Ethernet Cable Recommendation

1Wolf

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I've recently moved into a rental home and the ISP that serves this neighborhood offers Metronet Fiber Optic Internet and my package is a Gig speed package. I've previously always had comcast cable internet so Fiber is new to me. The fiber optic line comes through the outer wall into the house and plugs into a cable modem type device they called an ONT. The ONT plugs into my router via a short length of Cat6 Ethernet.

Unfortunately, my home office, gaming area, and most of my computer equipment is in the basement. The wireless from where the router is upstairs to the basement is awful and I'm not getting even a fraction of my fiber speeds.

So, while I can't move the ONT and the ONT needs to stay upstairs in the room that they ran the fiber optic into, I'd like to move my router to the basement and fish 100-150 feet of ethernet cable through the walls/under the floors between the ONT and the router.

What type of ethernet cable should I get to preserve my nice fiber speeds? I estimate I'll need 100 to 150 feet of cable. Cat6? Cat6a? Cat8? I wasn't sure what to get or what was way too much overkill. I just don't want to accidentally limit my fiber internet speeds because I picked the wrong cable.

Thanks!
 

applegrcoug

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I have put a lot of cable into my house. Bit of advice as you are fishing it through....run at least two cables. I did to everyplace. Every now and then I encounter a cable that someplace along the way got a staple or a cut or something.

Also, you may want to consider running a shielded wire for that run. Not sure it will make much difference, but interference is a weird deal.
 

pendragon1

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cat5e will do 1G up to 100m, thats the standard. if you think you might want/need faster in the future, go with 6.
 
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Nicklebon

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I would suggest that you stick with Cat 5E or Cat6 as these are suitable to mgig speeds of 2.5/5Gbps. Anything beyond that complicates your install and costs for little to no roi and increased likelihood of a faulty install. Do not run shielded cable unless you know how to do so and given the questions you don't.
 

BlueLineSwinger

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Mostly agreed with the prior posts.

Cat 5e is the simplest and least likely for an inexperienced installer to screw up. It supports up to 2.5 Gb/s to 100 m, so should be good for internet service for a long while. Given your apparent experience level, I'd recommend going with this.

Cat 6 is a bit more difficult to install correctly, and costs a little bit more. It supports up to 5 Gb/s to 100 m. This is probably overkill for your needs, but may be worthwhile if you know someone with install experience who can help you out.

Cat 6a is even more difficult to properly install, and can cost a fair bit more. It'll support up to 10 Gb/s to 100 m. Certain overkill, hard to recommend here.

Anything higher (e.g., Cat 7 or 8) is not recommended. These are barely even real standards and only really exist for limited circumstances in datacenters (which usually use fiber anyways). Do not buy shielded (STP/FTP) cabling, unshielded (UTP) only.

Solid-core, pure copper conductor only. No copper-clad aluminum (CCA), no stranded conductor.

Unless your local code otherwise dictates, general-purpose/residential-grade jacketing is fine for in-wall installation. Riser-rated is fine and may be the actual cheapest jacketing you can find. Plenum-rated is unnecessary.
 
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1Wolf

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I would suggest that you stick with Cat 5E or Cat6 as these are suitable to mgig speeds of 2.5/5Gbps. Anything beyond that complicates your install and costs for little to no roi and increased likelihood of a faulty install. Do not run shielded cable unless you know how to do so and given the questions you don't.

Mostly agreed with the prior posts.

Cat 5e is the simplest and least likely for an inexperienced installer to screw up. It supports up to 2.5 Gb/s to 100 m, so should be good for internet service for a long while. Given your apparent experience level, I'd recommend going with this.

Cat 6 is a bit more difficult to install correctly, and costs a little bit more. It supports up to 5 Gb/s to 100 m. This is probably overkill for your needs, but may be worthwhile if you know someone with install experience who can help you out.

Cat 6a is even more difficult to properly install, and can cost a fair bit more. It'll support up to 10 Gb/s to 100 m. Certain overkill, hard to recommend here.

Anything higher (e.g., Cat 7 or 8) is not recommended. These are barely even real standards and only really exist for limited circumstances in datacenters (which usually use fiber anyways). Do not buy shielded (STP/FTP) cabling, unshielded (UTP) only.

Solid-core, pure copper conductor only. No copper-clad aluminum (CCA), no stranded conductor.

Unless your local code otherwise dictates, general-purpose/residential-grade jacketing is fine for in-wall installation. Riser-rated is fine and may be the actual cheapest jacketing you can find. Plenum-rated is unnecessary.

Thanks kindly for the help and advice. Its much appreciated. So it looks like I'll stick with Cat5e or Cat6 based on your advice. I think I'd rather go with Cat6 as all the other cables I have lying around are also Cat6. With regards to knowing how to properly install Cat5e vs. Cat6 - does that only apply to cutting and crimping your own cable? Or does that apply to just a store-bought patch cable as well? I was most likely just going to buy a packaged 100 or 150 foot patch cable with the RJ45 connectors already on it and ready to go. I will likely hire an electrician to run the cable from point A to point B as accessing that area for me would be physically difficult. Its wouldn't think its a horribly difficult run as its just going from a main floor room in one corner of the house, down into a basement on the floor below to run above a drop-ceiling to the opposite corner of the house. My preferred electrician does advertise running network cable but I wanted to make sure I had the cable on-hand for him to run instead of him just using "whatever he had in his truck".
 

