PoE Standards: How To Select The Right Power And Fiber Cable For Your Network

Ethernet over Power (PoE) is a convenient technology that allows you to transmit both data and power over a single Ethernet cable. It’s commonly used in IP security cameras, VoIP phones, and other devices that require both data and power. But with all the different PoE standards out there, it can be tough to know which one is right for your network. In this blog post, we’ll explain the different PoE standards and how to select the right power and fiber cable for your network.

What is Power over Ethernet (PoE)?

Power over Ethernet is a technology for wired Ethernet LANs (local area networks) that allows the electrical current necessary for the operation of each device to be carried by the data cables rather than by dedicated power lines. This simplifies the installation and configuration of network equipment because it eliminates the need for a separate power supply.

PoE was originally developed to simplify the installation of IP telephones, wireless access points, and other networked devices that require power but are not equipped with a separate power source. The PoE standard IEEE 802.3af was released in 2003, and the newer IEEE 802.3at standard, also known as PoE+, was released in 2009.

PoE requires special circuitry at both ends of the Ethernet cable to inject or extract power from the data pairs. Most Ethernet switches include PoE support, either built-in or via an external module, and many networked devices such as IP phones and wireless access points are now available with PoE support.

When selecting a power or fiber cable for your network, it is important to consider which PoE standard you need in order to ensure compatibility with your devices and infrastructure.

What Are the Different Types of PoE Standards?

In order to select the right Power over Ethernet (PoE) standard for your network, you need to understand the different types of PoE standards and their capabilities. The IEEE 802.3af standard is the most common PoE standard and can provide up to 15.4 watts of power per port. It is typically used for devices such as VoIP phones, wireless access points, and IP cameras. The IEEE 802.3at standard, also known as PoE+ or High Power over Ethernet, can provide up to 30 watts of power per port and is often used for devices such as pan-tilt-zoom cameras and video conferencing systems. The IEEE 802.3bt standard, also known as Ultra PoE, can provide up to 90 watts of power per port and is ideal for devices such as LED displays and digital signage.

How to Select the Right Power and Fiber Cable for Your Network

There are many factors to consider when selecting the right power and fiber cable for your network. The most important factor is the type of cable you need. There are three main types of cables: single-mode, multimode, and hybrid.

Single-mode cable is the most common type of cable used in Ethernet networks. It can be used for data rates up to 10 Gbps over long distances.

Multimode cable is often used in short runs or in applications where high data rates are not required. It is also less expensive than single-mode cable.

Hybrid cables are a combination of single-mode and multimode fibers. They offer the best of both worlds by providing high data rates and longer distance capabilities.

The next factor to consider is the length of the run. The length of the run will determine the type of connector you need. For example, LC (local connector) or ST (straight tip) connectors are typically used for shorter runs while SC (subscriber connector) or FC (fiber channel) connectors are used for longer runs.

Finally, you need to consider the environment in which the cable will be installed. Indoor/outdoor cables have different jackets and are designed to withstand different weather conditions. Cables that will be buried underground need to have a special UV resistant jacket to protect them from sunlight degradation.


Picking the right cable for your network can be a daunting task, but it’s important to choose one that will meet your needs both now and in the future. We hope this guide has helped you understand the different types of cables available and how to select the right one for your network. If you have any questions, our team of experts at is always here to help. Contact us today and we’ll be happy to assist you in finding the perfect cable for your Power over Ethernet (PoE) network.