different grades of glass

It’s about the distance from point A to point B… it’s also about the money.

Even as technology continues to evolve, some laws of physics still influence our decisions. For instance, the distance between points you need to connect will direct you to either a single-mode (SM) or a multimode (MM) grade of glass.

If that distance is greater than 500 meters (1640 feet), single-mode is likely your best choice. Multimode can be a good choice if it’s a distance that’s less than 500 meters. (Note: some manufacturers support 550 meters of 10Gb Ethernet transmission.)

Transmission speed is also a critical characteristic to consider when choosing the right grade of glass. If you need more bandwidth, or will in the future, keep an eye on your migration path toward faster speeds. This will help you to figure out whether the glass you choose today will support tomorrow’s speeds.

You won’t go wrong if your distance, speed and budget needs point toward SM glass. It is a solid option; however, there is a trade off when it comes to connecting the SM to transceivers.

  • The connector process is best done with a fusion splice because the room for error is small.
  • The optic-electric transceivers for SM can be considerably more expensive at high speeds.
  • The power requirements for SM are more than MM transceivers, which may not appear to be a big deal until you have a data center full of connections.

Contact the team at Capital for help figuring out whether single-mode or multimode glass
would be best for your next project.

16680 W. Cleveland Ave., New Berlin, WI, 53151 | Phone: 262-788-9700 (800-227-9473) | Fax: 262-788-9710 | info@capital-electric.com

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