STP Cable (Shielded Twisted Pair): Types, Uses, Advantages, Disadvantages

STP Cable (Shielded Twisted Pair): Types, Uses, Advantages, Disadvantages

What is STP Cable in Networking

Definition: Shielded twisted pair (STP) is a especially type of copper telephone and local area network (LAN) wiring used in few business installations, and it appends an outer covering that functions as ground to ordinary twisted pair wiring.

Shielded twisted pair was introduced by IBM and it is used firstly in IBM organization only. Shielded twisted pair cable consist a metal foil otherwise braided mesh undercover that mainly encase every pair of insulated conductors. Metal casing helps to improve the quality of wire by securing the penetration of noise otherwise crosstalk. It has higher price as well as bulkier.


It is also called the metal shield that is normally linked to ground so as to decrease the interference of noise. STP is used for both transmissions analog and digital. STP’s bandwidth is supported by cable depends on thickness of wire and its distance that to be walked by signal on it.

STP and Data Transfer Rates

Shielded twisted pairs have several types of variety of cable categories. The most popular in use today are Cat5e, Cat6, Cat6a and Cat7. We can compare them with their bandwidth and maximum high-speed data transfer rates.

Example of Shielded Twisted Pair Cable

Here, early example of STP was IBM STP-A that has two pair 150 ohm defined by IBM cabling system in 1985, and it is used in Token Ring or FDDI networks.

Types of STP (Shielded Twisted Pair) Cable

Here, we will explain about different types of STP cable as per category cables; like as –

Foil Shield: Foil shield composite of the aluminum foil that is wrapped surrounding of the twisted pair as “Overall Foil Shield” otherwise it can be used surrounding each individual pair of wires like as “Each Pair Shielded”.

Braid Shield: Braid shield mostly prefer to “Tinned Copper Braid” as an overall shield to all twisted pair in cable.

All shield category cable contains the especially grounding wire appended known as “Drain Wire”

. The drain wire is fixed along with foiled shield.

Specification of STP Cable

  • Highest cable length: 100 meter
  • Bandwidth: 100 Mbps
  • Types of Connector: RJ 45
  • Expense: Expensive to UTP cable
  • Resistance: 50ohms
  • Mode of signal Transmission: Baseband
  • It provides the amazing protection from crosstalk and external interference.

Uses and Applications of STP Cable

  • STP cables are mostly used in few commercial installations.
  • Shielded Twisted Pair (STP) is type of cabling available in extreme cool weather where additional layer of outer covering gets it optimum solution like as temperatures or for protecting the inner constituents.
  • It is commonly used such areas where are getting cold weather that is comfortable in this stage.
  • STP cables are also used in high radiation environments where not permitted to humans.

Advantages of STP (Shielded Twisted Pair) Cable

There are various benefits of STP cable; below explain each one –

  • Easier to terminate with modular connector
  • Provide the best electrical characteristics compare to unshielded cables
  • Decrease the probability of crosstalk as well as offering better protection from interference.

Disadvantages of STP (Shielded Twisted Pair) Cable

There are various limitations of STP cable; below explain each one –

  • Having higher attenuation rate
  • Not good flexible because it is very much thicker
  • Not easier to maintain
  • More costly to UTP
  • Difficult to installation
  • It can enhance overall diameter and weight of cable as well.
  • It must be grounded otherwise STP can acts as antenna and picks up unwanted signals.
  • Its cost can be increased as per foot of wire length.

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