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Ethernet vs. Phone Cables – What's the main difference?

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The main difference between the two is the size of the plastic connector at the end of the cable. Telephones use RJ11/RJ12 connectors, while Ethernet uses RJ45. RJ11/RJ12 only use 4-6 pins, while RJ45 uses 8 pins.

 

 

Cat8 Shielded Ethernet Patch Cable

 

RJ45 Straight/Right 45° Angle Cable

 

 

Modular Connector

 

 

Both Ethernet and telephone cables are made using modular connectors. These connectors are designed for use with registered jack (RJ) twisted pair cables. The original modular jack was invented by AT&T in the 1960s and used in some phones. Over time, they became popular and eventually became the industry standard in the 1970s.

 

 

Each type of modular connector has an RJ designation, but can also be called "#P#C". The first number is the number of metal pins (P) inside the connector. The second number is how many of those pins are actually connected to the wire. The connected pins are called contacts (C). Modern phones use RJ11 (6P4C) or RJ12 (6P6C). Having more wires within a telephone line allows more signal pairs to run through one cable, e.g. a telephone and a fax machine are both connected on one wire. The extra amount of wires in the newer RJ12 also makes it backward compatible with RJ11 (on the other hand, RJ11 is not forward compatible with RJ12).

 

 

Because data signals are more complex than telephone signals, these old-style jacks didn't make it to the Internet once the World Wide Web was invented. RJ45 (8P8C) was developed for this purpose and uses four pairs of wires. RJ45 connectors are physically larger than RJ11/RJ12 due to the need for an extra pair of wires. While there are several different types of Ethernet available, they all use RJ45 connectors in their construction. Checking the dimensions and counting the number of pins in the connector is the easiest way to tell if the cable is an ethernet or a phone cable.

 

 

 

6 Pin Telephone Splitter Converter Cable

ETHERNET AND PHONE CABLES FROM PREMIER CABLE

 

 

Whether you need Ethernet cables, phone cords, or any type of cable accessories, Premier Cables are here to help. With thousands of cables in stock and OEM is accepted.

Have questions about Ethernet, phone cables, or any of our other products? You can leave your messages or by email at sales03@premier-cable.net

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