Type of Cable/Wire for Home Network

Old 10-24-06, 01:30 PM
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Type of Cable/Wire for Home Network

I've been thinking of running network cables to quite a few rooms in my house.

I know most here are of the thought to stick with Cat5e instead
of Cat6. I just never realized there were so many choices (other than sleeve color) for the type of cat6/cat5e.

Prices below were for a 1000ft box.

Cat5e UTP Solid Cable ($72 - $80)
Cat5e UTP Stranded Cable ($74-$80)
Cat5e STP Solid Cable ($97.60)
Cat5e STP Stranded Cable ($99)
Cat5e Plenum Solid Cable ($165)

Cat6 UTP Solid ($115)
Cat6 UTP Stranded ($115)
Cat6 Plenum Solid Cable ($223)

Obviously huge jump to 'plenum' cable (what is this?). Not so much between solid or stranded. Anyone able to explain the differences (UTP, STP, Solid, Stranded, Plenum) and or offer suggestions on which to purchase?
Old 10-24-06, 01:40 PM
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Did a bit of reading on wikipedia.

UTP = unshielded
STP = shielded (less interference)
Plenum = some kind of slow burning.

For my situation, no run is longer than ~120 feet.

All wires will be run under the house (in the crawlspace) to standard jack height on the first floor (1 story house).
Seems like plenum isn't required.

Is STP worth the extra $20 for medium length (~120ft) runs?
I still can't find the differences between stranded and solid.
Old 10-24-06, 03:59 PM
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Generally you will want UTP cable, solid for in the walls, stranded to make patches from. There is usually no need for STP in residential.

Plenum is for when you will install the cable in chases used for air circulation.
Old 10-24-06, 05:37 PM
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I would buy and use shielded cable. This is especially true if you aren't planning on being too careful about avoiding the electrical cables, or if there isn;t much of a way to avoid getting too close to them.
Old 10-24-06, 06:43 PM
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Buy the best stuff available - no amount of money saved will be worth it once the walls are sealed up and you're not thrilled.
Old 10-24-06, 07:08 PM
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caf5e UTP would be the best choice

stay away from the sheilded it can cause more problems than it solves if not properly bonded and grounded . no reason or advantage to using it a home network .

if you want to future proof , consider running conduit .

or at the very least pull a pull string along with the cable

then you can upgrade or add whatevers needed

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