Does That Indicate Any Better Quality If You Spend More On Network Cables?

- Nov 02, 2018-

Mostly no, but a qualified yes, which I'll have to explain. We have always said, and this is true for Ethernet cables as well as for other products, that price is a very, very poor proxy for quality. When we went out to test Ethernet cables, some of the most expensive ones we bought were the absolute bottom of the barrel–as were some of the cheapest.  There seemed to be no dependable pattern except that, at all price levels, performance was mostly horrible.

Now, price does come into it in one sense.  The cheapest spec-compliant cables cost more than the cheapest non-compliant cables.  But trying to find quality by searching price is a fool's errand, because most of the expensive cables aren't compliant, either. You've got to buy from somebody who actually tests each assembly, and tests it properly. Their products don't normally sell at retail stores or through popular web merchants but are found at large electronic distributors catering to such markets as the commercial integrator, data center, and broadcast markets.  They don't have a lot of interest in the consumer market, largely because these commercial customers often buy thousands of cables at once while you and I are likely to buy one or two.