With regard to data transmission in optical networks, fiber optic transceiver is a vitally necessary part used for sending and receiving electrical and optical signals between facilities like computers, input/output devices, peripheral devices or switches. Based on the difference of transceiver models, optical modules can be separated into single mode optical transceivers and multimode optical transceivers with their relevant characteristics. When faced with situation for building a fiber optic network, you need to know the distinctions between single mode fiber and multimode fiber. In order to get the whole picture of it, this article will present you a brief introduction and major differences of single mode fiber and multimode fiber.
Single Mode Fiber vs. Multimode Fiber: Definition
Single mode fiber is a single stand of glass fiber with a diameter of 8.3 to 10 microns and one mode of transmission, which can propagate at the wavelength of 1310nm and 1550nm. For this reason, there is little light reflection caused when light passes through the single mode fiber core. This will reduce fiber attenuation and optimize the ability for the signal to travel further.
Multimode fiber has larger core that guides many modes simultaneously and gives rise to more transit of data through the multimode fiber core. This will create more light reflection, higher dispersion and attenuation rate. It reduces the quality of the signal over long distance.
Single Mode Fiber vs. Multimode Fiber: Differences
As mentioned above, the inner structure of single mode and multimode fiber are diverse, so what would result in this circumstance?
- Light Propagation Types Difference
Single mode fiber has one type of light propagation: step index, while multimode fiber has two types: step index and graded index. What is more, the light propagation reduces less in single mode fiber transmission than that of multimode fiber.
- Transmission Distance Difference
Multimode fiber has a correspondingly large light carrying core and is usually used for short distance transmission with LED based fiber optic equipment. Single mode fiber has a small light carrying core and is normally applied for long distance transmission with laser diode based fiber optic equipment.
- Deployment Cost Difference
In terms of price, single mode transceiver costs 1.5 to 4-5 times more than multimode transceiver according to their different data rate.
Single Mode Fiber vs. Multimode Fiber: How to Choose?
It depends on transmission distance as well as overall budget. If the distance is less than a couple of miles, like 300-400 meters, multimode fiber will work well and transmission system costs, including transmitter and receiver, will be in the range of $500 to $800. If the distance is more than 3-5 miles, single mode fiber would be more suitable with the cost of more than $1000.
Single mode fiber is more effective for wide-range data applications and commonly used in carrier networks, PONs, and MANs. Multimode fiber is more suitable for shorter distance operations and used in enterprise data centers. And price is also a consideration. You can make a choice based on your needs. If you are interested in these fiber cables, Fiberstore is a good choice.