Data Cables Explained — Cat5/Cat5e/Cat6

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    Are you wondering if you have the best data cables installed throughout your building that will meet your employees’ and clients’ needs?


    Hopefully this article will help explain the difference between the different types of cables. If you are unsure of what you currently have, it should be labeled along the cable with one of the titles below. If you are unsure or are looking for advice, please contact us today at 508-528-8018.


    Cat5 cables are the slowest of the three. They can handle 10/100 Mbps speeds at up to 100 MHz bandwidth. These cables are hardly ever used anymore, especially in new installations. If you have these installed in your current building, please contact us so we can quote you a price on upgrading all your wires and get your company up-to-date with the latest technology. Your clients and employees will greatly appreciate the upgrade in speed and reduction in crosstalk.


    Cat5e cables are some of the most commonly used cables in new installations today. They are made to greatly reduce crosstalk. Basically, crosstalk bogs things down and causes interference. These cables keep signals on different circuits and channels to help prevent crosstalk. These cables handle 1,000 Mbps (Gigabit) at 100 MHz.


    Cat6 cables are the best of the best. If you want to make sure you are prepared for the future and don’t like to settle for anything but the best, then we suggest you contact us today to get your cables upgraded to Cat6. They handle 10 gigabit Ethernet at 250 MHz. And to help protect against crosstalk even more than CAT5e cables do, these cables have an internal separator that isolates pairs from one another.


    There are also CAT6a cables out there now that bulkier and heavier but does allow you to cover longer distances and reduce crosstalk. These are a bit steeper in cost though as well, and so unless we feel you are in dire need of these cables, we will not sell you something that is unnecessary for your business needs.