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Knowing Which Cables to Use in the Home

Some people call it a “wired world,” and they are not wrong. Many people today are using advanced electronic items for work, leisure, and communication, and some of them are even wireless. A laptop or a smartphone can access the Internet and other devices remotely, which is quite useful on the go. Still, while wireless tech is useful on a small scale, an office building is going to need cables such as cat5 cables, cat6 cables, USB 2.0 extension cables, and the like to keep its computers running smoothly. Cables have not been made obsolete; in fact, for some applications, they are preferable over a wireless connection, and bulk USB cables or USB 2.0 extension cables can hook up different electronic items with ease. Such USB 2.0 extension cables, cat5e cables, cell phone cables, and many more can be found in electronic goods stores, too. When is it time to buy a new USB 2.0 extension cable or a 100 ft HDMI cable? What can they do?

Cables for Office Use

Nearly all places of business today make use of computers. A small shop might need only one or two computers or laptops to handle administrative work and place stock orders, but a large office will need more. Cables will be needed to connect those computers to routers, each other, printers, and more, such as USB 2.0 extension cables and ethernet cables, because wireless connections will not do. Too many wireless signals in once place will mean constant signal interference, and that could spell trouble. So, ethernet cables such as cat5 and cat6 models will connect everything, and those cables will never suffer from interference. A typical cat6 cable contains four pairs of copper wires for the fast and smooth transmission of data, and IT professionals will be tasked with setting up all those cables in the office, along with other cable types as needed.

Those ethernet cables can be threaded discreetly in the office space to avoid tripping hazards, and holes can be drilled right into the floor to allow cables to pass through and reach a cable port. Routers allow for an internet connection, and cables plug PCs into those routers and each other for secure internet access at all times. Of course, routine inspections should be carried out on those cables, to check for any frayed sheaths or exposed wires. Hot, exposed metal wires make for a serious fire hazard. Also, care should be taken so that cables of the necessary length are purchased, and “extended” cables are the longest types. Cat5e and cat6e are the longest, and on a cable’s packing, the length should be described clearly. Some might be as long as 100 feet.

Fiber optic cables may also be installed, and this is the domain of professional crews whom the office’s manager may hire for this work. Invented in the late 1980s or so, fiber optic cables are thin glass tubes that carry data with pulses of light, and they allow for incredibly fast transmission speeds. Bundles of bulk fiber optic cables can be installed in an office to meet all its internet needs, and bonus “dark” cables will be added, too. Such cables can come online as the office’s internet usage expands, or if any of the main cables malfunction or get damaged.

Cables at Home

Many homeowners own a few devices that need cables, such as smartphones. These phones will need a lightning cable that plugs into the phone’s port at one end, and into a USB port at the other. When plugged into another device, the phone can share data, and its battery will be recharged. Adapters allow these cables to be plugged into an ordinary wall socket or even a car’s cigarette lighter.

A home PC may connect to the router with an ethernet cable, and cables may also connect a printer or a headset as well. Items such as keyboards and mice can be disconnected so a new one can be plugged into the computer’s USB ports, and once the drivers install, the new device is connected and ready for use. An HDMI cable, meanwhile, can connect a game console or laptop to an HDTV or a digital projector to make a high-def home entertainment system.

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November 2019
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