Frequently asked questions on data cabling

Frequently asked questions on data cabling

We use data cables for a variety of purposes. People use them to transfer information from one device to another – from your computer to your phone to share photos and documents. While they are broadly used, several questions are raised concerning their types, importance, and use. Let’s dive right into it and get your basics cleared!


What are the types of data cables?


There are many types of data cables. Cat5e, Cat6a, and Cat6 cables are the most commonly used. 


What kind of fire-rated wire should you use when running a cable in a building?


A plenum-rated cable (CMP) is coated with materials like Teflon that is fire-resistant. A plenum-rated cable is ideal for a wide range of residential and commercial purposes while meeting many safety standards.


Is there a maximum distance to run a data cable or wire?


Ethernet cables are available in a few different versions. Still, all have a maximum range of 100 meters, i.e., 328ft (ca. 100 m). 


Why should I not let my electrician run my data cabling?


A successful data cabling installation ensures that all wires from different locations are correctly connected, including data cabling performance compliant with the network hardware and software models. An incorrect connection would ruin the entire thing. So, it would be best if you don’t have your local electrician run your data cabling.


When is it necessary to use fiber optic cables?


Fiber optic cables can carry enormous volumes of data at very high speeds. For this reason, fiber optic technology serves various purposes. It is always the preferred networking method, whether it is between systems within a building or across buildings.


What is structured cabling, and why is it important?


Structured cabling is a telecommunications network or private data network that uses cables to connect devices from the computer to the telecommunications infrastructure.


The structured network cabling provides support for voice, video, and data communications for computers and services.


It is essential because they offer better speeds and performance from their systems, leading to smoother network infrastructure.


What are the types of CAT cables, what are they each for?


The different types of CAT cables are:


CAT 5: This cabling standard is pretty old and is comparatively slower than others. They are only rated to provide up to 100 MHz bandwidth. 


Cat 5e: They have four twisted pairs instead of two and a higher frequency rating. With these, you can expect better performance than the previous internet cables. 


Cat 6: Category 6 offers increased bandwidth of up to 500 MHz. It also includes more stringent specifications for crosstalk and system noise. They are suitable for Gigabit Ethernet and other high-speed network applications, such as 1000BASE-T. 


Cat 6a: The “a” in Cat 6a stands for augmentation. These cables are faster, denser, and more technologically advanced than regular Cat 6 cables because they have a shield to eliminate crosstalk. 


Cat 7: Cat7 can operate at up to 40Gbps at distances up to 50 m and 10Gbps at distances up to 100 m. They have stricter specifications regarding crosstalk.


Cat 8: Cat 8 is the most advanced Ethernet cable. They can support bandwidths of up to 2000 MHz at speeds of up to 40 Gbps.


What is the difference between Cat 5 and CAT 6? 


Cat 5 and CAT 6 differ in their transmission speeds. At 100 m, Cat 5 can reach up to 10/100 Mbps, while Cat 6 can reach up to 1 Gbps.


What are plenum cables?


Plenum cables run through the plenum spaces in buildings. They are usually under ceilings or above the raised floors.


When should plenum cables be used?


Plenum cables should be used in plenum air spaces and air ducts to prevent flames and smoke from spreading.


Shielded cables vs. non-shielded cables, what is the difference?


Shielded cables are a bit more challenging to install and maintain than non-shielded cables.


Shielded cables, however, offer greater protection against electromagnetic

interference, which can interfere with the internal workings of electrical systems.


Non-shielded cables are easier to use but may be susceptible to EMI.


Whether you’re an IT company, contractor, or even a business vendor, you must hire a network cabling technician for a professional network cabling service. Their skillset and years of experience make them ideal for handling your cabling requirements.


Contact Priority Networks Inc today for more information on data cabling and data cabling services.

Massimo DeRocchis

My life has been surrounded with computers since I was a child, from my first job as a Computer Assembly Assistant to the current ownership of Priority Networks, a dental focused networking company. Starting with an Apple computer connecting to other networks when I was only 13 years old, I quickly knew this passion would lead to bigger ventures. As the internet started to evolve, I immediately worked for an Internet Service Provider (ISP). This gave me insight to the power of worldwide internet communications and the capabilities of sharing data across multiple networks simultaneously. The dedication towards this field has given me the advantage of understanding new technologies and grasping complicated issues quickly from software, hardware, networking, security, management and much more. As a Computer Network Manager for Tesma International, a division of Magna International, I gained the experience of becoming a qualified NAI Network Sniffer, EDI Communications Specialist, Head Securities Manager, MRP Manufacturing Integration Manager, and received several enhanced managerial and technological training courses. Moving forward to today, I apply all my knowledge, training and years of solid network experience to deliver the very best support to all my customers at Priority Networks.