Optical Single-mode (OS) Fiber vs. Optical Multi-mode (OM) Fiber
We can determine whether optical single-mode fiber (OS) or optical multi-mode fiber (OM) is right for your application. It comes down to the specifics of your project, our experience and industry developments. We welcome an opportunity to consult if you have fiber optic questions.
A few points to consider:
- OS can accommodate more than one communication signal at longer distances compared to OM.
- OS transmits thousands of communication signals over several miles. This extended distance enables protection through isolation. If lightning strikes one end, the charge does not transmit down the line.
- OM was the choice for shorter-reach applications like data centers or enterprise-level networks. OS typically was avoided because the necessary network connectors (modules found in the switches) were very expensive. Today, prices are lower, making OS a viable consideration.
- OM1 and OM2 are not recommended for new installations, only Moves/Adds/Changes (MAC) to exiting installations.
Guide for key specs or capabilities:
|Fast Ethernet 100BASE-FX||1 Gigabit Ethernet 1000BASE-SX||1 Gigabit Ethernet 1000BASE-LX||10 Gigabit Ethernet 10GBASE||40 Gigabit Ethernet 40GBASE||100 Gigabit Ethernet 100GBASE||40G-SWDM4||100G-SWDM4|
|OM1||62.5/125||2000 meters||275 meters||550 meters (mode conditioning patch cable required)
|2000 meters||550 meters||550 meters||82 meters||N/S||N/S||N/S||N/S|
|2000 meters||550 meters||550 meters||300 meters||100 meters||100 meters||N/S||N/S|
|OM4||50/125||2000 meters||550 meters||550 meters||400 meters||150 meters||150 meters||400 meters||100 meters|
|2000 meters||550 meters||550 meters||400 meters||150 meters||150 meters||500 meters||150 meters|
|OS2||9/125||2000 meters||5 km at 1310 nm||5 km at 1310 nm||10 km at 1310 nm|
N/S: Not Supported
* Sources: 2020 interviews with Advanced Global Communications internal staff.