Nicholas Watkins

  1. Armored Fiber Optic Cables

    Fiber optic cables are a first-rate option for transmitting data, being much faster than traditional copper Ethernet lines. Fiber cable can also run for much greater distances, giving it another leg up on copper cables. However, a potential weakness of fiber is fragility. Compared to copper cables, fiber is easier to break since it contains glass. That is where armored fiber optic cables come in.

    Armored fiber optic cable can do everything standard fiber can do while also carrying additional protection. Underneath the jacket, there is a metal tube protecting the delicate fibers at the core of the cable. This metal tube does not hamper performance and provides protection from heavy objects, curious rodents,

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  2. Fiber Optic Cable Protection

    Fiber optic cables provide incredible data speeds and can ensure a new or upgraded system will keep up with network demands for years to come. While the equipment specs are more than good enough to withstand the test of time, it is equally important to build a system that can physically hold up as the years go by. Physical network protection involves using the right tools and equipment to safeguard cables from external forces as well as improper use.

    How To Protect Fiber Optic Networks

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  3. Fiber Optic vs. Ethernet Cables

    While fiber optic cable has been around for a while, it is only in recent years that new innovations have made the technology economically viable. Fiber has not quite hit the same low pricing as ethernet but is well within the realm of being cost-effective. With the issue of cost set aside, the real question becomes: “Why choose fiber over Ethernet?” These two cables may both be used for data transmission, but they have a few differences along with their similarities.

    What are Ethernet Cables?

    Ethernet is a t

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  4. Types of Fiber Optic Connectors – Simplex, Duplex, LC, ST, SC, and More

    From left to right: FC, LC, SC, and ST

    Fiber optic cables utilize a few different connectors that can be used to terminate the cable. While they do bear some similarities, each kind has a different enough size and shape that they are not interchangeable. When preparing any fiber-related equipment for installation, it is important to make sure the cables are equipped with the right connectors for the job.

    FC is an older fiber optic connector currently being phased out of industry standards. While single mode cables still use FC, it is unusual to see them on multimode cables. FC connectors take

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  5. Types of Fiber Optic Cable – Single Mode vs. Multimode

    For decades, all varieties of cables from coax to ethernet have used electrical signals to transmit signals through metal cores. Modern technology has paved the way for improvements on these age-old cables with fiber optic cabling. These newer cables are made using optical fibers, plastic tubes filled with small pieces of glass. Each piece of glass is used as a tiny mirror to reflect lasers down the cable. Since light (lasers) moves faster than electricity, fiber optic cables can transmit data much faster than older metal-based cables. It is possible to use fiber and Ethernet together so long as

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  6. HDMI vs. DisplayPort vs. DVI vs. VGA: What’s the Difference?

    There are a variety of different cables that can be used for video connections. While there have been industry efforts at streamlining, even today there are multiple options on the market. Each type of video cable is easily identified by its unique size and shape, but there are also differences when it comes to the quality of each cable signal. Knowing these differences can enable users to make educated choices when selecting cables for electronic devices.

    Current Version

    Analog/Digital

    Max Resolution

    Locking Connector

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  7. How Can You Tell the Difference Between XLR and DMX?

    XLR and DMX cables have a bit of overlap and it can be difficult to keep the two separate. The short answer is that XLR is used for audio while DMX is used for lighting. Both cables use the same kind of connectors and look the same on the outside, there are differences on the inside. There is a little bit of cross-functionality, but XLR and DMX should not be interchanged unless users find themselves in a desperate situation.

    Are DMX and XLR Connectors the Same?

    Whereas DMX refers to something specific, “XLR” is more of a catch-all term. It can refer to an XLR cable, XLR connector, or even audio cables in general. Oftentimes, microphone cables are referred to as XLR even if they may feature another kind of audio connection as well. DMX cables do use XLR connectors, but their specialized use has given the

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  8. Video Game Consoles – Cables and Cords

    Video games are one of the most popular past times today, with the video game industry making more money each year than movies and music combined. Avid gamers used to hang onto their old consoles, but that has become less common over the years due to games being re-released and digital downloads giving gamers easy access to their old favorites.

    Modern televisions tend to be equipped with an HDMI port and not much else while some TVs still have the older RCA ports. When using a TV with older types of connections, you can typically use a converter to get the console hooked up. Most connections today are streamlined

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  9. Belden DataTuff – Industrial Ethernet Cable

    Ethernet is the cornerstone of most modern technology; if a machine sends or receives any data, it is likely using Ethernet. In an office environment, there is nothing wrong with Ethernet using a standard PVC jacket. But industrial environments are a different story. PVC Ethernet is not designed to stand up to oil, chemicals, and other hazardous conditions. Belden’s DataTuff cable is engineered to withstand harsh industrial environments without compromising data transmission.

    PVC and plenum jackets not rated for industrial use cannot keep up in those environments. A cold environment can make the jackets hard and brittle, causing the cables to break when bent. Exposure to chemicals ca

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  10. Cable Cross-Sections

    Different types of cables have different functions and it is easy to view any cable as a single, working unit. But each cable is made of different layers, with each layer providing a different function. Learning how these pieces interact makes it easier to understand just how a cable works and what can be done to avoid damaging a cable.

    Coax Cross-Section

    Coax is one of the most common types of cable, having been in use for well over 100 years. While the technology has improved over time, the basic layout

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