Choosing the Right Power Sourcing Equipment for PoE Devices

Published on Updated on May 28, 2024

Networks today have become expansive as businesses need high-speed connectivity over large geographical distances. Many technologies such as fiber optics, PoE, and various types of network devices contribute to these advancements in networks.

Power over Ethernet (PoE) is a revolutionary technology that has helped networks expand without external power supplies. It supplies power and data over a single cable. PoE helps increase speed and efficiency of the network and facilitates transmission even in remote areas that may not be on the electrical grid.

Here, there are Power Sourcing Equipment (PSE) and Powered Devices (PD), wherein PSEs supply power to PDs within the network. Depending on the type of network and its geographical area of data transmission, among many other factors, you need to choose the right PSE for PoE devices. This post discusses some of the factors you need to consider.

Some of the most commonly used PSEs are network switches and media converters. PSEs are designed based on PoE standards, which ensures seamless integration and interoperability when deploying PoE.

These IEEE standards control the maximum power and voltage specifications. The selected PSEs need to be compliant with the PDs and of the same PoE standards.

    Common PoE Power Sourcing Equipment

    Most PSEs can be a hub of power supply for multiple PDs. Here are some widely used PSE types suitable for most network applications.

    • PoE Switches: Whether you have an industrial or a commercial switch, ensure you have the PoE PSE feature. While managed switches are required in large networks for automated control, unmanaged switches are used in most applications. PoE can be enabled in managed as well as unmanaged switches.
    • PoE Media Converters: Media converters are used to connect two dissimilar networks such as a blend of copper and fiber optics. They convert optical signals to electrical ones and vice versa. There are many types of media converters specially designed for industrial or commercial use. When choosing one, look for media converters with PoE PSE feature, such as PoE-enabled ports. Ensure the converter has connection option for RJ45 as well as SFP. Depending on your network requirements choose the PoE wattage which may be around 500 Watts or more.
    • PoE Extenders: Extenders, as the term implies, connects distantly located PD and PSE and extend the transmission distance. There are PoE extenders that facilitate power supply to PD along with data. You need to decide the number of PoE extenders depending on the distance or total length between PSE and PD. Generally, you can install one extender over a distance of 300 feet. However, this device is suitable mainly within similar network type.

    Factors to Consider When Choosing PSE for PoE Devices

    Here are some useful pointers which may help you make an informed decision when choosing a Power Souring Equipment.

    • Number of devices: Modern networks have multiple cameras, phones, computers, peripheral devices, and a lot more. Switches are great for such complex networks. You can use extenders if required, based on the distance.
    • Number of PoE ports: In most blended networks or fiber optic ones, the number of PoE ports is important because of the connectivity between two or more dissimilar networks. Check the port speed, configuration, and type against your requirements. Media converters are a great option as PSEs for blended networks.
    • Power requirements: Check the power consumption of the network, and the amount of power required through PoE. Match your PSE power budget to device needs. Ensure the devices are not overloaded.
    • Power management: Check for features in PSEs such as power allocation, prioritizing devices, and power budgeting per port.
    • Network type: Choose switches for centralized deployments, extenders/converters for remote locations.
    • Compatibility: Check the IEEE PoE compatibility based on the version of PSE and PD. It must be the same to avoid damages and functional issues.
    • Size of PSE device: Form factor is a crucial aspect because of space constraints and increasing number devices in modern networks. The PSE device should fit in anywhere in hard-to-reach areas and compact spaces, or directly into the port.

    Utilization of Power Sourcing Equipment (PSE) for PoE Powered Devices

    PSE stands as the cornerstone in the scope of Power over Ethernet (PoE), serving as the conduit for delivering power and data to PoE powered devices. Understanding the multifaceted utilization of PSEs unveils their important role in empowering efficient power delivery and enhancing network flexibility within modern network infrastructures.

    Essential Backbone of PoE Deployments: PSEs serve as the essential backbone of PoE deployments by seamlessly providing power to PoE powered devices over Ethernet cables. This integration of power delivery with data transmission eliminates the need for separate power sources, streamlining installation and enhancing deployment flexibility.

    Enabling Efficient Power Delivery: PSEs adhere to IEEE PoE standards, ensuring seamless interoperability and efficient power delivery within PoE deployments. Compliance with standards such as 802.3af, 802.3at, and 802.3bt guarantees compatibility and optimal performance across PoE powered devices.

