MoCA: Coffee or Cable?

MoCA isn’t a fancy chocolate coffee. But it is a great organization that develops networking protocols. CommScope’s Mark Alrutz introduces you to MoCA and the three things to pay attention to in coax cable networks.

Man_FiberIf you have been involved with radio frequency (RF) subscriber installations or troubleshooting, you have likely come across the term MoCA, often pronounced like a popular chocolate and coffee beverage. So what is MoCA, and how does it impact the subscriber network?

MoCA is an acronym for Multimedia over Coax Alliance, an international consortium that develops standards for networking over coaxial cable. Since 2004, MoCA has been working to provide high speed networking protocols and standards that enable the existing coaxial cable and passives in the subscriber premise to interconnect devices throughout the home. One example would be using the coaxial cables in the home to provide bidirectional communication between a “master” set top box and a series of “satellite” devices.

Since most residential and subscriber coaxial networks are in place, MoCA developed standards intentionally to operate over existing cables and passive devices. While this is often the case, today’s high definition and high speed services may require a bit of assistance to ensure MoCA enabled devices are performing at their best. CommScope continues to innovate in the subscriber space, and provides RF solutions that optimize the performance of MoCA services and devices.

When optimizing MoCA performance, there are three areas that require particular attention:

  • Shielding: Crucial in all coaxial networks, it is best optimized through the use of advanced tri-shield cable with tightly fit connectors. CommScope’s XpressPrep coaxial cable is ideal for this purpose. We live in a world full of wireless signals, and optimized shielding will help ensure excellent signal to noise performance.
  • Port isolation: Subscriber coaxial networks are interconnected by RF splitters and/or amplifiers. In these devices, port-to-port isolation must be optimized to best optimize MoCA signal flow, and to prevent MoCA devices from unnecessarily transmitting at too hot a level. Optimized isolation, not necessarily minimized, helps to ensure this needed balance is maintained. CommScope’s APD Subscriber Amplifiers offer this optimized isolation performance.
  • Input filtering: This is needed at the input to a subscriber residence. This prevents MoCA services from being carried into adjacent subscriber locations. Filtering can be installed as a stand-alone device or can be incorporated into house amplifiers, allowing a one-step secure installation. Our MoCA enhanced APD amplifiers (one link and a second link) contain an integrated power over Ethernet (POE) filter.

MoCA has developed standards and protocols for advanced networking in the home over existing coaxial plant. In turn, CommScope has innovative RF solutions to optimize and enhance those services. What can we do to help you?