CAT6 cable - Which is best UTP or STP ?

MJeeves

Well-known Member
CAT6 cable - Which is best UTP or STP ?

Is shielded CAT6 cable better than unshielded CAT6 cable for a home network ? :confused:

What are BELKIN CAT 6 cables like? Are they reputable? :confused:

:lease:

Thanks :thumbsup:
 

Trollslayer

Distinguished Member
Belkin are pretty good, I've used a lot of them without problems.
 

Andy98765

Distinguished Member
Why CAT6 for a home network? I use a mix of CAT5 and CAT5E running a 1 gig network with no problems for the last 2 years.
You are wiring a home with very short runs not a office with huge runs.
 

MJeeves

Well-known Member
Why CAT6 for a home network? I use a mix of CAT5 and CAT5E running a 1 gig network with no problems for the last 2 years.
You are wiring a home with very short runs not a office with huge runs.

I see your point, but is CAT 6 better than CAT 5 or CAT 5e ? :confused:
 

t72bogie

Well-known Member
I see your point, but is CAT 6 better than CAT 5 or CAT 5e ? :confused:

its better if you intend on running it near to power cables, otherwise, Cat 5e is more than good enough

Belkin cables are horrendously marked up - £10 for a £2 cable etc

if you are doing a lot of wiring just buy a 30M or 100M reel, a crimp tool, and some ends/patch panel, and do the job properly

£50 will probably buy you a few Belkin patch leads, whereas buy it bulk and you could rewire a whole office for that ;)
 

arthurleung

Active Member
its better if you intend on running it near to power cables, otherwise, Cat 5e is more than good enough

Belkin cables are horrendously marked up - £10 for a £2 cable etc

if you are doing a lot of wiring just buy a 30M or 100M reel, a crimp tool, and some ends/patch panel, and do the job properly

£50 will probably buy you a few Belkin patch leads, whereas buy it bulk and you could rewire a whole office for that ;)

I've always bought my network cable from SCAN and the price difference Cat5 and Cat6 is minimal so might as well get Cat6. While I'm not certain if its down to the cable, after I redone my home network (5/5e -> 6) and upgraded every system to vista/2008/w7b, my GbE speed went from 500Mbps to 900Mbps.

No point buying Belkin as it is the same generic stuff with a fancy label stamped on it. In fact Belkin cables can be quite crap, I bought some Belkin VGA cables a couple years back and they all ghosted.
 
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MJeeves

Well-known Member
No point buying Belkin as it is the same generic stuff with a fancy label stamped on it. In fact Belkin cables can be quite crap, I bought some Belkin VGA cables a couple years back and they all ghosted.

What make CAT6 cables would you recommend instead?
What is CAT6A/E cables? :confused:

Thanks again for your help guys! :thumbsup:
 

Kristian

Well-known Member
I've always bought my network cable from SCAN and the price difference Cat5 and Cat6 is minimal so might as well get Cat6. While I'm not certain if its down to the cable, after I redone my home network (5/5e -> 6) and upgraded every system to vista/2008/w7b, my GbE speed went from 500Mbps to 900Mbps.

The only reason you would get speed increases from changing the cables would be if the Cat5E was installed badly in the first place. This may cause lots of errored frames meaning lots of retransmissions. 1Gbps over Cat5E is exactly the same as over Cat6. It would be more likely down to the OS changes.
 

Kristian

Well-known Member
What make CAT6 cables would you recommend instead?

Whatever is cheaper. Just buy from a well known place and you'll be fine. Use proper sockets/modules/patch panels and a punch down tool for the run outs and then buy pre made patch cables to connect devices to.

What is CAT6A/E cables? :confused:

You want either Cat5E or Cat6a (Cat6a is augmented Cat6, and is basically the later version). All three cables (Cat5E/6/6a) will support 1Gbps Ethernet up to 100m as the spec. In the home UTP is usually more than sufficient unless you run some very noisy [electical noise] kit (Nothing that you usually get in the home), in which case STP may help.

Plenty of threads in this forum about installing the cabling too...

Kris.
 

MJeeves

Well-known Member
Whatever is cheaper. Just buy from a well known place and you'll be fine. Use proper sockets/modules/patch panels and a punch down tool for the run outs and then buy pre made patch cables to connect devices to.



You want either Cat5E or Cat6a (Cat6a is augmented Cat6, and is basically the later version). All three cables (Cat5E/6/6a) will support 1Gbps Ethernet up to 100m as the spec. In the home UTP is usually more than sufficient unless you run some very noisy [electical noise] kit (Nothing that you usually get in the home), in which case STP may help.

Plenty of threads in this forum about installing the cabling too...

Kris.

Thanks Kris.

So... money no object... it is the BEST option to go for STP CAT6a cables?
Money no object... :confused:
 

Kristian

Well-known Member
Thanks Kris.

So... money no object... it is the BEST option to go for STP CAT6a cables?
Money no object... :confused:

Money no object would be fibre all round or Cat7 but that would be just plain daft :)

Cat6/6a is more demanding wrt installation and termination (and Cat7 more so) than Cat5E.

