Category Archives: Connectors & Adapters

Fiber Optic Connector Selection Guide

For the past few decades since 1980s, many different types of fiber optic connectors such as MTP connector and MPO connector, have been provided by various manufacturers. Despite the fact that these types of optical connector varies greatly in mechanical design, the most basic components a fiber connector are more or less the same. They all have a fiber ferrule,  connector sub-assembly body, connector housing, and stress relief boot, etc. Next, part of the most commonly seen connectors will be introduced to you one by one.

LC connector

It works in both simplex and duplex with 1.25mm ferrule. Available in single mode and multimode. Externally LC connectors resemble a standard RJ45 telephone jack. Internally they resemble a miniature version of the SC connector. LC connectors use a 1.25mm ceramic (zirconia) ferrule instead of the 2.5mm ferrule. LC connectors are licensed by Lucent and incorporate a push-and-latch design providing pull-proof stability in system rack mounts. Highly favored for single mode applications.

LC connector

MTP connector and MPO connector

MTP connector and MPO connector are compatible ribbon fiber connectors based on MT ferrule which allow quick and reliable connections for up to 12 fibers. They are intended for installations that require many fiber connections. Up to 12 fibers in a ribbon are stripped to 125um cladding and inserted into 250um spaced parallel grooves. The ferrule also includes two 0.7mm diameter holes, running parallel to the fibers on the outer side of the ferrule. These two holes hold precision metal guide pins which align the fibers with tight tolerances.

MTP connector

MTP connector and MPO connector feature male and female connector design. Male connectors have two guide pins and female connectors do not. Both connector types need an adapter to mate a pair of male and female connectors. Because MTP connector and MPO connectors are trying to align so many fibers at once, their coupling loss are typically bigger than single fiber connectors.

ST Connector

ST connector comes in simplex with a twist-on mechanism, and it is available in both single mode and multimode. It is the most popular connector for multimode fiber optic LAN applications . It has a long 2.5mm diameter ferrule made of ceramic (zirconia), stainless alloy or plastic. Unlike MTP connector and MPO connector it mates with a interconnection adapter and is latched into place by twisting to engage a spring-loaded bayonet socket.

ST connector


Whether you are installing a brand new fiber optic network or repairing a legacy system using , hope this fiber optic connector selection guide will help you determine what kind of connector you are looking at or what type of connector you need to replace.

MTP Fiber Connectors for Plug-n-Play Systems

Currently, Plug-n-Play (PnP) fiber systems are becoming a prevalent choice for modern data centers with its advantage of quick-connect design, while MPO and MTP fiber connectors are the mainstays for modern PnP systems.

What Is Plug-n-Play System?

It is known to us that Plug-n-Play (PnP) fiber systems allow the quick addition of new devices in a computerized system, without the need for reconfiguration or manual installation of other external devices. And MPO connector and MTP connector are multi-fiber connectors which can provide up to 24 or more fibers in a single connector pushing up to and beyond 100Gbps data transmission. Since data centers host expensive equipment and process very sensitive information for networks, they must be always available. Therefore, the ability to quickly connect new equipment or service existing equipment is crucial. And Plug-n-Play fiber system with MPO connector and MTP connector is designed to achieve this “quick-connect” capability.

What Is MPO/MTP Fiber Connector?

Since more and more network hardware is equipped with QSFP/SFP+/SR4/CFP/CXP ports, cables with MPO fiber connector or  MTP fiber connector are becoming a requirement in these fields. However, data centers don’t have a monopoly on the technology! Anybody working with a large count of fiber that likes to save space would prefer to adopt MPO/MTP technology. With the advantage of minimizing the number of connectors and cables that enterprises are working with, MPO/MTP connectors can be found in the many other applications.

MTP Fiber Connector

1. Gigabit Ethernet

2. CATV and multimedia

3. Active device interface

4. Premise installations

5. Optical switch inter-frame connections

6. Interconnection for O/E modules

7.Telecommunication networks

8. Industrial & medical, etc


Since many years ago, installers have relied on MTP fiber connectors to speed deployment of data center installations. Today, we’ve seen the great advantages that MTP/MPO fiber connectors together with PnP system had brought to us. With their many years of high performance, ongoing improvements, and the next generation of advancements soon to come, MTP connectors will continue to deliver exceptional value for a vast range of network technologies.