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Q: Cat5 Cable Specifications ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   1 Comment )
Subject: Cat5 Cable Specifications
Category: Computers > Internet
Asked by: thepocketdrummer-ga
List Price: $5.00
Posted: 14 Sep 2006 00:55 PDT
Expires: 14 Oct 2006 00:55 PDT
Question ID: 765187
I need to know the specifications of a CAT5 Cable. Primarily how long
the cables can be before they encounter signal degradation.

I work at Xbox, and Tier 2 Agents tell me that anything past 20ft
could cause the signal to degrade and cause lag. I simply do not
believe them. If possible, provide some links that might be useful.

Thank you in advance!
Subject: Re: Cat5 Cable Specifications
Answered By: gregaw-ga on 14 Sep 2006 06:42 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
rajesh78 is correct that 100 meters is the standard maximum length for
a Ethernet connection using CAT5 cable.

The following Google search will bring up hundreds of pages to affirm this:

I'm sure your tier 2 people know this.  If not it should be very easy
to educate them, but before you do, consider the following:

There are some limiting factors.  The type of cable can make a
difference.  When using "stranded" cable, which is most often used for
patch cables due to its flexibility, the industry standard limits the
length to 10 meters (33 feet).
"The TIA/EIA 568A which is the governing standard regarding commercial
cabling systems limits the length of patch cables to 10 meters in
total length."

This may be where these people are coming from.  You might ask them. 
But if you purchase a CAT5 or CAT5e "certified patch cable", stranded
or otherwise, it will have passed the benchmark test required for
proper Ethernet performance.

The above articles are all assuming that it is being used for an
Ethernet connection. 10/100 BaseT.  CAT5 cable is just glorified
copper wiring and can be used for lots of other things.  Some
applications much longer runs and some much shorter.  However, since
the Xbox has an "Ethernet" port all of the industry standard rules
will apply.

You are definitely more right than they are.  Use these pages and ask
them to prove their point.  I think they will have a hard time.

I hope that this helps you.  If you require any further information
please let me know by posting a request for clarification.


Request for Answer Clarification by thepocketdrummer-ga on 14 Sep 2006 13:42 PDT
Could you explain a way to determine whether a cable is stranded or not?

Clarification of Answer by gregaw-ga on 14 Sep 2006 14:32 PDT
Sometimes it will actually say on the jacket of the cable itself.  I
just looked at my patch cable it says "24 AWG STR" (among a log of
other things).  This would mean it is 24 gauge(AWG) stranded(STR)
cable.  Not all cables will have this.

I can usually tell by looking at the end of the connector, where I can
see the individual wire ends.  You can usually see if it is a solid
copper circle or several smaller strands of copper in each wire.

Most commercially sold patch cables are made from stranded cable.  The
increased flexability is the main reason for this.  If you find a
piece of solid conductor cable will feel a difference.

Last resort would be to check with the patch cable's manufacturer.  If
they have specs on thier website it would surely say.

Thanks for the nice tip and the stars!
thepocketdrummer-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $5.00
Thanks! This will definitely help me out.

Subject: Re: Cat5 Cable Specifications
From: rajesh78-ga on 14 Sep 2006 02:19 PDT
Max length of a segment: 100 meters/330 feet

for more details look at

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