Difference Between Cat6 And Cat6e Cables

Ethernet cable technology is evolving with every passing day. New and novel cables are presented by different suppliers and manufacturers in the market. These innovations in the Gigabit Ethernet cabling are taking place due to the increasing needs of users regarding data transfer and communication. 

One of the most demanding Ethernet cables in the market nowadays is the Cat6 cable. It has almost all those features that a normal user is looking for in an Ethernet cable such as lightning-fast speed, reliability, and durability.

The Cat6 cable is available in the market in different versions such as Cat6e and Cat6a cable. Each of them offers different features and qualities to its users. Today, we will discuss the differences between Cat6 and Cat6e versions.  

Know your Cat6 Cable

Category 6 Ethernet cables are introduced in the market after the success of Category 5 cables. The last variant of category 5 is Cat5e. After this, category 6 Ethernet cables have taken over. The first variant introduced under this category is Cat6.

It has some enhanced features and qualities in comparison to older variants of Ethernet cables. The conductor wires of this cable are more tightly twisted which helps in improving its performance against interference factors like EMI and crosstalk.

It is designed to provide better performance in comparison to Cat5e. Therefore, it comes with better specs and features. Some of them are mentioned below.

  • Cat6 works at 250MHz bandwidth which is more than double in comparison to 100MHz of Cat5e.
  • Tested up to an extended bandwidth of 500MHz
  • 10Gbps Data Transfer Rate in comparison to 1Gbps of Cat5e
  • Cable Length of 328 Feet (100 meters)
  • Conductor wires used of 23 to 24 AWG
  • Available in different types like unshielded, shielded, riser, plenum, stranded, and outdoor
  • Spline Separator is included for the first time in Ethernet cables

The 10Gbps data transfer speed is more than enough to satisfy the home users and small commercial network users. This speed is attainable with this cable up to a distance to 55 meters maximum in ideal conditions. The cable becomes popular among the home users and small commercial network users as 10Gbps speed up to 55 meters are enough for them to fulfill their needs efficiently.   

The spline separator is included in the Ethernet cable for the first time in Cat6 design. The main purpose of the inclusion of a spline is to separate the twisted conductor wires from each other. Once they got separated, it impacts positively on their performance. They become more reliable against interference factors. Especially, it helps in minimizing the crosstalk factor that improves the signal strength throughout the cable.

Sometimes, the use of an Ethernet cable carrying a spline becomes trickier for the users. Therefore, for their convenience, the Cat6 cable is manufactured in two different variants. One comes with a spline and the other one comes without a spline.

Know your Cat6e Cable

There are not many differences between Cat6 and Cat6e versions. Both come with almost the same specs and features. The only difference is the bandwidth offered by the Cat6e cable 600MHz is better than the Cat6 cable’s bandwidth of 500MHz.

The Cat6e variant is not a standardized class by TIA. This is why you don’t see many brands manufacturing this variant. Some main features and specs of Cat6e Ethernet Cable are defined below.

  • Minimum bandwidth 250 MHZ
  • Tested up to an extended bandwidth of 600MHz
  • Offers minimum 1Gbps data transfer speed and maximum 10Gbps
  • Cable Length of 328 Feet (100 meters)

The extended bandwidth of 600MHz differs Cat6e from the Cat6 variant. The remaining features remain almost the same. It is also capable of delivering a data transfer speed of 10Gbps up to a distance of 50 meters in ideal conditions. Above 50 meters, its data transfer speed comes down to 1Gbps.

FAQs – Cat6 VS Cat6e

What type of keystone jacks are used with them?

Almost all the variants of Cat6 cable such as cat6 riser, plenum, or stranded, use the same type of keystone jacks. Similarly, Cat6 and Cat6e variants also use the same type of keystone jacks. The only thing to take care of while buying them is to check whether you want a 90-degree design or a 180-degree design.

What type of connectors are used with Cat6 and Cat6e?

Both Cat6 and Cat6e use the same type of connectors. They are called RJ45 connectors. There are no special connectors designed for Cat6e.


After analyzing the specs and features of both Cat6 and Cat6e. We recommend you go with the Cat6 variant rather than going for Cat6e. It is due to the standard certification from TIA. Cat6 is a standardized class approved by TIA. Whereas, Cat6e is not a scandalized class of TIA. Secondly, both these cables possess almost the same specs and performance features. Therefore, there is no need to invest more in the Cat6e variant which is more expensive than Cat6. Thirdly, the Cat6e variant is not available in the market easily as all the manufacturers are not making it. Therefore, you may face problems in getting the supplies of Cat6e after ordering it.

Related Tags: Cat6 Plenum Cable, Cat6 Plenum Rated