- Category 6A cable for future-proofing (as of 2019, this seems better than Cat 6).
- Shielded F/UTP cable for robustness to EMI/Radio Frequency Interference. (5)
I have a run in the basement that would be above a drop ceiling, but the drop ceiling is not currently used as a plenum space— as far as I know. There are returns and supplies that are ducted to the finished basement, but they appear to be sealed. This home is located in the USA.
Question 1: Plenum Fail
Some of the articles here and on Wikipedia make it sound as though you need to plan for space above dropped ceiling to be Plenum in the event of a ducting failure or if something gets disconnected in the future.
This would push me to 6A-FUTP-CMP which is pretty expensive cable (let’s say $4-600 per roll) and hard to find besides. Is this warranted: do you need to treat above-the-dropped-ceiling space as potential plenum space, or only if you know it is a plenum?
Question 2: Unfinished Portion Basement
If I run cabling in the unfinished portion of the basement, do I need to use CMP grade cable just in case a future renovation adds a ceiling that would invalidate the cable?
Or do I expect that a future renovator (me) would locate all the cable that’s about to be covered up and rip it out and replace it? Or is this moot because single-family home basements typically don’t use drop ceilings as plenums and you don’t have to treat them that way?