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4 Factors To Consider While Choosing Ethernet Network Cables

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By Author: Jennifer Truong
Total Articles: 33
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As you might already have experienced, choosing and getting the best Ethernet cable is not as easy as searching ‘ethernet cable near me’ on the search engine. With the new updates and modifications in Ethernet cables, there are various types of them available for different uses. These network cables often look the same but have significant differences in terms of categories, cables, and purposes. Its quality and performance majorly depend on the vendor you buy from. So choose wisely. Even though Cat5e cable tops the line, more options like Cat6, Cat6a, Cat7, and Cat8 Ethernet network cables are available.
Now let us come to the big question,' How to choose the right Ethernet network cable'. And to help you clear this confusion, we are here to help you with this Ethernet buying guide. Let us focus on some primary considerations you must do while choosing the best Ethernet cable.
What to Look for?
It is necessary to choose the correct Ethernet cables for better connections. The following main aspects will help you ...
... to choose the proper network cable by considering aspects like network cable types, performance, quality, price, and more.

Speed and Compatibility

To find the best LAN cable for supporting your Ethernet cable, you first need to know the requirements of the cable. This is mostly determined by the speed of the Internet network one is using. For instance, it would be a waste to buy a 10Gbps Cat6a cable if you are not going to use the 10Gbps speed of the Internet.

Ethernet cables are easily interchangeable and backward compatible. You need to understand the performance of different network cable types for achieving the best out of it. Because otherwise, you will plug a Cat5 cable into a router having the latest 10G Ethernet interface.

The adoption of this cable type will slow the data transfer down depending on the type of transferred file. Likewise, you will plug a Cat7 cable into an old router that does not support the latest speeds and end up having no output. Thus, be clear about what speed and performance you require and what type of network you are using before buying an Ethernet cable.

Material of the Cable

Ethernet cable with the copper conductor will enhance the performance of the cable and directly affect the Ethernet cable price too. Copper-clad aluminum wires & copper wires are easily available in the market.

Here, the most significant difference lies in the purity of copper, which ultimately determines the Ethernet cable quality. With pure copper, you will not lose the signal quality. For this, you need to choose oxygen-free copper wire with 99.95% pure copper quality. However, if you want to buy cost-saving wires, you can also go with copper-clad aluminum wires.

Cable Jacket Rate

Ethernet cable jackets are made of two kinds of materials - flame-retardant jacket and non-flame retardant jacket. As their name says, flame retardant cables are designed to resist the spread of fire, and non-flame retardant jackets are not. Thus, for safety concerns, you should buy flame retardant Ethernet cables.

The flame retardant types include cables such as CM, CMR, CMP, LSZH, etc. Ethernet cords having PVC CM and LSZH jackets are often useful in patch cabling environments.

Cable Connectors

The material of the connectors is important for maintaining constant signals. Silver and aluminum materials are extremely oxidizable, whereas gold is hardly oxidized in the natural environment. This makes gold an ideal material for achieving a strong and lasting Internet connection. With gold connectors, you will be less likely to lose the signal and can save yourself from spending on constantly replacing the connectors.

Conductivity order: silver > gold/copper > aluminum>nickel/iron

Other common factors like STP, UTP, length, color also play a major role in the efficiency of Ethernet cables. So, after knowing what you should consider before buying a good Ethernet cable, you should also know that its quality matters the most. And buying it from a good vendor can help you to end up with a good cable. For that you can search ‘ethernet cable near me’ on google and you will get a list of cable vendors and find quality vendor suggestions.

More About the Author

Jennifer Truong is the owner of SF Cable, a California based online retailer of all kind of cables, wires, cords, and other related accessories for computers and other consumer electronics. SF Cable is well known in the market for providing high-quality products at low prices by sourcing them directly from manufacturers. Jennifer has extensive experience in the cable industry and has been instrumental in the growth of SF Cable and in establishing it as one of the leading providers of cables online.

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