So yes, money no object, being reasonably sensible, would be Cat6a STP. However, imho Cat5E UTP or Cat6 UTP would be more than good enough in the home. In either case, good installation and termination is key to a reliable system.
 

MJeeves

Well-known Member
Money no object would be fibre all round or Cat7 but that would be just plain daft :)

Cat6/6a is more demanding wrt installation and termination (and Cat7 more so) than Cat5E.

So yes, money no object, being reasonably sensible, would be Cat6a STP. However, imho Cat5E UTP or Cat6 UTP would be more than good enough in the home. In either case, good installation and termination is key to a reliable system.


Thanks so much for all your advice guys! :thumbsup:

How does this cable look to you guys? Is it reputable and able to do the job well? Thanks.

Belkin (AQUA) CAT6a Shielded STP cable:
BELKIN CORPORATION Patch Cable/ Cat6a Shielded Snagless Rj45m/m Sstp 5m Aqua F2CP003-5MAQ-LS

Anyone used Adsis.co.uk ? They any good ? :confused:

Any feedback on the cable or the company is greatly appreciated. Thanks again... you've been soooo helpful. :smashin:
 

mickevh

Distinguished Member
What are you proposing to use this cable for?

By that I mean, are you looking to install permanent cable runs into the structure of your home (like they're going to be plastered into the walls) with RJ45 sockets on each end or are you simply looking to connect up a a few items of equipment stood near each other?
 

MJeeves

Well-known Member
What are you proposing to use this cable for?

By that I mean, are you looking to install permanent cable runs into the structure of your home (like they're going to be plastered into the walls) with RJ45 sockets on each end or are you simply looking to connect up a a few items of equipment stood near each other?

Thanks. A permanent install (may be near power cables, interconnect cables and speaker cables etc etc).

I just want THE BEST cables for the job. Thanks.
 

mickevh

Distinguished Member
If I was doing a cable install I would be terminating the cable runs onto RJ45 sockets and/or patch panels. I would be punching down the ends of the cables into the sockets using an IDC (AKA Krone) punchdown tool.

To do that, you don't need cable with RJ45 plugs already on ends of them (I would be cutting them off) and you don't need "patch" cable. Indeed, to punch down "patch" cable (as opposed to "solid" core) I believe you need to use special types of IDC sockets.

"Patch" cable has multi-stranded cores to make it more flexible and less prone to breaking. "Solid" core cable is what we use for permanent infrastructure runs because it's cheaper, punches down into IDC sockets better and I believe it has better electrical properties (whatever "better" means - you'll need to ask an electrical engineer.) It's just the same for your electrical supply: The twin-and-earth plastered into your home is "solid" core, but any appliances you plug in will have multi-stranded cables.

I wouldn't bother with cat6 since gigabit ethernet runs perfectly well over cat5e and I reckon it'll be a while (like years) before anything sold into the SOHO market goes faster than GBit. Equally, I've run in hundreds of Cat5e cables through electrically challenging environments such as plant rooms and basements at lengths in excess of 100m (which is outside the ethernet spec.) and they work GBit without a problem, so I doubt a domestic environment with a couple of loudspeakers and a 100amp ring main is going to challenge them much. Likewise, my sparkies regularly run UTP and mains wiring down the same bits of cable trunking, and we don't have any problems there either. Hence, I wouldn't worry about STP or FTP (costs more and needs "earthing" properly to deliver any additional benefit.)

A spool of 100m of solid core cat5e can be bought for GBP 20 or so, GBP 30 for cat6 (and that's retail prices on Amazon, at "proper" electrical suppliers it may be even cheaper. I'm sure "trade" we only pay GBP 10 + VAT or so for 100m cat5e.)

But I can understand people who are paranoid about future proofing and given that it's only about GBP 10 extra for cat6, then it seems reasonable to go for that.

What I wouldn't do is buy a made up "patch" cable(s) with RJ45 plugs on each end such as you've linked, and cement them into the walls leaving the plugs each end dangling over the skirting boards. Not least because it looks horrid. I'd spend some extra money on sockets and do the job properly.

One other pearl of wisdom - if ever you are putting in a permanently fixed UTP run, I "always pull 2" so that I've got a spare line just in case anything goes wrong or I find a use for an extra one in future. Cable is cheap, the expensive part is the "hassle" of putting it in.

Cheers, M,
 
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MJeeves

Well-known Member
If I was doing a cable install I would be terminating the cable runs onto RJ45 sockets and/or patch panels. I would be punching down the ends of the cables into the sockets using an IDC (AKA Krone) punchdown tool.

To do that, you don't need cable with RJ45 plugs already on ends of them (I would be cutting them off) and you don't need "patch" cable. Indeed, to punch down "patch" cable (as opposed to "solid" core) I believe you need to use special types of IDC sockets.

"Patch" cable has multi-stranded cores to make it more flexible and less prone to breaking. "Solid" core cable is what we use for permanent infrastructure runs because it's cheaper, punches down into IDC sockets better and I believe it has better electrical properties (whatever "better" means - you'll need to ask an electrical engineer.) It's just the same for your electrical supply: The twin-and-earth plastered into your home is "solid" core, but any appliances you plug in will have multi-stranded cables.

