Shield or Unshielded


#1

Would it make a difference using shielded or unshielded ethernet cables? I have my NAS and Sonos Connect connected to the router. The NAS is right next to the router while the Sonos is connected by a 60 ft. long ethernet cable. This cable runs past all sorts of stock power cables the power the computer , printers, monitor, scanner etc.


#2

The cost difference between shielded and unshielded is virtually zero. So the simple answer is, just buy shielded, and you’re done. No need to think about it.


#3

Definitely use unshielded ethernet cables unless you know there’s zero possibility of a ground loop through the shield…

If unsure, no need to think about it, use unshielded :wink:


#4

huh? current loop through the shield? The shield on STP should only be grounded on one end, not sure if I understand your point.


#5

But are they all done that way? Hence my point, if someone is unsure, use unshielded…

And my point again, if you know there’s no possibility of a ground loop via the shield, then sure, use shielded if you wish.


#6

If unsure they are easy to check. If you don’t have a DMM, just try short out a battery with the metal connector shell at each end. If the shells are connected via the shield it will short. If not, you’re in business.


#7

Ah yes. Checking wasn’t in your first reply :wink:

Checking always helps to be sure.

Not everyone is comfortable or can be fooked checking though - in which case unshielded is a safer bet for avoiding ground loops via ethernet cables.


#8

I make all my own STP, with solid conductors, so I know they are correct. I don’t notice any performance difference between UTP and STP LAN cable.


#9

We appear to be going in a loop ourselves, but that was the basis of my first reply - if you know (like you do, making your own cables) that there’s no possibility of a ground loop, then great.

Not everyone is in a position to know or test - so unshielded is safe advice for these people.

Anyway let’s break this loop. Should be clear as mud to the OP now hehe


#10

I agree with Brodric.


#11

Thank you for your responses. Any suggestions where I can get shielded cables with ground only on one end. My concern is the unshielded cable running past all the unshielded stock power cables and thus introducing noise into the system.


#12

Ghent Audio cat6a.

Made with Belden cat6a and includes a shield loop wire that connects both ends of shield but doesn’t terminate at the plugs.


#13

Have a go at making them yourself. You’ll need a crimping tool, the connectors, and a cable tester. No more than about 50 dollars for all that, plenty for sale on eBay. Then buy the bulk cable, probably a $ or 2 per foot. Then you’re set to make as many cables as you need.

Note to @Elk…when I put the dollar symbol preceding a number in the text editor window it doesn’t appear in the eventual post.


#14

Do not buy or build STP cables for audio. Really! So much misinformation here. Please read:


#15

I would worry much more about the noise coming from the router.


#16

How so? And how do you isolate it? Thanks


#17

Ethernet is an electrical connection, the router is a noisy device. Ethernet transformers only block a portion of noise while letting a segment go right through uninhibited. Especially the smps noise from the router goes right through the transformers.

(1) Use FMC’s to break the loop and power with high quality power supplies. This is an iffy area since the devices are not audiophile devices themselves.

(2) Buy an audiophile Switch from SoTM or AQVOX.

(3) Wait for the Uptone EtherRegen which will have built in isolation and custom circuitry for audio.


#18

Are you guys trying to find an answer to a problem that doesn’t exist?

I don’t follow CA forums or the latest state of discussions on this aspect, but I have no issues at all with my content arriving down a network cable, whether it’s UTP Cat5e or STP or whatever.


#19

I am only trying to find out if shielded or unshielded ethernet cables would make a difference in my specific situation. Seems like there are opposing views on this topic.


#20

It has been confirmed here by Paul that noise can pass through Ethernet transformers.