Tag Archives: Cat5e

Does Cat6 on Cat5e Patch Panel or Cat5e on Cat6 Patch Panel Work?

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In the market, there exist both Cat5e patch panel and Cat6 patch panel. We know that Cat5e patch panels are meant to be used with Cat5e cable, and Cat6 patch panels are meant to be used with Cat6 cable, but what’s the difference between Cat5e and Cat6 patch panels? Can I use Cat6 cable on Cat5e patch panels or can I use Cat5e cable on Cat6 patch panels? Answers will be provided in this blog.

Cat6 on Cat5e Patch Panel

Can I Use Cat6 on Cat5e Patch Panel?

There isn’t much practical difference in the patch panels themselves. There is a difference in the wire gauge specified between Cat5e and Cat6 Ethernet cable. The cat6 wire is thicker. Cat6 usually has 23 AWG copper conductors compared to only 24 AWG in Cat5e cable. Another factor making Cat6 a larger wire than Cat5e is the fact that between each of the four pairs in a Cat6 cable there is a spline that will separate each pair from one another. Separating the pairs helps reduce cross-talk between the pairs and gives you a better signal. However, this spline also increases the diameter of the cable. Regardless of the size difference in Cat5e vs Cat6, the fact was that Cat6 cable is backward compatible with Cat5e. Yes, Cat6 is often times a larger cable, but this in no way affects its use with Cat5e patch panels. Feel free to use Cat5e patch panels if you already have them. You can always upgrade them later.

Can I Use Cat5e on Cat6 Patch Panel?

In addition to using Cat6 on Cat5e patch panel, we may also across some situations where we want to use Cat5e on a Cat6 patch panel. According to the passage above, we know that Cat6 cable is thicker than Cat5e, so if I use Cat5e on a Cat6 patch panel, will it be too loose? Although Cat6 individual twisted pairs insulation is usually thicker than Cat5e, this is usually never a problem with termination, only with how many cables you can stuff through a piece of conduit. So, will a Cat5e cable be “looser” terminated on a Cat6 jack, slightly yes, but electrically it will still make contact and work fine. But you should mind that your cabling channel will default to the lowest Catx component. Even though the patch panel says Cat6, with Cat5e cables you should only expect Cat5e performance on those jacks.

Conclusion

When punching down Cat5e wire on a Cat6, the Cat5e wire is enough smaller that it is possible to get what looks like a good punch, but the insulation on the wire is not actually penetrated or is only partially penetrated by the vampire jaw of the punch block. When punching down Cat6 wire on a Cat5e panel, the larger wire can end up bending or even breaking the vampire jaws on the punch down block. In both cases, using care and testing each connection, you can usually make it work. If you’re just doing one panel at home you are probably OK. Although it can both work well, we don’t recommend to do like this. Use the Cat5e on Cat5e patch panel and Cat6 on Cat6 patch panel will get the best performance. FS.COM provide both high-density Cat5e patch panels for Fast Enthernet applications and Cat6 patch panels for 1-Gigabit Enthernet applications. Easy to management and conserves data centers rack space. For more information, please visit www.fs.com.

Related Article: Efficient Copper Cable – Cat5e, Cat6, Cat6a, and Cat7

Related Article: How to Select the Suitable Copper Patch Panel?

How to Choose Right Category 5e Cable for Your Network?

Category 5e Cable (Cat 5 enhanced), also know as Cat5e, is currently the most commonly used Ethernet cable in new installations. It’s designed to greatly reduce crosstalk, which means the Cat5e is better at keeping signals on different circuits or channels from interfering with each other. A step above Cat 5, it can handle 1000 Mbps speeds (gigabit Ethernet) at 100 MHz wit a maximum cable length of 328 feet (100 meters). How to choose right Category 5e Cable for your network? This article may give you the answer.

Category 5e Cable

Straight-Through or Crossover Category 5e Cable?

RJ-45 conductor Cat 5e cable contains 4 pairs of wires each consists of a solid colored wire and a strip of the same color. There are two wiring standards for RJ-45 wiring: T-568A and T-568B. The two wiring standards are used to create a cross-over cable (T-568A on one end, and T-568B on the other end), or a straight-through cable (T-568B or T-568A on both ends). To create a straight-through Cat 5e, you’ll have to use either T- 568A or T-568B on both ends of the cable. To create a cross-over Cat 5e cable, you’ll wire T-568A on one end and T- 568B on the other end of the cable.

straight-through-or-crossover-cat5e-cable

The straight-through Cat 5e cables are used when connecting Data Terminating Equipment (DTE) to Data Communications Equipment (DCE), such as computers and routers to modems (gateways) or hubs (Ethernet Switches). The crossover Cat 5e cables are used when connecting DTE to DTE, or DCE to DCE equipment, such as computer to computer, computer to router or gateway to hub connections. The DTE equipment terminates the signal, while DCE equipment do not.

Unshielded(UTP) or Shielded(STP) Category 5e Cable?

Shielded twisted cables (STP) reduce electrical noise and electromagnetic radiation. In other words, they help to keep the signal steady, and reduce interference with other devices. This is done with a shield that may be composed of copper tape, a layer of conducting polymer or a braid, and is covered with a jacket. Unshielded twisted cables (UTP) by definition do not have shielding serving them to reduce interference. They are designed to cancel electromagnetic interference with the way the pairs are twisted inside the cable.

unshieldedutp-or-shieldedstp-cat5e-cable

If you’re in any situation where you want to make sure that you get the most speed and efficiency out of your network, you’ll probably want to use shielded Cat 5e. It’s hard to know when and where you’ll run into enough EMI to cause a problem, but if you use shielded Cat 5e in the first place you won’t have to worry about tearing the cable from the wall to replace it if you do run into that problem. Due to the design and nature of unshielded Cat 5e, it is most suitable for office LANS and similar network cabling systems. Unshielded Cat 5e are lightweight, thin and flexible. They are also versatile and inexpensive. When properly installed, a well-designed unshielded Cat 5e cable will be easier to both install and maintain than a shielded one.

Length and Color Options of Category 5e Cable

When choosing Cat 5e cable for your network, you also need to consider length and color. Cat 5e Ethernet cables come in standard lengths such as 1, 3, 5, 7, and 10 meter. Longer lengths are available, and you can also have custom cable lengths made. The distance between your various network devices and your network switch or router will determine the length you need. Cat5e cables come in all sorts of colors. This decision can be based purely on your individual tastes and preference. Blue is perhaps the most common, but you might also consider white, gray, or some other color that doesn’t clash with your walls and carpet. Pictures below shows ten colors of Cat 5e cable provided in Fiberstore.

cat-5e-color

Conclusion

Cat 5e cable supports up to 100 MHz and speeds up to 1 Gbps over 100 meters of cable. Cat 5e crossover patch cable is usually used to connect two same of type of devices. Besides, snagless boot prevents unwanted cable snags during installation and provides extra strain relief.

snagless-booted-cat5e-cable

The table below listed several most popular Cat 5e cables sold in Fiberstore for your choice.

FS P.N. Description
22831 3m Cat 5e Purple Snagless Booted Unshielded(UTP) PVC Ethernet Network Patch Cable
22842 20m Cat 5e Blue Snagless Booted Unshielded(UTP) LSZH Ethernet Network Patch Cable
13826 3m Cat 5e Green Non-booted Unshielded(UTP) PVC Ethernet Network Patch Cable
22775 1m Cat 5e Purple Snagless Booted Unshielded(UTP) PVC Ethernet Network Patch Cable
22835 2m Cat 5e Blue Snagless Booted Unshielded(UTP) LSZH Ethernet Network Patch Cable