| More

Frequently Asked Questions

Back to Listings
Question:

What is the difference between Cat3, Cat5, Cat5e, Cat6, etc.?

Answer:
This is actually a somewhat complex question to answer as it involves a number of technical details. The most basic answer is that each Category of cable is supposed to meet (or exceed) a specific set of standards, the most significant of which, is the ability to pass all signals up to a particular carrier frequency (or signaling rate). Additional standards have to be met include values for attenuation, near end cross talk (NEXT), ACR, etc.
 
Cat 3
Voice
16 MHz
16 MHz
Yes
Cat 5
Voice, Data (10/100 Mbps thernet)
100 MHz
100 MHz
Yes
Cat 5e
Voice, Data (10/100 Mbps/ Gigabit Ethernet)
100 MHz
200 MHz
Yes
Cat 5 ENH1
Voice, Data (10/100 Mbps/ Gigabit Ethernet)
*
350 MHz
See note 1
Cat 6
Voice, Data (10/100 Mbps/ Gigabit Ethernet)
200 MHz
500 MHz
Yes

1 Cat 5 ENH is another version of Cat 5e offered by the manufacturer we use that further exceeds the Cat 5e EIA/TIA Standard.
Back to Top