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Cat5 Vs Cat5e Vs Cat6: How Ethernet Cable Speeds Differ

2017-12-07 HSDCable 342

Ethernet cables are the lifeblood of any wired internet network. While they all look very similar on the outside, these cables can potentially affect the speed of your home network depending on which type you're using. This infographic breaks down the key differences between Cat5, Cat5e and Cat6 ethernet cables, including how much you can expect to pay for them in Australia.


Cat5, Cat5e and Cat6 cables (also known as Category 5e and Category 6) are standardised cables used for Ethernet. Each standard is backwards compatible with older Ethernet cabling technology but differ in terms of data performance.


The infographic below comes from the Canadian voice and data communication system provider Network Telecom. It shows the data performance, frequency and maximum speed data for each cable type, plus the average cost per metre in Australia.


Remember, you’ll need more than just cables — gigabit speeds also require a gigabit-compatible router and gigabit-capable network cards in your computers. For a more detailed overview of Ethernet cable types, click here.