Q:

What are the specifications of a Category 6 cable?

A:

Quick Answer

Category 6, or Cat6, cable is a stranded bare copper wire with insulation that measures at least 0.153 millimeters thick. It has a gray jacket and an overall diameter of 5.8 millimeters.

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Full Answer

Cat6 cable is the standard cable used in gigabit Ethernet. This cable is backward compatible to Cat5 and Cat5e cables and offers high performance and fast speeds. Cat6 cable has a maximum allowed length of 328 feet and homeowners may identify Cat6 cable by the writing on the side of the cable sheath.

On the inside of the cable, there are four pairs of wires. The first pair is blue and blue and white. The second pair consists of orange and orange and white, and the third pair is green and green and white. Finally, the last pair of wires is brown and brown and white.

Cat6 cable has a DC resistance unbalance of five percent and a pair-to-ground capacitance unbalance of 330 pF on a 100-meter cable. Its normal velocity of propagation is 69 percent and its mutual capacitance is 5.6nF/m Max. The cable jacket can handle temperatures of up to 167 degrees Fahrenheit with an insulation wall thickness of 0.178 millimeters.

When cable companies use Cat6 cable without implementing Cat6 jacks and patch cables, performance is lost and will not meet Cat6 performance ratings and specifications.

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