How do I Choose the Best Cable Organizer?

Mary Elizabeth
Mary Elizabeth

A cable organizer is a management device or system for a set of cables that go to the same device or the power outlet or power strip. Alternatively, a cable organizer can be a storage device for cables that are not currently in use. A cable organizer may be a discrete item or it may be built into another piece of multi-function equipment. The type of cable organizer that is best in a given situation will depend on the types of equipment, cables, and furniture involved.

Woman doing a handstand with a computer
Woman doing a handstand with a computer

In pieces of furniture, like entertainment centers, computer desks, computer carts, and other items in which it is likely the cables and wires may have to pass from above to below or form inside to outside, the chief cable organizer is an appropriately placed and outfitted hole through which the required cables can neatly pass. When it is expected that cables with very specific requirements for grouping may be involved, multiple openings may be provided to accommodate such needs. These considerations can be taken into account when shopping for furniture, or it may be possible to make alterations to the furniture after it is purchased.

Discrete cable organizer items include ties, clamps, hooks, and Velcro® ties to capture cables and lock them out of the way. Other cable management solutions include raceways, covers, and ducts. These are channels through which cables pass, keeping them tidy, preserving them from damage, and preventing accidents that can happen with exposed cables. There are also proprietary cable managers that may organize not only cables but also hubs, power adapters, and power strips. Which of these is suitable will depend on the distance the cable needs to travel, the traffic in the room, and the décor.

A cable caddy is a device that holds cable ends in a row ready to use. This type of cable organizer is useful for equipment that moves in and out of place, like laptops, cell phones, mp3 players, and video equipment, allowing all the plugging and unplugging to occur in one, organized location. For a laptop, a similar function can be served by a hub or a cable organizer within a laptop stand. This is sometimes accomplished with a hole through the back of the stand, through which all the laptop connections can pass, and where they can be left hanging when the laptop is removed to another location.

Power strips may come with their own, built-in cable organizer. Since this system only organizes the cables just as they enter the vicinity of the power strip, it is likely that this may be usefully combined with other cable organizing methods on the equipment end of things. Cable organizers used for storage of cables that are not currently being used generally offer a neat way to organize cables that have been wrapped up according to manufacturer’s specifications.

Mary Elizabeth
Mary Elizabeth

Mary Elizabeth is passionate about reading, writing, and research, and has a penchant for correcting misinformation on the Internet. In addition to contributing articles to wiseGEEK about art, literature, and music, Mary Elizabeth is a teacher, composer, and author. She has a B.A. from the University of Chicago’s writing program and an M.A. from the University of Vermont, and she has written books, study guides, and teacher materials on language and literature, as well as music composition content for Sibelius Software.

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The best cable organizer I've found is called Cable Buddy. It's a well-designed piece of ABS plastic that attaches to your cable with a bungee, and lets you quickly wrap or unwrap quickly and easily. It comes with convenient color-coded labels for effective identification and organization.

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