Optical transceivers are a small yet vital component of any fiber optic network. At a high level, the simple component that transmits and receives data over fiber cables may seem trivial compared to switches and routers. As such, they are often treated as an afterthought bundled with those purchases. However, the cumulative impact of transceivers on your network (and your network budget) can be huge, which warrants further examination. If you’re just starting to consider transceivers outside of an OEM bundle, here are 3 key things to consider:

1. “Standards-based” ≠ “all the same”

You may have heard mention of the multi-source agreements (or MSAs) that govern the physical dimensions and some performance parameters of their respective transceiver form factors. However, when it comes to performance, MSAs are not precise specifications; they merely provide an acceptable range, and certain specs can have multiple values. For this reason, there is a large amount of variance among “MSA-compliant” transceivers. Many lowest-cost options cut corners on internal components that shorten their useful life, and should not be viewed as interchangeable with carrier-grade parts carried by Champion ONE and network OEMs.

2. Know all your options.

The standard 1G and 10G transceivers you would receive from your OEM require two fibers: one to transmit, one to receive. While in many cases this is sufficient, it can often lead to premature fiber constraints. However, it’s possible to reclaim 50% of your fiber (i.e., double your fiber capacity) by switching to single fiber (bi-directional, or “bi-di”) transceivers. These optics come in pairs that send and receive data on different wavelengths over the same fiber.

3. Your OEM support is NOT in jeopardy.

You’re OEM won’t abandon you, and transceiver vendors like Champion ONE will provide full support for their own products. You’re fully covered. 

Want to learn more about what you can do with transceivers? Let’s have a consultation.

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