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Top Reasons to Specify a 10G 6A™ F/UTP Category 6A Cabling System

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10GBASE-T Performance Headroom:

While it is true that minimally compliant category 6A cabling systems will support the 10GBASE-T application, the fact is that most end-users will not be upgrading their network equipment for another 5 years. Performance headroom provides assurance that the normal wear and tear that a cabling system experiences due to upgrades and moves, adds, and changes (MAC work) during its lifecycle will not degrade channel performance below the levels required to support a particular application. Since the 10GBASE-T application is highly sensitive to excessive cable-to-cable crosstalk (alien crosstalk) due to poor installation and network maintenance practices, headroom for this parameter is desirable to ensure a trouble free system upgrade 5 years from now. Siemon 10G 6A F/UTP cabling systems are guaranteed to provide a minimum of +10 dB¹ headroom to '568-B.2-10 category 6A and '11801:Amendment 1 class EA PSANEXT loss limits.

Installation Robustness:

Even with the most capable installation team, maintaining proper cable pulling tension, bend radius, and pathway fill ratios, and avoiding crushing and/or kinking of the cables during installation is challenging. After the initial installation, substandard MAC work practices such as exceeding maximum pathway fill requirements to accommodate growth, kinking patch cords when re-routing ports, damaging adjacent channels when removing abandoned cables, and crushing cables at the bottom of pathways can also degrade transmission performance. The bad news is that, unlike F/UTP systems, category 6A UTP systems subjected to poor installation practices and substandard MAC work are likely to show degraded alien crosstalk (AXT) performance. Furthermore, verifying that AXT performance has not been compromised in category 6A UTP cabling by non-compliant installation practices requires extremely complicated and onerous field verification testing. (While non-compliant installation practices may also cause non-AXT internal transmission performance problems for both UTP and F/UTP cabling, these can be easily identified through simple field test procedures.) Siemon's installation and MAC-friendly 10G 6A F/UTP cabling systems are virtually immune to compromised AXT performance and have minimal field test verification needs, thus saving valuable installation and troubleshooting time.

Cost Savings for Infrastructure Upgrades and Shared Pathways:

Bundling of category 6A UTP cabling with other category UTP cables can result in alien crosstalk levels that exceed industry requirements and potentially impact operation of the 10GBASE-T application. As a result, mixing, in the form of either bundling or conduit sharing, of category 6A UTP cabling with other UTP cable categories is not allowed by most manufactureres including Siemon². In addition, legacy category 6 cabling supporting 10GBASE-T operation over short lengths in accordance with TSB-155 should not be mixed with category 6A cabling. These stringent requirements make category 6A UTP cabling a less attractive choice for infrastructure upgrades. Siemon 10G 6A F/UTP cabling may be bundled and/or share pathways with all other categories of cabling such as those used for voice, building automation systems, etc. without concern.

Maximum Density:

Category 6A F/UTP cabling has one of the smallest overall cable diameters of any 10 Gb/s-ready copper cabling solution. This feature optimises the number of cables in pathways and the number of ports in the equipment rack (remember: the maximum number of ports that can be supported in a rack is dependent upon the number of patch cables that can be accommodated in the vertical patch cord manager). Siemon's 10G 6A F/UTP cabling systems support cost-savings strategies such as avoiding the replacement of existing pathways in retrofit designs and utilising smaller pathways and less rack space in new designs.

Superior EMC Performance:

Electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) describes both a system's susceptibility to interference from (immunity) and potential to disturb (emissions) outside sources and is an important indicator of a system's ability to coexist with other electronic/electrical devices. While twisted-pair cabling inherently has good EMC performance, data and experimental models prove that F/UTP cabling is actually 100 times less susceptible to interference than UTP cabling3! It is worth noting that even improperly terminated F/UTP cabling is still 10 times less susceptible to interference than UTP cabling3. Siemon 10G 6A F/UTP cabling systems support robust EMC performance in all environments where electromagnetic noise is present.

Protection Against High Frequency Noise:

While the balance performance of category 6A cabling is sufficient to protect against interference from low frequency common mode sources, the noise immunity provided by balance alone starts to deteriorate around 30 MHz³. Balance degradation above 30 MHz can adversely impact immunity from high frequency noise sources. Siemon 10G 6A F/UTP cabling systems minimise interference from high frequency RF transmitters and wireless devices by limiting noise coupled onto the twisted-pair and are ideal for use in manufacturing, industrial, and other "noisy" environments.

Improved Support of PoE/PoE Plus:

Theoretical and experimental data demonstrate that category 6A F/UTP cables exhibit significantly less temperature rise when pairs are subjected to a dc current than category 6A UTP cables. Siemon 10G 6A F/UTP cabling systems are ideal in installations targeted for future support of PoE Plus to ensure maximum heat dissipation.

Growing Market Adoption:

Screened cabling systems have been recognised for use by TIA, ISO and other Standards committees for years and the growth of category 6A F/UTP cabling now outpaces the growth of category 6A UTP cabling in most markets throughout the world. In fact, according to a recent BSRIA study4, "75% of respondents who plan to choose copper cabling for their 10G links plan for shielded cabling, relatively evenly split between Categories 6, 6A and 7". Siemon 10G 6A F/UTP cabling systems support the industry trend towards smaller and higher performing 10 Gb/s-ready copper cabling solutions.


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