The following explains some of the terminology associated with Structured Wiring that Nextec Systems offers.

BNC Connector:  This type of connector attaches to the ends of coaxial cable and feature male and female twist lock connection.  BNC connectors are typically used for commercial/professional audio devices and surveillance camera systems. 

Category 5, Category 6 (Cat 5, Cat 6) Cabling:  This is a type of cable that consists of 8 different insulated wires (4 pairs) twisted together over its length.  Although it is best known for use in networking, it is used for a wide variety of communications applications (audio/video, phone, intercom, touchscreens etc.).  The simplified difference between category 5 and cat 6 cabling is that cat 6 supports higher data speeds.

Decora Style: This is modern and clean style of wall plates for outlets that features rectangular cut outs and inserts for the electrical and low voltage (phone, TV, network etc).  Nextec regularly uses Decora style wallplates and inserts with QuickPort style Connectors.

Demarcation Point (aka Point of Demarc ):  This refers to the junction of cabling infrastructure from service providers and the internal structured cabling in your home or business.  The point of demarc for phone, internet and television is usually on the side of buildings.

F connector: This connector attaches to the ends of coaxial cable and feature male and female screw on type terminals. The typical TV outlet that you would see on a wall would have an f-connector.

Home Run Configuration:  This is the standard cabling method used today for most structured cabling where all cabling is run to a central point, as opposed to daisy chained. One of the few exceptions to this standard in today’s world would be many 70v commercial audio systems, which still incorporate a daisy chain type configuration.

Low Voltage Bracket (aka trim ring):  This is a bracket usually made out of metal or plastic that provides an opening to a finished wall for low voltage cabling/connectors.  It differs from a regular electrical box in the sense that it does not have a back which is required by code for electrical installations.  They are available in new work and retrofit mounting styles and are available in different sizes (1 gang, 2 gang etc)

QuickPort Connector: This refers to a square connector style by Leviton that snap into wallplates.  These connectors come in a variety of connections including phone jacks, data jacks, F connectors for TV, binding posts for audio and more.

Rj11 connector:  This is a connector that uses up to 6 wires and is typically used for telephone applications.  The connector on the cable that connects your phone to the wall outlet is an rj11 connector.

Rj45 Connector:  This is an 8 wire connector that is usually to the ends of cat5 / cat6 cable and is used for communications such as data networking.  The cable that plugs into the back of your computer for internet is an rj-45 connector.

Structured Cabling:  This refers to all the cabling and cabling infrastructure products in a home or business for audio/video, data, phone, security and control.

Structured Wiring Enclosure:  A structured wiring enclosure is usually a metal enclosure that serves as central connection point for various communications, security and audio/video  cabling that is run throughout your home and business.  Common components inside of a structured wiring include phone, distribution modules, TV distribution modules, data network routers/switches and security controllers.

Vapor Barrier:  This refers to material (usually plastic sheeting) that is designed to prevent the penetration of moisture into walls, ceilings and floors.  It is a consideration in structured Cabling because wires and devices such as speakers often penetrate the vapor barrier and steps must be taken to not violate the integrity of the vapor barrier.

Please check out our Duluth, Minnesota and Northern Wisconsin Residential Structured Cabling Services page and our Duluth, Minnesota and Northern Wisconsin Commercial Structured Cabling Services Page.

By Jerid Prahl – Owner/Lead Designer Nextec Systems