Cats vs. Cables. Cat5e vs. Cat6 Ethernet Cables Explained


CATx and CAT9 refer to categories of twisted pair copper cabling used for Ethernet networks. CAT stands for “Category” and the number refers to the performance rating. Higher numbers indicate cables that can support higher bandwidth and faster speeds over longer distances.

CATx is a generic term that refers to any category of twisted pair Ethernet cable. CAT9 is a specific type of cable rated for category 9 performance. So CAT9 is a type of CATx cable with specific capabilities.

This article will compare CAT9 vs CATx cables, looking at bandwidth, speed, distance, cost, applications and other factors to understand the key differences.

Category Ratings

Ethernet cables are categorized according to standards established by the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) and the Electronic Industries Alliance (EIA). These categories indicate the performance capabilities of the cable in terms of bandwidth, speed, and applications.

The categories range from Cat1 to Cat9, with higher numbers indicating cables capable of faster speeds and higher bandwidth. Key categories include:

  • Cat5e – Supports speeds up to 1Gbps and is commonly used for home and office networking.
  • Cat6 – Supports speeds up to 10Gbps and distances up to 100 meters.
  • Cat6a – Similar to Cat6 but with improved crosstalk specifications, allowing 10Gbps speeds at distances up to 100 meters.
  • Cat7 – Supports speeds up to 10Gbps and distances up to 100 meters. Uses GG45 connectors.
  • Cat8 – Supports speeds up to 40Gbps and distances up to 30 meters. Used primarily for data centers.
  • Cat9 – Proposed category supporting speeds up to 400Gbps over short distances. Not yet widely implemented.

Higher category cables are backwards compatible with lower categories. For example, Cat6 cable will work for Cat5e applications. But higher rated cables are required for faster Ethernet applications.


The CATX and CAT9 lines have different bandwidth capabilities. According to, the CATX has a patented vibration dampening technology called Liquid Gel Dampening Knob which helps reduce negative vibration and redirect energy back into the barrel. This results in a larger sweet spot and more balanced swing weight. The CAT9 on the other hand uses AV2 Anti-Vibration barrel construction to reduce sting and provide a better overall feel.

In terms of measurable bandwidth, the CATX outperforms the CAT9. Marucci designed the CATX with a lower balance point which allows it to achieve faster swing speeds. Independent tests measured the CATX having a bandwidth that is 2 times higher than the CAT9. This gives it much more capabilities in terms of maximizing bat speed and power transfer.

The key differences in bandwidth come down to the CATX’s lower balance point and use of Liquid Gel technology resulting in faster swing speeds, a larger sweet spot, and more optimized energy transfer through the barrel. The CAT9 still performs well but is constrained compared to the advances made in the CATX.


The CATX has a higher speed and data transfer rate than the CAT9. According to Headbangersports, the CATX can achieve speeds up to 2,000 MHz while the CAT9 tops out at 600 MHz. The increased speed enables the CATX to have a data transfer rate of up to 40 Gbps compared to 24 Gbps for the CAT9.

The higher speed is achieved through more stringent requirements on impedance and return loss in the CATX specification. This allows the CATX cable to maintain signal integrity at higher frequencies compared to CAT9.

So in summary, the CATX has significantly faster speed and data transfer rates, making it better suited for applications that require moving large amounts of data quickly, like 8K video streaming.


When it comes to maximum cable distances, there are some key differences between Cat9 and CatX cables.

According to Marucci CATX Review | CAT9 Comparison, Vanta, & More, Cat9 ethernet cables can transmit data up to 100 meters or 328 feet without any loss of quality. CatX cables, on the other hand, can transmit data up to 150 meters or 492 feet while maintaining signal integrity.

The increased cable distance capacity of CatX is due to its increased bandwidth capacity and higher frequency rating compared to Cat9. CatX utilizes all four cable pairs for data transmission which allows for the greater distances. Cat9 can only use two of its four pairs for data which limits its maximum distance.

In summary, if your network requires cable runs over 100 meters, CatX would be the better choice as it can reliably support distances up to 150 meters. If you only need runs of 100 meters or less, Cat9 will likely meet your requirements just fine.


The Marucci CATX and CAT9 bats have slightly different ideal use cases due to their construction and performance attributes. According to Headbanger Sports, the CATX is better suited for contact and elite hitters looking for a balanced swing weight and larger sweet spot, while still providing great bat speed. The barrel design allows players to drive the ball to all fields with more consistency. Meanwhile, the CAT9 is ideal for power hitters looking to optimize bat speed and maximize pop. The lighter swing weight and stiff carbon composite barrel generate explosive speed through the zone. Power hitters can take full advantage of the CAT9 design to hit for power to their pull side. So in summary, the CATX optimizes balance and consistency, while the CAT9 provides an edge in raw bat speed and power potential.


The CATX tends to be more expensive than the CAT9. According to Marucci Sports, the CATX has an average retail price of $349.99 while the CAT9 retails for around $299.99 on average. So there is about a $50 price difference between the two models.

Some key factors that contribute to the CATX’s higher price point are its newer design and technology. Marucci created the CATX after the CAT9, so it incorporates some of their latest innovations. Additionally, the CATX uses Marucci’s AV2 Anti-Vibration knob which helps reduce negative feedback and sting. This proprietary technology adds to the cost.

In the end, players need to decide if the performance benefits of the CATX are worth the extra $50. Those looking for the latest tech and materials from Marucci will appreciate the CATX, while budget-conscious buyers may be happy saving money on the very similar CAT9.


Cat6 cables are widely available and can be easily purchased online and in most electronics stores. They have been the Ethernet standard for many years and are readily available (source).

Cat7 and Cat8 cables have more limited availability. While they can be purchased online, they are not as common in most retail stores. Cat8 cables are newer to the market and still gaining availability (source).

Cat9 cables are still in development and not yet commercially available. They will likely have very limited availability once released, similar to how Cat8 cables started (source).

Future Proofing

When considering future proofing and upgradability, the CAT9 bat has a slight edge over the CATX. According to this article, the CAT9 uses Marucci’s latest carbon composite technology called SC4, which allows for more flexibility in tuning the barrel’s performance through wall thickness and carbon mapping adjustments. The CATX uses an older carbon composite technology called TR3.

Additionally, the CAT9 features Marucci’s new AV2 anti-vibration knob which helps reduce negative feedback and sting in the hands. The CATX uses an older AV1 knob design. While both bats can be upgraded with new knobs, the CAT9 offers the latest technology out of the box.

Overall, the CAT9 has a slight edge for future proofing thanks to its use of Marucci’s latest carbon composite barrel technology and upgraded knob design. However, both bats are highly adjustable and can be upgraded over time. The CATX still offers excellent performance, but the CAT9 provides more flexibility for tuning and the newest tech innovations from Marucci.


In summary, the key differences between CATX and CAT9 baseball bats are:

  • Bandwidth – CATX has a larger barrel diameter and sweet spot compared to CAT9.
  • Performance – CATX uses new alloy and composite materials designed for better overall performance and lower vibration.
  • Price – CATX bats are more expensive than CAT9 models.
  • Availability – CAT9 has been around longer so has wider availability compared to the newer CATX.
  • Future proofing – CATX uses the latest technology so may have a longer usable lifespan as bat standards change.

Overall, the CATX is the newer, premium model bat from Marucci offering the latest tech and materials. It performs better than the CAT9 but comes at a higher price point. For players looking for the best performance and able to afford the premium price, the CATX seems to be the recommended choice over CAT9.[1][2]

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