Copper Network Patch Panels

Fiber optical cables are terminated on either end using the fiber patch panel, pigtails and coupler assembly. Actually each core of the fiber cable is spliced to fit in to the fiber patch panel. A fiber patch cord connects to the patch panel and the fiber interface of the network switch. And there are copper patch panels, including CAT 5e Patch Panel, Cat 6 patch panels and Cat6a patch panels.

The Cat5e patch panel is designed for Cat5 cables. The panels are equipped with individual, fully modular printed circuit boards (PCBs) and a rear cable manager. Cat5e patch panels are available in 8, 12, 24, 48 ports.

CAT6a Patch Panel are designed to exceed TIA/EIA-568-B.2-1 component, permanent link and channel level performance specifications providing usable bandwidth beyond 250MHz and are backward compatible with lower level cabling systems. These high-density panels are available in 12 through 96 port versions and feature enhanced front and rear labeling features for easy circuit identification. Category 6+ panels support both T568Aand T568B wiring configurations using an easy to read color-coded wiring label.

Cat6a patch panel is a 10G serial panel designed to meet 10 Gigabit Ethernet IEEE 802.3an rev. 1.0 transmission requirements. The 10G cat6a patch panels are available in 24- and 48-port versions featuring port labeling areas and port numbering for easy circuit identification, which provides maximum strength and durability and eliminates panel flex during termination.

Category 6a Mini Patch Panels are available in 12-port size and are ideal for installations where space is at a premium and open bay racks cannot be used. Panels are provided mounted to either an 89D bracket or in a hinged version, both of which allow for easy access to the back of the panel for termination to 110 connectors.

What Are The Differences Between Cat5e, Cat6, Cat6A Patch Panels?

In fact there are not much practical difference between the Cat5e, Cat6, and Cat6a Patch Panel, One of the main difference is the wire gauge specified between them, The Cat6/6a is thicker than Cat5/5e, this can lead to unreliable connections on the punch down side of the patch panel, to wit: When punching down Cat5/5e wire on a Cat6/6a, the Cat5/5e wire is enough smaller that it is possible to get what looks like a good punch, but the insulation on the wire is not actually penetrated or is only partially penetrated by the vampire jaw of the punch block. When punching down Cat6/6a wire on a Cat5/5e panel, the larger wire can end up bending or even breaking the vampire jaws on the punch down block. It is supposed to be other differences in the way the wire is held and the shape of the “jaws” on the block itself, but depending on the brand it way differ.


Get the same patch panel type as the wiring you have. CAT5e Ethernet Cable won’t fit correctly in Cat6 panels, as well as viceversa. If you have a mixed cabling environment, terminate each cable to a dedicated patch panel and label accordingly.