CAT5 and Fiber

Cabling-Design.com FREE cabling and networking Helpdesk
icon
 Question by Donti Twine posted 22 Sep 2006
 CAT5 and Fiber
What is the major difference between CAT5E plenum and PVC? Also, how do I determine the amount of Fiber strands that is needed for an installation?
icon
 Answer by Dmitri Abaimov posted 23 Sep 2006
Dear Donti,

The main difference between those two types of cable is the materials the jacket and the internal insulation are made of. In a nutshell, the plenum cable almost does not burn. As such, it does not spread the fire and therefore is considered safer. Problem is: it emits very toxic fumes in high temperatures. So, you still have a chance at getting poisoned if this cable is involved in a fire, but the fire will not spread as quickly.

You might want to read more about plenums here:
http://www.cabling-design.com/interaction/tips/01Feb20001.shtml

As far as your second question goes, the amount of fibers depends on the equipment you anticipate using that fiber plus a reasonable extra. As a bare minimum I would use a 6 strand fiber cable, then go to 12 if 6 does not give enough room for future growth end so on. There is no precise formula on how much spare is enough. You just have to make a good guess.

Sincerely,
Dmitri Abaimov, RCDD

Click here to see the expert's profile
Back to the current page of questions | Back to all the questions
Back to Cabling-Design.com HELPDESK | Ask your question
Residential Cabling Guide

Home Cabling Guide

Finally, an instantly downloadable book that saves you thousands in home improvement dollars! Enjoy living in 21st century technology-advanced home while increasing its selling value and competitive advantage on the real estate market. Whether your cabling is for home office or high-tech leisure, you can wire your home yourself or learn "wirish" to speak with your cabling contractors in their language!

Learn more ...

Please rate this page

Rating: Average rating: Ratings
BadFineGoodVery GoodExcellent