If you are looking to buy the Cat6a Plenum cable then there are some things that you will need to know before you actually purchase the Cat6a Plenum Cable. The Cat6a is the highest-performance version of the Cat6 cable and is used to connect larger rooms.
In this article, we will cover the five things that you need to know before buying the Cat6a Plenum cable.
Difference between Cat6 and Cat6a Plenum cable
Some people confuse Cat6 and Cat6a cables as the same. While they both are in the same categories but their performance is different. 6a, in which the ‘a’ stands for ‘augmented’ was introduced as an improved version of the original 6th category of the ethernet cables. And the Cat6a plenum cable can support data transmission at 10-gigabit speeds over 100 meters while its Cat6 counterpart supports only gigabit speeds at the same distance. These cables are different in terms of bandwidth capacity as well. Cat6 provides 550 MHz bandwidth and the 6a provides a voluminous 750 MHz.
Benefits of Cat6a cable
The second thing you need to know about this cable is the benefits it provides. Its performance is one thing that sets it apart from other categories of ethernet cables but it has more benefits that are not necessarily its performance features.
For instance, it is manufactured only with a riser and a plenum jacket. This is done to keep the quality of the cable at an optimum. It is also approved by EIA/TIA – which is also a testament to its high quality.
Another important yet lesser know benefit of this cable is its longevity. It essentially futureproofs your LAN with the most advanced features. If a new technology with higher data transfer rates and bandwidth requirements is introduced in the future, which is most certain, this cable will be one of the few wired networking accessories that will be compatible. In the rapidly developing landscape of technology, Cat6a cable ensures your proactiveness for what the future might behold.
The last but not the least benefit of this ethernet cable is its wide compatibility. Meaning, that if you have already Cat6 or Cat5 cables installed in your network, this can be integrated without any technical problems. It is also compatible with almost all of the 23 AWG keystone jacks so you don’t have to worry about whether it will fit your patch panels or wall plates, or faceplates.
Communications Multipurpose Plenum Jacket
It comes with a CMP-rated tick plenum jacket which is made out of ‘low smoke zero halogens’ (LSZH) materials. Cat6a with a plenum jacket ideally finds its use in indoor HVAC spaces such as raised floors and dropped ceilings.
It is highly unlikely for this cable to catch fire, if it does (it won’t). The jacket will prevent the flame from propagating along the cable. Also, the LSZH materials do not emit toxic smoke in a fire hazard which is an important factor to consider when setting up a safe LAN network.
Augmented Cat6 Applications
You need to know what applications you can use on the cable if you are looking to buy a Cat6a plenum. And if you already have it installed in your network, you need to know its potential.
It supports all high-speed ethernet applications from fast ethernet to 10-gigabit ethernet.
Augmented Category 6 cable comes only with a bare copper conductor. It is designed, as mentioned, to meet high standards of safety and performance. The only conductor it comes with is bare copper. However, bare copper can be either stranded or solid. The solid conductor is made out of a single piece of metal and the stranded one is made out of multiple wires which are twisted together to make one solid conductor.
Bare copper, solid or stranded, is highly resistant to heat. It is also resistant to corrosion. Moreover, it is a ductile and malleable material, which means that you can twist or turn it into any shape of your desire.
This makes the cable easier to install, long-lasting, and highly efficient.
Bonus: The cable is relatively more expensive than other Category 6 cables. And you get value in the form of better performance and safety.
Cat6a plenum cable, in short, is reliable, secure, and fast. It is also more expensive compared to the other Cat6 Cables and Cat6 risers as well. We hope this article will assist you in making an informed decision while buying the cable.