View Full Version : Recommended Cat5 Brands?
06-27-2001, 01:59 PM
Regarding Cat5: is a cable just a cable (read: does brand name really matter)? I know there are rating (crosstalk, MHz, Black Box's over-priced lifetime warranty brand, yada yada), but i'm just looking for a spool of cable to make patch cables and lay throughout my apartment.
I've worked with both solid and stranded and would prefer stranded for my purposes (because it coils better). Does anyone have any recommended deals, brands, etc.? Has anyone every heard of or used 'Space Shuttle' or 'BAFO' brand cable?
Thanks in advance for your input.
(Side note: anyone know what's with the 1/2" twist requirements?)
06-27-2001, 04:47 PM
I don't think brand name makes a difference, just so long as it is not cheap crap. Stranded is definately the way to go. If you are running cable through your walls you might as well spend a little more on a higher rated cable, you won't regret it later.
Re: the side note:
The 1/2 twist causes interference running along the cable to cancel itself out. Without the twist, or with a longer twist, the cable would have more data errors, if it was able to transmit at all.
06-27-2001, 09:02 PM
if you're looking for crossover i found some at circuit city for 5 bucks for 10 feet. not bad considering i found the same for 15 at compusa and 21 at bestbuy.
if you're wiring the house i would use a better quality stuff, seeing as it's going to be there for a while.
06-27-2001, 10:49 PM
my fav is cat5e, it's just a bit better than regular cat5
but if your adventurous, you should get Cat5 o' 8 Tails
06-28-2001, 05:18 AM
Stranded vs Solid:
Use stranded when making patch cables - where you crimp on an end. The stranded wire makes it easier for the contacts to connect.
When punching down wire (on a patch panel or wall jack) you should use solid - you get better punchdown connections with solid wire.
This is just a rule of thumb - I've used both types for both applications, and they seem to work OK. However, when I just want to pick up one spool, I'll always go with solid - I find I get better connections with it. You really have to crank down hard on the crimper to make patch cables, but they do fine.
06-28-2001, 05:26 AM
I just wired my house using a couple of 1000' cat5e (solid) spools from Home Depot and they were $54.00 each. I used it for both phone and network. I think it is made by General Cable, but might be labeled as Carol Brand. It is the same stuff I have seen local contractors using in area businesses.
06-28-2001, 10:16 AM
So the 1/2" twist is really just leaving a little less than 1/2" of the wires exposed from underneath the plastic casing before crimping? Is there any actual twisting involved?
07-02-2001, 05:05 AM
The rule has to do with the twist, not the plastic sheilding covering the twisted wire. That sheilding doesn't do anything except keep the wire together, unless you happen to be using STP (sheilded twisted pair) which is pretty darn unlikely.
Take a good inch to 1-1/2" off of the plastic sheilding to give yourself room to work. Put the wires in the correct order, THEN trim them up so they will fit in the plug. The 1/2" rule comes into play here - you can't have more than 1/2" of untwisted wire going into the plug (or patch panel or whatever). This is where you'll start dropping your speed from 100Mbps down closer to the 10Mbps level if the connection is not perfect, and is why I always recommend that people buy rather than make patch cables.
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