A Couple of Couplers

It is not hard to see why some people would get flustered by the vast abundance of different types of couplers out there; and the fact that we carry them all doesn't seem to help. But rest assured that this FAQ page, made by our PI Manufacturing technicians, will help you decide the exact one you need.

First of all, let's look at what couplers actually do. When we think of the word, couple, we think of a pair. So it's not hard to imagine that a coupler connects a single pair of cables. Because of the numerous types of cables that exist, there has to be just as many different types of couplers that will connect them all. 

In order to pick out the coupler that will meet all of your networking and connection needs, first determine what type of cables you are trying to connect. 

1.    Q. What is the difference between Straight and Crossover?

A. If you are using a network hub or switch you can use straight cables to connect devices to the hub or switch.  When two devices are connected directly (without a hub or switch), both devices are transmitting and receiving.  If a straight cable was used, both devices would be trying to transmit output to the other devices output.  To correct this problem a crossover cable connection can be used to invert the cable arrangement.  A crossover connection changes the pin arrangement so both devices can transmit and receive data.  PI Manufacturing carries both straight and crossover cables as well as couplers.  Our crossover couplers can be used to connect two straight cables, which would provide a good crossover connection.  What ever connection type you need, PI Manufacturing has the products to make it happen.  Take a look at the difference between crossover and straight cable connection below.



2.     Q. What does a reverse coupler do?

A. A reverse coupler actually reverses the order of the pins as seen left to right.  This type of connection is needed for applications such as telephone connections.  As you can see in the example below the order (left to right) of colored wires are reversed with the second cable.  

3.    Q. What is the difference between shielded and unshielded couplers?

Shielded couplers minimizes interference from outside devices.  As the amount of devices increase in a area, interference may occur.  PI Manufacturing recommends looking at our great shielded couplers.

4.    Q. What is the difference between printed and non-printed circuit board couplers?

Our CAT-5 and CAT-6 couplers include printed circuit boards.  Printed circuit boards use a crisscross method on the board to minimize internal interference.  PI Manufacturing's couplers are made high quality to protect from interference.  Take a look below to see how our printed circuit boards work.