IT/Networking: Not all PoE is Created Equal

With two different standards and non-conformant products, navigating the Power over Ethernet minefield requires homework, research and planning

High wattage POE is different typically powers higher-end devices such as all outdoor licensed microwave bridges. The powerful radios within these bridges will typically require more than 50W to function, which is well north of the 2009 standard for POE; therefore, manufacturers use non-standard active POE — typically at 56V — to deliver high-wattage power to outdoor units (ODUs) at up to 100 meters. As an example of this the Exalt Communications ExtremeAir licensed microwave bridge that supports up to 1Gbps of throughput requires a maximum of 130W @ 55V over a single shielded CAT5/6 cable.

Whichever PoE solution you choose to present and implement for your customers, being able to navigate the minefield of different options requires taking the necessary time up front to implement the devices correctly. In the end, it will save you and your customers time and money.



Ronen Isaac is vice president of Continental Computers, a networking and video surveillance products reseller and integrator/VAR based out of El Segundo, Calif. He is also vice president of