5 Benefits of PoE Media Converters

Do you want to avoid the hassle of finding or installing an electrical outlet in an out-of-the-way location? Are you looking to save money when installing IT equipment? These benefits and more can be yours with PoE Media Converters. First, let's define the term, PoE.

What is PoE?

One significant advantage offered by twisted-pair Ethernet cable is providing electrical power to low-wattage electrical devices with Power over Ethernet (PoE). The Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) first defined specifications for low-level power delivery over twisted-pair Ethernet cable to PoE-enabled devices such as IP telephones, wireless access points, Web cameras, and audio speakers in June 2000 with the 802.3 af-2003 standard, which was updated in September 2009 with the 802.3at (PoE+) standard. Further refined in 2018, the IEEE 802.3bt standard, known as PoE++ or 4PPoE, expands the power capabilities of 802.3at.

PoE works well in many applications: video surveillance, building management, retail video kiosks, smart signs, vending machines, retail point-of-information systems, laptops, flat screens, and other applications where connecting to a power outlet is impossible or inconvenient.

What are the Benefits of PoE Media Converters?

  1. Along with matching copper to interference-free fiber, media converters double as power sourcing equipment (PSE) for Power over Ethernet (PoE) devices plugged in on the copper side.
  2. You can use one set of twisted-pair wires for both data and low-wattage appliances. Using existing UTP cabling for both data communications and power simplifies a network application.
  3. When installing IT equipment, you save money by eliminating the need to run electrical wiring. This is great for placing equipment where electrical access is inconvenient or just too expensive to locate.
  4. By eliminating its power cord, you can easily move an appliance with minimal disruption. This saves time and work effort.
  5. If your LAN is protected from power failure by a UPS, the PoE devices connected to your LAN are also protected from power failure.

PoE, PoE+, and PoE++

The types of PoE vary in the amount of power available delivered over CATx cable to devices. The chart below summarizes the power capabilities of each type of PoE, as well as some common devices that the different types of PoE support.

Power to
Powered Device (PD)
Max. Power
per Port
PoEIEEE 802.3af
(Type 1)
12.95 W15.4 W2-pairStatic surveillance cameras,
VoIP phones, wireless access points
PoE+IEEE 802.3at
(Type 2)
25.5 W30 W2-pairPTZ cameras, video IP phones,
alarm systems
PoE++IEEE 802.3bt
(Type 3)
51 W60 W4-pairVideo conferencing equipment,
multi-radio wireless access points
PoE++IEEE 802.3bt
(Type 4)
71.3 W100 W4-pairLaptops, flat screens

Black Box PoE Media Converters are the ideal way to extend your network over fiber or copper and also provide power to remote PoE devices over long-distance data links. They act as a copper to fiber converter and PSE (Power Sourcing Equipment) all in one device. Find out more about PoE Media Converters.

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