    Enhancing Network Flexibility and Management: Advanced PSEs incorporate power management functionalities, empowering network administrators to optimize power usage and ensure stable operation across the network. It also facilitates network expansion and adaptation to evolving requirements by providing a scalable and flexible power delivery solution.


    If you are looking to expand your network, you may need good quality network devices with PoE and other features. Ensure you source from a reliable player. VERSITRON has been in the market for several years and has the expertise in developing and customizing POE switches and POE media converter solutions. Their team has designed and engineered devices such as media converters, switches, and extenders with PoE and varied configurations, advanced features, form factors, and more. The company offers a diverse range of PSE options, ensuring compatibility with various standards and network requirements. They offer custom options to suit your specific requirements. You can contact their team of experts to know the features, scalability and so on of the PoE devices they offer.

    Frequently Asked Question About PSE for POE Equipment

    PoE Standards control the maximum power and voltage specifications. Some IEEE PoE standards are 802.3af (PoE), 802.3at (PoE+) and 802.3bt (PoE++).

    Most PSEs can be a hub of power supply for multiple PDs. Some widely used PSE types suitable for most network applications are PoE Switches, PoE Media Converters, and PoE Extenders.

    Here are some useful pointers that can help you make an informed decision when choosing a PSE device-

    1. Number of devices
    2. Number of PoE ports
    3. Power requirements
    4. Power management
    5. Network type
    6. Compatibility
    7. Size of PSE device

    The output voltage of PSE for PoE devices varies based on the PoE standard being used. IEEE 802.3af (PoE) provides a voltage range of 44 to 57 volts DC, with a maximum power output of 15.4 watts per port. IEEE 802.3at (PoE+), which allows for increased power supply of up to 30 watts per port, maintains the voltage range of PoE, which is commonly 44 to 57 volts DC. IEEE 802.3bt (PoE++) has two types: Type 3 and Type 4. Type 3 can offer up to 55 watts per port, whereas Type 4 can deliver up to 100 watts per port. The voltage range for Type 4 PoE++ might vary, however it typically falls between 52 and 57 volts DC. It is important to note that the actual voltage delivered by PSE can vary depending on factors such as cable length, quality, and climatic conditions. Furthermore, PoE standards ensure that power-receiving devices (powered devices, or PDs) are designed to operate safely within the prescribed voltage ranges.

    The major distinction between Power Sourcing Equipment (PSE) and PoE Powered Devices (PD) is in their various functions inside a Power over Ethernet (PoE) network. Power Sourcing Equipment (PSE) includes equipment that supply power to PoE-enabled devices over Ethernet cables. PSEs pump power into Ethernet cables, allowing PoE-enabled devices to receive power and data over the same connection. PSEs consist of PoE switches, PoE injectors, and midspan power injectors. PSEs use IEEE PoE standards to negotiate power supply with connected PDs.

    On the other hand, PoE Powered Devices (PD) receive electricity from PSEs. These gadgets, such as IP phones, wireless access points, and IP cameras, need on electricity from PSEs to function. PDs reduce the need for separate power sources by employing power delivered over Ethernet connections, making installation easier and more flexible inside PoE networks. PDs must meet IEEE PoE standards to ensure compatibility with PSEs and secure power transmission.

    Power Sourcing Equipment (PSE) in Power over Ethernet (PoE) systems provides power to PoE Powered Devices (PD) using a method known as power injection. When a PoE-enabled device connects to a PSE port, the PSE conducts a negotiation to ascertain the device's power consumption. Once agreed upon, the PSE injects DC power into the Ethernet cable, often over the same twisted-pair copper wires used for data transmission.

    This electricity is then used by the PD to power its internal components, such as processors, radios, sensors, or cameras, removing the need for a separate power source. Throughout the process, the PSE monitors voltage, current, and temperature to guarantee safe power distribution while following to IEEE PoE standards such as 802.3af, 802.3at, and 802.3bt. Overall, PoE power sourcing equipment efficiently distributes power to PoE-enabled devices, allowing for the seamless integration of power and data transfer via Ethernet infrastructure.

    Rich Tull

    Rich Tull
    R.W. Tull is the President of Versitron, a leading technology company specializing in data communication and networking solutions. With expertise in Guiding network switches and media converters, R.W. Tull has played a pivotal role in driving Versitron's success. His deep understanding of these technologies has enabled the company to provide innovative and reliable solutions to clients. As a visionary leader, He ensures that Versitron remains at the forefront of the industry, delivering cutting-edge networking solutions that enhance data communication efficiency.
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