Things You Need to Know About MTP/MPO Harness Cable

A MTP/MPO harness cable, also called MTP/MPO breakout cable or MTP/MPO fan-out cable, is a fiber optic cable terminated with MTP/MPO connectors on one end and MTP/MPO/LC/FC/SC/ST/MTRJ connectors (generally MTP to LC) on the other end (as shown in the following figure). In addition to its definition, here are something you also need to know about MTP/MPO harness cable.

MTP(MPO) Harness Cable

What Is MTP/MPO Connector

As a kind of multi-fiber connector, the MTP/MPO connector is most commonly used for 12 or 24 fibers in a single connector pushing up to and beyond 100Gbps data transmission. Thus it satisfies the huge demand for more bandwidth and more space efficiency of data centers and ever-expanding server clusters. MTP/MPO connectors are paving the way for increased data transmission speeds and rack density.

Though MTP and MPO are literally different from each other, they are often used interchangeably. The MPO connector is a multi-fiber connector that is defined by IEC-61754-7, and the MTP is a registered trade mark of US Conec (a leader in providing passive components for high density optical interconnects), which identifies a specific brand of the MPO style connector.

Common Types of MTP/MPO Harness Cable

As mentioned above, the connectors on each end of the fiber cable may be the same or not. Thus, the MTP/MPO harness cable is usually divided into MPO/MTP-MPO/MTP harness cable, MPO/MTP-Secure Keyed LC harness cable and MPO/MTP-Standard LC/FC/SC/ST/MTRJ harness cable. In the MPO/MTP-Secure Keyed LC harness cable, the secure keyed LC connector provides a quick, simple termination method, featuring a pre-installed cleaved fiber with an index-matching splice element, and a precision factory pre-polished zirconia ceramic ferrule.

Differences Between MTP/MPO Harness Cable and MTP/MPO Trunk Cable

MTP/MPO harness cables and MTP/MPO trunk cables are two common kinds of MTP/MPO fiber cables. They differ from each other in such aspects as function and application.

MTP/MPO harness cables are designed for high density applications requiring high performance and speedy installation. Harness cables provide a transition from multi-fiber cables to individual fibers or duplex connectors. Therefore, they can meet a variety of fiber cabling requirements.

MTP/MPO trunk cables are designed for high density applications which offer excellent benefits in terms of on-site installation time and space saving. Trunk cables serve as a permanent link connecting the MTP/MPO modules to each other.

MTP(MPO) Trunk Cable

MTP/MPO harness Cable in 40GbE/100GbE Migration

As data communication technology migrates from 10GbE to 40GbE and 100GbE, transition from discrete commercial connectors to MTP/MPO connectors is essential. MTP/MPO harness cables are ideal for connecting high speed switches populated with such higher rate transceivers as QSFP+ transceivers to existing 10GbE elements populated with SFP+ modules.


Generally speaking, with its high-density MTP/MPO connectors and harness cables, the MTP/MPO harness cable is suit for high density environment that demands space saving and reduced cable management solutions. Furthermore, supporting various connections from multi-fiber to single-fiber, the MTP/MPO harness cable is an ideal connection to patch panels and data distribution routing.

OM3 and OM4 Fiber Patch Cables

Multi-mode fiber patch cable, which is composed of a fiber optic cable terminated with multi-mode fiber optic connectors at both ends, is a type of optical fiber mostly employed for communication over short distances, such as within a building or on the campus. There are four common kinds of multi-mode fiber patch cable: OM1, OM2, OM3 and OM4 fiber patch cables. OM1 and OM2 fiber patch cables are commonly used in premises applications supporting Ethernet rates of 10 Mbps to 1 Gbps. While OM3 and OM4 fiber patch cables are developed to accommodate faster networks such as 10, 40, and 100 Gbps. The following figure shows the differences between OM1, OM2, OM3 and OM4 cables on diameter, jacket color, optical source and bandwidth:

OM1, OM2, OM3 and 0M4

Compared with OM1 and OM2 fiber patch cables, OM3 and OM4 fiber patch cables are more suitable for today’s higher-speed networks. This article will give a brief introduction to the similarities and differences of OM3 and OM4 fiber patch cables.

Similarities of OM3 and OM4 Fiber Patch Cables

The first thing to note is that the connectors of OM3 and OM4 fiber patch cables are the same. The commonly used connectors are LC, SC, FC and so on. In addition, the termination of the connectors is the same as well. As for the fiber optic cable, both OM3 and OM4 fiber patch cables use 50/125 micron (“50” represents the diameter of the core, and “125” represents the diameter of the cladding) multi-mode fiber cables. Furthermore, the fibers of OM3 and OM4 fiber patch cables are all laser optimized multi-mode fibers (LOMMF), which are designed for use with 850nm vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELS). Last but not least, OM3 and OM4 fiber patch cables have the same aqua sheaths.

