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12 volt network switch?

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w6bi's picture
12 volt network switch?
I need to expand a mesh network at a remote site.  It doesn't need a VLAN-aware switch, but it does need to run natively off of 12 VDC.  Anyone got a recommendation?


Orv W6BI
Most of the MikroTik routers/switches will run from 11-30V. Either the lower end switches (RB260GS) or hEX series routers. I prefer the hEX PoE for the full RouterOS and PoE functionality. Our favorite hAP lite would work too with regular firmware ;) Ian
w6bi's picture
Thanks - I'll check them out.
Another switch, and better power?
I'm also interested in very remote weatherproof switches/routers for same  reasons.
Please read below for the key questions??
I recently got a Ubiquiti NanoSwitch, which is outdoor qual and can be pole mounted with the tower nodes.  This way, I didn't have to repackage for the tower...
You only need to run a single PoE LAN cable up the tower.  It has one downlink PoE source RJ45 port, and three devices PoE feed RJ45 ports.
It reportedly runs on "24" VDC passive, and simply passes PoE thru to the three outputs.  The spec sheet claims input range of 21.6-30VDC.
But you have to carefully assess the PoE _current_ draws for each (1A max each), and total for the PoE feed (1.25A max total).
I am running two Rockets (M2 & M5) plus a NanoStation.  BONUS! There is just enought power left to run a PoE PTZ Camera, via the Aux NS port!
And I'm staying below the maxes. Actually _less_ than "spec" loading!  I might even be able to squeeze another cam on the other NS?
And over a 22ga AWG Cat6 HD Outdoor cable of 100ft, I'm down only about 1.2VDC!
>>> Question 1::  I'd really appreciate it if somebody could try running this nice switch on vanilla 12VDC, and see if it still works??  I just haven't had time.  Yet...
Warning!  I can run the above 3-4 devices and keep _under_ the _max_ PoE current limits, _only_ by pushing the power up at the _24VDC_. 
IF I tried it at 12VDC, I would likely have to reduce the nodes loads.  Or likely toast the circuit board traces...
Remember - these UBNT devices typically pull _constant_power_, so shifting volts up means changing currents down.  Do the math!!
In my case, to enable use on either 12VDC or 24VDC station sources, I have
a) a 24VDC PoE PS for mains/generator ops,
and for tactical ops...
b) a small & efficient 12VDC-24VDC converter, with PowerPoles, and alternately,
c) a little PPole "Y" that hooks a pair of PPole equiped batteries in series to provide the 24VDC, plus
d) a set of handy PPole to 5.5mm power plug adapters (homebrew), plus 5.5mm power jack fitted PoE "LAN/PoE" splitters (eBay).
>>> Question 2:: Those little 12VDC-24VDC converters are very inexpensive, potted weatherproof, rugged, and very highly efficient.  So why not simply feed with your apparent 12VDC, and push up the 24VDC????
BONUS!   In this case, you get a _regulated_ 24VDC output, even with wide ranges of "12" VDC inputs, often from 8-20VDC, and even sagging batteries!
Suggestions appreciated, and we'd like to hear what you do?
Thanks & 73!
Gene :

My notes
I use those cheap 12-24V converters too. Battery system is 12V nominal but I always bump the switch and PoE up to 24V. One install here has 75-100' runs up to the roof so 24V is necessary. I have plenty of spare network cable up there so it all runs direct to a hEX PoE at 24V downstairs. I prefer to run cable and have fewer things to break that are out of reach. Another option is to use a MikroTik PowerBox Pro and run 24V seperately over 18ga (or pair up 4+4 wires in your outdoor cat5 cable!). The PowerBoxes are just hEX PoE's in an outdoor case. Like most of their switches/routers, one can power it and pass power to all ports from ethernet port 1 subject to current limitations and voltage drop, but it also has a DC input jack for full power on each port. Voltage in is the voltage out. Ian
K6CCC's picture
I have been VERY happy with
I have been VERY happy with my Mikrotik switches - I have five in daily use here.  One is the RB260 and another is the current version of that - the CSS106-5G-1S.  They are VLAN aware if you need that.  There is also a POE version, but I don't have those.  Works just fine on 12V DC.
W6RUF's picture
Nano switch on 12
Im running a Nano Switch, feeding it 12 volts through a single 30 foot Ubiquity ToughCable.  On the pole I’m running a Nanobridge, Rocket, and a cheapy 12volt PTZ camera.  It works fine.  I didn’t bless it with math or tactical just works.
NETGEAR Works Fine
I have a few of the Netgear GS10x series switches running from 12V with no problems. I made up pigtails to the coaxial connectors from power poles.
k1ky's picture
TP LINK TL-SG108E Power 9 Volts DC
We use the TPLINK TL-SG108E Managed switches at our repeater sites that don't have Internet (VLAN1) onsite.  These run on 9 Volts, easy to convert downward from 12V.  They support VLAN2 DTD as well as connected computers, cameras and similar devices.  Otherwise the Netgear Prosafe GS108T supports POE in and will run off 12V DC.
We opted for option 2 in our
We opted for option 2 in our deployment, it's cheaper. The Ubiquiti is native 24vdc so you'll need the 12vdc->24vdc converter. The Netonix will tolerate 10~72vdc and still provide reliable PoE power at the configured 24vdc or 48vdc.

Option 1: Netonix WS-8-150-DC (if PoE is needed)

Option 2: Ubiquiti ES-5XP & DC-DC Converter Amazon Part # B06W2HTFW4 (If Poe Is Needed)

Option 3: Most Linksys/Cisco/HP unmanaged switches are native 12vdc. I have a Linksys/Cisco WRT54GS2 V1 in my hand now that's 12vdc. Assuming PoE isnt needed this should be in any IT guy's junk pile.

Justin Kennedy
K5DLQ's picture
Most UBNT devices that I've
Most UBNT devices that I've seen from from 11VDC to 24VDC.

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