Cat cable recommendations

Hello all ,
As above , having full fibre installed very soon
Installation is being placed close to hifi space
So i can connect atom he and core to router
( about 5 feet Away )
Do i need fancy ethernet patch cables or would giveaway ones work just as well
Is speed of cable an issue cat 5 / 6 / 8 whatever :thinking:
Thanks in advance .

There is a wealth of info buried in this forum if you search
But whatever, all you need is a basic Cat-5e to supply Naim and all other streamer brands.
Question is will a better cable work/sound better. Forum favourites are mostly Cat-6 or Cat-6a, some go for higher Cat numbers, others go for more expensive.
My advise is to go for a not too expensive Cat-6 such as BlueJeansCable, Belden Catsnake or similar. Then if you feel so inclinded, try some others as & when curiosity gets the better of you.


Alan, I completely agree with Mike on his answer to your question having gone through a very similar scenario than yours but with a much longer extension of wired ethernet into my listening room. Cat 5 cable will work fine and its unlikely you would hear any difference between using a Cat 6 and Cat 5 cable. I went with Cat 6 because it is more future proof which, in my opinion, is the advantage if you have “permanently” installed the cable by, for example, running it through walls.


These topics in other threads historically have run and run sometimes in to the 1000’s of posts!
You will NOT for sure get a definitive answer.
Keep it simple and start any experiments along the lines of the comments above, if you go down this rabbit hole and find that the 1m cable that connects your system to the internet cost you more than the rest of the system then something probably isn’t right.
Your Naim streamer has a 100 Mb/s Ethernet interface and even running flat out streaming 24/192 audio from the Internet or your local NAS is barely going to stress even a basic CAT5e cable and over such a short cable distance the environmental factors will likely be minor.
What cable “sounds” best to you is a personal decision and based mainly on your appetite to tinker and limit on your credit card.


Having played around with a variety of cables over the years, cheap to expensive, I’ve found 2 Designacable Cat 6a floating from router and nas to EE8 and a Chord C-Stream to ND555 works best. Not expensive in relation to the system.



I recently attended a demonstration of Naim NC300 series kit. There were half a dozen systems, ALL with Chord C stream into the 300 network player.

So. That’s what I now use. :grin:


Ok thanks for advice ,
Old setup was wifi to atom , and core via wifi extender with its own ethernet output .
Old broadband is very poor ,if someone else in house is streaming 4k , qobuz at 192 would struggle , very frustrating .
Will investigate companys mentioned
Hopefully new fibre will be ideal for everything
Thanks again :slightly_smiling_face:

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Another support for @Mike-B 's sensible suggestion.

We also found that running the last switch in the chain in low power mode (reduced voltage on the Ethernet cable) and the quality of the PSU for that switch made a very big difference - in fact a significantly greater difference than the Ethernet cable used.



Had to…


Chord C-Stream, Catsnake 6a (floating) and BlueJeans cables are all reasonably priced and work extremely well even against the pricy stuff. Worth mentioning that I’ve alway found it beneficial to have a different brand from switch to streamer. You seem to gain something wired this way, rather than have the same brand all the way through. It’s worth experimenting for what it costs.


I used Catsnake 6a (floating). Not unreasonable prices for my 5m of cable. It’s quite bulky so bear that in mind.

I’ve just ordered another for the Sky box. Prices have gone up a bit (as has everything) but would still recommend.

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I’ve done something similar.

Chord Clearway all the way to the Chord EE1, then Chord Epic to the streamer.


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Elsewhere mentioned on this forum, the length of cable can make a difference in SQ, ideally longer from switch to streamer. I’m using 10 meters of cat6 (Legrand) procured from a datacenter supplier on the last leg and IMO it does sound better than a shorter length.

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For lengths under 100m Cat5e or 6 will be fine. Higher specified cable will be pointless in a home environment if you are not using correct terminations, bend radius and the switches appropriate as well as a professionally installed network.


Get a decent, network intended, cat8 patch cable. Cat8 is sufficiently insulated to sustain 40Gbps transmissions.

Isn’t Cat 8 a bit overkill for a home installation, or even gaming. Cat 5e or Cat 6 should suffice.


Do you really need that much for a home network? You certainly don’t need it for music purposes, for which regular Cat5e has more than enough capacity. Naim streamers, and many others, run at 100MB by design so unless you are doing other stuff at home which is a great deal more demanding, you are probably better off with a slower LAN which has the potential to generate less electrical noise.

Do not bend, twist or kink the cable and as has been pointed out appropriate bend radius.

Then everything else goes with your wallet.

Warm regards,

Mitch in Oz.

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I can imagine that some cats would chew the cables, but rabbits are the absolute worst. One of my daughters has a rabbit and they just had to stop letting it out in the house without very close supervision.
They let it out in the yard tho.

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Purchased 2x Belden 1303E catsnake Cat6a
From the interbay
Reviews seemed great
Will report back when installation is complete

Thanks again , what a great community :slightly_smiling_face:

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