Posted by The Team at CXtec on Mar 17, 2022 5:11:51 AM

First things first, Multigigabit is Cisco’s marketing terminology for NBASE-T (IEEE 802.3bz). Feel free to do your research on it...

First things first, Multigigabit is Cisco’s marketing terminology for NBASE-T (IEEE 802.3bz). Feel free to do your research on it in the following links; however, there will not be a pop quiz once this blog post is over. So don't worry.


Multi-gigabit Ethernet refers to a type of technology that maximizes available bandwidth at each network access point. Modern multi-gigabit or “mgig” equipment adheres to the well-defined IEEE 802.3 standards, which outline specifications for 2.5 and 5-Gigabit Ethernet links. Leveraging existing cabling infrastructure, multi-gigabit Ethernet enables high-speed Wi-Fi 5, Wi-Fi 6, and IoT devices to achieve blazing-fast performance with support for Power over Ethernet (PoE). This approach eliminates the need for costly and complex new cabling installations, making it a cost-effective solution for organizations.


MGIG offers high-speed connectivity that, in turn, enables seamless data transfer, ensuring smooth operation of bandwidth-intensive applications and enhancing overall productivity.

The key benefits of mgig include: 

  • Future-Proof Scalability: Mgig provides the scalability required to accommodate future demands without costly infrastructure upgrades. 
  • Enhanced Connectivity for Wireless Networks: In the era of Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6, where faster wireless access points are prevalent, Mgig switches ensure optimal connectivity for your wireless infrastructure, delivering high-speed performance and meeting the bandwidth needs of modern devices.
  • Advanced Management Capabilities: Cisco's intuitive network management platforms, such as Cisco DNA Center, provide centralized control over Mgig switches. Administrators can easily configure, monitor, and troubleshoot the network from a single interface, streamlining operations and enhancing efficiency.

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To summarize, the main benefit to Multigigabit is that it’s for switches that have the latest/greatest 802.11ac Wave 2 wireless APs connected to them. The term refers to a port’s ability to connect to devices (like APs) that require more than 1 gig of throughput. Multigigabit ethernet switches help organizations achieve lightning-fast data transfer speeds and accommodate the growing demands of modern applications.

Further, with enhanced bandwidth, future-proof scalability, and advanced management capabilities, multigigabit switches offer high-speed connectivity, enabling organizations to meet the demands of today's data-driven world. Upgrade your network infrastructure with multigigabit switches and experience a new level of speed, efficiency, and productivity.

If you really want to get technical, the speeds supported by Cisco’s Mgig ports are 100 Mbps, 1 Gbps, 2.5 Gbps, and 5 Gbps on Cat5e cable, and up to 10 Gbps over Cat6a cabling. Cisco Mgig ports are a good choice for organizations because of its features that offer lightning-fast data transfer rates, seamless connectivity, and flexible deployment options.


Some of the benefits offered by Cisco MGIG include:

  1. Advanced Threat Protection: Cisco Mgig products integrate cutting-edge security features, including robust firewalls, intrusion prevention systems (IPS), and threat intelligence, keeping your network safe all-year round.
  2. High-Speed Connectivity: Cisco Mgig switches provide lightning-fast connectivity with speeds of 2.5 Gbps, 5 Gbps, and 10 Gbps, ensuring seamless data transfer for bandwidth-intensive applications.
  3. Centralized Control: Cisco's intuitive network management platforms, such as Cisco DNA Center, enabling administrators to easily configure, monitor, and troubleshoot Cisco Mgig switches from a centralized interface.


Cisco multigigabit switches that you can choose from include:

  • Catalyst 4500E chassis (WS-X4748-12X48U+E blade)
  • Catalyst 3850 stackable (WS-C3850-24XU, WS-C3850-12X48U)
  • Catalyst 3650 stackable (WS-C3650-8X24PD, WS-C3650-12X48FD, WS-C3650-8X24UQ, WS-C3650-12X48UQ, WS-C3650-12X48UR, WS-C3650-12X48UZ)
  • Catalyst 3560-CX compact (WS-C3560CX-8XPD-S)


  • Cisco 3800 series
  • Meraki MR84


Alright, that’s about enough geek stuff… at this point, you’re probably in one of two camps:

Camp One:

You’ve been thinking about or planning to upgrade your wireless in the near term to the latest 802.11ac Wave 2 APs. You’ve probably learnt everything there is to learn about Cisco multigigabit switches and are ready to make the shift.  If so, COOL! 

You’re going to have a state-of-the-art wireless setup that just cries out for Multigig – now you have a clue of what it is and which Cisco products support it. I hope you have the budget to make your dreams come true.

Camp Two:

You’re reading this thinking, "I’m nowhere near upgrading to a wireless setup like that, but I do need to upgrade my switch infrastructure." OK, may I humbly suggest that you don’t chase after Multigig yet. Here’s why:

  • It’s EXPENSIVE – latest/greatest stuff always is
  • Availability is limited – especially in the secondary market where you can really save budget money

Remember again that there are literally only a couple of Cisco APs that have the feature. Are you really considering going after those high-end APs?

Still have questions? Not sure what's right for you?

If you’re looking for options, or have more questions, we have experts who can help you.  We have product managers and engineers that can help guide you to an affordable switching solution with the right features for your needs.  Offering customers options is what we do – it’s our specialty. Meanwhile, we hope this blog helped you gain an understanding around what is mgig, features, benefits and the kind of products that you could look out for!