With four new ISO/IEC and TIA cabling projects under development, it is more confusing than ever to cross reference the two groups’ cabling and component specifications. This short primer should help.
In ISO/IEC Standards, structured cabling components (e.g. cables, connecting hardware, and patch cords) are characterized by a performance “category” and are mated to form a permanent link or channel that is described by a performance “class”. In TIA Standards, components and cabling are both characterized by a performance “category”. ISO/IEC and TIA equivalent grades of cabling, arranged in order of increasingly more stringent transmission performance, are shown below.
(cabling and components)
|Class D||Category 5e||→||Category 5e|
|Class E||Category 6||→||Category 6|
|Class EA||Category 6A||→||Category 6A|
|Class I||Category 8.1||→||Category 8|
|Class FA||Category 7A||No equivalent||-|
|Class II||Category 8.2||→||Class II*|
|* TIA has substantial component-related work that needs to be done related to the specification of class II channels and the naming convention for components is unknown at this time.|
Note that ISO/IEC class I/category 8.1 and TIA category 8 will not be electrical supersets of ISO/IEC class FA/category 7A.