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The Difference Between Cable Assemblies And Wire Harnesses

Jun. 06, 2024

Cable assemblies and wire harnesses may sound like a contest between two soccer teams, but in the everyday world of communications, networking, power, and connectivity of all kinds, it's not about the competition, it's about the other. Cable assemblies and harnesses are essential components for a wide variety of applications in the industrial, commercial, consumer, and public and private service sectors. The list is exhaustive - telecommunications, industrial and consumer electronics, automotive, medical, manufacturing, military, computing, aerospace, semiconductors, government agencies, and more.


While both cable assemblies and wire harnesses are used to transmit signals or power, they are very different in complexity and use.


The difference between a cable assembly and a wire harness is that a cable assembly creates a path from one point or circuit to another, while a wire harness connects multiple points or circuits together, with multiple branches running in different directions and having multiple terminations on each branch, thus providing multiple functions.  


A cable assembly is one or more wires that run together in a single sleeve with a connector or plug at each end. Cable assemblies can be bundles of wires or groups of cables that are bundled together. Cable assemblies are wrapped in thermoplastic or vinyl sleeves and are ideal for arranging wires and cable sets around obstacles. Cable assemblies are designed to perform specific functions determined by the plugs, terminals, and connectors located at each end. They are used in most electronic applications, from flat panel displays to automotive electronic systems to integrated cockpit systems to simple LED lighting for apparel, clothing, and accessories.

 Cable Assemblies

 Cable Assemblies

What are the uses of cable assemblies?

Cable assemblies converge or interconnect different circuits or electrical paths to function together to carry signals or power. They typically have only two ends to connect point A to point B.


For example, Ethernet cable assemblies are designed to provide services that support bandwidth speeds up to 10 Gb Ethernet, such as large data centers, military field units, and medical facilities. For applications that require a lighter weight, smaller size, the ability to transmit clearly and quickly over long distances, support greater bandwidth, and have high voltage isolation, fiber optic cable assemblies will meet these needs. Industries that use fiber optic cable assemblies include aerospace, automotive, industrial, medical and military applications.


Wire harnesses are a method of combining multiple point-to-point cable assemblies into one final assembly. They are typically held together using cable ties or some form of protective sleeving to protect the wire or cable from environmental conditions such as moisture, heat or friction, and to organize the different breakouts for easy routing in a system or box build. If you want to know about the wholesale best cable assemblies price, welcome to contact us.

Wire & Cable Harness for Computers

  Wire & Cable Harness for Computers

What is the purpose of a wire harness?

Although wire harnesses can be confused with cable assemblies, the main difference is that harnesses typically contain multiple ends or branches running in different directions with multiple terminations on each branch to provide multiple functions.


Custom wiring harnesses are used in durable goods, such as household appliances, and in and around a variety of engines - cars, buses, locomotives, trucks, and even aircraft. Wire harnesses are used in electronic equipment, construction machinery, industrial equipment, and HVAC products.


Cable assemblies and harnesses are essential components for all types of networks, connections, communications, and power supplies. Whether you need a custom cable assembly or a working harness will depend on the application requirements. By understanding the different functions between the two, you can easily select the right assembly for the job. If you want to know about the wholesale best wire harnesses price, welcome to contact us.

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