cat 6 jack with cat 5e cables?

tom418March 24, 2012

While my walls were open for my adding two outlets on my third floor (thanks to flexible drill bits!) I had the opportunity to fish a couple of CAT 5e cables.

The local "big box store" didn't have Cat 5e jacks, so I picked up a copuple of CAT 6 jacks. Besides being about a dollar more expensive, are these compatable with 5e cables?

Yes, I know that I won't get Cat 6 performance, but can I use the jacks?

Also, should I be using 568A or 568B standard?

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Ron Natalie

Cat 6 jacks will work fine. As long as you are putting jacks on both end (terminated the same way), it's purely a nomenclature thing (the wires are paired the same, but the color assignment/pair numbering is different).

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 6:47PM
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The CAT6 spec is a concern from a performance standpoint when used on CAT6 cable, but the answer to your question is simply what type of wire is the jack designed to be used with - 23AWG or 24AWG, stranded or solid? CAT5e is usually 24AWG solid or stranded, CAT6 23AWG solid and 24AWG stranded.

Are the jacks punch down or tool-less connections on the backside? Punch down jacks often work for both gauges but the tool-less jacks are usually limited to a single gauge.

Just look on your installed cable for the gauge and solid/stranded info printed on the jacket and then check the packaging for the jacks for their compatibility specs.

You can use either T568A or T568B standard but just keep it all consistent so you don't start creating crossover cables. T568B, however, is more commonly used and what I use as well, unless of course I'm in a facility already used the T568A standard.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 7:26PM
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Thanks. My cable is 24 gauge Solid UTP. The jacks (Leviton) apparently are designed for punch down tools (they come with a small tool).

Sounds like I'll go with the 568B.

Thanks to you both.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 7:46PM
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