Looking for PoE switch - 4IP cameras now up to 8 later

MiniKnight

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Mar 30, 2012
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All,

Since we do not yet have a dedicated forum, I'm making my home automation thread about networking. Here's what I'm looking for a recommendation on:

An unmanaged PoE switch that can run 4x cameras that all will have infrared on them. I can see up to 8 cameras being used one day so if it can do that, even better.

One question I'm interested in is whether it makes sense to get a 8 port PoE switch now or to get a 4 port now then another 4 port when I expand.

Thanks
 

dba

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Feb 20, 2012
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IP cameras are like potato chips - once you have one, you can't stop. I'd go for the eight port switch.

Are you looking for a switch that will be dedicated to POE or for one that you'll use for the entire home, but that also handles POE. If the latter, how many total ports will you need, understanding that up to eight of them will need to be POE?
 

PigLover

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Jan 26, 2011
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Look at GS110TP.

Decent price/performance (8 PoE ports for about $180 street price). Lots of features for a low-cost switch. Lifetime warranty. Fanless. OK for hot environments.

One drawback is somewhat limited total PoE. While it can deliver the full spec of 15.4w to a single port, the total PoE delivered across all ports is limited to about 36w. You might not be able to use all 8 ports for cameras if they all have IR-illiuminators. Most current IP cameras draw 3-5 watts without IR and about 7-9 watts with the IR turned on. This means 8 cameras without illuminators will work OK (drawing about 32 watts total) but with illuminators the switch will cap out at 4 or 5 cameras.

While this is annoying, prices go WAY up for PoE switches with more power. These things are cheap enough to just start stacking them as your camera collection grows. It might seem silly to buy an 8-port PoE if you can only use 4-5 ports of it with power, but if you shop around you'll find that most 4-port PoE and the 4+4 (4 PoE + 4 non-PoE) switches are not much cheaper.

Dba is right - once you have one camera you'll buy more. The are somewhat addictive.
 
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PigLover

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You can actually vary the bandwidth depending on video quality settings. Even the cheap cameras give you some choices.

For reference, a 2 megapixel camera will deliver 1080p @ 30fps H.264 compression and high-quality levels at about 8mbps. You can lower the i-frame rate and still get good results down to about 2mbps with most cameras.

1.3 megapixel cameras run well at about 1mbps.

The 100mbps switches should work well. Do be careful about the power output - get the full manual and check it out before ordering. The phrasing in the Amazon ad shows "full 15.4w", but it doesn't say all 8 ports can 15w at the same time. This wording is similar to Netgear's and may be misleading. Giveaway would the be power brick. Unless they are using at least a 120w power brick then there is no way to offer full power to all 8 ports simultaneously.
 
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LeoS

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Jun 19, 2013
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On the budget side, there are also passive injectors which you insert between your (non PoE) switch and the PoE devices.
The single ones go for $12-15 if I'm not mistaken and they go up to 12ports (Rackmount form) for just around $50.
I've used the single injectors but just on my test bench.

http://wifi-texas.com

There's a thread about caution (and tests) on non-fused ports too here:

8-Port non fused injector testing - Ubiquiti Networks Community

Or you can check out ebay for used enterprise switches or new old-stock. I got a few 48 ports L2 Nortels (24 PoE) for less than $300 each and have been running 16 IP cameras on one of them for 2+ years now.
 

LeoS

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On bandwidth: consider that the higher quality (bitrate) image that you want to capture means you will need to provide higher amount of storage space too (and how far back you can/want to keep the recordings of).

And it may affect your playback performance too (depending on your system) as you may need to seek through hours/days of footage, etc.
 

MiniKnight

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The rest of the network will be gigabit, it's just how much I need from the cameras to a NAS machine for recording. Thanks for the bandwidth figures.

What about this one? Cisco Linksys SFE2000P Switch 24x 10 100 Poe 4X Gigabit Ports 2X Combo SFP GBIC 0745883572113 | eBay

24 PoE ports - 2 gigabit + 2x SFP gigabit Linksys, very inexpensive. Sounds like 100mbps would be plenty.

I wonder if that one I linked on Amazon is the same as the TP-LINK TL-SG1008 - Welcome to TP-LINK

I have to imagine that there are a few OEMs out there churning these out.
 

PigLover

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Looks like a great option. 180w total PoE should support 15-20 cameras with illuminators, Gige uplink should be good for that many cameras even at high quality video settings.
 

TangoWhiskey9

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Jun 28, 2013
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Here's another direction for you. Gotta admit that you got me looking too.

Amazon.com: WD My Net Switch - 8 Port Gigabit Ethernet Network Switch - HD Media Switch: Computers & Accessories

That thing is $25 for an 8 port gigabit switch that looks like it has some QoS!!!!

Then get one of these for $45:
WS-POE-8-48v60w passive Power Over Ethernet POE Injector for 8 IP cameras, VOIP phones or Access Points, 48 volts, 60 watts max

Total cost $70. If you need more switching, can always get a second WD 8 port switch then use a combination.

Makes ya think gigabit NICs are way overpriced in PC's.
 

PigLover

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Didn't take a real close look at it, but it appears that this switch can receive its power via PoE, but does not provide power to other devices. Not exactly the right solution (though a dirt-cheap 8-port gigabit switch is still interesting in its own right...).
 

TangoWhiskey9

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Didn't take a real close look at it, but it appears that this switch can receive its power via PoE, but does not provide power to other devices. Not exactly the right solution (though a dirt-cheap 8-port gigabit switch is still interesting in its own right...).
Flip your mental diagram. Router > $25 switch > PoE injector > IP cameras

I thought that too. For $25 with a warranty. Wonder if power is really bad with it? If so, maybe not a good deal. Maybe even something for a cheap just in (brief)case device.
 

MiniKnight

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I may end up doing what you outlined. I missed the Linksys one. My significant concern is getting a loud switch, especially a managed one.

Scary proposition now that I realize there are different voltages.
 

PigLover

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None of the desktop options listed above have fans so they won't be loud (the 4 port Netgear/trendnet/etc, the 4+4s or the 8-port Netgear). The injector options don't have fans either.

I prefer managed switches over injectors for one main reason: you can remotely turn the PoE on or off on a per-port basis. This allows you to re-set devices that are acting up without getting off your butt (or - if you have VPN access to your network - without even being there). Other than this the unmanaged switches or injectors are just fine.

I'm not exactly sure what you mean by "two voltages". As long as you stay with 802.11af then everything is fine. Older PoE gear before the standards finalized - might vary. Some of the older Cisco phones and Ubiquiti Unifi WiFi did non-standard things. But almost all 'current' PoE will be 802.11af and should be compatible.
 

MiniKnight

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Anyone have a HP 2600 series PoE that may be able to share noise levels? PigLover I believe in your managed switch idea.

8 ports under $120 J8762A HP ProCurve 2600 8 PWR 8 Port Poe Switch | eBay

48 ports under $240 HP ProCurve J8165A 2650 PWR 48 Port Poe Ethernet Switch 0808736675376 | eBay

I do have a preference for HP just due to warranty. These seem like good options but were released in 2007. The 1910 8 and 16 ports are all in the $240 to $290 range

All are USD not something else. I think I'm failing at making decisions
 

Evan

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Those 8 port WD switches were reviewed by @Patrick long ago, solid and super low power.
I have one, no idea if the QoS works but the switch has been really solid and powered on a couple of years I Guess without a restart.
 

zhoulander

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Cisco SG300-10MPP can often be found for ~$100 on eBay. It has 2 combo Base-T/SFP ports so you can still have 8 POE+ devices and a 2 port LAG.