It seems like everywhere you turn, someone’s trying to defy gravity. Take a look around – we have aircraft, spacecraft, supportive undergarments that are more heavily-engineered than aircraft and spacecraft combined, and industrial epoxy-strength hair products, without which we wouldn’t have Snooki, Pauly D, or the rest of Jersey Shore, for that matter.
Sometimes the gravity defiance works, sometimes it doesn’t (see “Jersey Shore”). The point is, it’s always there. But what about working with gravity, for once? Novel idea, right? I think so – especially when it comes to things like patch cords. Everyone worries about strain relief, because patch cords that plug into patch panels at 90 degree angles tend to, thanks to gravity, sag under their own weight, which can lead to signal attenuation and other damage. But instead of reinforcing network cables, why not let them just go with the flow? This epiphany courtesy of the pros at Black Box, who have developed the SpaceGAIN patch panel based on that very same “just go with it” principle.
SpaceGAIN patch panels, unlike the common garden variety, have ports that tilt downward at a 45 degree angle, so that once plugged in, patch cables can just flow gently (and naturally) downward, instead of jutting out at 90 degree angles and then dropping downward in tight (and possibly signal-damaging) arcs. Nice and easy – no attenuation, no bend radius issues. And because of the downward slope, the cords don’t stick out as far, leaving you with a little extra room in your rack or enclosure… and in a densely-packed server room, that never hurts.