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Ethernet Network Cabling Categories & Advantages

Twisted-pair Ethernet network cables have become prevalent over the last few decades. Any local area network is incomplete without these networking cables. In terms of speed and connectivity, these cables have become a reliable choice for deployment. Your data package integrity will be intact and you will not face any interference.

There are many categories of cat6 plenum cable when it comes to Ethernet network cabling. You need to have a basic understanding of how these cables work and which is the best choice for your network. Many advantages come with these cables. We’ll also discuss that in this article. But first, let’s talk about the categories of Ethernet cables.

Categories of Ethernet Network Cable

Ethernet cable has come a long way since its beginning. There have been many changes and updates according to the needs and demands of the networking industry. With this evolution of cable, we have the best form of cable these days.

There are several categories of Ethernet cables. Some of these categories have become obsolete as a newer version has replaced them. You won’t find cat1, 2, 3, or 4 anywhere. Category 5 or higher is still in play. Let’s find out how they are different and what they have to offer.

Cat5 – this is one of the oldest cables that are still in play. You’ll get a 1000 Mbps data transfer rate with this cable. You can also use this cable for 100Base-T and 1000Base-T applications. This cable usually has 1.5 to 2 twists per centimeter.

Cat5e – this cable is the enhanced version of its predecessor. This is a TIA/EIA verified cable. It has a higher frequency and better performance than category 5 cables. You’ll get 125 Mbps speed with this cable. This cable has the same twists per centimeter as cat5.

Cat6 – this category is rather new. Category 6 cables are verified by TIA/EIA. These cables offer better performance. This cable has more twists per centimeter than category 5 cables. This cable can fight crosstalk and electromagnetic interference in a better way. Cat6 plenum technically supports a 10Gbps data transfer rate at 55 meters.

Cat6a – this is an augmented version of category 6 cables. This cable tends to support twice the speed as cat6. Usually, this cable comes as a shielded cable which makes it better when it comes to crosstalk and EMI. This cable is not as flexible as cat6.

Outer Jackets of Ethernet Cable

The outer jacket of any cat6 1000ft cable is as important as the internal structure of any Ethernet cable. You need to have a better understanding how outer jackets because when it comes to deployment, the outer jacket matters. You need to get the relevant cable following the surroundings. There are mainly three types of jackets when it comes to Ethernet cables; plenum, riser, and PVC.

Plenum-rated cables are for plenum spaces, as the name indicates. These spaces are horizontal in your building. Plenum spaces have continuous airflow. This presence of air makes them dangerous in an event of a fire. Plenum-rated cables have fire retardant qualities. They would burn slowly and try putting out fire with its thick smoke.

Riser-rated cables are ideal for riser spaces of your building. These are vertical spaces of your building or home. You can install plenum cables in these spaces but not the other way around.

Polyvinyl chloride or PVC are outdoor cables. These cables are made of high-end plastic polymer that can endure extreme temperatures and water flow.

Internal Structure of Ethernet Cable

The internal structure of an Ethernet cable consists of twisted pairs of wires. Eight pure copper wires are twisted together in four pairs. Some cables have pure copper wiring inside them. The name of the cable indicates that like cat6 solid copper. Some manufacturers use copper-clad aluminum instead of pure copper. This alloy can affect the overall performance of the cable.

The pairs are tightly twisted to fight off crosstalk and electromagnetic interferences. The more twists a cable has per centimeter, the better chance it has against crosstalk. It is a phenomenon that happens when signals from two passing by cables interfere with each other. This affects the data integrity.

Advantages of Ethernet Network Cables

Ethernet network cabling has a lot of benefits. This is a practical solution for your local area network. Some of the advantages are the following:

Speed & Efficiency – this is one of the biggest advantages of Ethernet cables. You’ll get better speed and a stable connection as compared to the wireless connection. The cable offers one-to-one connections. You can get up to 100Gpbs speed without any hiccup.

Security – this is one of the biggest advantages that come with Ethernet cable. You’ll get a higher level of protection as compared to the wireless connections. You’ll get control over your connection and you can restrict your usage. This sort of connection will not be easy to hack into.

Dependability – Ethernet network cables create the most reliable connections. It is because these cables can restrict all other incoming frequencies.

Ethernet network cabling is a reliable and secure way to build your connections. Get the right cable for your network technology system and it’ll go a long way.

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