For decades, all varieties of cables from coax to ethernet have used electrical signals to transmit signals through metal cores. Modern technology has paved the way for improvements on these age-old cables with fiber optic cabling. These newer cables are made using optical fibers, plastic tubes filled with small pieces of glass. Each piece of glass is used as a tiny mirror to reflect lasers down the cable. Since light (lasers) moves faster than electricity, fiber optic cables can transmit data much faster than older metal-based cables. It is possible to use fiber and Ethernet together so long as you have a media converter, allowing newer technology to upgrade older existing infrastructure.

Each fiber optic cable has a different sized core measured in microns (μm). These cores are made of up optical fibers, also called strands, with each fiber acting like lanes of traffic that send and receive signals. Each fiber can only send or receive a signal, not both at the same time, so they work in pairs. As more fibers are added, more signals can be sent and received through the cable to increase data speeds. The number of strands needed will depend on how heavy network traffic will be.

Along with being faster, fiber optic cables also support greater maximum distances. For example, Ethernet cables have a maximum distance of 328 feet (100 meters). By contrast, fiber optic cables can go for hundreds of meters or even several ki

Read more »