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Hi guys ... I wanted to get everyone's opinion on whether it's okay to use normal custom-length cut CAT 5e/6 Ethernet cable for running it between floors through walls ..

I actually have my wireless router on ground floor (i.e. 1st floor for US folks), and its signals kinda struggle when I move floors .. So I want to run one Ethernet cable from ground floor to 1st floor, and one from ground floor to basement (where my upcoming HT room is supposed to be) .. Then one 1st floor and basement, I'll install access points ..

Problem is, I'm not in the US, and I really only have local custom-length-cut ethernet cable available .. There is a guy selling QED ethernet cables, but not only are they quite expensive, they're also on backorder so I'll have to wait like 15 days or so for them ..

So long story short, I want to know if an ordinary Ethernet cable will work well while running inside walls between floors, or if I should really wait for those QED cables ..
 

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I use ordinary Cat5 cable under my floor... Not sure if it is to code but it works fine.
 

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Is the wire going to be fully supported? Different type of cables for different areas, fire exposure and mechanical wear..

For instance if your going to run a cable through a ceiling, is that space used for return air and subject to the cable moving and flexing? If so then use a cable that has internal support and an outside jacket that does not give off toxic fumes when exposed to fire...

The cable I used in my home has an internal filler that is X shaped. The X has one pair of wires in every " void" of the X and the jacket surrounds the wires and the X. Hard to explain in words, just think of a X inside of an O and the wires in the spaces... The filler acts as a strain relief for the wires and an internal support that allows the cable to hang unsupported.

As a practical matter as long as you don't make really sharp turns, hang 30 feet of cable unsupported (Think elevator shaft) or run the cable through areas where the cable is subjected to vibration or excessive flexure any type of cable should last forever..
 

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CAT5 or CAT6 Ethernet cable which is CL2 rated (inwall rated).
 

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of course it'll work. There is NO point in using the QED cables for ethernet. no point at all. do use Cat5E or Cat6. The latter is more future proof, but slightly harder to connect the plugs at the ends. Cat5E is the current standard in normal installations, also on events etc, we use Cat5e.


Regards,
Bert.
 

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Cat5 cables are good, I don't think it's a good idea to use ordinary Ethernet cables in wall installations, because I faced many connection and speed problems after a year due to it, I think the wall damages the cable and they do not behave exactly as electric wires behave in wall. :eek:
 

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The selection of network cables for installation requires a bit of understanding. First, bulk cable cut to length wins over pre-terminated cables. Second, select a Cat5E or Cat6 that is rated for the installation. The type required is mandated by local electrical codes, so you need to find out what's required and ignore general forum recommendations from those not familiar with your local codes. Generally, plenum rated wire is safe everywhere, but the extra cost may not be necessary. Next, use only wire that has been tested and certified to at least 350Mhz. Some wire is sold as Cat cable but doesn't really test out well. Blue Jeans has an article about this. Use coppers only, nothing plated or clad. Shielded cable isn't necessary for short residential runs. Cat 6 is only required for large installations with long runs, or for the OCD/Paranoid. Cat 6 is much harder to use and more expensive. For residential installations there is no measurable advantage.

Perhaps most critical, use connectors designed specifically for your wire type. Don't use Cat6 wire with Cat5 connectors...you probably can't anyway. Stranded cat wire isn't recommended for installation, and uses specific connectors. If you do used shielded cat cable, you need the right connectors and tools too. The "EZ" style of cable connectors and tools do make life simpler for the novice, but the pros avoid them because of cost.

Lastly, get the right tools. A good ratcheting crimper if you're using cable mount plugs, a good punch tool with jacks, and invest in a basic cable tester is you can confirm your connections as you go.
 

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Blue Jean cables are good, but not necessary for something like a cat5/6 cable. I would only spend the extra money using BlueJean if its an analog video or analog pre-amp audio cable. If its a digital cable (HDMI,Toslink, etc) then just get the cheapest one that doesn't have design issues (weak connector,...).
For Cat5/6 though, your best bet is shielded twisted pair (STP) solid copper. Unshielded or stranded are going to be more likely to be impacted by EMI.
 

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As for code. If it's going in a wall or under a rug (if it's getting fished) use a CL/CL2 rated cable. If it's going into plenum space use a plenum rated wire.
 

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Blue Jean cables are good, but not necessary for something like a cat5/6 cable. I would only spend the extra money using BlueJean if its an analog video or analog pre-amp audio cable. If its a digital cable (HDMI,Toslink, etc) then just get the cheapest one that doesn't have design issues (weak connector,...).
For Cat5/6 though, your best bet is shielded twisted pair (STP) solid copper. Unshielded or stranded are going to be more likely to be impacted by EMI.
Please help me understand. Why do you only recommend the Blue Jeans cable for analog video (hi freq) or analog audio (lo freq), but then turn around and say it's NOT needed for digital HDMI (both high freq audio/video). Do you mean to say that the analog signals need the better cable because they're inferior to digital? Are you implying that bits are bits, so can't possibly be affected by cabling?

CATx cable ratings must be taken with a grain of salt just like calibration files for a measurement microphone. If you really want to know what to expect in terms of electrical performance, an independent lab test can help. There's a lot of information and misinformation out on the web, and Blue Jeans has nothing to gain by spreading the latter. I believe them when they describe why all CATx cable is not created equal on this page. And I know that replacing 50 ft. of generic brand CAT6 with Blue Jeans eliminated drop-outs when streaming 24/96 hi-res audio from my server.
 

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Analog signals are much more susceptible to interference and noise in the signal, so you need better cables that are more insulated. Digital signals can also be affected by interference, but the signal gets to the destination intact or it doesn't. The digital signals in many cases have checksums for the packets being sent, so the packet is either valid 100% intact or invalid. So if you have a $3 cheap HDMI cable that is working, it makes no sense to spend big money on a BlueJeans HDMI cable that will give you absolutely no difference. Of course if you have handshake issues, or the signal drops out, then you may want to look at a lower gauge, or better shielded cable (or something like redmere for HDMI).

It will depend on your run length for the catx, if you have a really long run or the cable is going to be run near things that could cause interference then it could be a good idea to buy shielded twisted pair (STP). Most catx cables are unshielded twisted pair (UTP). There isn't really a whole lot that BJ cables can do to make "superior" catx cables other than the shielding, or tighter twisting near the connectors. Both of which can improve the performance of the cable.
 

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Digital signals can also be affected by interference, but the signal gets to the destination intact or it doesn't.
<snip>
The digital signals in many cases have checksums for the packets being sent, so the packet is either valid 100% intact or invalid
Well, okay, but I would add "yes and no." Why? Because the same could be technically said of analog (I.e. A rolled-off or otherwise distorted signal is not "intact). But that's splitting hairs in the matter of semantics.

Hope that doesn't come across with a "tone" but bits-are-bits is a pet peace of mine--and I can't seem to figure out how to add emoticons using the HTS.com iPhone app.

My point is that a digital signal doesn't just "get there or not." The ones and zeros are analog pulses with predefined amplitude, duration, and rise/fall times. Ground bounce caused by switching in unrelated circuitry can send a zero over the threshold into a one.

In any case, you make a good point about packets and checksums I hadn't considered. I'd like to try backing off to a "lesser" cable ( for lack of a better term) and see what happens. I like to keep an open mind and understand the great people here never stop learning. Thanks for listening!
 
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