What is Ethernet?

Ethernet is the legacy technology used to connect devices on wired Local Area Networks (LAN), Metropolitan Area Networks (MAN), and Wide Area Networks (WAN), allowing devices to be able to communicate with each other over a protocol, Ethernet cable is a physically encapsulated cabling that transmits data from one point in a network to another. Ethernet was formally introduced commercially in 1980, and as Ethernet continues to be upgraded, it can support higher bit rates, more nodes, and longer link distances. By now, Ethernet is widely used in homes and industry, and can also work with wireless WiFi technology. Often used in laptops, IP cameras, routers, NVRs, and other devices, it is one of the key technologies that make up the Internet.

Types of Ethernet

Ethernet can be categorized into different types depending on the transmission rate and type of physical media, the following are the more common types of Ethernet:

Fast Ethernet: Fast Ethernet is a communications protocol, usually supported by twisted pair or CAT5 cable, that is capable of transmitting or receiving data at speeds of around 100 Mbps. When laptops, cameras, or other devices are connected to a network, they can run on 100Base and 10/100Base Ethernet at the fiber optic end of the link. Fast Ethernet uses fiber optic cables and twisted-pair cables to create communications; 100BASE-TX, 100BASE-FX, and 100BASE-T4 are three common categories of Fast Ethernet.

Gigabit Ethernet: Gigabit Ethernet is an upgraded version of Fast Ethernet with the potential to transmit up to 1 Gbps of data, also using fiber optic cables and twisted pair cables to create communications. It can transmit data at 1000 Mbps or 1Gbps. In modern times, Gigabit Ethernet is more common. This network type also uses CAT5e or other advanced cables to transmit data at rates up to 10 Gbps.

10Gb Ethernet: 10 Gigabit Ethernet is a new standard that defines only full-duplex point-to-point links, also known as 802.3ae. It can transmit data at a rate of 10 Gigabits per second and is considered to be a more advanced high-speed network. It also uses CAT6a or CAT7 twisted pair cables and fiber optic cables. With the help of these fiber optic cables, 10 Gigabit Ethernet can be extended to nearly 10,000 meters.

 Switch Ethernet: This type of network requires the addition of switches or hubs, which helps increase network throughput because each workstation in that network can have its own dedicated 10 Mbps connection instead of sharing media. When a switch is used in the network, instead of using crossover cables, regular network cables can be used. For the latest Ethernet, it also supports 1000 Mbps to 10 Gbps and 10 Mbps to 100 Mbps Fast Ethernet.

Advantages of Ethernet

  • Compared to other systems for connecting computers, the cost of setting up an Ethernet network is not high.
  • Ethernet uses firewalls for data security, providing a high level of security for stored data.
  • Gigabit Ethernet and Wireless Ethernet have the potential to allow users to transfer data at speeds ranging from 1-100 Gbps.
  • The quality of data can be maintained unchanged while transmitting data using Ethernet.
  • The management and maintenance of Ethernet will be easier and more convenient as compared to other networks.

Disadvantages of Ethernet

  • The use of Ethernet requires deterministic services and is less suitable for use in real-time applications.
  • Wired Ethernet is better suited for short distances because of the limitations in distance.
  • If wired Ethernet requires the installation of cables, hubs, switches, routers, etc., it increases installation costs.
  • If used in interactive applications, there is a limitation on data transmission, which not only needs to be fast but also very small.
  • Establishing wireless Ethernet requires specialized experience in the networking field, meaning it can be difficult to create.
  • Wireless Ethernet is not necessarily more secure than wired Ethernet.
  • The 100Base-T4 version does not support full duplex data communication mode.

Uses of Ethernet Cables

Ethernet cables are physical media used to transmit data in a computer network and are wires that can be connected to network components such as routers, modems, switches, computers, etc., to ensure that traffic is transmitted between network nodes so that these devices can access the LAN and the Internet.

Ethernet Cable Categories

Category Max.Data Rate Bandwidth Max. Distance Usage
Category 1 1 Mbps 0.4 MHz Telephone and modem lines
Category 2 4 Mbps 4 MHz Local Talk and Telephone
Category 3 10 Mbps 16 MHz 100m(328 ft.) 10BaseT Ethernet
Category 4 16 Mbps 20 MHz 100m(328 ft.) Token Ring
Category 5 100 Mbps 100 MHz 100m(328 ft.) 100BaseT Ethernet
Category 5e 1 Gbps 100 MHz 100m(328 ft.) 100BaseT Ethernet and Residential Homes
Category 6 1 Gbps 250 MHz

100m(328 ft.)

10Gb at 37m (121 ft.)

Gigabit Ethernet and Commercial Buildings
Category 6a 10 Gbps 500 MHz 100m(328 ft.) Gigabit Ethernet in Data Centers and Commercial Buildings
Category 7 10 Gbps 600 MHz 100m(328 ft.) 10 Gbps Core Infrastructure
Category 7a 10 Gbps 1000 MHz

100m(328 ft.)

40Gb at 50m(164 ft.)

10 Gbps Core Infrastructure
Category 8

25 Gbps (Cat8.1)

40Gbps (Cat8.2)

2000 MHz 30m(98 ft.) 25 Gbps/40 Gbps Core Infrastructure

How to Choose The Right Ethernet Cable

  • Consider Ethernet Cable Compatibility and Speed First:Understanding the categories of Ethernet cables mentioned above will reveal that most Ethernet cables are interchangeable and some are backward compatible. So before you buy an Ethernet cable, make sure you know the speed and performance you want and the type of network equipment you will be using.
  • Cable Length:The maximum allowable length of Ethernet copper, Cat5e, or Cat6 cable when used for 10/100/1000Base-T is 100 meters (328 feet). Therefore, please consider the distance of the device you want to connect to first to find the right length of cable.
  • Cable Color:The color of the Ethernet cable can help track the cable to ensure that the right cable is connected to the right location and that the right cable color is suitable for cable management.
  • Cable Flexibility:The thickness of the cable's internal jacket and shielding can reduce the cable's flexibility, so you can choose the right Ethernet cable based on the flexibility of the cable you need.
Bonus Surprise

Bonus Surprise

Power over Ethernet (POE) refers to charging and transmitting data to the device via an Ethernet cable without the need for additional external wires or adapters to supply power, making the device easier to install and simpler to wire (please note that the device being used should support Power over Ethernet to utilize this technology).

Campark POE Security Camera Recommendation - SC45

SC45 is Campark's latest POE security camera kit, which can capture 4K Ultra HD images and wonderful details, with PTZ function that can support the camera to rotate 355° horizontally and 90° vertically, covering a 360° omni-directional field of view, so that you don't miss a single detail, and adopting POE technology to make the camera more convenient to install and easier to charge.

Adopting H.265 video compression technology not only provides smoother and clearer video streaming but also saves more storage space. Featuring motion tracking and instant alerts, the camera pushes instant alert notifications to the cell phone when it detects suspicious activity within the surveillance area, allowing users to be aware of the surveillance situation at all times and with the help of the real-time two-way call function, it can effectively stop intruders from entering the house.