What's the Difference between Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet? - Baudcom ...

What’s the Difference between Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet?

What is Fast Ethernet?

Fast Ethernet is a local area network (LAN) transmission standard, initiated in 1995 as IEEE 802.3u, and it also can be referred to as FE. Fast Ethernet is aiming to improving the speed of network and reducing the bit, and it has the speed of 100 Mbps.

It is designed for 100 Base-T networks and is also compatible with 10 Base-T networks, allowing users to benefit from faster Ethernet speeds without the need to completely upgrade their network systems.

Fast Ethernet devices can operate on unshielded twisted pair (UTP) cables, such as category 5 and higher rated cables, so the transmission of the optical fiber can be longer. It also supports both full-duplex and half-duplex modes.

What is Gigabit Ethernet?

Gigabit Ethernet is another version of local area network (LAN) transmission standard, and it is also the latest one, initiated in 1999 as IEEE 802.3ab and in 2004 as IEEE 802.3ah. The standard IEEE 802.3ab defines the applicability of Gigabit Ethernet to 1000 Base-T networks and allows the use of existing UTP cabling.

Gigabit Ethernet supports the speed of 1000 Mbps, and this is ten times faster than Fast Ethernet. Gigabit Ethernet can meet increasingly complex network requirements, such as connecting multiple bandwidth-intensive devices and broadband Internet connections for video streaming.

Gigabit Ethernet devices can transmit data packets at a much faster rate than Fast Ethernet. Fast Ethernet switches can transmit data packets at a rate of 10 megabits per second. Gigabit Ethernet switches transmit data packets at a relatively high speed of one gigabit per second.

Difference between Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet

There are many different aspects to compare Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet, as shown in the following table:

Aspects Fast Ethernet Gigabit Ethernet
Speed 100 Mbit/s 1000 Mbit/s
Coverage Up to 10 km Up to 70 km
Round Trip Delay 100-500 bit times 4000 bit times
Delay More delay Less Delay
Configuration Simple and economical Complicated and more errors
Price Cost effective More expensive


All networks can support Fast Ethernet but Gigabit Ethernet has to be in specific networks. So if you don’t need your network speed faster than 100 Mbps, then you can choose Fast Ethernet. If you have a lot of users on the network, you can consider Gigabit Ethernet.


Baudcom offers all types of FE GE related products. For more information, please visit Baudcom.

Post time:2023-07-20


Lomoveishiy – Finland

I needed those to connect my PC on the third floor to have internet access in that room, and ISP installed their modem on the first floor only. After dropping fiber patch cables, plugged in all cables into these media converters at both sides, and link came up instantly. Was much easier than I thought!

Raymond – USA

Great experience – units worked straight out of the box – just needed plug in cables and we were done. I also like the possibility to enable jumbo frames, while we do not have a need for this feature at the current moment it’s great to have this option.

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