Why Cat 6 Is a Game Changer

Are you looking to enhance your business internet? Then it’s time to upgrade to Cat 6 cabling. Category 6 cable is a type of twisted-pair cable standard used specifically in gigabit Ethernet-based computer networks. It was jointly defined and specified in 2002 by the Electronics Industries Association and Telecommunication Industries Association (EIA/TIA). Keep reading to learn more about why Cat 6 cabling is a game-changer.

How Cat 6 Cable Works

Category 6 cables support gigabit ethernet data rates of 1 gigabit per second. With cat 6 cables, your business can accommodate 10 Gigabit Ethernet connections over a certain distance – typically around 180 feet for a single cable. Cat 6 cables produce an optimal performance because of their use of four pairs of copper wires. This type of cabling can be identified by its printed “Cat 6” text along the insulating sheath. 

Cat 6 vs. Cat 6a

While Cat 6 cables are great for your business, Cat 6a cabling is even better. Cat 6a, or Category 6 Augmented cable standard, was created to further improve the performance of Cat 6 Ethernet cables. Cat 6a cables enable 10 Gigabit Ethernet data rates over a single cable run of 328 feet. On the other hand, Cat 6 supports 10 Gigabit Ethernet but only up to 164 feet of cable length. The best type of cable for your business will depend on your business needs and goals.

Cat 6 vs. Cat 5e

Another type of cabling you may have heard of is Cat 5e. This type of cabling also has four wire-pairs but only uses two of the pairs. Cat 5e was standardized earlier than Cat 6 cables and lacks some of the technical improvements that went into Cat 6. However, Cat 5e cables still support Gigabit Ethernet installations at a lower cost. Cat 5e cabling became a popular choice for businesses because it’s less expensive than Cat 6 cabling and offers acceptable performance for Gigabit Ethernet.

Limitations for Cat 6 Cables

Nothing is perfect, and that same principle applies to Cat 6 cables. As with all other types of twisted pair EIA/TIA cabling, individual Cat 6 cable runs are limited to a maximum recommended length of 328 feet for optimal connection speeds. Cat 6 cabling supports 10 Gigabit Ethernet connections but not throughout its entire distance. 

Learn More About Cat 6 Cabling

Want to learn more about Cat 6 cables and why they’re a game-changer? Blue Star Technologies is here to help. Our Maryland cabling experts will answer any questions you may have, set up your network, and ensure that it’s running smoothly. Contact us now to learn more. 

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