The PoE Standards Explained

Ethernet is the standard for wired computer networks. And while it has been around for a long time, the recent introduction of Power over Ethernet (PoE) has made it even more popular. What is PoE? In short, it is a way to power network devices over the existing Ethernet cable. This means that you no longer need to worry about running separate power cables to your IP cameras, VoIP phones, and other devices. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at the different PoE standards and explain how they work. We will also touch on the benefits of using PoE in your home or business network.

Power over Ethernet (PoE)

PoE enables the Ethernet connection to act as a power source for devices. This technology is useful for devices that require a power source but do not have an available outlet, such as security cameras or VoIP phones.

There are three major types of PoE: 802.3af, 802.3at, and Passive PoE. 802.3af is the most common type of PoE and is compatible with most devices that require a power source. This type of PoE provides up to 15 watts of power. 802.3at is the more powerful version of PoE and can provide up to 30 watts of power. Passive PoE does not use the Ethernet connection as a power source but instead relies on an external power source.

When choosing a PoE device, it is important to make sure that it is compatible with the type of PoE you are using. For example, if you are using 802.3af PoE, make sure that your device supports this standard before purchasing it.

The Different Types of PoE

There are two types of PoE: endspan and midspan. Endspan PSEs are built into switches, while midspan PSEs are stand-alone devices that inject power into an Ethernet cable. The main difference between the two is that endspan PSEs include data switching functions, while midspan PSEs do not.

Midspan PSEs are typically used in VoIP applications, because they can provide power to IP phones without affecting data traffic. Endspan PSEs, on the other hand, are better suited for powering cameras and access points, since they can control both power and data traffic.

To decide which type of Power over Ethernet is best for your application, you need to consider the following factors:

1) How many devices need to be powered?

2) What types of devices need to be powered?

3) Do the powered devices need to be centrally located?

4) What is the budget for the Power over Ethernet solution?

Active vs. Passive PoE

PoE standards are constantly evolving to meet the changing needs of the market. The two most popular types of PoE are Active PoE and Passive PoE. Both have their own advantages and disadvantages.

Active PoE is more expensive than Passive PoE, but it offers a number of benefits. Active PoE can provide power to devices over longer distances, up to 100m. It is also more scalable, so it can be used to power more devices. Active PoE is also more reliable, as it uses Power over Ethernet Injectors which are less likely to fail than passive devices.

Passive PoE is less expensive than Active PoE, but it has shorter maximum distance and can only be used to power one device. Passive PoE is best suited for small deployments where cost is a primary concern.

Which Devices Use PoE?

PoE devices come in all shapes and sizes these days. You can find PoE switches, routers, APs, and IP phones that all use this technology to connect to your network. Here is a list of some of the most popular PoE devices:

-Cisco Meraki MR Series: These enterprise-grade access points use PoE to connect to your network and deliver fast, reliable Wi-Fi coverage.

-Ubiquiti UniFi: The UniFi line of products from Ubiquiti is incredibly popular with small businesses and home users alike. Their APs, switches, and routers all support PoE for easy installation.

-Netgear Nighthawk: The Nighthawk line of routers from Netgear is designed for gaming and streaming applications. Many of their models support PoE for easier installation.

-Linksys Velop: The Velop line of mesh Wi-Fi systems from Linksys uses PoE to connect its nodes together for fast, reliable coverage throughout your home or office.


The Ethernet standard for Power over Ethernet has come a long way since it was first introduced in 2003. The latest version, 802.3bt, provides up to 100 watts of power per port, which is enough to support most PoE-powered devices. Whether you’re looking to upgrade your existing network or install a new one, understanding the different PoE standards is important to ensure that you have the right equipment for your needs.

Back to top button

Murtaza Ali

Typically replies within a day

%d bloggers like this: