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Wiring a house with network cable - some 'deep dive' questions  



Hi, I know this has come up on the show previously - but I wonder if people could share specific experiences or knowledge.

About 20 years ago I ran some Cat 6 solid core cable through our previous house.  I terminated the cable at each and with RJ45 faceplates, and then used patch cables to go to the router/switch at one end and to computers/switches at the other end.  It was a simple set up.

It surprises me that even today it's common for people to use Cat 5e cable - if I'm going to the trouble of installing new cable I want it to be as future proof as possible.  So I'm thinking of using at least Cat 7.  However - and this is where the question comes in - it seems it's not necessarily as straight forward as just going for the best I can afford.  It seems there are issues such as

1) What are the differences between Cat 7, 7A or 8

2) It seems to be difficult to find parts compatible with Cat 7 cable (eg. RJ 45 faceplates)

3) Cat 7 etc need shielded connectors, and it seems they need to be earthed

4) I've read that they can be difficult to work with, and require more careful testing - how should that be done, if I don't have anything faster than gigabit CURRENTLY, how do I know it's terminated to achieve optimal performance in future

5) I'm thinking of getting a patch panel - but again it seems as though patch panels either work with specific cable type (I don't think I found any Cat 7 patch panels), so are people using Cat 7 Keystone Jacks slotted into blank patch panel faces - if so, are they all interchangeable

6) I watched a YouTube video showing a very nice method of terminating the cables that included colour coded positions on the jack and a tool that 'squashes' the jack once assembled (sorry if this isn't a good description).  I've previously used the Krone type pushdown tool which seems a bit more laborious and perhaps less reliable.  What are the best keystone jacks / tools to use for simplicity and reliability?

Anything else I need to be aware of?


PS.  Final point is I'm in the UK, so presumably suppliers of parts may be different, but at least if I can see what's recommended in the USA it might help me know what to look for in Europe!



PS. This was the video I found showing a connector and tool for terminating to female jacks - looks a really nice method. The tool looks expensive, but I think the old saying of 'a bad workman blames his tools' comes from bad workmen using poor tools!