Cat5/5e, Cat6/6a Cable Buying Guide

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Update time : 2023-04-27 10:59:00

Cat5 vs Cat5e vs Cat6 Ethernet Cables, What Are They?

What Is Cat5 Cable: A Little Older, A Little Slower

Cat5 cables have been the first choice for Internet connections for many years. If you're on a LAN, the cable running out of the back of your PC is probably Category 5. This type of network cable is made up of four twisted pairs of copper wire terminated by an RJ45 connector, which has a bandwidth of up to 100 MHz, supports 10 or 100Mbps speed. You may be able to get Gigabit speeds on a Cat5 cable, particularly if the cable is shorter, but it isn't always guaranteed.

Note: 100 Mbps /100m.

What Is Cat5e Cable: Faster With Less Interference

Category 5e (Cat5e) is an enhanced version of Category 5 cable, which indicates a lower-noise version where the potential for crosstalk is reduced. The internal interference is lower because the cable has an average of two twists per centimeter, which allows it to transmit data without significant signal degradation.

There are two main differences between the Cat5 and Cat5e network cables. On the one hand, Cat5 Ethernet cable supports speeds up to 100 megabits per second, while Cat5e supports networks up to 1 gigabit (1000 megabits per second). On the other hand, Cat5e comes in shielded varieties, performing better in reducing noise.

Note: 100-250Mhz/1 Gbps/100m.

What Is Cat6 Cable: Even Faster With Better Performance

Same as the Cat5e cable, the Cat6 cable consists of four pairs of twisted copper wire but features more stringent specifications for crosstalk and system noise. A Cat6 patch cord has a bandwidth capacity of 250 MHz, which has even stricter specifications when it comes to interference. Offer you speeds of up to 10 Gbps.

Note: 250-500Mhz/1 Gbps /100m (10Gbps at 37-55m)

What Is Cat6a Cable: Stronger Sheathing, Better for Industrial Application

The "a" in Cat6a stands for "Augmented". Cat6a Ethernet cables are able to maintain higher transmission speeds over longer network cable lengths. With a stronger sheathing, the Cat6a cabling is better suited for industrial environments. However, compared to Cat6 cables, Cat6a cables are thicker and less flexible.

Note: 250-500Mhz/10 Gbps /100m.

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