Patch panels are common and essential cable organizers for both small and large networks. They are useful tools to build a neat and easy-to-manage cabling system. In the market, there are various types of patch panels such as Cat5e, Cat6, Cat6a patch panels. And as the fiber cabling is emerging, fiber patch panels are also popular. In addition to that, modular patch panels are also launched to offer greater range of flexibility. Since we have discussed Ethernet patch panel and fiber optic patch panel before, here will mainly focus on the modular patch panel. For more information about Ethernet and fiber patch panels, read How to Select the Suitable Copper Patch Panel? and How to Use Fiber Patch Panel for Better Cable Management?
The modular patch panel often refers to an unloaded patch panel, which can accept various removable face-plates. Thus network installers can field-configure various patching solutions according to different networking requirements. In addition, it also allows us to install various media types in the same panel, providing great flexibility in multimedia installations (as shown below).
According to different applications, there are Ethernet modular patch panels and fiber modular patch panels. The Ethernet modular patch panel is also known as a blank patch panel. It is often available in 24-port 1U or 48-port 2U, designed to accommodate keystone jacks such as Cat5e, Cat6, etc. In addition, there are also non-shield and shielded modular patch panels. While a fiber modular patch panel typically has four empty slots where LC/SC fiber adapter panels or cassettes can be installed prior to or during deployment. Moreover, multimedia adapter panels are available in this type of panel as well.
Unlike pre-loaded or fixed patch panels, modular patch panels have no built-in ports. Therefore we have to install RJ45 jacks or fiber adapters into the reserved holes of the modular patch panel. Here will introduce how to use the Ethernet and fiber modular patch panels separately.
An Ethernet modular patch panel can accept nearly all kinds of RJ45 keystone jacks. And we can also deploy several kinds of copper cabling at the same panel. For example, both Cat5e and Cat6 keystone jacks can be inserted into the same Ethernet modular patch panel (as shown in the video). This helps us a lot in saving space and cost. In addition, Ethernet modular patch panels are never out of date even if we want to migrate to Cat6a or Cat7 cabling in the future. The only thing we should do is to replace the old jacks and cables with new Cat6a or Cat7 keystone jacks and cables. The follow video shows the steps of how to use FS Ethernet modular patch panel for Cat5e/Cat6 cabling:
A fiber modular patch panel, on the other hand, is mainly for fiber cabling or the mixture of fiber and copper cabling. It is an innovative design which combines copper and fiber management in one patch panel for maximum system flexibility and versatility. When use it, we only need to install several standard fiber adapters, fiber cassettes or multimedia adapter panels into its slots. This can be tool-less when you buy a user-friendly fiber modular patch panel as shown in the following video.
To conclude, the modular patch panel is ideal for multimedia applications, providing easiness and flexibility to customize any cabling installation. FS provides an extensive selection of modular patch panels, including the above mentioned Ethernet and fiber modular patch panels with various styles and ports. Furthermore, we also supply assemblies such as Cat5e/Cat6/Cat6a keystone jacks and LC/SC fiber adapters & cassettes.