We’re in the digital age, and IT infrastructure is one of the most critical aspects needed for a business to succeed. That’s where a structured cabling system comes into play– it’s responsible for handling all of your business’s telecommunication needs. Sometimes called data cabling or structured network cabling, a robust cabling setup not only saves your company time and money but also greatly increases productivity and efficiency.
However, there are two main choices when it comes to picking out a structured cabling system for your business: standard cables and fiber-optic cables.
In this article, we’re going to explore the differences between the two so you can easily decide which one is best for structured cabling.
The Importance of Structured Cabling Installation Virginia Beach, VA
Regardless if you choose standard cabling or fiber optics, there’s one thing that’s for sure– any structured cabling system is better than having none at all. As mentioned, your IT infrastructure is critical for your business to succeed. Here’s a quick rundown of the top 5 reasons why an effective structured cabling setup is so important:
- Reduce Downtime
- Faster Data Transmission
- Less Noise
- It’s Cost Effective
If you want to delve deeper into these benefits, check out our article 5 Reasons Why Voice and Data Cabling is Important. Let’s continue with the differences between standard and fiber-optic cables.
What are Standard Cables and Fiber-Optic Cables?
The main factor that separates standard cables and fiber-optic cables boil down to the way they send and receive data.
Fiber optics use bundles of flexible glass to transmit data in the form of light. These bundles are covered and protected by a layer of plastic, and they’re able to transfer a large amount of data very fast. Compared to standard cables of the same diameter, fiber optics can transfer a lot more data.
Standard cables, on the other hand, are made from strands of copper wire that use electricity to transmit data. These are called coaxial cables that use copper at the center along with aluminum as insulation and plastic covering. Electricity travels much slower than light and they’re also susceptible to interference from weather and other electromagnetic causes.
Standard Cables vs Fiber-Optic Cables: Which is Better?
When looking at shear quality, fiber optics win by a landslide. Let’s take a look at the top 4 benefits of fiber optics and why it’s generally the best choice for business purposes:
1) Fiber optics is faster
As mentioned above, fiber optics use light to transmit data. For reference, light can travel between the earth and the moon within a few seconds! As such, the bandwidth of fiber optics can reach speeds of 100 Gbps (gigabits per second) or more. Copper cables, on the other hand, generally top out at around 40 Gbps.
2) Fiber optics can travel further
One issue that comes with transmitting data is that the signal gets weaker the further it travels– this is called attenuation. However, when you compare fiber optics attenuation to copper cables, the difference is astounding. Copper cable lengths are limited to a little over 300 ft before signal degradation kicks in. Whereas, fiber optics can reach lengths of nearly 25 miles with very little attenuation.
3) Fiber optics don’t suffer from electromagnetic interference
When you have multiple copper cables running parallel and across each other, the moving electrons create an electromagnetic field that interferes with the signal. However, since fiber optics use photons, you don’t have to worry about any interference at all.
4) Fiber optics future-proof your business
As your business grows and IT requirements evolve, you’ll need more bandwidth to keep up with the changes. Fiber optics ensure your business is ready to adapt as internet speeds get faster.
Finding a Network Cabling Solution: Virginia Beach, VA
When it comes to premiere structured data cabling services, Virginia Beach, VA businesses can always rely on TCI. Our team of expert technicians can help your business decide what’s the best solution for your needs and budget. If you’re ready to make your business more productive and efficient, contact us today to speak with one of our friendly professionals!