BlueLineSwinger

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Thanks kindly for the help and advice. Its much appreciated. So it looks like I'll stick with Cat5e or Cat6 based on your advice. I think I'd rather go with Cat6 as all the other cables I have lying around are also Cat6. With regards to knowing how to properly install Cat5e vs. Cat6 - does that only apply to cutting and crimping your own cable? Or does that apply to just a store-bought patch cable as well? I was most likely just going to buy a packaged 100 or 150 foot patch cable with the RJ45 connectors already on it and ready to go. I will likely hire an electrician to run the cable from point A to point B as accessing that area for me would be physically difficult. Its wouldn't think its a horribly difficult run as its just going from a main floor room in one corner of the house, down into a basement on the floor below to run above a drop-ceiling to the opposite corner of the house. My preferred electrician does advertise running network cable but I wanted to make sure I had the cable on-hand for him to run instead of him just using "whatever he had in his truck".

We're referring to doing a proper install, including punchdown to a keystone jack or other end, keeping the pairs twisted together, minding proper bend radius, etc. This is increasingly important as the cable's category rating increases and compliance with expected data rates.

Patch cables typically have much thinner jacketing that isn't meant to be pulled through a wall. There's a decent chance of damaging it while fishing it through. Also a good chance of damaging the RJ-45 jack (e.g., those clips are fragile).

If you have an electrician do the job, make sure they know how to properly run data cables and won't do things that are otherwise OK for basic electrical, like stapling the run or making tight bends.
 

SamirD

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If you have an electrician do the job, make sure they know how to properly run data cables and won't do things that are otherwise OK for basic electrical, like stapling the run or making tight bends.
Or the most common--running it like phone wire and calling it networking. :mad:
:mad::mad:(n)(n):banghead::banghead::hungover::hungover:

If you have coaxial cables in the walls, I'd use these instead and just put a pair of moca adapters to get you your ethernet run. The cost will probably be the same after the adapters, but the difference is that you can take these with you and resell them to recoup most of your investment in them.

As far as your idea to use the patch cable, I've done this for short runs. But for a longer run like you're talking about, I wouldn't do it. Also, people running wire typically won't 'guarantee' their work unless its their wire, so I'd just get a quote from them for a full job--that way they can get whatever they deem correct, and if it's not, it's their problem to fix it. Cat6 is common now at Home Depot/Lowes so that's what he'll be using if he's really going to run network wire and knows how to.
 
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If you have an electrician do the job, make sure they know how to properly run data cables and won't do things that are otherwise OK for basic electrical, like stapling the run or making tight bends.
this...so many do this wrong. Always check people's work because many are incompetent.

I also agree with the run 2 cables at a time thing. I am getting that in mind for the future for myself :D

I've recently moved into a rental home and the ISP that serves this neighborhood offers Metronet Fiber Optic Internet and my package is a Gig speed package. I've previously always had comcast cable internet so Fiber is new to me. The fiber optic line comes through the outer wall into the house and plugs into a cable modem type device they called an ONT. The ONT plugs into my router via a short length of Cat6 Ethernet.

Unfortunately, my home office, gaming area, and most of my computer equipment is in the basement. The wireless from where the router is upstairs to the basement is awful and I'm not getting even a fraction of my fiber speeds.

So, while I can't move the ONT and the ONT needs to stay upstairs in the room that they ran the fiber optic into, I'd like to move my router to the basement and fish 100-150 feet of ethernet cable through the walls/under the floors between the ONT and the router.

What type of ethernet cable should I get to preserve my nice fiber speeds? I estimate I'll need 100 to 150 feet of cable. Cat6? Cat6a? Cat8? I wasn't sure what to get or what was way too much overkill. I just don't want to accidentally limit my fiber internet speeds because I picked the wrong cable.

Thanks!
I have Metronet and love it. They have been great. The speeds I get across the global is solid too.

I use Cat5E throughout my house. I have 10GbE fiber only my desktop and server. Cat5e can go up to 2.5Gbps and Cat 6 goes to at least 10Gbps. So get either Cat5e or Cat 6. Cat 6 is futureproofed though. I would recommend Cat6 if you ever plan on getting 10GbE for file transfers between computers down the road.
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/6b/Twisted_pair_based_ethernet.svg

Twisted_pair_based_ethernet.svg
 
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1Wolf

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Thanks to everyone who chimed in, got me steered in the right direction, and offered information and advice.

After the advice here, I've elected to switch gears and instead of going with my electrician, I'm going to try a local small business that does home network and home theater wiring as well as other tech stuff. They are very well spoken of and get great reviews online. I'll ask him to run Cat6.

this...so many do this wrong. Always check people's work because many are incompetent.

