Ethernet vs etherCON Cables
Ethernet cables are the standard for computer networking and have an RJ45 connection at each end. Standard ethernet cables can be used for connecting all Axe-Fx II models to all MFC-101 models using the ethernet or etherCON ports. Crossover type ethernet cables should NOT be used.
etherCON cables are basically ethernet cables with an XLR style locking housing around the RJ45 connector. Because the XLR style housing will lock, the “clip” found on ethernet cables should NOT be present! Axe-Fx II Mark II and Axe-Fx II XL models feature an etherCON port for use with either an ethernet or etherCON cable. MFC-101 Mark II and Mark III models also feature an etherCON port. Axe-Fx II Mark I and MFC-101 Mark I models can NOT use etherCON cables and must use standard ethernet cables.
Cat 5 vs Cat 5e vs Cat 6
Any of these cables will work with the Axe-Fx II and MFC-101 in either ethernet or etherCON configurations as long as the cable is has RJ45 connectors and is NOT a cross-over type cable. If anything, Cat 5e is the recommended cable to use.
Cat 5 is an older style of ethernet cable supporting speeds up to 100 Mbps, though Cat 5e has become the new standard.
Cat 5e is the current standard for ethernet cables supporting speeds up to 1000 Mbps.
Cat 6 is more “future-proof” for computer networking installations supporting speeds up to 10Gbps (10,000 Mbps). They are generally more rigid and less flexible than Cat 5 cables due to an extra “spline” and usually thicker wire, so they may not lay as neatly on the ground as a Cat 5 or Cat 5e.