Data Center Cabling Solutions

In this episode, Josh and Brittany talk review considerations for fiber optic cabling when migrating from 1G to 10G Ethernet speeds. Understanding fiber types, OM1, OM2, OM3, and OM4 and the supported distances are critical.



Josh:                Hi, I'm Josh, Product Manager with CABLExpress.

Brittany:          I'm Brittany, Infrastructure Design Specialist, and today we're going to talk about migrating from 1 to 10 gig as it relates to fiber.

Josh:                The first thing we wanted to do is get a little education on the fiber types as related to this speed upgrade.

Brittany:          Perfect. Let's see what you got, JT.

Josh:                I'm going to use these balls as a demonstration on how distance works. First off, 62.5 or OM1, can go 33 meters at 10-gig speeds. Then if you have 50-micron OM2, you can go up to 82 meters. Then next comes OM3, which is also 50-micron fiber, but you can get up to 300 meters, and for OM4, which is also 50-micron, you can go way up to 550.

Brittany:          Thanks, JT. I have a few questions. I know you mentioned that OM2, 3, and 4 are all 50-micron. Since they're the same core size, can we mix them?

Josh:                That is a great question, Brit. All those core sizes, if they're the same core size, it's backwards compatible. OM4, OM3, and OM2 are all backwards compatible. Remember, you're always working to your weakest link so if you have OM2 and then mixing in OM4, you have to look at the distances that your OM2 are going to be running. That's going to be your bottleneck, that's where you have to have your concern.

Brittany:          Is there any concern for field-terminated fiber?

Josh:                Absolutely, that's a concern. Field-terminated fiber over time will degrade and it'll degrade very quickly, so you really need to pay attention to that. You should evaluate any field-terminated fiber links that are in the channel.

Brittany:          Thanks, JT. Keep in mind when selecting new switches for your network, fiber connectivity is just as important.

Josh:                Thanks for watching. I hope you learned something.

Brittany:          For more information, visit us at today.