I wouldn't bother with cat6 since gigabit ethernet runs perfectly well over cat5e and I reckon it'll be a while (like years) before anything sold into the SOHO market goes faster than GBit. Equally, I've run in hundreds of Cat5e cables through electrically challenging environments such as plant rooms and basements at lengths in excess of 100m (which is outside the ethernet spec.) and they work GBit without a problem, so I doubt a domestic environment with a couple of loudspeakers and a 100amp ring main is going to challenge them much. Likewise, my sparkies regularly run UTP and mains wiring down the same bits of cable trunking, and we don't have any problems there either. Hence, I wouldn't worry about STP or FTP (costs more and needs "earthing" properly to deliver any additional benefit.)

A spool of 100m of solid core cat5e can be bought for GBP 20 or so, GBP 30 for cat6 (and that's retail prices on Amazon, at "proper" electrical suppliers it may be even cheaper. I'm sure "trade" we only pay GBP 10 + VAT or so for 100m cat5e.)

But I can understand people who are paranoid about future proofing and given that it's only about GBP 10 extra for cat6, then it seems reasonable to go for that.

What I wouldn't do is buy a made up "patch" cable(s) with RJ45 plugs on each end such as you've linked, and cement them into the walls leaving the plugs each end dangling over the skirting boards. Not least because it looks horrid. I'd spend some extra money on sockets and do the job properly.

One other pearl of wisdom - if ever you are putting in a permanently fixed UTP run, I "always pull 2" so that I've got a spare line just in case anything goes wrong or I find a use for an extra one in future. Cable is cheap, the expensive part is the "hassle" of putting it in.

Cheers, M,

Thanks so much for a very indepth reply. It is appreciated.

I have the funds, so do you think these cables are more than good enough for the job? Thanks. :smashin:

Belkin (AQUA) CAT6a Shielded STP cable:
BELKIN CORPORATION Patch Cable/ Cat6a Shielded Snagless Rj45m/m Sstp 5m Aqua F2CP003-5MAQ-LS

Anyone used Adsis.co.uk ? They any good ?

Any feedback on the cable or the company is greatly appreciated. Thanks again... you've been soooo helpful. :thumbsup:
 

Triggaaar

Distinguished Member
I wouldn't bother with cat6 since gigabit ethernet runs perfectly well over cat5e and I reckon it'll be a while (like years) before anything sold into the SOHO market goes faster than GBit.
But how many years? Technology does move quickly, and if you're going to be staying in your home for 20 years, could we be wishing we had faster connections to cope with future applications?

Hence, I wouldn't worry about STP or FTP (costs more and needs "earthing" properly to deliver any additional benefit.)
Does that mean you wouldn't go for Cat5e STP?

I have the funds, so do you think these cables are more than good enough for the job? Thanks. :smashin:

Belkin (AQUA) CAT6a Shielded STP cable:
BELKIN CORPORATION Patch Cable/ Cat6a Shielded Snagless Rj45m/m Sstp 5m Aqua F2CP003-5MAQ-LS
I think mick is saying no, he doesn't think they're ideal for the job
What I wouldn't do is buy a made up "patch" cable(s) with RJ45 plugs on each end such as you've linked, and cement them into the walls leaving the plugs each end dangling over the skirting boards. Not least because it looks horrid. I'd spend some extra money on sockets and do the job properly.
If money isn't too much of an issue, and you don't fancy DIYing it, pay someone to install proper sockets in your walls. They look neat, don't get damaged as you walk by, and do the job perfectly.

Like you though I'm not sure whether to put cat5e or cat6 in.
 

mickevh

Distinguished Member
Hi - no, I wouldn't use FTP or STP as to be effective, you have to wire the foil or shield to an electrical "earth." In big corporate type buildings our cabling is largely terminated (at one end at least) into cabling closets and onto rack mounted patch panels. The racks in such closets are sometimes earthed, so we connect FTP/STP to earth there (we buy special patch panels suitable for FTP/STP and there's usually an "earthing" point built into them that you wire up to the rack.)

Domestic installs tend to either not use racks, or if they do, not earth them, so there's nowhere for you the connect your FTP/STP earth, so it seem pointless spending the extra money on FTP/STP cable. Just buy regular UTP.

Cat5 versus 6 - as I said in one of myearlier ramblings, the cost difference is only 10 pounds these days, so why not go cat6.

An no, I wouldn't pay GBP 20 for a 5m patch cable which I was going to mutilate, I'd buy "bulk" cable at GBP 20-30 for 100m and fit my own sockets on the ends.
 
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alpha123

Standard Member
Rightly or wrongly, I've gone for shielded CAT6 cabling throughout my house. I'm looking for shielded "keystone jacks" (aka "connectors", I believe, amongst other things) to terminate the cables at the outlets and at the hub end. They seem to vary in price enormously.

Are there any particular brands that anyone recommends or advises particularly against?

Thanks in advance.
 

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