Flat and round Cat6 cables, which one to choose? How do they differ from each other? Of course, the most obvious difference is the shape. But in addition to appearance, they are also very different in functions and application scenarios. Now, we will explore more about flat vs round Cat6 cable in five points below.
Length: Round Cat6 Is Better For Long Distance
Flat Cat6 Cable comes with a thin multiple stranded cable, which is weak, most flat cable in the market is not more than 30m lengths, performance does drop at a longer length, so they are not preferred for long distances.
Round Ethernet cables are not very vulnerable to attenuation over long distances, because the two related wires are designed to be entangled with each other inside the round cable. It can offset the interference superimposed on it by the outside environment. Therefore, the round wire can be as long as 100 meters, while the flat wire is generally just a short jumper, the longest is about 2 meters.
Insulation: Round Cat6 Is More Insulated
Flat Cat6 cables do not have filler and insulation like round cables. It uses similar insulation as electrical properties. Therefore, flat cables are more affected by EMI, they may be attenuated over long distances.
Round Cat6 cables are not as susceptible to attenuation, or the degradation (loss) of data over long cable lengths. Round Ethernet cables also have more insulation than flat cables. In a word, round Cat6 cables are better protected against EMI, they’re more insulated, and also shielded for more durability.
Installation: Round Cat6 Is More Flexible to Install
The thing that is convenient about flat Ethernet cable is the size of the wires and the ability to lay your cable flat on surfaces, on the ground or anywhere under surfaces, which is why it is a great choice for installing under carpet.
But round cables can be cast through walls hassle-more freely than flat cables, so if you need to run cable in the walls, then a solid round Cat6 cable is the choice. It also comes with standard solid core wire, which is enhanced with good reliability and makes it suitable for longer distance cabling.
Durability: Round Cat6 Is More Durable
The round Ethernet cable comprises some layers of filler substances that help sustain its round shape and reduce heat production. Moreover, these components prevent the cable from other external factors.
Since a flat cable is designed specifically for permanent installation, they require more maintenance than the rounded ones. They are not able to provide as high uptime as rounded cables. Contrastingly, the round cables require very little maintenance and provide more uptime.
Application: Flat and Round Cat6 For Different Scenarios
Because of their differences, flat and round Cat6 cables have different suitable application scenarios. For example, in some homes or offices where extra space is minimal, flat cables can fit exactly as you want them. On the contrary, when building an office, data center or professional outdoor network, round Cat6 cables are more popular because of the sturdy and durable filling layer and better anti-shielding performance.