If you are looking for the best 2.5 GBe switches, you are in the right spot. This standard offers excellent performance over existing CAT 5e cables in specific scenarios.
The standard Ethernet speed is 1 GbE, and it may not offer excellent network performance. To benefit from a high-speed connection, it is better to use a 2.5 GbE switch that provides 2.5 times faster speed than a standard Ethernet switch. When you plan to upgrade your whole network to the quickest possible speeds, these switches prove so much helpful. The enhancement in network performance leads to a boost in productivity.
Also Read: Best 10G Multi Gigabit LAN Switch Managed & Unmanaged with 24 & 48 Ports
It is based on the IEEE 802.3bz, NBASE-T, plus MGBASE-T standards for existing Ethernet over twisted pair at speeds of 2.5 and even 5 Gbit/s. These use the equivalent existing cabling as the omnipresent Gigabit Ethernet yet offer higher transfer rates. The resulting standards are named 2.5GBASE-T and 5GBASE-T.
Related Reading: Best Gigabit Ethernet Cables CAT 7 and CAT 6 for 10G Ethernet
NBASE-T refers to Ethernet equipment that can automatically negotiate to operate at speeds of 100 Mbit/s, 1, 2.5, 5, or 10 Gbit/s, depending on the quality of the cable and the abilities of the equipment at the other end of the line.
These standards are specified in Clauses 125 and 126 of the IEEE 802.3 standard. The physical (PHY) layer transmission technology of IEEE 802.3bz is based on 10GBASE-T but functions at a lower signaling rate. By decreasing the actual signal rate to 1⁄4 or 1⁄2, the link speed falls to 2.5 or 5 Gbit/s, respectively. The spectral bandwidth of the signal is lessened accordingly, lowering the requirements on the cabling so that 2.5GBASE-T and 5GBASE-T can be deployed at a cable length of up to 100 meters on Cat 5e or better cables.
Also Read: Best 10 Gbps PCIe x4 Ethernet card for LAN – 10BaseT
The NBASE-T effort also systematized how its switches can execute power over Ethernet according to the IEEE 802.3at and replacement standards. This allows a single cable to provide both power and data for high-bandwidth wireless access points such as those that execute the 802.11ac and 802.11ax measures.
No special connectors or cables are needed to benefit from 2.5 GbE connections. It would be best if you used your existing CAT5e cables as usual with the new 2.5GbE infrastructure. If the situation is such that you cannot afford for 10 GbE upgrade, then a 2.5 GbE switch presents a more affordable option. There will be a significant improvement in the Ethernet speeds. Let’s know more about the best 2.5 GbE switches:
8. D-Link Smart Managed 2.5 GBe Switch (DMS-1100-10TS):
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In this intelligent managed Ethernet switch from D-Link, there are multiple access ports available. One unique feature of the DMS-1100-10TS controller is it supports 802.3bz. This allows the IT professionals to increase their network bandwidth up to two times. Also, it controls the existing Cat-5e cabling. There is no requirement to upgrade the cabling infrastructure. Hence, this switch is perfect for applications like installing multiple 802.11ac Wave 2 access points through 2.5 GB connections. The actuator type is the push button.
7. QNAP QSW-1208-8C-US Unmanaged 10GbE Switch:
The key thing to note about this unmanaged switch from QNAP includes 12 SFP+ ports and shared 8 shared 10GBASE-T ports. When you plan to upgrade your network environment without spending much quickly, this switch proves to be helpful. The 10GBASE-T and NBASE-T standards support you from the faster network speeds when using your existing Cat 5e and 6a cables.
The RJ45 (copper) and SFP+ (fiber) ports are present for accomplishing a wide range of network needs. These ports allow most devices to benefit from the 10GbE connectivity. Being compliant with the IEEE 802.3az, this switch is found to be energy-efficient. Some other qualities of this switch include low latency and high-performance output. Therefore, QSW-1208-8C is the perfect choice for upgrading your professional or home network.
6. TRENDnet 2.5GBASE-T Web Smart Switch, TEG-30102WS:
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TRENDnet equips this smart web switch with eight 2.5 GBASE-T RJ-45 ports. They offer fast gigabit speeds that can support up to 2.5 Gbps speed on the prevailing Cat5e or advance cabling. Looking at the hardware design, it shows two 10G SFP+ slots that support fast network connections. The hardware also depicts the 1U rack mount design. The maximum connection speed is up to 2.5 Gbps.
This product is an IPv6-ready switch implemented with an intuitive web-based interface. Some advanced traffic management controls are IP routing, QoS, VLAN, LACP, access controls, troubleshooting, link aggregation, IGMP snooping, and SNMP monitoring. The controls are also available for dynamic ARP check and per port MAC restriction. All these controls make this switch an efficient solution for SMB networks. Through the help of intelligent web management, the controller presents a simple to use online GUI management interface.
