Best Ethernet Switch – All You Need to Know in 2024

An Ethernet switch is a networking device that connects multiple devices within a local area network (LAN). It acts as a central hub, allowing devices to communicate with each other and share resources such as printers, scanners, and internet connections. In this blog, we will explore the different types of best ethernet switch, factors to consider when choosing one, and the best options for small businesses, home use, and large enterprises.

Types of Ethernet Switches

Ethernet switches come in various types, each with its own set of features and capabilities. The main types of Ethernet switches include:

Unmanaged Switches

These are basic switches that are easy to set up and use. They are ideal for small networks or home use where simplicity is key.

Managed Switches

These switches offer advanced features such as VLAN support, QoS, and SNMP management. They are suitable for larger networks that require more control and customization.

PoE Switches

Power over Ethernet (PoE) switches can deliver both data and electrical power to devices such as IP cameras, VoIP phones, and wireless access points. They are convenient for simplifying the installation of network devices.

Layer 2 Switches

These switches operate at the data link layer of the OSI model and are capable of forwarding data based on MAC addresses. They are commonly used for connecting devices within a LAN.

Layer 3 Switches

Also known as routing switches, these switches can perform the functions of a router. They can make forwarding decisions based on IP addresses, making them suitable for larger networks with multiple subnets.

Factors to Consider When Choosing an Ethernet Switch

When choosing an Ethernet switch, there are several factors to consider to ensure that it meets the specific needs of your network. Some of the key factors to keep in mind include:

  • Look for switches that support Gigabit Ethernet or higher speeds to ensure fast data transfer within the network.

  • If you have devices that require PoE, such as IP cameras or wireless access points, opt for a PoE switch to simplify power delivery.

  • Determine whether you need the advanced features and control offered by a managed switch or if a simple unmanaged switch will suffice.

  • For networks with voice or video traffic, prioritize switches with QoS support to ensure optimal performance for these applications.

  • Consider the cost of the switch and weigh it against the features and capabilities it offers.

Best Ethernet Switch for Small Businesses

For small businesses, reliability, affordability, and ease of use are crucial factors when choosing an Ethernet switch. Some of the best options for small businesses include:

NETGEAR GS108 8-Port Gigabit Unmanaged Switch

This unmanaged switch offers Gigabit speeds and is easy to set up, making it ideal for small office environments.

Cisco SG350-10P 10-Port Gigabit Managed Switch

This managed switch provides PoE support and advanced features such as VLAN and QoS, making it suitable for small businesses with growing networking needs.

Best Ethernet Switch for Home Use

When setting up a home network, simplicity, and affordability are key considerations. Some of the best ethernet switch for home use include:

TP-Link TL-SG105 5-Port Gigabit Unmanaged Switch

This compact and affordable switch is perfect for connecting devices within a home network.

D-Link DGS-105 5-Port Gigabit Unmanaged Metal Desktop Switch

With its durable metal housing and plug-and-play setup, this switch is ideal for home users who want a reliable and hassle-free networking solution.

Best Ethernet Switch for Large Enterprises

Large enterprises require robust and scalable networking solutions to meet their demanding requirements. Some of the best ethernet switch for large enterprises include:

HPE Aruba 3810M 48G PoE+ 1-slot Managed Switch

This high-performance managed switch offers PoE+ support and advanced routing capabilities, making it suitable for large enterprise networks.

Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series High-Performance Aggregation Switch

With its high-speed connectivity and extensive feature set, this switch is designed to meet the needs of large enterprise environments with high traffic volumes.

Best Managed Ethernet Switch

Managed switches provide advanced features and greater control over network traffic. Some of the best-managed Ethernet switches on the market include:

Ubiquiti UniFi Switch 48 Managed Gigabit Switch with SFP+

This managed switch offers 48 Gigabit Ethernet ports and additional SFP+ ports for high-speed uplinks, making it ideal for enterprise deployments.

NETGEAR Insight Managed Smart Cloud Tri-Band 4×4 Wireless Access Point

This cloud-managed switch offers remote management capabilities and advanced features such as VLAN support and traffic prioritization.

Best Unmanaged Ethernet Switches

Unmanaged switches are simple to set up and are suitable for small networks or home use. Some of the best unmanaged Ethernet switches include:

Linksys SE3008 8-Port Gigabit Unmanaged Metal Desktop Switch

This compact switch provides fast Gigabit speeds and is perfect for connecting devices in a home or small office environment.

TRENDnet TEG-S80G 8-Port Unmanaged Gigabit GREENnet Switch

With its energy-efficient design, this unmanaged switch is an eco-friendly choice for small networks.

Best PoE Ethernet Switches

Power over Ethernet (PoE) switches simplify the deployment of network devices by delivering both data and power over a single Ethernet cable. Some of the best PoE Ethernet switches include:

TP-Link TL-SG1008P 8-Port Gigabit PoE Unmanaged Switch

This PoE switch provides seamless power delivery to connected devices such as IP cameras and VoIP phones, making it ideal for small businesses and home use.

Ubiquiti Networks UniFi Switch 16 PoE Gen2

With its high-power PoE capabilities and advanced management features, this switch is designed to meet the demands of larger PoE deployments in enterprise environments.


What is the difference between a managed and unmanaged Ethernet switch?

A managed switch offers advanced features such as VLAN support, Quality of Service (QoS), and remote management capabilities, while an unmanaged switch is simpler and does not offer these advanced features.

Can I use a PoE switch to power my IP cameras and wireless access points?

Yes, a PoE switch can deliver both data and power to compatible devices such as IP cameras, wireless access points, and VoIP phones, eliminating the need for separate power sources.

How many devices can I connect to an Ethernet switch?

The number of devices you can connect to an Ethernet switch depends on the number of available ports on the switch. Switches are available with varying numbers of ports to accommodate different network sizes.

Wrapping Up

Choosing the right Ethernet switch is essential for building a reliable and efficient network infrastructure. Whether it’s for a small business, home use, or large enterprise deployment, understanding the different types of switches and their respective features can help you make an informed decision. By considering factors such as port count, speed, PoE support, and managed vs. unmanaged options, you can select the best ethernet switch to meet your specific networking needs. With the right switch in place, you can create a seamless network environment.

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