Power over Ethernet (PoE) is the process of sending electrical power and data over copper wire. Before PoE communications, devices like cameras required a signal cable to transmit the image back to a recorder. These devices also required local power supplies to provide power. Because cameras and similar devices are often installed in locations where local power may not be available, companies started running a mix of signal and power cables with a power supply transmitting power from the head end recorder location.
Through further development into signalling and power technologies, cameras started using multi-pair cables, like CAT5, to send a mix of signalling and power. Signalling was sent on one or two of the four pairs of a CAT5 cable, and power transmitted on the remaining two pairs. This helped to simplify installations, as fewer cables were required to accomplish the same task.
PoE was created in 2003, and describes any of several standards or ad hoc systems that pass electric power along with data on twisted pair Ethernet cabling. Over the past 30 years, Ethernet and PoE technology has seen incredible innovation. Initially, one of the primary downsides of Power over Ethernet was the limited reach of 328ft (100m). However, new PoE innovations are pushing the limits of PoE transmission over several cable types.
Benefits of PoE
Many companies will install a PoE switch fabric when modernising from older, analogue voice and security systems, or when deploying a new system. PoE switches provide numerous benefits:
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