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Just like the subject says.

I've got a mess of FC hardware in a rack that I'd like to replace the cabling on. Looking at Monoprice I see that LC/LC cables are really close in price between 10Gb and "normal" ($9.18 for a 1m 10Gb, $8.91 for a 1m "normal"). Is there any reason I shouldn't buy the aqua-colored stuff for future use?

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On a side note, if you can wait another year, 40/100Gb connections are just coming out (and are quite pricey, but not as bad as you'd think). It's my humble opinion that much of the small and medium business market will skip 10Gb and go straight for 40/100Gb. Cat6a and OM3 support 10Gb only. Cat7a and OM4 support 40/100Gb. – Chris S Jul 12 '11 at 23:49
The 40G/100G cables use MPO connections, not LC. – toppledwagon Dec 12 '12 at 1:49
up vote 9 down vote accepted

Orange cable meets the OM2 standard. Aqua meets OM3 or OM4 standards (usually OM3). Yellow is singlemode cable.

The OM standards are backward compatible (for the most part; OM1 was defined to be 62.5/125 size; OM2+ are 50/125; but not all manufacturers followed this, just be sure to get the size that matches your equipment or you'll experience some attenuation).

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Any idea where I look on my equipment for what I need in terms of 50 or 62.5 um? All the obvious places don't say. I've got QLogic switches and QLogic or Brocade HBAs. – Bill Weiss Jul 12 '11 at 23:49
The datasheets for most QLogic devices (Switches and HBAss‌​pecifically call out their compatibility. Many of them are compatible with both 50 and 62.5. For Brocade they're almost always made for 50/125; their website states most are compatible with 62.5/125 though with a reduction in distance of half. If you can't find it in their datasheets, their tech support should know right away. – Chris S Jul 12 '11 at 23:56
Huh. How didn't I find that when I looked? Thanks. – Bill Weiss Jul 13 '11 at 0:07

No, go with the OM3/OM4. OM3/OM4 is becoming more common in the fiber industry. I manufacture fiber assemblies and see the trend moving toward OM3/OM4, particularly for future growth purposes. Within the 50um (micron) family, the Aqua fiber OM3/OM4 is backward compatible to its orange counterpart. Both fiber cores are the same size.

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