When and Why Should I Use Fibre Optic Cabling?

In Short, this comes down to distance, speed and long term reliability. As speeds increase the physical limitations of transmitting radio frequency signals along copper wire come ever nearer. A Cat6 cable contains 8 cores, on a 100m run one core can be as much as a meter longer than another.  Due to propagation delays the signals arrive out of synchronisation with each other, which is why speed and distance are major limiting factors. Fibre is free of any such problems.

A single fibre cable can carry 24 cores which carries the equivalent to 12 Cat6 cables. It needs less room, and can share a cable route used by the buildings electrical power system. We can also install cables with higher capacities where needed.

Falling costs make it viable therefore when interconnecting switches etc. It is the only recognised method of running external data cables and so is always used for runs outside buildings. It is also ideal for long range backbone links and in our view will start to get rolled out to servers as well as backbone applications as fibre interface cards become affordable.

From the viewpoint of making a future-proofed installation, fibre is a better bet than the proposed Cat7 standard.