Home Network Cabling


Standard Member

Not sure where to really post this, but all relates to Smart Home / future proofing so here goes........

I'm looking at 'future proofing' my house..... and remember a few years back going to a home building show at the NEC and came across a stand called 'Single point networks'. Basically one custom designed connection which can handle everything. They promote the fact they use cat-8 cable which is fine for HD, but like now what about 4K.......??

Just wondering if anyone has any advice / suggestions to what methods I can use.

If it means running separate cables throughout and having the relevant faceplates then so be it, just got a feeling there must be something out there.......

Any advice much appreciated

Cheers :0)


Well-known Member
While Cat 8 is a ratified standard it is designed for use only for data centers where distances between switches and servers is short. It is not intended for general office or home cabling.

If you intended to network your house then you will be looking at cat 5e/6/6a for that. Testing costs to get the wiring certified can be expensive however most home owners don't bother. So give the minimal difference in cost for the cabling and hardware you might as well go for the best which would be cat 6a cabling and hardware.


Distinguished Member
Cat7 is meant to sit in cable trays because it is quite rigid, I would expect Cat8 to be more so.
I believe Cat6 is adequate for your needs, Joe Fernand (a member here and deals with this stuff professionally) could help.


Well-known Member
You really need to think about the applications for this cabling. CATx is really flexible here, but there are some applications it's not suitable for, like mains current; obvious, but just one example. Coax being another cable type still deployed but less so today. Equally some vendors are now using CATx for lighting, so if you're going to future proof, you're going to be deploying a lot of it!

That's the main reason it's a good idea for having a contractor to take care of this. If you already know what this plan is, even broadly speaking, then you'll be able to be more specific and lose the excess you won't use to an extent.

So start with the layout and applications (HVAC or streaming media for example), and the systems and specification should meet this criteria. Remember you may need some centralised area for patching, switching, and control systems depending on size and complexity of your applications.


Distinguished Member
Cat5e is fine for networking, rated for Gigabit connections up to 100m and I recommend installing in pairs - wall plates take multiples of two modules.
I agree about planning and a patch location and remember with things called 'mod taps' you can route phone lines (but not broadband) through network cables.


Distinguished Member
The "cat" (UTP) cables aren't "network" cables - they are just "cables." Originally they were designed for phone systems and repurposed for data networking (ie ethernet. ) I doubt there would be any problem running phone (and broadband) down them. I've done both - ADSL to well over 100m (on top of whatever distance it had already traveled from the exchange.)

Incidentally, I never used Mod-Taps on UTP phone lobes. I forget what's in a mod-tap - IIRC it's essentially like a "master socket" so it can "ring" the phone - so if one's cabling/extensions are after a "proper" MS I can't see that you need the mod tap. Instead, I just terminate the applicable cable lobes onto "BT" type sockets instead of RJ45's - which also stop people plugging ethernet devices into POTS lobes (and vice versa.)

I guess if one wants the ultimate in "future proofing" (against what?) then one would install "proper" containment, ducting and trunking, then you can always deploy new cabling into it when some new standard emerges.

I think there's plenty of life left in GBit ethernet, and given that 2.5Gig and 5Gig (essentially quarter and half clocked 10Gig ethernet) is available, when we do reach the point where there's genuine need for faster than GBit ethernet, (hopefully) 2.5Gig and 5Gig will extend the "life" of the incumbent cabling infrastructure for those lobe that aren't up to snuff for running 10Gig.


Distinguished Member
Mod taps are useful because it means you can patch phone connections anywhere you want without dedicated sockets, that is what makes them useful.
Network cables are specified for 100MHz symbol rates, phone cables were not.

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