Differences Between OM3 and OM4 Fiber Patch Cables

Compared with the OM3 fiber patch cables, the cable of OM4 fiber patch cables has a lower attenuation and operates at a higher bandwidth. Both these two factors mean that less power is lost in the transmission of signal. That’s to say, the transmission distance of OM4 fiber patch cables is further than that of OM3 fiber patch cables. Furthermore, the effective modal bandwidth (EMB) of OM3 and OM4 fiber patch cables is different as well. The followings are detailed information about the EMB and transmission distances of 10G OM3 fiber patch cables and 10G OM4 fiber patch cables.

The 10G OM3 fiber patch cable specifies an 850nm laser-optimized 50 micron cable with an effective modal bandwidth (EMB) of 2000 MHz/km. It can support 10 Gbps link distances up to 300 meters.

The 10G OM4 fiber patch cable specifies a high-bandwidth 850nm laser-optimized 50 micron cable with an effective modal bandwidth of 4700 MHz/km. It can support 10 Gbps link distances of 550 meters.

Fiberstore offers both OM3 fiber patch cables and OM4 fiber patch cables terminated with different fiber optic connectors (LC/SC/ST/FC/MTRJ/MU/E2000/SMA). These cables, which can be simplex or duplex and customized in optical lengths, are 100% optically tested for maximum performance before shipping worldwide.

Single-mode Fiber Patch Cable VS Multi-mode Fiber Patch Cable

Fiber patch cable, also called fiber optic jumper or fiber optic patch cord, is designed to interconnect or cross connect fiber networks within structured cabling systems. The connectors capped at either end of the fiber patch cable allow it to be rapidly and conveniently connected to an optical switch, cable television (CATV) or other telecommunication equipment. Depending on transmission medium, the fiber patch cable can be classified into single-mode fiber patch cable and multimode patch cord.

What is Single mode Fiber Patch Cable

Single-mode fiber patch cable, which is generally yellow, is composed of a fiber optic cable terminated with single mode fiber optic connectors at both ends. It is usually used for connections over large areas, such as college campuses and cable television networks. Compared with multimode fiber patch cable, single-mode fiber patch cable have a higher bandwidth. The following figure shows the common single-mode fiber patch cable which is with blue connectors at both ends.

single mode

What is Multimode Patch Cord

Multimode fiber patch cable, which is generally orange or grey, is composed of a fiber optic cable terminated with multimode fiber optic connectors at both ends. Its connectors are generally cream or black (as shown below). It is a type of optical fiber mostly employed for communication over short distances, such as within a building or on the campus. Due to its high capacity and high reliability, multimode optical fiber is used for building the backbone network application.

multimode patch cord

Difference between Single-mode and Multimode Fiber Patch Cables

The main difference between single-mode and multi-mode fiber patch cables is the size of their respective cores.

Single-mode fiber optic patch cables use 9/125 (“9” represents the diameter of the core, and “125” represents the diameter of the cladding) micron bulk single-mode fiber cables. The most common type of single-mode fiber has a core diameter of 8 to 10 microns. In single-mode cables, light travels toward the center of the core in a single wavelength, allowing the signal to travel faster and over longer distances without a loss of signal quality than is possible with multimode cabling.

Multimode patch cord uses 62.5/125 (“62.5” represents the diameter of the core, and “125” represents the diameter of the cladding) micron or 50/125 (“50” represents the diameter of the core, and “125” represents the diameter of the cladding) micron multimode fiber cables. In other words, the core of the multimode fiber patch cable is either 50 or 62.5 microns. Compared with single-mode cable, the larger core of the multimode cable gathers more light, and this light reflects off the core and allows more signals to be transmitted. Although it is more cost-effective than single-mode cable, the multimode cabling does not maintain signal quality over long distances.

Both single-mode fiber patch cable and multimode patch cord can be used in computer workstation to outlet and patch panels or optical cross connect distribution center. A large number of fiber optic patch cables are supplied by Fiberstore, including the above said single-mode and multimode fiber patch cables.

