If you have experienced the loss of internet connectivity and long hiatus in working environments, you must be aware of the importance of high performance data networks. The local area networks, also known as LANs, cannot work at the best of their potential without Ethernet Cables. Today, if you take a look at 10 Gigabit Ethernet, you wouldn’t be able to believe the fact that at a certain point in time used to establish connections between telephone networks.
The Evolution Of Ethernet Cables
Over the years, technology has evolved a lot and there is a lot of demand for high network speed. To support these demands, engineers have developed components and cables that are able to transmit fast speeds at long distances. In the 1980’s, the introduction of CAT3 Ethernet cables took place as it could support 10BASE-T Ethernet as well as voice services.
The introduction of CAT5 in mid 1990s outgrew its popularity as it could support the network speed of up to 100Mbps. Thereafter, came CAT5E as it could support Gigabit network applications. It also introduced stringent crosstalk specifications and enabled high data transfer to work more effectively.
For the past decade, CAT6 cables have become imperative for installations of Gigabit network application. They deem perfect for installations in new buildings and support the bandwidth of up to 250 MHz. CAT6A, in which A stands for Augmented; supports the bandwidth of up to 500 MHz and data rate of 10G up to 100 meters. Universities, data centers and hospitals of today make use of CAT6A extensively.
So, What Is The Difference Between CAT5E, CAT6 And CAT6A Cables?
The cabling infrastructure of CAT6 Cables is far more superior as compared to the infrastructure of CAT5E. During the initial days of advent of CAT6, it was 50% more expensive than CAT5E. Considering its price, several refrained from installing it. After few years, its costs reduced drastically and now it has become the latest and the most acceptable standard for new cabling installations.
European countries make use CAT7A cables a lot. Whereas they are always the first choice for installations in the USA. The development of CAT8 cables is on for supporting 40 Gb speeds and utility at data centers.
Introduction To CAT-6A Cables
CAT6A cables can support the data transfer rates of up to 10Gbps at a maximum bandwidth of 500MHz. If you look at its anatomy, you will observe that it has tighter twists and comes with additional insulation that lessens the crosstalk. Also, these cables are backward compatible with CAT-6 as well as CAT-5e. If you are looking for a cost-effective solution for a future cabling system, CAT6 Cables are a perfect choice. Class EA networks make use of CAT-6A components as defined in ISO/IEC 11801 and TIA/EIA 568.
The size and the weight of CAT6A cable was its biggest drawback during the initial days in 2008. Thereafter, its size slimmed down and reduced by 20%. If you make use of cables that are bigger in size, they would need more space and would ask for large cable trays and conduits for fitting them.
Termination becomes difficult when it comes to CAT6A. However, there are a few outlets and modular jacks which you can terminate in a matter of 2 minutes. They ask for lesser cost and time for installation.
The Gleam Of Hope…
Despite of the above drawbacks, CAT6A goes on to become the right choice as it future proofs the network. So, if you want a greater lifetime for your cabling system, you must choose to install these cables.
Shielded Or Unshielded: Which One To Go For?
You can also identify Shielded and unshielded cables as F/UTP (shielded) and U/UTP (unshielded) cable. CAT-6A U/UTP depicts that the cable has four unshielded twisted pairs and comes without an outer shielding. And CAT-6A F/UTP depicts that the cable has a shield and consists of 4 unshielded twisted pairs and an outer foil shield.
One of the latest additions to the CAT-6A shielded cable range is a U/FTP cable. This cable configuration has all four pairs individually shielded, rather than an outer foil shield. The overall test results and performance of this cable has been quite impressive.
If you want to know more about CAT6A cables and are looking for different configurations of it, SF Cable is the right place to be. Just place your order online and we will deliver them to your doorstep in no time! All of our cables come with a lifetime warranty and are ROHS compliant. Make sure you buy from the best online vendors of cables and accessories in the USA!