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Is OM3 obsolete?
Knowledge Base + 2024.01.09

No, OM3 fiber optic cabling is not considered obsolete. It still offers high-speed performance and is widely used in many applications. However, it has been surpassed by OM4 and OM5 cabling in terms of data transmission speeds over longer distances.

Physical Difference

Physical difference mainly lies in diameter, jacket color, optical source and bandwidth, which is described in the following table.

MMF Cable TypeDiameterJacket ColorOptical SourceBandwidth
OM550/125µmLime GreenVSCEL28000MHz*km

Practical Difference

Multimode fibers are able to transmit different distance ranges at various data rate. You can choose the most suited one according to your actual application. The max multimode fiber distance comparison at different data rate is specified below.

MMF CategoryFast Ethernet1GbE10GbE40GbE100GbE

What’s the Differences Between Single Mode and Multimode Fiber?

Technical difference

Core Diameter—Single mode fiber has a small diametral core(8.3 to 10 microns) that allows only one mode of light to propagate. Multimode fiber optic cable has a large diametral core(50 to 100 microns) that allows multiple modes of light to propagate.

Light Source—Multimode devices usually use a LED or laser as a light source. While single mode devices use a laser, or laser diode, to produce light injected into the cable.

Practical Difference

Distance—Light travels a longer distance inside single mode cable than it does inside multimode. So multimode fiber is suitable for short haul application, allowing transmission distances of up to about 550m at 10Git/s. When distance is beyond 550m, single mode fiber is preferred.

Price—Multimode fiber usually cost less than single mode fiber.

Bandwidth—The bandwidth of single-mode is higher than multimode as much as 100,000 GHz.