Choosing the best network cable
Network cables may look similar, but there’s a lot going on beneath the cover to meet different LAN needs.
Network cable sizes
MSY stocks 1m network cables (and shorter) through to 20m network cables and longer. Finding the right length LAN cable can help improve network speeds and reliability, while also hopefully helping to avoid potential cable trip hazards.
Know your network cable Cat-type
Older network cables may have the same compatible RJ45 connectors for modern devices, but they don’t have modern speeds. Cat5e Ethernet cables are the starting point for gigabit (1000Mbps) network speeds.
Network cable colours
Colour is usually an aesthetic choice for computer and networking equipment, but it can serve a practical role for Ethernet cables. Different LAN cable colours make it easier to differentiate between multiple LAN cables and devices, without having to add tags.
Ethernet cable extras
Ethernet cable length, Cat-type and colour are all important considerations, but there’s more to factor in when buying your next LAN cable.
Flat or round network cable
Typically, network cables are round, and MSY stocks plenty of round Ethernet cables. But flat LAN cables are increasingly popular picks, which tend to be lighter and easier to tuck away than round network cables.
Shielded or unshielded LAN cable
Shielded network cables tend to be more expensive and stiffer than unshielded LAN cables. That extra cost protects against interference, which is worth considering for offices more than the average home.
Future-proofed network cable
Any Cat5e network cable is fast enough for Australia’s fastest home internet download speeds. But you can boost local transfer speeds and future-proof your LAN devices with Cat6, Cat6a, Cat7 or Cat8 Ethernet cables that reach between 10Gbps and 40Gbps speeds.
Ethernet cable FAQs
MSY has answers for the most popular LAN questions.
Can you a split a network cable?
No, a network cable cannot be split to connect to more than one device. If you want to make a wired connection with two devices, you’ll need two separate LAN cables (and at least two spare ports on your router, modem-router or networking switch).
How long can a network cable be?
Most recent network cables are designed to operate at max speeds up to 100 metres. That’s not practical for most use-cases, though. MSY stocks Ethernet cables up to 50 metres long.
How do you connect network cables?
All network cables have the same RJ45 connector on both ends, so it doesn’t matter which end goes into the device and which one goes into networking equipment. Match the bulky part of the RJ45 connector with the bottom of the port to easily connect it to both ends.
Which network cable brand is best?
Most network cable use-cases mean you can get away with buying a generic brand. That said, MSY also stocks LAN cables from popular brands like Asus and Cabac.
What’s a crossover network cable?
Crossover network cables are another type of cable that create an ad hoc connection between two Ethernet-compatible devices. They’re less popular than regular (straight-through) LAN cables these days.
What is a network cable for?
A network cable is for offering faster network speeds, lower latency and greater connection reliability than WiFi. LAN cables are a great way to free up local WiFi bandwidth for shared routers and modem-routers.