telcom connector

ionized_gwDecember 14, 2012

I have some of these sprinkled around the house in rectangular housings on the baseboards. The house had working telephones when we bought it, but we have been making do with cell phones. and the landline phone is not working at this point. (We never connected with the local telco.) The house had more than one line at one time. There are also standard modular phone plugs in several places.

I am fixing floors and I have to decide if they are necessary or desirable. If it is all junk, I should cut them off and not take the trouble to retain them with the new baseboards and floors. (They come up through the floors.)

Thanks for looking!

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Ron Natalie

These are the old 50 pin (25 pair) cables that the old style key phones (phones with several line buttons on the bottom and a red hold button). The problem is that the wire used are just loose pairs and don't make any of the cat 5 etc... standards that the more modern digital multiline phones that people use are.
I'd yank it out and put in regular cat5 or cat6.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 6:47PM
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    Bookmark   December 15, 2012 at 12:55AM
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Those are called amphenol connectors, they are old school crud. Boot em! Happy New Year!!

    Bookmark   December 31, 2012 at 7:55PM
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"Those are called amphenol connectors, they are old school crud. Boot em! Happy New Year!!"

No, they are RJ21 connectors, originated by Amphenol, and are still used today. The cables and connectors, while not meeting current specs for network uses, are still reported to meet CAT5 specs for shorter limited length runs.

I would leave the cables in the walls and accessible for future low voltage options.

You know, people said coax in the walls was "old school" and they should not bother installing it. Well, MoCA is being used today for high-speed cable/satellite video, internet, and LAN media distribution.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2012 at 9:07PM
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" The RJ-21 50-pin telco connector, **also known as an Amphenol Connector**, was invented by Amphenol over 50 years ago and is still prevalent today in intra-building voice and data systems"

If you are going to pick nits, for the Op's sake, at least be factual. And, they are still junk and should be replaced.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2013 at 4:50PM
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I was being factual in stating they are RJ21 connectors, since the term Amphenol connector means totally different things whether they are used in Telco/data, Centronics (data/printers), SCSI, Leslie speakers, musical instrument amps, or military communications equipment.

Are RJ21's junk? Well, they do need occasional cleaning of the contacts just like other types of connectors - and 50 pins does increase your odds of failure. But I have seen them used for years without a single problem.

My recommendation, however, was not in keeping the R21's but in keeping the cable in the wall which may be able to be used for some other purpose - i.e. doorbell, security camera using baluns, data I/O, and even short LAN runs.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2013 at 7:01PM
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This is getting more interesting all the time!


    Bookmark   January 1, 2013 at 8:07PM
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Ron Natalie

It's not the connectors that are junk, it's the bulk 25 pair cable that they are connected to that is. Unless you are dealing with analog voice circuits, and even then it is a bit finicky, those cables aren't worth a whole lot. Fortunately, every hole that they are pulled to is big enough to pull a couple of cat5/6 4-pair cables through.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2013 at 8:56AM
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