What is the difference between the types of cable - UTP, Patch, Stranded, Solid?
UTP stands for Unshielded Twisted Pair. It is a cable type with pairs of twisted insulated copper conductors contained in a single sheath. UTP cables are the most common type of cabling used in desktop communications applications.
Stranded cable has several small gauge wires in each separate insulation sleeve. Stranded cable is more flexible, making it more suitable for shorter distances, such as patch cords.
Solid has one larger gauge wire on each sleeve. Solid cable has better electrical performance than stranded cable and is traditionally used for inside walls and through ceilings - any type of long run of cable.
Patch Cables are made of stranded copper conductors for flexibility. This construction is great for the flexing and the frequent changes that occur at the wall outlet or patch panel.
The Stranded conductors do not transmit data signals as far as solid cable. The TIA/EIA 568A which is the governing standard regarding commercial cabling systems limits the length of patch cables to 10 meters in total length. Does that mean you can't use stranded cable for longer runs? Not at all, we've seen installations running stranded cable over 100 feet with no problems - it's just not recommended. This is why we don't sell patch cables over 30 feet in length.