Video Balun Troubleshooting Guide

If you are experiencing problems with your video baluns, follow these simple troubleshooting techniques to find the real source of the problem.

    Verify Cable Configuration:

  • Make sure you are NOT using Shielded Twisted Pair (STP) wire. We recommend using CAT5E or better Unshielded Twisted Pair (UTP) wire.
  • Keep cables as far away from AC power, florescent lighting, High EMI equipment, and high current equipment. This can introduce noise into the video system and cause the picture to become distorted.
  • Splice connections may allow noise to enter the system, when splicing UTP wires, make sure to use RJ45 connectors, or when soldering or twisting the pairs together, make sure there is less than 1 inch of untwisted wire.
    Verify Video balun connections:
    Before testing the video baluns themselves, you must first test their interconnections:

  • Make sure that you are only using a single pair (only 1 positive wire and 1 negative wire) to connect the balun over CAT5E. Using multiple video pairs may have the following effects:
    • Decreased effective distance.
    • Shadows, Ghost images, or distorted pictures.
    • Increased susceptibility to noise and interference.
  • Make sure the polarity is correct on both baluns. Incorrect polarity will cause a distorted video signal
  • Make sure that you have not exceeded the maximum distance for the configuration you are using. If you are near the maximum distance, try using a configuration with longer distance to solve your problem:
    • The passive-passive balun maximum distance is 1200ft
    • The passive-active balun maximum distance is 3000ft
    • The active-active balun maximum distance is 9000ft
  • Make sure to check all RG59 connections. Problems with RG59 connections can cause numerous problems ranging from video distortion to intermittent video, and many more problems.
  • When using active baluns, make sure you are using them in the correct locations
    • Active Transmitter must be placed near the Camera, not the DVR
    • Active Receivers must be placed near the DVR, not the camera
  • When using active baluns, make sure to power them using the correct 12V power supply:
    • Try using an individual transformer local to the video balun. This will test if the power section of the cable is good (if not local to the video balun).
      ***NOTE: If the video balun is powered locally, this will test the power supply***
    • If the cable power section is good, then place the transformer on the DVR side of the cable. This will test if the power supply is good.
    Verify Camera Connection:
    Before testing the video baluns themselves, you must first verify the video output of the camera is working correctly:

  • Using an individual transformer, power the camera locally to verify that the power section of the cable is good.
    ***NOTE: if the camera is powered locally, this will test the power supply***
  • If the cable power section is good, then place the transformer on the DVR side of the cable. This will test if the power supply is good.
  • Using a video test kit, or similar product, test the video output of the camera to verify the video output of the camera is functioning correctly.
    Verify DVR Connection:

  • Verify that the channel on the DVR is not causing the problem by switching it to a known good channel.
  • Verify that the DVR is not causing the problem by plugging the channel having the issue directly into a test monitor or similar equipment.
    Verify Balun Functionality:
    After following all the previous test steps, you can now test the video balun functionality.

  • Using a length of cable, connect the baluns on either side of the cable; verify that video comes over the cable correctly.

If you are still having issues after following this troubleshooting guide, please give us a call, our technicians can help you diagnose the problem further.

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