Cisco continues to increase their selection of switches. If you’ve ever tried to compare two switches you know, it’s a lot of work and digging through datasheets can make your eyes glaze over. Here is a user-friendly breakdown of what you are comparing, to help pick the right piece of equipment for your needs.

3650 from Cisco

The first press release for the Cisco 3650 was in October 2013.

“Cisco Catalyst 3650 Series Switches are enterprise-class, stackable access switches that provide the foundation for full wired and wireless convergence on a single platform.”

  • Dual redundant, modular power supplies and three modular fans to provide redundancy
  • 24 and 48 10/100/1000 data and Power over Ethernet Plus (PoE+) models with energy-efficient Ethernet (EEE) supported ports
  • Three fixed-uplink models with 4 x 1 Gigabit Ethernet, 2 x 10 Gigabit Ethernet, or 4 x 10 Gigabit Ethernet ports

3850 from Cisco

The first press release for the Cisco 3850 was in January of 2013.

“Cisco Catalyst 3850 Switches, which combine wired and wireless by supporting wireless tunnel termination and full wireless LAN controller functionality.” (aside “direct copy from Cisco website”)

  • Insert from the whitepaper: A Cisco 3850 is a more powerful switch than the Cisco 3650 with higher bandwidth and support for more wireless access points and wireless clients.
  • It offers modular uplinks as well as Cisco StackPower for up to 9 switches and a built-in stacking module.
  • The FRUs power supplies are larger than the 3650’s.
  • The 3850 supports Cisco UPOE to provide an available 60 watts per port rather than the 30 watts per port of Standard PoE.


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