5. Zyxel Multi-Gig Unmanaged Switch with 12 Ports:
Zyxel specifically designs this 12-port switch for those customers who demand cost-effective 10GbE network connectivity. It is helpful for a broad range of applications ranging from home to office. Its structure highlights two 2.5G Multi-Gigabit ports, eight Gigabit Ethernet ports, and two 10G SFP+ uplink ports. The port combination can serve a broad range of network devices like NAS, WiFi 6 AP, gaming PC, or workstation. Hence, they enhance the flexibility of your network.
With the setup of this unmanaged switch, you will benefit from super-fast 2.5G networking. Both the 2.5G multi-Gigabit ports provide a boost to your wired connection. The maximum speed is 2.5 times more than the standard Gigabit connections. The increase in speed makes this switch perfect for use with a new motherboard. It facilitates quick file transfers, high-resolution video streaming, and a gaming experience without lags. It comes with a plug-and-play design that does not need setup to save time and effort for the users. You can connect this switch to multiple devices in your home or a studio network. Examples of these devices are media players, game consoles, set-top boxes, VoIP, and few other web navigating devices. There is no need to make any software configuration.
4. QNAP QSW-M408-4C 10GbE Managed Switch:
There is a total of 12 ports in this QNAP managed switch. It is found compatible with 10GbE and NBASE-T technologies. These technologies make this switch capable of supporting a maximum of 5-speed options. They are 10 G, 5 G, 2.5 G, 1 G, and 100 M. The purpose behind implementing these technologies is to offer fast transmission speeds with your existing Cat 5e and 6a cables.
The prominent characteristics include efficient performance, desktop size, and user-friendly management functionalities. They let you quickly upgrade to a hybrid fast-speed network environment and that too at an affordable price. Simultaneously, there will be the optimization of network bandwidth, and the security of network maintenance will be excellent. Especially for home and office setups, this switch is handy.
3. QNAP QSW-M408-2C 10GbE Managed Switch:
QNAP designs the QSW-M408-2C switch as a Layer 2 web managed switch. It comes equipped with several SFP+ ports and Gigabit ports. The support for network management and layer 2 switching is excellent. This is made possible through the web user interface that is user-friendly and easy to use. Hence, this managed switch provides flexible operation in a hybrid fast-speed network infrastructure. It also provides a smooth network management solution for non-IT working professionals.
The QSW-M408-2C is known to be compatible with NBASE-T and 10GbE technologies. They support 5 speeds, namely 100 M, 1 G, 2.5 G, 5 G, and 10 G. Consequently, this switch can guarantee fast transmission speeds in Cat 5e and 6a cables which you already use. Packed with a lot of features, this switch is made in a compact size. It can nicely fit on a desk and does not get overheated. The design shows that the power cable connector rotates. It is available at an affordable price, and it can optimize the network bandwidth and offer high network security.
2. NETGEAR 10G Ethernet Smart Managed Plus Switch (GS110EMX):
The unmanaged switch offers an easy plug & play solution to make a connection with all of your network devices. They don’t need any complex configuration or installation of management software. They can provide a secure and reliable network connection. But this NETGEAR product is a Smart Managed Plus switch. It powers emergent small businesses with fundamental features to configure, monitor, and secure their network. All these benefits are conveyed cost-effectively to provide a perfect upgrade from unmanaged switches.
The manufacturer thoroughly tests this switch for quality, reliability, and performance. What makes it famous and unique is it comes with PROSAFE lifetime protection. Being compliant with IEEE802.3az Ethernet mode, the switch does not consume much power during use. All NETGEAR switches, including this one, surpass the high standards needed for a steady and robust network infrastructure. Being supported by an industry-leading commitment, there are no doubts about performance and quality.
1. QNAP QSW-1105-5T 5-Port Unmanaged 2.5GbE Switch:
Equipped with 5 high-performance 2.5GbE ports, this QNAP switch rapidly upgrades your network. The intention behind this is to benefit from the 2.5GbE-enabled devices and NAS without any need for extra network cables. The plug & play setup and fanless design are the two essential aspects of this switch. They both facilitate loop detection and provide blocking functions. As a result, it becomes easy to make a cost-effective, high-speed network environment at home or office.
If you are looking to upgrade your network to high-speed without spending much, this switch is a great option. In addition to efficient performance, the build quality is sturdy enough to resist vigorous usage. With this switch, it becomes easy to set up and connects your PCs. Also, it works perfectly for the SOHO Hi-Speed network.
The 2.5 GbE switches are well-known to make a high-speed network environment at cost-effective prices. They significantly boost the speed and performance of your network compared to standard Ethernet switches.
IEEE P802.3bz 2.5G/5GBASE-T Task Force”. IEEE Standards Association.