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.