Terminating cables properly is critical to network performance, but it can be a tricky task with multiple steps. Fortunately, this task is easy to manage and get right when the proper tools, connectors, and methods are understood.
In this guide, we teach the key points of network cable termination, including:
Tools used for terminating: Strippers, cutting tools, punch down and crimp tools
Connectors and patch panels
Jacks vs. modular plugs
How to terminate modular plugs
How to terminate and install RJ45 jacks
How to punch down patch panels
Speciality modular plugs
Differences in Cat 5e and Cat 6 connectors
Plus, we include 4 video demonstrations on stripping cable jackets, terminating RJ45 mod tips, terminating CAT 6 network cable to a keystone jack and patch panel termination.
This is part of our ongoing series of installation guides including:
Before any discussion of terminating cables, users should decide whether cables will be terminated with a modular plug directly into the camera (direct connect), or if a jack will be installed with a short patch cable to the camera or other device (jack and patch).
Direct connect is most common in IP cameras, but installers should be aware that not all users prefer this method. Some bid specs may require a jack to be installed, as well. Additionally, cables are rarely terminated to plugs at the switch/NVR end but are instead typically terminated to a patch panel to more easily facilitate labeling and moves and changes.
Looking at my pricing the REVConnect is about 55 cents more than a traditional connector. You buy the core and then put on whatever color modular jack or direct connect jack you want. So for 55 cents more but labor probably cut in half this make perfect sense. Especially like most integrators we aren't termination hundreds of cable a day usually.
Yes it is required and that is an average cost but the labor savings it provides in say a years time more than pays for that. I know where I work we often get caught up in how much something might cost but never consider will this save labor costs or even as simple as four or five people discussing whether to charge a customer for a $50 part when you spent $200 in labor discussing said part.
I would also suggest if an Integrator were to switch over to this system make sure and get ahold of the local Belden rep. They may give you some of the crimpers if you buy enough and I'm not talking a thousand dollar order either.
Because at the end of the connector where the wire was sticking out the cut wasn't clean and we RJ45 couldn't make a solid connection in the jacks. Could have been user error but I have run into this several times over the years.
Or just don't use the EZ system. I tried the system a long time ago when I was first getting into this. It seemed to make it faster, but then I simply got faster using the traditional way and didn't need to look at the end or worry about dull blades. I still use the correct crimper as I like the crimper. I just don't use the EZ connectors.
Mostly I’m impressed the cables are in the right place. It’s surprising when you see a manufacturer example of an item and it’s either mounted poorly (recently as a vandal dome on a wall with rain) or some other inconsistency!
I started using the EZ-RJ45 because I have some nerve damage causing me numbness and pain in my hands. It would start halfway through an installation and I would barely be able to finish. The tool really helped me spend less time working on the connectors and nearly eliminated the pain and numbness.
There are three types of RJ45 modular plugs. One made for solid conductor cable, one made for stranded conductor cable, and one that's designed for either. Using the wrong one will cause issues at some point.
Correct. Typically, one will be cheaper than the other. So purchasing departments may purchasing the wrong one based upon price, then if techs don't know what to look for, the wrong connector gets installed. Typically the issue doesn't surface on the initial install, but after a cable gets plugged and unplugged the conductor gets loose.
One system you don't mention is the keystone patch panel. I haven't punched a panel in over a year. The problem I have is when you don't fill the entire patch panel and need to add cables to the patch panel in the future. I find that using a keystone patch panel avoids the potential of knocking the existing punched cables and causing them not to work. In a tight rack, this can happen.
Many make their own keystone system for time savings. I like the Dynacom KwiJack system that uses their KwikTool. It works well and is relatively inexpensive. For the keystone panel, I just get the ones from PI as they work well and are inexpensive.
For shielded panels, I used the ones from Dynacom.
I looked into the Belden system and got a demo of it, but I believe it costs more than 55 cents over what I use currently. They make the KwikJack work with 5e, 6, and 6a UTP keystone jacks. I may look at the Belden system again at some point.
We have a bunch of SFF machines / NUCs that we use for testing. The first one you highlighted is our "utility" server. It runs a bunch of non-vms services for us; PRTG, time server, disk cloning software, and several other services. The other machines are running Avigilon, Genetec, Milestone, Exacq, NxWitness,, other VMSes we use for testing.
Just to expand on John's comment: The NUC is a small form factor PC marketed by Intel (it stands for Next Unit of Computing) which we have found works a lot better than other small form factors we've tried. It's more flexible in processor, memory, and storage selection.
For example, all of ours are running quad core i7s, 16GB RAM, an m.2 SSD for the OS, and then a 1TB drive for video storage. Older models we tried were all focused on being super low power, but were much weaker, only supported a single drive, 4GB of RAM, etc. We've been pretty happy with them in this configuration. Sean has a rack of them for VMS testing, as well.
I'm sure this tip are well known, but I'll share these illustrative pics anyway as the method was extremely useful against 'creative youngsters' that pulled the RJ45 from few WAP's over and over again some years ago, but after this cut they never been pulled so easily again.
Each 4 pair horizontal cable shall be terminated on an 8 position modular jack. The outlet shall meet the interface requirements of IEC 60603-7. The standard pin configuration is T568A, and T568B is provided to accommodate other 8 pin configurations
Additionally, A provides backwards compatibility for USOC 1 and 2 pair wiring schemes where as B only provides 1 pair.
B only exists because of AT&Ts old wiring scheme, however the cable twist rates were designed around A and as such it is the superior standard.
Installers should be installing A in greenfield sites and only reverting to B (if needed or spec'd) for the above reasons rather than the other way around. I know B is very common in the US but it's almost non existent in AU/NZ because AS/NZS 3080 prefers A
With all that said, in the end, no one will see any adverse affects no matter which standard you choose, but I feel it's helpful to enlighten people on A vs B and why A is better.
Thank you Serge. For clarity, below is an image of an FM45
Similar to the Compression Gland Connector demonstrated in the report it is advertised as tool-less. This really means crimper-less (or specialty tool-less). The installer will still need a jacket stripper and either electrician scissors or diagonal cut pliers to flush cut the wires.
The problem Serge faces is that the body of the FM45 is so large compared to an RJ45 that it does not work with all cameras, or may be more difficult to connect to some cameras.