethernet, then (at the device end) use a POE splitter to separate the power from the data and present them to the device in the normal way e.g. RJ45 plug for the data and typically a barrel plug for the power, then the device is unaware of the fact that POE was used to reach it!

Some pitfalls to beware of:

  • Check that the POE Injector & Splitter you are using can supply the load that your device presents
  • It is best to err on the side of caution and use POE Injectors and Splitters from the same manufacturer
  • Check the voltage that your device needs; splitters are available for 3.3V, 5V, 9V, 12V, etc.
  • Check the power connector needed for your device; barrel connectors come in many different inner & outer diameters, and occasionally the opposite polarity …

More detail on many of these factors to follow in later articles, but we said we’d try to keep this one a simple answer to a simple question …

Your comments, feedback, queries and elaboration are always welcome …

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2 Responses to “Do I need a power over ethernet splitter?”

  1. NickS Says:

    Can one CAT5 cable with PoE be split to connect 2 separate PoE devices? Would a regular 1to2 RJ45 coupler work or do I need a special product because I am splitting a PoE cable? The reason I ask is that I need to install 2 PoE devices next to each other in a location that has one CAT5 cable going to it. It would be extremely difficult (if not impossible) to run a second CAT5 cable back to my PoE switch and I was hoping I could simply ‘share’ the one connection. I believe that the power and the bandwidth should be adequate to support both devices (a Mobotix Camera and ExtIO device – the ExtIO device can be connected directly to some of the cameras therefore using the same power / bandwidth as I am proposing – only the model I have does not accommodate this and requires its own CAT5 connection).

    I have scoured the net but every time I search using ‘splitter’ I find discussions / products of this nature (ie separating out the power and network connection) which is not what i am after! Any answers very gratefully received!


  2. admin Says:

    Hi Nick, You need a Veracity Outreach Quad Switch unit, this is a 4-port switch which is POE-fed and can then pass POE onto up to four cameras (or other POE-enabled devices). Not yet added to the webshop so I’ll drop you an email with further details …

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