What Is a Patch Cable & Patch Cable VS Ethernet Cable [MiniTool Wiki]

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What Is Patch Cable?

Ethernet and patch cables have become very common in our daily lives. Previously, we have introduced Ethernet cable and you can refer to this post - What Is an Ethernet Cable? Here Is a Full Introduction.

Then, what is a patch cable? It is also called the patch cord, which is an electrical or optical cable used to connect one electronic or optical device to another signal route. If you want to learn more information about patch cable, you can continue to read this post from MiniTool.

Both ends use the same wiring standard: T-568A or T-568B. Therefore, the wiring on both sides of the jumper (connector A and connector B) has the same jumper color (as shown in the figure below). In particular, pin 1 on connector A goes to Pin 1 on connector B, pin 2 to pin 2, and so on. These jumpers are widely used to connect computers to switches, hubs, or routers.

Patch cables are usually made of coaxial cables. Signals are transmitted through a shielded core wire, and electrical grounding or ground loop connections are transmitted through a wire mesh surrounding the core wire. Each end of the cable is connected to a connector so that the power cord can be plugged in. The type of connector can vary greatly, especially when using adapter cables.

The patch cables might be:

  • Single conductor wire, for example, using banana connectors.
  • Coaxial cable use, for example, BNC connector.
  • Qualified fiber optic cable suitable for modular fiber optic spectroscopy equipment.
  • Use shielded or unshielded Cat5, Cat5e, Cat6, or Cat6A cables with 8P8C (RJ-45) modular connectors with straight-through T568A or T568B wiring.

Types of Patch Cable

There are two types of patch cables, one is the fiber patch cables and the other is the ethernet patch cable. Patch cables are widely used for short-distance connections and are usually used in corporate offices. On the other hand, Ethernet network cables are very suitable for connecting computers to network hubs or Ethernet switches.

Patch Cable VS Ethernet Cable

Now, let’s see the differences between patch cable and Ethernet cable.

Ethernet is a type of protocol used to specify how information bits communicate through a specified medium. Ethernet cables include cables, such as fiber optic cables, twisted pair or coaxial cables, and category cables. Copper wire network cables and fiber optic cables are two common types of Ethernet cables.

Generally, people are used to naming Ethernet cables like Cat5, Cat5e, and Cat6 as Ethernet cables to simplify the name. Therefore, in short, an Ethernet cable is a type of cable, and a jumper or cable is a part of the cable, which acts as a connector at both ends.

Thus, you can use the patch cable as an Ethernet cable, since both of them are the same in a copper network. However, one thing to note here is that jumpers are best suited for small distances from the jumper to the switch.

Ethernet cables and patch cables are usually more or less the same thing. However, when it comes to Ethernet, it refers to the flow of information across different locations, and the latter is the best choice for shorter-distance connections because of the lack of flexible jumpers to support them.

The biggest disadvantage associated with patch cable is that the attenuation is on the higher side. Another difference between jumpers and Ethernet cables is that the former has two connectors at both ends, while Ethernet cables may not have two connectors and usually terminate directly at the device interface.

Also see: What Is Ethernet & Why Use It & How Does It Work?

Final Words

To sum up, this post introduces what patch cable is and the types of patch cable. Besides, you can know the differences between patch cable and Ethernet cable. I hope that this post can be useful to you.

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