A KVM extender is a device that extends the signals of a computer’s keyboard, display, and mouse over a single Ethernet cable to enable remote control and operation of the computer using the peripherals.
Typically, it consists of a transmitter and a receiver. KVM extenders are designed to extend the distance of KVM (Keyboard, Video, and Mouse) connections. It delivers clear images and provides smooth mouse and keyboard control. It’s widely applied in the data center and surveillance field.
Using a single Ethernet cable, a KVM extender can exceed the limit on the keyboard and mouse cable length. It enables keyboard and mouse control over a long distance. It also extends the images and enables remote placement of the host machines for security purposes.
Ideally, KVM extenders should bring no noticeable latency or lag.
KVM Extenders’ Types, Trends and Selection
KVM extenders can be classified in various ways. People choose a specific KVM extender depending on their specific requirements in the transmission distance, cost, use scenarios, number of channels supported, etc.
As a professional KVM extender manufacturer, AV Access offers a wide range of KVM extenders. Customers can choose from them based on their customized needs.
KVM Extender’s Development Trends
There are several trends in KVM extender development:
- From 1080P transmission to 4K video transmission. Support for higher refresh rates and widescreen resolutions in some cases.
- Progress from simple HID (Human Interface Device) transmission to USB 2.0 data transmission.
- The shift from single-channel video connection to dual-channel video connection.
- The parallel development of two transmission methods, Cat cables (twisted pair) and fiber optic, but CatX is more commonly used.
- Use cases from point-to-point connections to many-to-many configurations.
AV Access keeps pace with these technological trends and has developed various types of KVM products. In this product field, we have accumulated extensive experience in understanding customer needs and possess strong technical capabilities. Our KVM extender products are known for their stability, reliability, and ability to meet different requirements.
Additionally, AV Access has taken into consideration the power supply for KVM extenders’ USB interfaces and brings the power delivery for USB 2.0 ports up to 1.25A at maximum.
KVM Extender Types and Selection
Point-to-point & one-/many-to-many
Some KVM extenders are for point-to-point direct connection, some are designed to connect in a one-to-many or many-to-many way.
Point-to-point KVM extenders are more easy to use. They need no complicated configuration. These products often support Power over Ethernet (PoE) and need only one end of power delivery.
They adopt a plug-and-play solution and all you need is to connect the transmitter and receiver via a Cat cable, and power up on one end. Connect it to your monitor, keyboard, and mouse, and you’re ready to use it. The setup and connection process is simple.
Point-to-point KVM extenders can be further categorized based on different transmission media, transmission distances, and maximum resolutions.
KVM extenders that support one-to-many and many-to-many connections are more flexible. Multiple sets of transmitters and receivers are connected to an Ethernet switch via CAT cables. After the configuration, you can flexibly route the connection from a certain transmitter to a receiver.
It’s a bit more complicated to set up. The advantages are that it allows for a longer transmission distance (thanks to the network switch) and the connection is more flexible and scalable.
Different transmission distances and media
Different KVM extenders offer varying transmission distances. There are some typical distance ranges, such as 40 meters, 70 meters, and 100 meters. There are two main transmission media — optical fiber transmission and transmission via a CAT cable. You can choose the more suitable option based on your specific applications, budgets, and the existing cabling at the site.
The number of channels
Most KVM extenders are for single-channel transmission. There are also some dual-channel or multi-channel KVM extenders. A dual-channel KVM extender is built with two video channels, making it convenient to extend KVM signals for a dual monitor setup for remote control with USB peripherals like a keyboard, mouse, and microphone.
Support of different resolutions
KVM extenders are designed to support different resolutions and refresh rates. There are some for 1080P video transmission and others support up to 4K@30hz and 4K@60hz. To meet the need for high refresh rates, there are some KVM extenders that support refresh rates better than 60 hertz, such as 1080P@240hz and some extenders are designed for special resolutions for ultra-wide displays.
Video connector types
In the use of KVM extenders, different projects may require different types of KVM extenders to connect via video types like HDMI or DisplayPort. Both of the video types are commonly used for all kinds of computing devices and in many different scenarios. AV Access provides HDMI KVM extenders for most common uses and DisplayPort KVM extenders for your project needs.