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Why Use QSFP-40G-UNIV Transceiver for 40G Network?
Knowledge Base + 2023.12.04

SFP and SFP+: SFP is for 100BASE or 1000BASE applications while SFP+ is used in 10GBASE applications. SFP+ ports can accept SFP optics but at a reduced speed of 1 Gb/s, but an SFP+ transceiver cannot be plugged into an SFP port.

SFP+ and SFP28: SFP28 is designed for use with 25GBASE connections. SFP+ and SFP28 have the same form factor, and compatible pinouts. SFP28 transceivers will work with SFP+ optics but at a reduced speed of 10 Gb/s.

QSFP and QSFP+: QSFP carries 4 x 1 Gb/s channels. QSFP+ supports 4 x 10 Gb/s channels and the channels can be combined into a single 409 Gb/s connection. A single QSFP+ can replace 4 SFP+ transceivers resulting in greater port density.

QSFP-DD, QSFP28, and QSFP56: QSFP-DD transceivers have the physical dimensions and same port densities as the QSFP, QSFP28, and QSFP56 but double the number of lanes to eight. QSFP-DD modules are available that support 400 Gb/s and 800 Gb/s. To accommodate the greater number of lanes, the mechanical interface of QSFP-DD on the host board is slightly deeper than that of the other QSFP transceivers to support an additional row of contacts.

Why Use QSFP-40G-UNIV Transceiver for 40G Network?

Since QSFP-40G-UNIV transceivers have the same duplex LC optics interface as 10G transceivers and their transmission distances range from 100 m to 2 km, migrating from 10GbE to 40GbE becomes much easier and simpler: apart from the hardware replacement, users only need to replace existing 10G transceivers with 40GBASE-UNIV QSFP+ modules. In addition, there are more benefits listed below.

Cost-Saving for 10G to 40G Migration

It is known that 40G short-reach transceivers such as 40GBASE-SR4 and 40GBASE-XSR4 transceivers often require 12-fiber parallel MTP OM3/OM4 cables to achieve 40GbE transmission per link. This is four times more fiber per link than is needed for a 10G short-reach link. QSFP-40G-UNIV transceivers operate over the same duplex fiber system as 10GBASE-SR modules, avoiding the need for expensive 40GbE migration cassettes and an additional MTP fiber infrastructure deployment.

Simplify Data Center Cabling

QSFP-40G-UNIV transceiver enables operation on both SMF and MMF, allowing customers to consolidate their optics and use QSFP-40G-UNIV QSFP+ transceivers in their network irrespective of the fiber type. In addition, QSFP-40G-UNIV can interoperate with QSFP-40G-LR4 and QSFP-40G-LR4L which avoiding the transition process of moving from multi-mode to single-mode fiber cabling, further simplifying data center cabling.

Cost-Effective for Singlemode Fiber Cabling

As we know, OM3/OM4 multimode fiber cables have limited transmission distance in the future 100G or even 400G network. Therefore there is a strong desire for the data center to move to single mode fiber cabling for cost-effectiveness migration. But the price of 40G long-range single mode transceivers is too high. The 40GBASE-UNIV transceiver is an ideal choice for 40G single mode fiber infrastructure for distances from 500 m to 2 km.

FAQs on QSFP-40G-UNIV Transceivers?

How does QSFP-40G-UNIV QSFP transceiver differ from other short-reach QSFP transceivers?

Short-reach 40G transceivers include QSFP-40G-SR4 module (100m over OM3 fiber) and QSFP-40G-XSR4 module (300m over OM3 fiber), which are based on the IEEE 40GBASE SR4 standards and operate over parallel MMF with MTP connectors. 40GBASE-UNIV transceiver has LC connectors and works on both SMF and MMF fibers.

Is 40G QSFP-40G-UNIV QSFP+ interoperable with other QSFP transceivers?

The QSFP-40G-UNIV transceiver is based on the IEEE 40G-LR4 standard that is compliant to IEEE 802.3ba. So it can interoperate with any 40GBASE-LR4 standard transceivers and 40GBASE-LRL4 transceivers. Besides, a 40G QSFP-40G-UNIV transceiver can be plugged into any QSFP+ slot. However, as 40G QSFP-40G-UNIV transceiver uses a single pair of fibers, it fails to interoperate with parallel optics like the 40GBASE-SR4 transceiver.

Can the QSFP-40G-UNIV transceiver be used to break out 4x10G connections?

No. Only 40G transceivers that use MTP parallel fiber cables are available for applications requiring four 10GbE ports from a single QSFP interface. QSFP-40G-UNIV and all other 40G duplex modules are not capable of being broken into 4x10G.