a home intercom system

Looking for suggestions for a hardwired home intercom system. I don't think the intercom systems are the way to handle audio in the house so that just leaves an intercom doing intercom duty. It seems most of these that are hardwired require shielded wiring so I can't just prewire some cat5 wire and figure out a vendor later.
What do you folks like for pure intercom duty? That doesn't cost an arm and a leg?
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On 21 Oct 2004 07:32:41 -0700 "Power Cat" used 8 lines of text to write in newsgroup: alt.home.repair

Don't know what your definition of "arm and a leg" are, but these are what the pros use.
http://w6.adi-dist.com/customer/servershared/catalog/pdf/NP-Snd225-230.pdf
-Graham
Remove the 'snails' from my email
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snipped-for-privacy@verizon.net (Power Cat) wrote in

I just spent a fair amount of time and effort ripping out the intercom system in my house. We never, ever, used the thing -- are you certain that you have any need for intercoms?
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Murray Peterson wrote:

Exactly. Why not buy a pair of inexpensive FRS radios for those times when you might need such communication ability? Those would have the bonus of working in the yard too.
--
Bo Williams - snipped-for-privacy@hiwaay.net
http://hiwaay.net/~williams /
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They also have the bonus of being portable and being right at hand. We used the radios for mapping out our circuit breakers in our house -- me running around to all thge plugs and switches, and my wife in the basement flipping breakers. Worked like a treat.
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We bought and installed an older used business telephone system--most of em wire in with cat5 cable, just like a computer network.........they allow paging and 2 way intercom to any single station as well as to the whole group--and answering is hands free.
Like these :
http://search.ebay.com/merlin-410_W0QQsokeywordredirectZ1QQfromZR8
Relatively inexpensive, easy to set up and program and use and with parts for expansion and upgrade being readily available on the used market--the 410 allowing for 10 extensions and 4 incoming ( co ) lines........
We also patched an unused co line to an amplifier and then into the old NuTone speakers, adding some more horn speakers outside, the overhead paging now covering most of the 8 acre estate and with all communications functions being also linked to the machine shop some 500ft from the residence.
Not that the old merlin telephone systems are for everybody, but for us it has worked out really well.
--
SVL



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I can't tell you what works, but I can tell you what doesn't. I bought some wireless FM Radio Shack units (because they were cheap and easy to install), the kind that transmits right over the house electrical wiring, so you can just plug the units in any electrical outlet, no special wiring required. The only ones that work are ones that are on the same circuit. Of course, if your house is big enough for an intercom, it is unlikely that any two of them are going to be on the same circuit. Those that are on different circuits do not receive the broadcast clearly, if they receive it at all. Don't waste your money on this technology.

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That's weird. Mine work fine, even not on the same circuit. I would think it would use the neutral, and they all home run to the box, right?
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Mine work fine too. I have one in a detached garage, and one in the kitchen. They do not need to be on the same circuits. They work so well that may neighbor bought a pair for his garage and house. The only problem is he got the same frequency we have! When he first plugged them in he started talking to my wife! He exchanged them for a differant freq, and all is well! Greg
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I bought a set of them a year or so ago. [Radio Shack Cat. No. 43-3105] I have them on 3 different circuits but only 2 communicate.
The non-communicating one is on the opposite leg of the feed. I bought another gadget that bridges the legs but that doesn't seem to help.
I suspect there is some other interference going on but haven't found the source. [I should probably try it again now that my daughter has gone to college with her refrigerator, stereo & computer]
Jim
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On Thu, 21 Oct 2004 14:06:43 -0500, "Wayne"

I have three of these in my three-story house and they work just fine, although they are each on a different circuit. And there are two different types of wiring in the house! There were a couple of outlets they would not work on, but they worked on most. They do not seem to work with extension cords.
We use the monitors all the time and it saves a lot of shouting up and down the stairs. The ones we got (years ago) were from Radio Shack. I don't recall what they cost but it was well under $100 for three.
I should also say that we have computer network wiring, five large computer monitors, four wireless phones, and a TV home theater with wires all over the place, but no interference on the monitors, not even the one that sits in the midst of three computers. The only interference I have encountered was from a fluorescent lamp on our drafting table, which I fixed by installing a small EMF supressor device on the cord.

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I've always been impressed with the Aiphone brand of intercoms. It is a Japanese company, but they have been available in the US for many years. The Sound quality is very good as is the construction. I've installed them in a few estate homes with many rooms and buildings. In one instance I needed a unit customized and the factory did it for me. The cost of these units may be more expensive than some others that are commonly used.
Regardless of the brand that you choose, be sure to follow the factory's installation procedures and use the wire that is recommended by them. It will have a great affect on the sound quality.
John Grabowski http://www.mrelectrician.tv

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