What’s the Difference between Cat6 vs Cat5e?

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We live in a world that is contently evolving. There are so many inventions every day. Technology has a great impact on our lives. Computers are an integral part of our daily life. Cabling industry has also evolved. If you possess a computer network, no matter how big or small, you know cat6 or cat5e cables. These cables connect the computer and servers to modems. Both cables have certain qualities that differentiate them from each other. The basic difference between Cat6 and Cat5e is higher speed and fewer cross-talks.

Networking cables emit electromagnetic signals. In giant networks where a lot of cables are near each other, sometimes their signals overlap. This overlap results in electromagnetic interference. This phenomenon is called Cross-talk. Cable6 cable can overcome this issue with enhanced sheathing and tighter twists. All these cables come in different jackets, conductors, shielding, and frequencies.

Jackets:

Plenum:

There are
three types of jackets in networking cables: Plenum, Riser, and PVC. Both Cat6 and Cat5e comes in all these jackets. Cables with plenum jackets are suitable for plenum spaces. Plenum spaces have a higher chance to catch fire. Cat6 plenum and Cat5e plenum have the insolation which makes them ideal for these fire-risky places. They have high fire-resistant.

Riser:

It is also another type of insolation. The riser-rate Cat6 and Cat5e is a perfect fit for the floor to floor installation. Riser-rated jacket cables are not recommended for plenum spaces as they have higher chances to catch a fire.

PVC:

Polyvinyl chloride or PVC jacket is used for outdoor installations. Cat6 and Cat5e come in PVC insolation. If you are looking for a cable that has higher durability then PVC will help you in the long run. This type of insolation is also not recommended for plenum places.

Conductors:

There are two types of conductors available in Cat6 and Cat5e. Both f these cables come in solid copper and CCA (Copper Clad Aluminum). In solid copper, the conductors are made of solid copper. CCA has aluminum shielded conductors. There is not much of a difference between these two. Cables with both of these conductors have virtually the same conductivity.

Shielding:

There are various shielding types but most important one of them is UTP (Unshielded twisted pair). Cat6 and Cat5e have UTP shielding. Their twisted pairs give them a better chance to fight against cross-talks and higher data transfer speed rate.

Frequency:

Frequency can be defined as the data transfer rate. This is a major difference between these two cables. Cat5e has a low transfer rate as compared to Cat6. Cat5e has 350 MHz while Cat6 has a whopping 550MHz frequency.

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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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