A shielded twisted pair cable, also known as an STP cable, is used in computer and telephone networking applications including wiring Ethernet connections for computer networks, as well as commercial and residential telephone connections. The cabling consists of two wires twisted together with an outer shield covering them. STP wires are durable and long-lasting; they are used in long distance cabling applications.
Resistance to Interference
STP cabling automatically repels interference from outside sources. The two wires inside of the cabling form a circular magnetic field when electrical current flows through them. The magnetic field cancels out any outside magnetic fields as well as interference from within the cable, other electrical devices and radio waves. The wires' outer metallic foil or braid shield adds an extra layer of protection against interference.
STP cables transmit data quickly at speeds up to 100 megabits per second. The cabling carries data, including packets of information via the Internet as well as commercial computer networks, through both inner wires and not just one wire. Using both wires also reduces data transmission delays.
Data being sent via STP cabling is also more secure than data sent via other cabling types, including coaxial and unshieled twisted cabling. STP cabling's inner and outer components keep data flowing properly, resulting in fewer data packet dropouts, delays and errors. Data packet dropouts and delays slow information transmission and can result in Internet connection and network errors.
Where to Buy
STP cabling is available at electronics, computer and hardware stores as well as home improvement stores. The cabling is also available directly from cabling manufacturers and online outlets that sell STP cabling, connectors and cutting tools. As of the date of publication, STP cabling is more expensive than unshielded and coaxial cabling -- usually $20 to $30 more than unshielded cabling.