pardon the noob question (though I have a EE degree back in the day, it's been a long time).
Let me ask this simply, then explain my use case below. I am wanting to use several existing CAT5 cables with a simple manual switch on them to activate individual AC outlets. I'm thinking that something like the SainSmart SSR board should do it. However, all examples of using relay boards like that relate to computer controlled applications. I don't really need all that. I just want a remote low-voltage switch to kick on an AC outlet. If it matters, each outlet is only going to pull 20-50 Watts.
I'm thinking this should conceptually be okay for what I want. But... I don't know exactly how to hook it up. Would wiring a separate 5V DV supply to the switch and then to one of the input terminals on the relay board do the job? Would I need a limiting resistor? or is that built in? From the schematic, it looks like that's included and I'd just apply +5V to the channel input.
If this were something I could quickly buy and play with, I'd do that, but it looks like these things take 3 weeks to arrive and I don't see any option to return it. So, I was hoping someone could toss me some advice on this.
Here's the details on the use case. I'm trying to replace a whole-house stereo system with a DIY version. Each room has CAT5 run from the central location to a control panel in each room. however, those control panels are shot. So, rather than replace with a new set of panels which will just wear out and avoiding a more expensive remote-control (or even iphone) based system... I want to leverage the CAT5 in the room to just have a simple switch to turn on an outlet for a small amplifier which will drive that room's audio. Thus, each room can then independently kick on a small amplifier for that room (rather than a big expensive multi-room amplifier). Each zone is just going to have a 20 watt amp (possibly a 50 watt in a large room) so it's not a lot of power. but, I obviously don't want to try running the AC power to the amp's power supply via the CAT5. And, even though the amps have a 12V DC power supply which I could potentially run over CAT5, I think that's going to try to pull too much current. So, that's why I'm thinking a SSR or traditional relay is what I want to be using.
Further clarifications: I have one central hub (basement closet) where all wiring is routed. so, from that closet, CAT5 goes out one line to each room. Also, from that closet, a pair of speaker wires go out to each room. My plan was to use a distribution amplifier from an audio source to feed a series of small amplifiers--one for each zone. and I would use the CAT5 to simply kick on an outlet to activate power to that room's amplifier. The audio source is going to be something I can manage via iphone app (select audio stream, volume, etc.) so I just want something to control which rooms have the sound turned on. I know this is crude and simplistic. but, I don't need an awesome elegant system. I'm looking for cheap.
I hope that makes things more clear. Audio and power isn't really bouncing around the house... it's all centrally located. I just want to find a way to remotely "flick a switch" to kick on the amp for the room I'm in.
Any issues with doing what I want? Any other products I should be considering? I don't want to go spend $400+ for a commercial product and I don't want to go completely DIY (I can solder, but I don't really want to build an 8-channel relay circuit from scratch either).
much appreciated for anyone to help guide me before I order and waste time waiting for something to arrive which might not work.