Wednesday 19 September, 2018 |
Everything You Need to Know About SFP Transceivers
SFP is the short form of Small Form-factor Pluggable. It is a transceiver which we use widely in the field of networking and data communication. It is a hot pluggable and compact device and behaves as an interface between a networking device and its interconnecting cable. The cable could be a copper cable or it can be an optical fiber cable, it performs conversions between electrical and optical signals.
SFP supports many standards such as Ethernet, SONNET, Fiber Channel etc. it can allow transport of gigabit and other fast Ethernet LAN packets over time division multiplexing based WANs, also it can help in transmission of E1/T1 streams over packet switched networks. SFP is an upgraded version of GBIC module i.e. Gigabit interface converter that’s why it is also called mini GBIC, it has very similar functionality as GBIC transceiver but has much smaller dimensions. The SFP permits greater port density (number of transceivers per inch along the edge of a mother board) than the GBIC.
The form factor and electrical interface are specified by the multi-source agreement (MSA) under the auspices of the Small Form Factor Committee. It is a famous industry developed and supported by many network component vendors.
In markets, SFP have a wide range of devices which are easily detachable and can allow users to select the appropriate transceiver according to the required optical range for the network. Copper cable interfaces allow a host device designed primarily for fiber optic communications, for the purpose to communicate over unshielded twisted pair networking cables.
SFP transceiver support various digital diagnostics monitoring functions and are called digital optical monitoring (DOM), with this feature, users can monitor real time parameters of SFP, some of which are output power, temperature, input power, transceiver supply voltage, laser bias current etc.
An enormous amount of change is expected in optical transceiver, each with different transmitter or receiver, this allows the client to customize and configure the transceiver to get the proper reach with either a multi mode fiber or single mode fiber type. The single form factor pluggable comes in different categories namely –SX, which is 850nm, LX, which is 1310nm, ZX, which is 1550nm and DWDM. These categories have an interface of a copper cable which allows a mother board to communicate via USTP (unshielded twisted pair) cable network.
The SFP has the transfer rate of approx. 4.25 Gbit/s while XFP, which is another form factor and very identical to SFP, increases this amount by three times i.e. 10Gbit/s.
In this article we will discuss various SFPs and how they are different from each other by comparing them and formulate a table.
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