When referring to stranded vs. solid cables, we are actually referring to the core material of the cable (copper) and how it is configured. Copper cabling is easier to use and more cost efficient than fiber cables. The wire thickness (gauge), insulation,
fillers, shielding, drain wires and outer jacket material may also be a determining factor for proper cable selection.
Category 5e (CAT5e) and Category 6 (CAT6) network cables, whether they are classified as stranded or solid, both consist of four pairs of conductors. The difference is that a solid cable uses one solid wire per conductor, while a stranded cable uses multiple
wires wrapped around each other per conductor.
For example, a stranded cable with a gauge of 7/32 means that there are 7 strands of 32-gauge wire per conductor. Solid cables are shown as the gauge of the wire for each conductor, i.e. 24 AWG. Wire gauges represent the thickness of the wire and the
higher the number, the thinner the wire. These gauges are based on the number of times the wire has to be "drawn" or stretched to achieve the correct thickness. Therefore, the gauge is the number of times it was pulled.