Belden introduces high-performance patch cables

Recently, Belden Wire & Cable Co. (Richmond, IN) unveiled the DataTwist 350, a stranded 350-megahertz patch cable that meets TIA/EIA-568A standards for Category 5 networks, according to company claims. Patent is pending.

Recently, Belden Wire & Cable Co. (Richmond, IN) unveiled the DataTwist 350, a stranded 350-megahertz patch cable that meets TIA/EIA-568A standards for Category 5 networks, according to company claims. Patent is pending.

"Network performance and integrity are important," says Jay Lahman, product marketing specialist for premise wiring products. "Patch cables are often the weak link in a network."

Maintaining patch-cable performance is vital for a Category 5 network. The TIA/EIA-568A standard allows up to 10 meters of patch cable from the termination blocks in the telecommunications closet to the equipment and from wall outlets to desktop workstations--areas that often experience fluctuations of temperature and humidity.

At the June Broadband `96 conference held in Framingham, MA, Galen Gareis, senior product development engineer for the company, characterized the effect that long-term aging can have on a patch cable. Over time, he said, aging can cause attenuation to change by 7 to 8 decibels. "Why risk performance with failing attenuation?" asks Lahman.

To test its product, Belden created environments that fluctuated in temperature and humidity levels. According to Gareis, "We simulated the environment of patch cables in the wiring closet and accelerated the aging process." The company states that results showed its patch cable showed only a 3.35% increase in attenuation at 100 MHz, while cables from other manufacturers showed increases of 20% to 40%.

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