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   ► KBComputer TechHardwareWired Networ...   Print This     
  From the October 2015 Issue of Prestwood eMag
Tech Wired Networking:
Cat 5, 5e, 6, and 6a Connectors
Posted 11 years ago on 6/1/2009
Tech Q&A Flashcard:
 A flashcard from our Tech Flashcards Library
 A FAQ from our Tech FAQ Page



Do I need different connectors for Cat 6 then what I'm currently using for Cat 5?


No, Cat 5, 5e, 6, and 6a all use the same RJ-45 connectors and are downward compatible. Meaning you can use a Cat 6 cable in a Cat 5 network. The difference is in the quality of the cable. Cat 5e is rated higher than Cat 5, Cat 6 is rated higher than Cat 5e, etc.

However, when building a Cat 5 or Cat 6 cable, you have to use the correct type of connector. Meaning, Cat 6 connectors are built differently even though you can use already made cables.

Here are the actual ratings:

Cable Frequency Rating Speed Range
Cat 5 100 Mhz 100 Mbps
Cat 5e 100 Mhz 100 to 1,000 Mbps
Cat 6 250 Mhz 1 to 10 Gigabit
Cat 6a 500 Mhz 10 to x Gigabit
Cat 7 600 Mhz 10 to 100 Gigabit


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FAQ Contributed By Mike Prestwood:

Mike Prestwood is a drummer, an author, and creator of the PrestwoodBoards online community. He is the President & CEO of Prestwood IT Solutions. Prestwood IT provides Coding, Website, and Computer Tech services. Mike has authored 6 computer books and over 1,200 articles. As a drummer, he maintains and has authored 3 drum books. If you have a project you wish to discuss with Mike, you can send him a private message through his PrestwoodBoards home page or call him 9AM to 4PM PST at 916-726-5675 x205.

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