Cat5e Bulk Wire

Category 5 cable

Category 5 cable (Cat 5) is a twisted pair cable for carrying signals. This type of cable is used in structured cabling for computer networks such as Ethernet. The cable standard provides performance of up to 100 MHz and is suitable for 10BASE-T, 100BASE-TX (Fast Ethernet), and 1000BASE-T (Gigabit Ethernet). Cat 5 is also used to carry other signals such as telephony and video. In some cases, multiple signals can be carried on a single cable; Cat 5 can carry two conventional telephone lines as well as a single 100BASE-TX channel in a single cable or two 100BASE-TX channels in a single cable.

The cable is commonly connected using punch down blocks and modular connectors. Most Category 5 cables are unshielded, relying on the twisted pair design and differential signaling for noise rejection.

Category 5 has been superseded by the Category 5e (enhanced) specification.

Category 5 vs. 5e

The category 5e specification improves upon the category 5 specification by tightening some crosstalk specifications and introducing new crosstalk specifications that were not present in the original category 5 specification. The bandwidth of category 5 and 5e is the same - 100 MHz.


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