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Cat 6 versus Cat 6a

Posted on 2010-11-22
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
Hello,

I am not that well versed in the art of cables, so I'd like to pose the question:
What's the difference between Cat 6 and Cat 6a?  Would you know the difference in your production network?

Thanks,
Tom
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Question by:tommymat
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Author Comment

by:tommymat
ID: 34191480
p.s. I apologize for being a noob on this, but I am not that good on the networking side.
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Accepted Solution

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rjwesley earned 250 total points
ID: 34191516
In short:

Cat 6 can support 1 Gig
Cat 6A can support 10 Gig

Costs on Cat 6A is likely very high right now and would more likely be noticable with high end applications that produce files of significant saved over a network.

Rob
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Assisted Solution

by:hunart
hunart earned 250 total points
ID: 34191601
Here is info on the differences between the two cables http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category_6_cable.

There several differences, however, the important factors are the operating frequency (better performance) and the cable length limitations.  Obviously, the cost of the cable is significantly different.

HT
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Author Comment

by:tommymat
ID: 34191616
But the average desk jockey wouldn't notice the difference in checking e-mail/web surfing, right?
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Expert Comment

by:hunart
ID: 34191662
That's true... However, your infrastructure would have to have the resources to handle such bandwidth.  For example, using CAT6a cable alone does not necessarily allow you to have better performance on your network.  Your network devices would have to support that as well in order to fully utilize the benefit of such cable.

HT
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Author Comment

by:tommymat
ID: 34191676
True, especially when you consider that I am probably going to be using existing Cat 5e patch cables from the desk to the workstation.  I work in Scrooge's shop and we can't afford such items.

Thanks,
Tom
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