How Do You Compare Cat6a Plenum VS Cat6 Plenum?

It is important to understand the need and use of Ethernet cables before deciding to buy them. A huge variety of Ethernet cables are available in the market. Among them, Cat6 plenum pure copper cable and Cat6a plenum 1000ft cables are the most demanding ones.                       

You must think of a long-term investment while installing them. This is not a small investment by any means and there is a lot of hassle in getting them installed. It cannot be done after every short period. Therefore, a wise and right decision required in this regard. It should be taken after analyzing the network needs fully complete and studying the Ethernet cables features thoroughly.

Once you get a clear idea of your needs and requirements then you will be able to take the right decision which would be beneficial for you in the long term. There are different types of Ethernet cables available in the market for your analysis.

How Do You Compare Cat6a Plenum VS Cat6 Plenum?

Each of them comes with different features and qualities. You much read and understand them carefully and then match them with your needs and requirements. The one you think will appropriately fulfill your needs in present and near future as well will be the best option for you.

The most demanding Ethernet cable variants nowadays are the Cat5e, Cat6 Plenum Pure Copper Cable and Cat6a plenum cable. These variants are further classified into different types according to their features and usages such as plenum, riser, and PVC.

Some are compatible with others while some are not such as plenum can replace any other cable while PVC cannot be used in place of others. Therefore, the selection of the right cable is a tricky thing.

This article will provide you with enough information about the latest Ethernet cables and their variants that improve your ability to select the right cable for your modern networks. You will be able to understand their specifications and usage.

It will help you in judging them in a better way. You understand better which cable suits best with your needs. Therefore, take out few minutes from your busy schedule and go through this article carefully. It will benefit you a lot in many ways.

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Cat6 Ethernet Cable

Cat6 is a sixth-generation Ethernet cable. The name of the cable represents its category and generation. It provides lightning-fast data transfer speed in comparison to fifth-generation cables. We will talk about its different features and qualities below.

Cat6 Ethernet Cable

Jacket Types of Cat6

It is available in 3 different jacket types of jackets.

  • Plenum
  • Riser
  • PVC

Cat6 Plenum Pure Copper or CMP-Rated Variant

It is one of the most demanding variants of Cat6 plenum cable. They are called plenum-rated or CMP-rated cables. It is a high-speed and efficient data cable with a safe jacket. The plenum-rated cables are high in demand due to their safety reasons. They are much more secure and safe cables to be installed in the plenum spaces of the buildings. 

The plenum jacket of the cable is made from polyvinyl chloride material. This material is exceedingly flame-retardant and UV resistant. The plenum-rated cable resists the expansion of fires. Even in the case of fire, they do not produce smoke or any toxic substance that is dangerous for human health. This quality makes it a perfect candidate to be installed at the plenum spaces.

Another quality of this cable is that it can be used as a replacement for other jacket type cables but no other jacket type can replace this one. These qualities increase the worth of the cables to a great deal. This is why they are more expensive in comparison to other jacket-type cables.

Cat6 Riser or CMR-Rated Variant

This variant of the cable is known as Riser-Rated or CMR-Rated cable. The riser jacket cable is made to install at the riser or vertical spaces of the buildings.

They are also highly efficient and fast data cables. They come with great data transfer speed. With that, they are excellent against crosstalk and EMI properties as well. The riser jacket type also comes with the fire-retardant property. It resists the expansion of fire and does not produce any toxic smoke. It can replace PVC cables but it cannot be used as a substitute for plenum-rated cable.

Cat6 PVC Jacket Variant 

It is a cable designed for outdoor use. The PVC-Rated cable comes with some great features. Its outer jacket is durable and sturdy and makes it very good against environmental factors like rain, sunlight, heat, and others. The other two jacket type variants can be used as its substitute but this cable cannot be used as a substitute for any other jacket type cable.

Conductor Types in Cat6

Ethernet cables is made of four twisted pairs of wires. These are the conductor wires of the cable. Normally, there are two types of conductor material used in them.

  • Pure Solid Copper
  • Copper Clad Aluminum

These materials come with different features and qualities. The pure solid copper conductor wires are preferable in comparison to copper-clad aluminum wires because of their high-performance abilities.

Pure copper wires come with less DC resistance property. It means they can transfer more energy into the system rather than wasting it in the environment. It increases the data transferability capability of the cable.

Whereas, copper-clad aluminum come with relatively high DC resistance property. These wires emit more energy into the environment as wastage in comparison to pure copper wires. You will find 23 AWG wires in this cable. The increased thickness of the conductor wires allows the cable to transfer data at a quicker rate of 10Gbps.  

Cat6 Plenum Pure Copper – STP VS UTP Variants

Cat6 cable is also available in both STP and UTP versions. Your needs and demands will make it clear to you which version will suit you the best. Otherwise, their functionalities and features remain the same as explained for the Cat5e version.

Other Features

The cable can provide a data transfer speed of 10Gbps over a distance of 50 meters or 168 feet. It is the maximum data transfer speed you can achieve with a Cat6 Ethernet cable. As the distance increases, the speed comes down to 1Gbps up to a distance of 100 meters or 328 feet. It is tested up to a bandwidth of 550MHz. The cable meets and exceeds all the set standards of its performance.

Cat6a Ethernet Cable

It is also a sixth-generation cable. It is an upgraded version of the Cat6 Ethernet cable. The name Cat6a itself suggests where “a “stands for augmented. It means an improved variant.   

Cat6a Ethernet Cable

Jacket Type of Cat6a

It is manufactured in the same three types of jackets plenum, riser, and PVC. The Functionality and features of these jacket types mentioned above. They remain the same with this version of the cable as well. Cat6a Plenum is the most utilized variant of this cable due to its high features and qualities.

Conductor Types in Cat6a

Cat6a cable also comes with 4 twisted pairs of wires. The same conductor materials are used in its manufacturing as well that are used in the previous variants

  • Pure solid copper
  • Copper-clad aluminum

Their qualities and features are explained above and they remain the same in this variant of the Ethernet cable as well. The thickness of the conductor wires in this variant is 23 AWG. These thick conductor wires enhance the data transfer speed to a great extent.


Cat6a cable is available in both STP and UTP versions as well. The features of these versions are explaining above in this article. Read them carefully as they remain the same in this variant of Ethernet cable as well.

Other Extra Features

The cable can provide a data transfer speed of 10Gbps over a distance of 100 meters or 328 feet. If we compare Cat6a VS Cat6, this is the main difference we find in them. This improved version of Ethernet cable can deliver the same data transfer speed up to 100 meters. Cat6 was providing this speed up to only 50 meters. With that, the bandwidth of the improved version of cable is also enhanced up to 750MHz. It meets or exceeds all the set standards of its performance.

Book Your Order Now With iTechCables:

After reading this article, we hope most of your ambiguities get resolved. You will be in a much better position to decide between buying an Ethernet cable for your networks. Cat6a plenum and Cat6 plenum pure copper cables are the top-rated ones. In our opinion, prefer one of these two variants if you have no budget issues. The only problem now is the access to a reliable and trustworthy supplier of these cables.

Book your order now at iTechCables and get guaranteed products of top quality and features. iTechCables are the manufacturers and suppliers of these cables in the US. The customer services representatives are waiting for your order booking call 24/7. Get great discounts with great services. Avail of these great offers now and save your money. Orders will deliver at your doorsteps for your convenience and support.


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