Fibre Optic Cables can transmit at different speeds over varying lengths depending on their size.  Fibre optic cables generally come in either Multimode (OM1, OM2, OM3, OM4) or
Singlemode (OS1). Please see the table below for different speeds and maximum run length for each type of cable.


10100 Gigabit 10GB 40GB 100GB
OM1 2000m 275m 33m x x
OM2 2000m 550m 82m 100m 100m
OM3 2000m 800m 300m 100m 100m
OM4 2000m 1100m 550m 150m 150m
OS1 40km 40km 40km 40km 40km

Multimode (OM1, OM2, OM3, OM4) fibre can carry multiple light rays at the same time with light travelling down the middle (shortest path)

Multimode Fibre Cable simplifies connections and this means active equipment such as media converters and switches capable of taking fibre cost less.

Multimode is available in two core sizes, 62.5/125(OM1) and 50/125(OM2) microns.

OM3 & OM4 are laser enhanced versions of 50/125(OM2)

Singlemode fibre has a much smaller core size of 9 microns and has a single light path and can travel much longer distances of up to 100km.

This requires more expensive active equipment such as media converters and Switches. Therefore Multimode fibre tends to be more cost-effective in most applications.

Related Links

Fibre Optic Cable