Shielded vs. Unshielded Ethernet

Hello! Long time reader, first time poster. I really appreciate any guidance anybody can provide on my question below and a huge thanks in advance.

I’m considering running ethernet through my home and trying to figure out if I should run shielded or unshielded cables. I have a chase that makes it easy to get from my basement to my attic. Problem is, that chase contains some wiring for second floor electrical (including condenser on the roof, air handler, and potential future wiring for washer/dryer). I live in a two story townhome and the length of the chase is approximately 22-24 ft.

A couple of questions:
(1) Should I be running shielded ethernet cable? Unclear to me since it’s a residential setting.
(2) If yes to shielded, what kind of shielding?

Thanks again!

I am not sure I can answer your question but as a commercial electrician I have been working in a high-rise office building for the past 2 years. Recently I went looking for some shielded scraps to make a few patch cords, I looked on 3 different floors but no shielded cable, just the plastic core. These cables run on top of, underneath and around all kinds of electrical cables (277 volts)

1 Like

Shielded cables seem to be more future proof.
Also choose Cat7 type.

1 Like

Minimum cat6a to future proof for 10gbit. I would go shielded cat7 or cat8 but that’s just preference. Last thing I want to worry about is my cabling causing errors or packet loss. Monoprice. com has deals on cat5-cat8 each month. Sign up for the newsletter. Buy them when they are on sale. They may be different colors buying on sale but w/e. I can live with that. You can get up to 100ft cables that are terminated already for cheap, especially on sale. Unless you want everything to be exactly the same.

1 Like

The only time I have seen shielded CAT cable was when it was running to power monitors in medium voltage switchgear because it needed to be 300 volt rated. Once you have the shield the next question is grounding and the shielded connectors… If you’re going to do it and do it properly what would you gain?

1 Like

Class F channel and Category 7 cable are backward compatible with Class D/Category 5e and Class E/Category 6. Class F features even stricter specifications for crosstalk and system noise than Class E. To achieve this, shielding was added for individual wire pairs and the cable as a whole. Unshielded cables rely on the quality of the twists to protect from EMI. This involves a tight twist and carefully controlled design. Cables with individual shielding per pair such as category 7 rely mostly on the shield and therefore have pairs with longer twists.”

Cat 7 is not an official standard. Instead of adopting Cat 7 then just certified Cat6A.

If you buy cat 7 or 8 patch cables from Monoprice, they already come with shielded connectors.

1 Like