Patching BT telephone lines to CAT5/CAT6 (RJ45) wiring
April 28th, 2016 11:54 am

We have four main categories of patch kits :-

  • Standard
  • Port Sharing/Multi Line
  • Privacy
  • Broadband

The standard patch kits are our most basic, they allow you to patch a single BT line to as many as 4 extensions. For example, the single user standard version (RJ45V1S) comes with everything requited to go from the BT outlet to the patch panel and then at the outlet end convert the network outlet back to a standard BT type socket. The 4 user version adds to this & yep, you guessed it, comes with everything required to patch a single BT line to 4 extensions over structured cabling (structured cabling is the term used to describe CAT5e & CAT6 cabling among others ).

The port sharing & multi line versions expand on this concept. The port sharing version (RJ45V1PD) allows you to patch a single BT telephone line over the SAME cable as an Ethernet device (a printer or a PC for example). There is a downside, because we use what used to be the spare pairs in the cable the device will only connect at 10/100 speeds. Gigabit speeds use all 4 pairs to transmit the data so there are no spares to utillise for other services. In reality this is no big deal, 10/100 is plenty fast enough in the majority of cases.

The Multi Line versions ( RJ45VDLS & RJ45VDLA) enable you to patch 2 separate BT lines over a single cable/outlet. One is designed for standard analogue lines (RJ45VDLS) while the other caters for ADSL enabled lines (RJ45VDLA). The really good thing about the ADSL version is it allows the modem or router to be sited at the outlet end rather than at the patch panel. In some situations this is what the user wants. Consider this scenario, you are in a serviced office block with structured cabling. The patch panel is in the basement but your office is on the top floor. You simply want to connect a wireless router into the telephone line so everyone can connect to the Internet wirelessly. With our kit you effectively move the BT line to the outlet in your office so the wireless signal is nice & strong.

The privacy versions are an evolution of the standard versions. What these kits do is effectively "lock" the telephone line to the extension that uses it first. Imagine you have one telephone line which is used for both telephone & a card machine (PDQ). If someone is on the telephone the last thing they want is the card machine interrupting their conversation! Likewise, if someone is doing a transaction on the card machine they don't want the termi...

BT telephone wiring, colour codes, common faults & cable quality
April 28th, 2016 11:54 am

In this post we cover some common BT wiring faults/mistakes, colour code schemes & why cable quality with broadband is VERY important! We also explain the bell wire & why you really want to have the latest NTE5 and most probably a SSFP too (what on earth is an SSFP you ask?! Well read on to find out!!......

Some common faults

Phone ringing continuously
Terminals 2 and 5 swapped between sockets (2 at one socket connected to 5 on another and vice versa)
No ringing
Terminal 3 disconnected

Ringing but no speech (or very poor speech) and can't dial out.
Wire between terminals 2 or 5  broken.

Very poor speech quality, possibly poor bell
Terminal 3 and 2 or 3 and 5 transposed

Colour Codes

BT Openreach are using new cables with new colour codes. The old wiring scheme was as follows :-

Connector 2 - Blue with White Rings
Connector 3 - Orange with White Rings
Connector 5 - White with Blue Rings

This has now changed to :-

Connector 2 - Blue
Conector 3 - Brown
Connector 5 - Orange

The ring wire or bell wire

You have most probably heard of the "ring wire" or "bell wire" & why it is bad news for ADSL & vDSL broadband. Removing the bell wire (pin 3 on the IDC block of the MASTER socket, eg, NTE5) can certainly improve ADSL/vDSL performance if you have internal extension wiring (if you don't have any extension wiring then you shouldn't have a bell wire!). However removing the bell wire is against the BT wiring specification. So what can you do? Well, the good news is BT along with their suppliers cured this problem with the addition of a bell wire filter (or inductor to use the correct term) which is fitted to the latest BT NTE5A socket (which we sell!). In short the addition of a 22mH choke on the circuit effectivily removes the bell wire from the equation while leaving it in place to do what it is there to do!!

So what's the issue? Read on.....

The problem arrises when internal wiri...

BT Openreach External NTE (XNTE)
April 28th, 2016 11:49 am

BT Openreach will discontinue the use of the XNTE when current stocks are exhausted. This is due to the fact that vDSL services require a SSFP (Service Specific Face Plate) which in turn NTE5 socket!! We saw this coming from day 1!! If you have an XNTE and upgrade to vDSL then the Openreach engineer will gel crimp your internal wiring directly to the BT pair outside. The XNTE will become nothing more than a junction box, a new NTE5 will be fitted along with the vDSL faceplate as pictured below (the vDSL extension connections are circled in RED).


We first reported on the XNTE back in September 2009......

Openreach have started to fit external NTE's in place of the popular NTE5 socket. The only real benefit is to Openreach themselves as the new socket means they can easily disconnect any internal wiring & diagnose line faults without requiring entry to the premises. However, if you have ADSL then you should consider changing the first socket on any internal wiring so...

NTE5A Design Changes
April 28th, 2016 11:42 am

The NTE5A has been revised a number of times during production, most notably :-

Product Change Announcement - 07/11/2008

Products concerned –
BT style NTE 5A – All variants
BT style NTE 5B – All variants

Scope of Change –

1) The NTE5 CCU (customer connection unit) currently incorporates a 4 way IDC connector. It is intended to change this to a 3 way IDC connector which will allow connections to pins 2, 3 and 5 for the line and ringing circuit. Note ; where 4 wire extension cabling is used, continue to use the same conductor colours relevant to terminals 2,3 and 5 and leave the conductor normally terminated to pin 4 unconnected.
2) On certain variants of NTE 5A and 5B, the design allows drop wires to be attached to two metal terminal posts via a screw and captive washer. It is the intention to replace these terminal posts with a 2 way IDC connector.
3) Currently most variants of NTE5 incorporate a Bell Wire Filter, it is the intention to make this a standard fitting on all var...