Plenum, Riser, and PVC Ethernet cables are the three main types of Ethernet cables. When it comes to specifications (such as bandwidth capacity and data transfer rates), each of the three variants of a category is identical. It is, however, the location of installation about the jacket material that is important. If you’re a beginner, you’re probably unaware of the differences between Cat5e Riser Cable and Cat5e Plenum Cable, as well as Cat6 Plenum Ethernet Cable and Cat6 Riser Cable. But don’t worry; we’ve covered everything in this article. All you have to do now is stick with us until the very end.
What is Riser Ethernet Cable?
A CMR-rated riser ethernet cable has a CMR-rated jacket. CMR stands for Communication Multipurpose Cable Riser, and the standard for ethernet cable jackets is laid out in Article 800 of the NEC. The CMR-rated cable’s jacket is made of high-quality polyvinyl chloride with fire-retardant properties. A CMR-rated ethernet cable is intended for use in vertical or Riser spaces to prevent fire spread. Cat5e Riser Cable, Cat6 Riser Cable, and Cat6a Riser Cable are all widely available riser Ethernet cables. In addition, riser Ethernet cables can be used in outdoor areas.
What is Plenum Ethernet Cable?
The type of plenum ethernet cable that has a CMP-rated jacket is known as a plenum ethernet cable. The highest classification for the jacket material of ethernet cables is CMP, which stands for Communications Multipurpose Cable, Plenum. A CMP-rated cable is made of the highest quality polyvinyl chloride, which is fire-resistant. This cable is installed in the building’s plenum or horizontal spaces, and it stops fire progression while emitting no toxic or hazardous elements. A plenum ethernet cable can be used in Riser and outdoor spaces, but it cannot be reversed. Plenum cables are significantly more expensive than riser and PVC ethernet cables due to the superior quality jacket material. Cat5e Plenum Cable, Cat6 Plenum Cable, and Cat6a Plenum Cable are all widely available plenum cables.
Let’s move on to the installation locations now that you understand the riser and plenum cables.
Where to install Plenum and Riser Cables?
Plenum cables are installed in the building’s plenum or horizontal spaces, such as beneath raised floors or suspended ceilings. The reason for installing a CMP-rated cable in plenum spaces of buildings is simple: these areas have high air pressure, which increases the risk of fire eruption and progression; to reduce this risk, a CMP-rated cable should permanently be installed in these spaces. Plenum cables can be installed in Riser and outdoor spaces, as previously stated, but they cannot be reversed.
The name “riser spaces” is self-explanatory in terms of what they are. Riser-rated cables are installed in the riser spaces or vertical spaces of buildings with the same goal: to stop the spread of fire. Riser-rated emits no toxic elements or hazardous gases when exposed to fire. Riser cables can also be installed in outdoor areas; however, they cannot be reversed.
Riser Cable: Some Key Specification
Data transfer speeds of 1Gbps and 100 Mbps are available at distances of 165 feet and 328 feet, respectively, with Cat5e Riser cable. In addition, it features a 550MHz bandwidth capacity.
Cat6 Riser Cable has 10 Gbps and 1 Gbps data transfer rates over a length of 165 feet and 328 feet, respectively. In addition, it features a 550 MHz bandwidth capacity.
Data transfer speeds of 10 Gbps over a distance of 100 meters are possible with Cat6a Riser Cable. It has a 750 MHz bandwidth capacity.
Plenum Cables: Some Key Specification
Cat5e Plenum Cable has a bandwidth capacity of 350 MHz and data transfer rates of 1Gbps and 100Mbps across lengths of 50 meters and 100 meters, respectively.
Over a length of 50 meters and 100 meters, Cat6 Plenum Cable offers data transfer rates of 10 Gbps and 1 Gbps, with a bandwidth capacity of 550 MHz.
Data transfer speeds of 10 Gbps over a distance of 100 meters are possible with Cat6a Plenum Cable. In addition, it has a 750 MHz increased bandwidth capability.