Cat6 Plenum Cable is a high-end ethernet cable usually produced in 1000ft lengths for installations in commercial and residential buildings. It is available in a plethora of options to choose from. For instance, you can buy it in different colors, conductors, and shielded or unshielded types.
The data transfer rate and bandwidth capacity of this cable are 1 GBit/s and 550 MHz,r respectively. And it features 23 AWG twisted pair conductors in 4 pairs.
Cat6 is an affordable plenum ethernet cable, but if you don’t know what to look for in the cable, or what to pay for which specifications, it can get quite pricy. Most people would just buy it from an online store without understanding what they are buying and whether the price they are paying is justified. While it may work for a lot of people, it is certainly not how a pro would buy it.
So let’s unveil the secret to buying the 1000ft Cat6 Plenum Cable like a pro.
Getting to Know the Cat6 Plenum
Understanding the Cat6 Plenum cable demands understanding your networking requirement. For instance, if you are installing it in a commercial building or a large office, you will certainly be using devices such as smart screens, IP security cameras, identification systems, and many others that require a fast internet connection, and in some cases, a PoE connection.
So the cable that fulfills all these requirements is the Cat6 Plenum cable. Note that in some cases you will need to run the cable at long lengths, for such applications, this is the cable you need.
Checking the Performance
Checking the performance of the Cat6 plenum 1000ft cable is easy. Primarily because it is tested by most manufacturers professionally and you can see the results. For instance, each conductor pair of the cable undergoes tests for their frequency, resistance, and external noise. These results are always available from the manufacturer and you must ask for them before you buy a cable.
If these performance test results are not available with the manufacturer you can also run these tests yourself – since you are buying like a pro, you should not shy away from getting the cable tester and testing it.
Once you have the results of the Cat6 cable conductors, you will need to look for the frequency of the cable, its resistance to EMI, and the amount of NEXT-crosstalk.
Make sure that these results match the description of the cable. Ideally, a plenum ethernet cable should have less than 3% crosstalk of its total frequency for it to perform smoothly.
Similarly, the frequency of the cable can also vary while testing the cable depending on its run length. So be sure to check that too.
Checking the Essentials
Once you have tested the performance of the cable, that is primarily its conductors, you will need to test the cable’s other components that ensure a safe and reliable connection.
Following are the essentials you need to check.
Whether the cable is safe or not is a major factor. This cable is designed for both safety and performance.
Be sure to check that the jacket of the cable (Plenum) meets the fire safety requirements set by the relevant authorities. It must not emit toxic smoke if in a fire hazard. And should be designed to actively prevent and extinguish fire propagation along the length of the cable.
Cost-effectiveness means you need to make sure that it is not priced unjustifiably high and that it will last for some time. Now, the prices of this cable vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. You can find its average price by looking at a few.
Bear in mind, that the cheapest is not the worst and the most expensive is not the best – qualitywise.
Ease of Installation:
The cable should be easy to install. Otherwise, it can not only increase the installation costs, but it could also mean that the cable is bad. If the cable features a high-quality plenum jacket and bare copper conductors, it is most probably as easy to install as it can be.
Pro Tip: For indoor use, buy the stranded Cat6 plenum cable. It is the easiest cable to install and also works impeccably in indoor and short-distance runs.
Which one do you need?
Without beating around the bush, we recommend the Cat6 Plenum Cable with Pure Copper conductors.
Now, note that it is also available in solid and stranded variants. If you need the cable for indoor and short-distance transmissions, use the Stranded Cat6 Plenum with bare copper conductors.
For outdoors or relatively longer runs, use the Solid Conductor Cat6 Plenum Cable. It is durable and reliable. The signal integrity of this cable over long distances is unmatched.
Pro Tip: The cable is also available with the CCA conductors but is not recommended for use.
Buying the 1000ft Cat6 plenum like a pro is all about understanding the cable and your requirements. And then using the knowledge to identify and get the right cable. We hope this blog would help you in doing so.
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