First of all, what is a Converged Application (CA) Score? The CA Score, developed by Berk-Tek and verified by UL, provides a measurement of IP infrastructure performance in a real-world environment when multiple applications converge, such as IP video, VoIP, Data and Power-over-Ethernet (PoE). The better protected your IP traffic is from the stress of simultaneous transmission of voice, data, video and PoE, in a real-world environment with noise and heat, the better your score.
What does a good CA Score look like? A CA Score of 8.6, for example, would mean that your IP infrastructure performance is outstanding, with a near flawless application performance, even under stress. On the other hand, a low CA Score, such as 3.6, would mean you could expect to see and hear flaws (errors) and encounter frustrating delays. VoIP calls could sound choppy or streaming video may have regular interruptions in both audio and visual quality. Files could even take longer to open. In sum, you want your CA Score to be on the higher end of the spectrum!
Why does a good CA Score matter? A good CA Score indicates higher performance. When you consider the fact that the Cat 6 standard was ratified in 2002, it makes sense that meeting the minimum might not be enough anymore. When Cat 6 standards were developed, transmitting data from computer to computer was the norm. Now, however, file sizes are exponentially larger, and we transmit much more voice, data, video and power simultaneously to many different IP devices. We're doing a lot more on our networks, so it makes sense that we would need a new standard, the CA Score, to help inform our decisions around how we build our networks!
For more information on the CA Score and Berk-Tek's cabling solutions, contact your local Accu-Tech representative.