Everything you ever wanted to know about Category 8

February 23, 2017 at 8:00 AM


Category 8 is coming and we’re not taking about a torrential hurricane. This new standard for twisted-pair cabling is under development with ratification expected this year that will bring many exciting advancements in wired communications. Here is everything you need to know to prepare yourself for Category 8.


  -  Primarily intended to support 25GBASE-T and 40GBASE-T


  -  Different from previous standards because it uses 2000 MHz frequency


  -  Limited to 30 meter distance and 2-connector channels


  -  Ideal for data centers and small LANs in commercial buildings


  -  Targeted for use at the data center “edge” where connections are made between the server and switch


  -  Will be backward compatible with previous standards


  -  Two classes of products offered - Class I: RJ45 and Class II: Non-RJ45


  -  Requires shielded cable, but not limited to specific type of shielding. Can use F/UTP (8.1) or S/FTP (8.2) and other shielded constructions


  -  Can provide up to four times faster speeds on the same cabling being used today


  -  Exceptional signal-to-noise margin while supporting transmission rates of 25Gb/s and higher


  -  Connectors will be designed for field termination and also pre-terminated for Panduit’s QuickNet line


  -  Will allow data center designers to organize their racks and cabinets to support 30-meter channel connections now and be positioned to transfer to 25G/40GBASE-T when the technology becomes available


  -  Installation methods will be similar to lower grades of cabling. Can be installed in existing pathways and conduit, though to support 25GBASE-T and 40GBASE-T the existing infrastructure must be upgraded


  -  No additional power required. In fact, Cat8 may better support remote powering applications such as PoE because of its lower dc resistance and insertion loss. It is likely that 25GBASE-T and 40GBASE-T equipment will use more power than 10GBASE-T, but that may be remedied as the technology evolves


Benefits of 24 AWG Cable

July 21, 2016 at 8:00 AM


When designing your Ethernet network, there are so many cable parameters to consider, including different wire gauges. To help you choose the cable that best suits your Ethernet connectivity application, we’ll take a deeper look at the benefits of 24 AWG cable and all that it has to offer.


Longer Distance

If 26 AWG cable was a sprinter, 24 AWG would be a long distance runner. 24 AWG cable can be used for distances of up to 90 meters, before adding a repeater. This is a significantly longer distance in comparison to 26 AWG cables that only support 68 meters.


Larger Diameter Conductor

Rugged to the core, the large diameter of a 24 AWG cable makes for a stronger conductor. This added strength is beneficial when the cable is being pulled-on during installation and when routed through machines or other equipment.


Lower Attenuation

That large conductor also brings the benefits of lower attenuation. Because the 24 AWG conductor is larger than that of the 26 AWG cable, is has less signal loss over distance.


Improved Connection

Improved connection is another benefit of the larger copper conductor of 24 AWG cable. Because the cable has more copper for the pins of an insulation displacement connector (IDC), 

like an RJ45, to “bite” into, it results in better connector retention and durability.


PoE Support

Thicker copper in the 24 AWG cable, also results in enhanced Power over Ethernet (PoE) capabilities. Thicker copper = less resistance = longer distances with less heat, all of which equates to better PoE performance.


You want to make sure that you have the best, most reliable cable in order for your network to perform optimally and 24 AWG cable has many benefits that set is apart. From Cat6 cable assemblies to Cat5e patch cords, L-com offers a variety of 24 AWG cables to fit your needs.


Contact us today for more information.


802.3bt PoE: Providing the Power of Possibility

July 30, 2015 at 10:00 AM


The realm of possibilities is expanding for Power over Ethernet (PoE) with the development of 802.3bt PoE.


The primary advantage of PoE is that it provides power to communication devices where no AC power source is available.  With no power lines to run, PoE saves on installation costs and makes configuration easier because the power source is within the data cables. More than one million devices are powered by PoE using the same cables that transmit Ethernet data.


However, the current version of PoE, 802.3at, peaks at 25.5 Watts, a modest power level that has limited use because many applications require more wattage.


The development of the 802.3bt standard will lift those power limitations with capabilities up to 49 Watts! 802.3bt PoE utilizes all four twisted pairs in Cat 5 and Cat 6 Ethernet cables providing more power. 802.3bt will be standardized with support for 10GBASE-T (10 Gbps Ethernet) and will be backward compatible with previous 802.3 versions.

PoE has evolved into a key technology for providing power and data simultaneously.  With 802.3bt PoE offering double, and possibly triple the power, new applications could extend to include 100 million devices worldwide and countless other possibilities.


