How to Choose the right Cat6 Cable for your Network?

How to choose the right cat6 cable for your network

Choosing the right ethernet cables is important for establishing the perfect network for home or office. This is particularly important when you are getting cat6 ethernet cables. Because these cables are used for high-performance networks and if you choose the wrong ones, you will not get the performance that you need. 

Read on to learn how to choose the right category six cable for your network.

What is Cat6 cable?

Category 6 cable is the successor of the enhanced category 5 cable. It was introduced as an enhanced version of its predecessor and it is rightly so. For instance, its data transfer rate at 100 meters is up to 1 Gbps while Cat5e cable transfers data at 100 Mbps at the same length.

Category 6 cable has also a voluminous bandwidth capacity of 550 MHz. 

Why Cat6 cable?

It is easy to install and maintain, long-lasting, and supports high-speed ethernet applications such as 10BASE-T, 100BASE-TX Fast Ethernet, 1000BASE-T, and 10 GBASE-T.

Given the value of this cable, it is affordable as well.  Additionally, the twisted pair cable is certified by TIA/EIA and RoHS. It also follows the T568 A and B wiring protocols for enhanced compatibility. 

How to choose?

Only knowing about the cable is not enough to choose the right ethernet cable for your network. In addition to the knowledge of the cable, you have to have a practical understanding of the cable specifications. 

Jacket: The jacket of the cable is of utmost importance. First, because it ensures the safety of the cable, and second, it enhances the performance of the cable. There are three types of jackets. Plenum, Riser, and PVC. 

Cables with the PVC jacket are mostly used outdoors. They are resistant to weather, sunlight, and water. But they can also catch fire if overheated and emit toxic gases. 

The riser jacket is used in indoor vertical rising spaces. It is highly resistant to heat and is virtually weatherproof, but it can also emit toxic smoke if it catches fire. 

The plenum jacket is the cutting-edge ethernet cable insulation.  It is weatherproof, lightproof, and highly resistant to fire. The spaces within buildings where air circulates are the designed installation space for these cables

Conductor:

Bulk Cat6 cables are available in two different types of conductors. Namely, bare copper and copper-clad aluminum (CCA). 

As it is implied by the term, the CCA conductor is plated with a layer of copper for enhanced performance. The aluminum base of the wire is a decent conductor but it can break if you twist it too much and can overheat under pressure. 

The bare copper conductor on the other hand is the finest conductor you can get. It is a pliable material and that means a lot when installing the cable. You can twist and turn it to give it the shape of your desire. Bare copper is also better at resisting EMI and crosstalk. And the overall signal integrity is better on copper conductors. 

STP vs UTP:

STP stands for shielded twisted pair and UTP stands for unshielded twisted pair. STP cat6 has extra material for insulation from interference and crosstalk. It adds a little to the cost of the cable but it is worth it. 

The UTP cable has no extra sheath for protection against various interferences. You can use a UTP cable for almost all ethernet cable networks. You need an STP cable only when your network has an overwhelming amount of wires. 

Length and color:

The length of the cable depends on two factors. First is your requirements and second is the cable’s run-length limit. If you need 40 feet of cable, you should get 45 because a few feet extra will save you from inconvenience later. 

And get cables in different colors. That will help you easily manage your cables.

Cost:

All things aside, the right cable for anyone is the one that is within their budget. 

If your budget allows you to buy Cat6 cables with bare copper conductor, go for it. However, if you want to save a little extra, you can choose a cable with the CCA conductor. 

The pro tip is to buy cables with bare copper conductors. The little extra cost will ensure a long-lasting and reliable network. 

NewYork Cables is the leading brand of cutting-edge networking cables and accessories and we are offering free deliveries on orders above $199 and a legendary 10-Year guarantee (Terms and Conditions apply). Place your order now or contact us at [email protected]  for more info.

Specification Cat5e Cat6 Cat6a
Cable Jacket Plenum, Riser & PVC Plenum, Riser & PVC Plenum & Riser
Wire Gauge 24-AWG 23-AWG 23-AWG Highly Twisted
Frequencies 350 MHZ 550 MHZ 750 MHZ
Installation Temp 0°C to 60°C 0°C to 60°C 0°C to 60°C
Pairs 4 Twisted Pairs 4 Twisted Pairs 4 Twisted Pairs
Package Easy Pull Box Easy Pull Box Wood Spool
Colors Black, Blue, White, Red, Green, Yellow Black, Blue, White, Red, Green, Yellow Black, Blue, White, Red, Green, Yellow
Standard Compliance ETL, FCC, CE, CSA, ISO/IES, RoHS FCC, CE, CSA, ISO/IES, RoHS ETL, FCC, CE, CSA, ISO/IES, RoHS

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