Related Articles:
Single Mode vs Multimode Fiber: What’s the Difference?
The Advantages and Disadvantages of Optical Fiber

New Application of Fiber Optic Connector Assembly at the Scene

Recent years, PON technology has been more widely used in the fiber optic industry because of its advantages on building cost, protection cost and the broad width. And in China, the three major telecom operators – China telecom, China unicom and China mobile all bring the EPON and GPON into the telecommunication network, at the same time, in order to support the application of PON technology, ODN network is built strongly, then it put forward higher requirements to fiber optic connection, protection as well as the application and management of fiber cable devices, the most obvious device among them is fiber optic patch cable.

We all know that tradition fiber patch cables are made to follow as the certain length of fiber optic connector assembly process, different lengths of fiber cables and connectors composed of a wide variety of fiber patch cords, they can be used in fiber optic patch panels, fiber transfer boxes, fiber cable devices and the connection between the devices and other optical ports, but just because these different fiber patch cables, it bring heavy pressure to storage management. Except this, traditional factory custom the length of fiber patch cables usually more than the actual length if the route and it leaves the length of the excess in a small disk space, we can see from the figure that not only it adds the cost of distribution frame and other cable devices but also not easy to manage, and too longer fiber cables always happens intertwined, knotted squeeze and circumstances, then result in unnecessary trouble, increase the cost of maintenance and management.

longer cable

Therefore, how to control the length of fiber patch cables effectively, to avoid all the trouble. To solve the problem, Fiberstore makes his opinion. we use the on site assembly of fiber connectors, and on the 2 mm or 3 mm fiber pigtail?into end and make fiber patch cable at the scene, replacing the traditional custom factory fiber patch cables, it can greatly alleviate the traditional fiber patch cables left too long, difficulties of managements, frequent failure those a series of maintenance problems. Fiberstore comes with the close communication with all the operators and joint efforts, apply the fiber optic connector assembly of FTTH at the secne into fiber patch cables managements of fiber equipments.

After the constant experiments and used for many time successfully, we have to believe that the embedded optical fiber types of fiber optical connector assembly at the scene will be the first choice for the fiber distribution frame, cable box, optical distribution boxes and other cable device in the future, it also can give ODN network cabling system maintenance and management to bring a revolutionary change.

Excellent Solution to Fiber Patch Cable Management

Recently I saw many people be in trouble in fiber patch cable management, usually see them stack the cables casually, many people will have the feeling of a mess and always envy other people can do it well, maybe today’s article can give you a lot of help and don’t have to be jealous of other people’s good work.

The optical cord has the possibility to be the weakest link in the fiber optic network, usually in order the finish optimum performance and reliability we must observe true procedures in the administration of the fiber patch cords, the best solution will be the smallest cost and changes or moves. In the fiber patch cable management, the voice connection should be also careful. Well, let’s tell you detailed procedures.

patch cable management

When we receive the request from the administration, be sure that you know the introduction and design of the fiber cabling and you should also know that if you have fiber patch cords that can match to the stalled cabling, the reason is that fiber optic cables have different types and they should be distinguished. Then choose the suitable length of fiber cable. The length depends on its points of connection. It is the shortest one that does not obstruct or interfere with other cords and connectors on the fiber patch panels, avoiding running cords and connectors on the panel. The next step is that tight the fiber patch cords, it will be pulled on connectors and too much slack complicates cable management, making the fiber patch panel more difficult to operate in. At the fiber patch panel, the patch cables equally toward both sides of the vertical cable management channels to prevent overloading one side. Be careful not to mix up cords of different core diameters. Additionally, cords must be of the same or higher bandwidth as the behind-the-wall cabling. Before the patching, there is a point we need to remember, it is cleaning the connector, the cleaning parts include connector ends on patch cords, connector ends on panels, connector ends on network equipment, as for how to clean different types of the fibre optic connector, such as fibre optic sc connector, fibre optic lc connector…We mentioned it in our Fiberstore’s blog if you are interested in it, welcome to visit Fiberstore’s blog. For example, exceeding the bend radius can result in significant additional loss and adverse impact on channel performance. For example, mpo fiber, the minimum bend radius is ten times the core diameter. Take care not to use excessive force during the patching process. This can stress cords and connectors, reducing their performance. If you need to go to force in pulling a cord, something is wrong. If the existing core is the right length, it may be possible to re-use it. If this is the case, remove the cord completely and re-run it in through the cable pathways. This is the only guaranteed way to ensure there are no tangles, kinks or strains in the cord. The final step is to update the documentation of the as-built configuration and close the work order associated with the completed change request.

The above contents are the summary of fiber patch cable management steps, if there are some trouble when you are putting into the practice, welcome to discuss with us, and the related fiber optics that I mentioned in this page, such as various of fiber cables, fiber connectors, fiber adapters even fiber optic patch panel, you all can find from FS.COM.