As this new technology emerges, L-com will be developing innovative 802.3bt products and solutions to support your connectivity needs. In the meantime, we continue to support 802.3af and 802.3at applications with a wide range of products that help you save time and money with your wired and wireless networking installations.


 Click here to view our 802.3af and 802.3at products.


The Benefits of Using PoE

January 1, 2015 at 10:00 AM



Power over Ethernet (PoE) has been around for awhile now. Chances are you use PoE at work and maybe even at home. PoE has several benefits that we will expound upon in this week’s blog post.


PoE provides data and power over a single Ethernet cable which is a pretty brilliant idea. PoE first came to market in 2003 and has flourished since. With its first release 802.3af, PoE was able to provide 15.4 watts of DC power to a connected device such as a PoE enabled IP phone or Wi-Fi access point. The most current implementation of PoE, 802.3at can send a whopping 25.5 Watts of DC power to an end device and can be used with PoE enabled pan, tilt and zoom (PTZ ) IP cameras for surveillance applications.


Currently the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) is working on the next generation of PoE called 802.3bt. 802.3bt promises up to at least double or even triple the power output of 802.3at!


Possible future applications for 802.3bt include point of sale (POS) credit card readers, building lighting and access controllers, industrial brushless and stepper motor drives, video conferencing systems and more!


Well here it is… a breakdown of some of the major benefits of PoE


·         Fast deployment of devices and services

·         Flexibility of device placement (no AC wall outlet needed!)

·         Cost savings as new AC outlets do not need to be installed

·         Cleaner installations, no unruly power cables required


Here are some typical applications and uses for PoE Splitters and Injectors




Check out L-com‘s extensive line of PoE products to help make your life easier


3 Tips for Installing Security and Surveillance Cameras

August 14, 2014 at 10:00 AM




Do you need to put your business or network under tight security?


Installing security and surveillance cameras has become more important than ever before. Malicious persons are getting even smarter, causing a greater need for multiple layers of security (we talked about this in a recent post- How Secure is Your Data Center).


Some individuals are installing cameras in their homes, others in their businesses, or some even to monitor empty lots.


While a trusted and professional installer is always your best bet, here are three significant things to consider if you’ll be installing security cameras on your own. 




1.    1. Get the Right Camera


You have a lot of options today for the camera you select. Commercial grade security cameras are generally broken up into CCTV cameras that use a coaxial video cable to connect to the recording device, and IP cameras, which use either wired or wireless Ethernet signals.


Regardless of which method you use, be aware that you will also need power for the camera. So even if it is “wireless” camera, a power cable may still be needed at the installation site.


Lucky for you, there also exists All-in-One Kit DVR Surveillance Systems that come with everything you will need to get your system up and running right away. 


Here’s a short video to guide you through the setup and installation of an all-in-one kit. Note that if you purchase a kit with an existing hard drive, you can just skip over that step. 




1.    2. Consider using Power-over-Ethernet


Because cameras are often installed in out-of-the-way locations, plugging them into a power outlet is often a problem. If there is no outlet nearby, you would need either a long (and sometimes obtrusive) power cable, or a licensed electrician would need to put one in for you.


A good solution to this problem is to provide the power via an Ethernet cable using Power-over-Ethernet (PoE). PoE devices vary, but in general you will need an injector at the power source. The Ethernet cable plugs into the PoE injector, and the power travels along the cable to the camera. 


Many cameras today are PoE ready and can accept power from any 802.3af standard device with no need for a separate power cable. However, if they do need a separate power cable, you will generally need to install a PoE midspan or "tap" near the camera to separate the power out of the Ethernet cable so it can be used.


Click here for a free short PoE overview, OR here for an in-depth PoE Whitepaper




2.    3. Lightning Protection is a Must


Any electronic device that is on the edge of a structure, either indoor or outdoor (and especially if there is conductive cabling attached to it), is at risk for lightning damage. Even an indirect lightning strike can destroy electrical equipment costing thousands of dollars. Because of this, we highly recommend a
simple and replaceable lightning protector on each end of every cable that links to a camera. Even if a direct strike destroys a camera, lightning protectors will save you from damage to anything that is connected to the camera (even PoE Ethernet lines)


L-com stocks a wide variety of lightning protectors for nearly every cabling application. Your options include coaxial video protectors (used in CCTV lines), category-rated PoE protectors (used in IP and PoE lines), and PTZ (Pan-Tilt-Zoom) camera lightning protectors that include individual protection circuits for the analog video line, the RS485 control line, and the AC/DC power lines.



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