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Quote:Cat5 cables are rated to handle 100mbit connections (FastEthernet); this is the most common connection type for home users.
Cat5e cables are rated to handle 1000mbit connections (Gigabit); This is reasonably common nowadays for home users, but most people don't reach those numbers anyway.
Cat6 cables are rated to handle 10000mbit connections (10 Gigabit) up to 50 meters and 1000 up to 100 meters (same as 5e). 10 Gigabit connections is something you will not see in a common home network anytime soon.
In short, you do not need Cat6. Cat5e is more than enough for normal use. @Chetyre
Thank you all for your inputs. I will check the cables when I get home to see which type of ethernet cables are hooked up on my modem/router. So maybe they are cat 5/5e... Is there anything older than those cables? Also, I recently bought a 75 feet and 50 feet cat6a ethernet. While I don't have speeds that you describe for that type of cable, is it still okay to use it? I have comcast cable internet.
There's nothing wrong with using a higher grade cable than is required. Just means you're a little more future proof for things that'd come out down the road. You don't strictly need it, but it won't hurt anything either.
Some roads you shouldn't go down because maps used to say there'd be dragons there. Now they don't, but that don't mean the dragons aren't there.
I actually just spent all day wiring my house with Cat5e. Thought about going cat6/cat6a but I already had a 500ft spool of cat5e and didn't really want to spend the extra money. Plus it'll probably be many years before 10GBaseT NICs are affordable