What are ethernet splitters

A typical ethernet cable has eight wires. You also have shielded cables which contain a grounding pin. For an ethernet connection to work, you only need to use four of these wires – two transmit wires, and two receiver wires. This leaves two pairs of wires redundant in most cables that can serve a different purpose.

One of these purposes is to use them to transmit power. This is known as Power over Ethernet (POE), but they can also be used as a second data connection. The easiest way to implement this, is to purchase a pair of ethernet splitters. They simply plug into either end of a network cable and convert the pin connections. Obviously, you can do this manually, but by using a specifically designed device you will get a more professional setup.

This is an example of a network splitter cable that I have patched up to my child’s Xbox and PlayStation systems. It means that there is only one cable flowing down the side of the unit to the systems. At the other end of the cable there is the same setup. The grey wire is a temporary connection to an additional switch/access point whilst the children are being home schooled due to Covid-19. This demonstrates the flexibility with wired sockets, allowing for different devices to be connected and disconnected as easily as you’d plug in a telephone charger etc.
  • Please note that gigabit ethernet connections require use of all four twisted pairs (8 wires).


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