Main computer in the machine room


I see lots of composers which have their main computer in a “server room” quite far away from their desk and I was wondering what would be the best approach to connect things like mouse, keyboard, monitor. Surely there is a limit for cable length.

If you have your main computer in a “server room”, what is your approach?


Senior Member
Bluetooth Keyboad and mouse

Hdmi or Display port cable will run 15m plus...I’ve done it.
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New Member
My air-conditioned machine room (really just a large closet) is accessed from the studio tracking room and is located on the far side of the studio control room front wall. A 15' USB cable reaches a USB 2.0 hub in the control room which feeds a bunch of stuff, so the overall reach is more like 20-25' depending on how long a cable I use to connect gear to the hub. Works great for keyboards (controller and computer), mice, and even small file transfers from memory sticks. Video Monitor cables (DP 1080 and HDMI 4k) are 15' long. No issues with either video or USB.

One tip for Bluetooth... plug a bluetooth dongle into a nearby USB hub (typically on a monitor or keyboard) and say goodbye to weak bluetooth. I run a 5,1 Mac Pro, notorious for bad bluetooth connections. I disconnected power to the the internal bluetooth transmitter/receiver and use the dongle with perfect results for my wireless mouse.


Depending on your system and your setup. You could go the KVM switch route (ethernet) or could do the thunderbolt dock with long (and not that cheap) thunderbolt cable.

You could also try to extend all the cables (usb, screens etc) but that is tricky since not all stuff will work that well.

Lots of people have their rig in the room with them though. Some systems don't make that much noise.


Thanks for your feedback guys, that gives me some ideas. I think I'll go with the KVM over IP route.


Sock Muppet
You can get powered extenders for just about any type of cable you can think of and any length, if needed. KVM seems a bit extreme to me, and expensive (?), for what you need. You can and should run a USB hub next to your desk for easy access, bluetooth on that for your mouse and keyboard.

One tip when running long cables, especially video cables, don't buy the cheapest cables you can find, it will cause more problems in the long run (ha ha pun). You don't need the most expensive, but definitely get quality cables it makes a difference.