I also agree with the run 2 cables at a time thing. I am getting that in mind for the future for myself :D


I have Metronet and love it. They have been great. The speeds I get across the global is solid too.

I use Cat5E throughout my house. I have 10GbE fiber only my desktop and server. Cat5e can go up to 2.5Gbps and Cat 6 goes to at least 10Gbps. So get either Cat5e or Cat 6. Cat 6 is futureproofed though. I would recommend Cat6 if you ever plan on getting 10GbE for file transfers between computers down the road.
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/6b/Twisted_pair_based_ethernet.svg

Twisted_pair_based_ethernet.svg

Thanks for the info and the diagram. I had 100 feet of Cat6 that I just ran on the floor down to the basement to try out the Metronet Fiber when running a PC wired to see what I would get. I was pretty impressed that they said Gig internet and I was indeed getting very close to those speeds.

Once I move the router to the basement I'll probably still need to setup mesh upstairs. I use an ASUS RT-AX88U router which has worked great for me for the months I've been using it in my last house. This current house has alot of dead zones and stuff upstairs so once that router is moved to the basement I'll probably need to setup their Asus "AI Mesh" to be able to get good wireless on the upstairs floors. The main thing is to get my basement network PC's and equipment in my basement hardwired to take advantage of those fiber speeds though.

Thanks again!
 

toast0

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Once I move the router to the basement I'll probably still need to setup mesh upstairs. I use an ASUS RT-AX88U router which has worked great for me for the months I've been using it in my last house. This current house has alot of dead zones and stuff upstairs so once that router is moved to the basement I'll probably need to setup their Asus "AI Mesh" to be able to get good wireless on the upstairs floors. The main thing is to get my basement network PC's and equipment in my basement hardwired to take advantage of those fiber speeds though.

Thanks again!
I briefly used Asus's "Ai Mesh", but on lower spec routers (debranded TM-AC1900 aka RT-AC68U), but at least for me, it worked a lot worse than just having all of them in AP mode running the same SSID. One big limitation is Ai Mesh runs all the devices on the same channels; I also had some issues with stability that I'd hope got better. If you do try the mesh, make sure it's running in wired backhaul mode (which you'd want to setup anyway). One nice feature was in mesh mode, you can use the WAN port on the slave devices, so you get an extra port.
 

SamirD

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Thanks to everyone who chimed in, got me steered in the right direction, and offered information and advice.

After the advice here, I've elected to switch gears and instead of going with my electrician, I'm going to try a local small business that does home network and home theater wiring as well as other tech stuff. They are very well spoken of and get great reviews online. I'll ask him to run Cat6.



Thanks for the info and the diagram. I had 100 feet of Cat6 that I just ran on the floor down to the basement to try out the Metronet Fiber when running a PC wired to see what I would get. I was pretty impressed that they said Gig internet and I was indeed getting very close to those speeds.

Once I move the router to the basement I'll probably still need to setup mesh upstairs. I use an ASUS RT-AX88U router which has worked great for me for the months I've been using it in my last house. This current house has alot of dead zones and stuff upstairs so once that router is moved to the basement I'll probably need to setup their Asus "AI Mesh" to be able to get good wireless on the upstairs floors. The main thing is to get my basement network PC's and equipment in my basement hardwired to take advantage of those fiber speeds though.

Thanks again!
Glad we could help. (y) Definitely keep us posted on how it all goes. :) I think the decision to move to a structured wiring specialize is a solid one as they definitely will know what they are doing. :)
 
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Thanks to everyone who chimed in, got me steered in the right direction, and offered information and advice.

After the advice here, I've elected to switch gears and instead of going with my electrician, I'm going to try a local small business that does home network and home theater wiring as well as other tech stuff. They are very well spoken of and get great reviews online. I'll ask him to run Cat6.



Thanks for the info and the diagram. I had 100 feet of Cat6 that I just ran on the floor down to the basement to try out the Metronet Fiber when running a PC wired to see what I would get. I was pretty impressed that they said Gig internet and I was indeed getting very close to those speeds.

Once I move the router to the basement I'll probably still need to setup mesh upstairs. I use an ASUS RT-AX88U router which has worked great for me for the months I've been using it in my last house. This current house has alot of dead zones and stuff upstairs so once that router is moved to the basement I'll probably need to setup their Asus "AI Mesh" to be able to get good wireless on the upstairs floors. The main thing is to get my basement network PC's and equipment in my basement hardwired to take advantage of those fiber speeds though.

Thanks again!
I just use 2xR7000s routers in my house for wifi N/AC. 1 in the basement on the "west side" and 1 in my bedroom on the top floor in the Center/Southside. It works pretty well. Labeled them NSA Sucks 1/2 5g and NSA Sucks 1/2 2.4G.

Here are some examples I get with Metronet ^-^
 

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ChosenUno

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If it's a newer home with good electrical wiring then maybe Gigabit Powerline might work for you. If you can maybe get a pair of 1Gbps powerline units to try out and return them if they don't work.
 

ThatITGuy

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How long do you plan to live in the rental home? Personally, I would not put too much money into something I may end up having to abandon and do somewhere else in just a few years.
 
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