A variety of technological advancements and trends are driving the increasing need for 10 GbE in the data center. IT managers are now faced with the challenge of selecting the appropriate 10-gigabit physical media, as 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10GE) is offered in two broad categories, optical and copper, with the latter being the most commonly used means for connectivity in data centers. This article addresses the tradeoffs between the effective choices in copper connectivity 10GBase-T and SFP+ direct attach cable (DAC fiber).
What is 10GBASE-T and Why Choose It?
10GBASE-T is an IEEE 802.3an standard which supports the creation of technology that is capable of transmitting 10 Gigabit Ethernet up to 100 meters over four pairs of CAT5 balanced copper cabling system. It is an exciting technology that provides end users with cost-effective media to achieve 10Gbps data rates.
Like all BASE-T implementations, 10GBASE-T works for lengths up to 100 meters, giving IT managers a far greater level of flexibility in connecting devices in the data center. With flexibility in reach, 10GBASE-T can accommodate either top of the rack, middle of row, or end of the row network topologies. This gives IT managers the most flexibility in server placement since it will work with existing structured cabling systems. Because 10GBASE-T is backward-compatible with 1000BASE-T, it can be deployed in existing 1 GbE switch infrastructures in data centers that are cabled with CAT6 and CAT6A (or above) cabling, enabling IT to keep costs down while offering an easy migration path to 10 GbE.
What is SFP+ DAC Fiber and the Benefits of It?
SFP+ direct attach cable (DAC) is a fixed assembly that is purchased at a given length, with the SFP+ connector modules permanently attached to each end of the cable. SFP+ DAC provides high performance in 10 Gigabit Ethernet network applications, using an enhanced SFP+ connector to send 10 Gbps data through one paired transmitters and receivers over a thin twinax cable or fiber optic cable. The 10G SFP+ DAC is designed to use the same port as an optical transceiver, but compared with optical transceivers, the connector modules attached to the cable leave out the expensive optical lasers and other electronic components, thus achieving significant cost savings and power savings in short reach applications.
SFP+ DAC is a low cost alternative to traditional fiber and twisted-pair copper cabling in data center deployments. SFP+ DAC provides better cable management for high-density deployments and enhanced electrical characteristics for the most reliable signal transmission.
10GBASE-T vs 10GBASE SFP + DAC
SFP+ DAC fiber has significantly lower overall cost when you include switch, NIC and cable, however, 10GBase-T has more flexibility and can reach longer distance. For data centers, the advantages of SFP+ with DAC are a very good match for today’ s requirements and emerging trends. That’s why SFP+ DAC is being adopted rapidly as best practice for new data centers. For wiring closets, 10GBase – T will be the obvious choice once the demand for bandwidth becomes more acute and once the price and power for 10GBase-T technology comes down.
As one of the most professional optical manufacturers in China, FS solutions for 10 Gigabit Ethernet include 10G SFP+ DAC fiber, 10G SFP+ direct attach copper cable. Besides, we also provide high-quality 10G SFP transceivers, like EX-SFP-10GE-LR, SFP-10G-LR-X, SFP-10G-SR-X, etc.