Next Generation BASE-T cabling coming - TvTechnology

Next Generation BASE-T cabling coming

Faster BASE-T network connectivity is around the corner
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There’s a new and higher bandwidth BASE-T standard coming. It’s called Next Generation BASE-T (NGBASE-T). It will operate on copper twisted-pair and use the ubiquitous RJ45 connector. Early examination of the technology predicts that copper cabling can support at last 40Gb/s, perhaps even 100Gb/s. A white paper from CommScope outlines the preliminary research and offers some predictions to a time frame for actual products.

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There’s a new and higher bandwidth BASE-T standard coming. It’s called Next Generation BASE-T (NGBASE-T). It will operate on copper twisted-pair and use the ubiquitous RJ-45 connector. Early examination of the technology predicts that copper cabling can support at last 40Gb/s, perhaps even 100Gb/s. A white paper from CommScope outlines the preliminary research and offers some predictions to a time frame for actual products.

One might ask why its important to extend the bandwidth of copper-twisted-pair. Far higher bandwidth cabling is available, not limited to coax and fiber. It turns out that simply being able to retain the familiarity of the RJ-45 connector going forward is a key reason for this research. At the July, 2012 IEEE committee meeting, presenters said that the backwards-compatible RJ-45 connector was a key strength of BASE-T technologies.

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The RJ-45 connector supports a still growing 1 Gbps/s market, which is also expanding to 10 Gbps connectivity. Also, by relying on a the same familiar RJ-45 connector found in legacy installations, users can more easily upgrade their networks. The NGBASE-T solution also is expected to continue to provide the patch panel flexibility associated with structured cabling, allowing reconfiguration of networks. Finally, and not unimportant, a copper twisted pair solution would likely be more cost-effective than coax or fiber.

High volume shipments of 40Gb/s equipment may be five to six years away (a lifetime in broadcast), but this future option may help enforce the financial safety of building today with twisted-pair solutions.

The entire CommScope white paper can be found here.