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What is the difference between 1310nm and 850nm SFP module?
Knowledge Base + 2024.01.09

The difference between SFP modules operating at 1310nm and 850nm primarily lies in the wavelength of the optical signals they use. This difference in wavelength affects the performance characteristics, supported distances, and the type of optical fiber used. Here's a breakdown of the key distinctions:

  1. Wavelength:

    • 1310nm SFP Module: Operates at a wavelength of 1310 nanometers. This is often associated with modules designed for longer-distance transmissions.

    • 850nm SFP Module: Operates at a wavelength of 850 nanometers. This is commonly used for short-distance transmissions.

  2. Supported Distances:

    • 1310nm SFP Module: Typically used for longer-distance transmissions. It is common in applications where the link distance ranges from several hundred meters up to tens of kilometers.

    • 850nm SFP Module: Primarily used for short-distance connections within data centers or campus networks. Distances are usually limited to a few hundred meters.

  3. Fiber Type:

    • 1310nm SFP Module: Often used with single-mode fiber (SMF), which has a smaller core size and is suitable for longer-distance transmissions.

    • 850nm SFP Module: Typically used with multimode fiber (MMF), which has a larger core size and is suitable for shorter-distance transmissions.

  4. Applications:

    • 1310nm SFP Module: Commonly used in applications requiring longer-distance connectivity, such as point-to-point links in telecommunications networks.

    • 850nm SFP Module: Commonly used in short-distance applications within data centers, connecting switches, servers, and other networking equipment.

  5. Modal Dispersion:

    • 1310nm SFP Module: Single-mode fiber with 1310nm wavelength experiences lower modal dispersion, which is advantageous for longer-distance transmissions.

    • 850nm SFP Module: Multimode fiber with 850nm wavelength experiences higher modal dispersion, which limits the achievable distances but is suitable for short-range connections.

It's important to choose the appropriate SFP module based on the specific requirements of your network, including the desired data rates, distance, and the type of fiber optic infrastructure in place. Always refer to the manufacturer's specifications and compatibility guidelines to ensure proper performance and compatibility with your networking equipment.