Professional Manufacturer of Fiber Optic Products

Simple Guide to Choose Fibre Patch Leads

1. Single-mode or multimode fibre?

A. It depends on Fiber optic equipment/device

If the equipment/device is single-mode, then fibre patch leads must be single mode.

If the equipment/device is multimode, then fibre patch leads must be multimode.

B. It depends on transmission distance

If the transmission distance is long, like 10km or more, then single mode the right choice.

If the transmission distance is short, multimode is a good choice. Normally, the transmission distance can not exceed 2km if multimode fibre is used.

The table below is showing the transmission distance for different multimode fibre.



OM1 62.5/125 OM2 50/125 OM3 50/125 OM4 50/125
1Gb/s 275m @850nm

550m @1300nm

550m @850nm

550m @1300nm

800m @850nm

550m @1300nm

1100m @850nm

550m @1300nm

10Gb/s 33m 82m 300m 550m
40&100Gb/s Not required Not required 100m 150m


How to distinguish single-mode and multimode fibre cable?

Yellow jacket is single-mode.

Orange jacket is multimode OM1 & OM2.  Light blue is OM3 & OM4

The most accurate way is to see the text printed on the cable jacket.

It is single-mode when it mentions “SM”, “Single-Mode”, “9/125”, “10/125”, “G652D”, “G657A”

It is multimode when it mentions one or more of them: “MM”, “Multimode”, “OM1”, ”OM2”, “OM3”, “OM4”, “OM5”, “62.5/125″, “50/125”.

2. Connector

Standard fibre optic connectors are SC, LC, FC, ST which are widely used to make fibre patch leads.

FC, ST is used on equipment/device, and sometimes used on ODF and termination box.

SC is widely used on ONU, patch panel; LC is the most popular ones, it is small and saves much space, is widely used in high-density applications like data centre.

3. PC or APC

There are two polish types, PC and APC. If high return loss is required, then APC is a better choice.

One more thing is important, PC can not mate with APC. PC only mate with PC, APC only mate with APC.

4. Insert loss  & Return loss

According to the IEC standard, there are four grades of attenuation caused by the connector. Please see the table below.  High level always means high cost. Normally, anfkom’s fibre patch leads are made with insert loss <0.3db, which is between Grade B and C. We can also provide fibre patch leads with insert loss<0.2db or even insert loss<0.1db is much better than grade B.

attenuation grade

5. Outer Jacket

3 types of Jacket material widely used to make fibre patch leads in the market.

PE Polyethylene)PE has excellent moisture and weather resistance properties and has good electrical properties over a wide temperature range. It’s also abrasion-resistant. So PE is the standard jacket material for outdoor applications.

PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride )PVC is usually low-cost, flexible, fairly rugged, and a flame/oil-resistant material, so it can be formulated to function in a variety of environments and applications. In other words, it can be used as the jacket materials for both indoor and outdoor cables

LSZH (Low Smoke Zero Halogen)LSZH jacket is free of halogenated materials which can be transformed into the toxic and corrosive matter during combustion. LSZH is an environmentally friendly material, and it is more expensive than PVC.

PVC and LSZH are popular for indoor applications.

But if high fire resistance required, ONFP or ONFR material is a choice.

ONFP and ONFR are defined on the UL standard. ONFP fibre patch leads are installed in the plenum area.

6. Cores Number

Normally the fibre patch leads are simplex or duplex, also multicore patch leads will be used in some applications. The multicore cable diameter is big, It is strong and not so flexible.  Sometimes, people bundle 48 duplex fibre patch leads instead of using 96F multicore fibre patch leads.


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