Extending the ethernet port range from 100m to about 300m.

I’m planning to use the TX2 dev kit for streaming video over ethernet. I see that the TX2 features 10/100/1000 BASE-T Ethernet. However, 1000Base-T ethernet standard only supports cable distances up to 100m. I’m wondering what my options are for extending this range from 100m to about 300m. I’m curious to know if anyone has attempted this before?

I could use a PCIe network interface card with a different ethernet standard (such as 1000Base-LX) that supports larger distances. Such as this one: http://www.microsens.com/products/category/network-interface-cards/serie/Serie/show/gigabit-ethernet-nic-pci-express1000base-sx-465/

Or I could use an extender such as this one https://www.perle.com/products/10-100-1000-ethernet-extender.shtml

I’m wondering what would be the better choice (considering latency, speed etc.) or if other methods exist to extend the range to about 300m.

Probably switches in the middle or the extenders (basically small simple bridges) would be the simplest answer. Fiber is of course very fast and low latency over large distances…but it’s also very expensive. And who knows if there is a driver for a PCIe fiber NIC? What you’d want to do in that case is find out which PCIe card you like, check out what driver it uses, and see what shows up in the “/proc/config.gz” to see if it can be enabled without porting.

I don’t know how your particular extender example functions…it says it just uses twisted pair…I’d be suspicious of latency if it has to do something special to work with simple twisted pair. Perhaps that extender even needs host software for management and won’t work on the Jetson. There are gigabit extenders which are just ordinary gigabit bridges and splice a long cable length in without using any drivers. That PCIe 1000-base-SX at least says it has a Linux driver, so if you find the config required for it in a desktop system, and can compile the kernel under a JTX2 with that option, you’ll at least know if you have a driver before you buy it. Personally, if I had to go over those distances and didn’t want to fuss with it, I’d probably go fiber…but it gets expensive, especially by the time you support it at both ends plus buy the fiber line between and any tools for adding connectors or splicing. Some of the better “simple” extenders cost just as much as the fiber card, and you’d need at least two…but they don’t require fiber cable. Fiber doesn’t seem that bad of an idea if you have the money.

Hi linuxdev

Thanks for the useful comments. Could you please point me to one of these “simple” extenders? I’m not too sure which ones you’re referring to.

Another option is to use a directional antenna with WiFi. That may be able to work, if you have clear line of sight and are good with antennas.

Yes that could be an option, although my application requires ethernet (wired) communication from one point to another.

It has been a long time since I’ve shopped for extenders, but there are a variety here:

They are “simple” in not needing drivers in the actual computers for management…they just pass ethernet like a bridge. Slower ones are of course dirt cheap, prices go up fast for more modern speeds.

The best option to extend to 300 meters is to use multimode fiber and not cat5e/cat6 (an option linuxdev mentioned as well). Then you can do a single run without any extenders in the middle. 1Gbps up to 1000 meters or so. Can do 10Gbps up to 500 m but that isn’t useful if it ends up connected to a single 1 gig port :) Isn’t that expensive.

You can get cheap, decent multimode fiber for around $200 for 1000ft. You’ll need to put connectors on the ends (under $20), there are a variety of fiber connectors, get ones that match the gigabit ethernet converter (around $50 a piece) you use at each end to convert back to cat5e or cat6 cable.

If it is outdoor, you want the corning fiber which has the waterproof jacket (avoid gel for burial if possible, they are messy). If you are running indoor, check the fire rating. If you are running indoor to outdoor, check the fire rating as well. If you want protection from animals chewing on it, you can get armored.

The other option is just put some cheap gigabit ethernet switches ($15 to $40) at < 100 m. The ethernet switch will repeat the signal. This requires power at the the < 100m intervals, of course.