100G QSFP28 CWDM4 Optical Transceiver Overview

Updated on Jul 20, 2022 by

FS 100G QSFP28 Transceiver

In the ever-evolving world of data communications, high-speed optical transceivers play a pivotal role in ensuring the seamless flow of data across networks. As data demands continue to surge, the 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 optical transceiver has emerged as a powerful solution to address the need for efficient, high-capacity data transmission. This article delves into the features, applications, and advantages of the 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 optical transceiver, shedding light on its crucial role in modern networking.

What Is 100G QSFP28 CWDM4?

100G QSFP28 CWDM4 Form Factor

The 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 optical transceiver, with its compact and versatile form factor, has quickly gained prominence in the world of data communications. The "QSFP" in its name stands for Quad Small Form-factor Pluggable, while "CWDM4" indicates its support for Coarse Wavelength Division Multiplexing (CWDM) technology. This combination of form factor and optical capabilities makes it an ideal choice for high-speed data transmission.

The QSFP28 form factor is a widely accepted industry standard for 100G optical transceivers, known for its small size and high-density configuration. This small form factor allows network administrators to maximize the use of their data center real estate, accommodating more transceivers in the same space compared to larger, older transceiver types.

DDM Function of 100G QSFP28 CWDM4

One of the standout features of the 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 optical transceiver is its Digital Diagnostic Monitoring (DDM) function. DDM provides real-time monitoring of various parameters associated with the transceiver's performance. These parameters include optical power levels, temperature, and voltage. By providing this crucial data, DDM allows network administrators to proactively manage and troubleshoot their optical networks, ensuring optimal performance.

DDM functionality is especially valuable in large data centers and network environments, where the ability to monitor transceiver performance without physically accessing each transceiver is a significant advantage. This remote monitoring feature enhances network reliability and reduces downtime, contributing to overall network efficiency.

Cost of 100G QSFP28 CWDM4

The cost-effectiveness of the 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 optical transceiver is another key factor in its popularity. Its competitive pricing, relative to other 100G optical transceivers, makes it an attractive choice for organizations seeking to balance high-speed data transmission with budget constraints. The affordability of QSFP28 CWDM4 transceivers is driven by their standardization, high production volumes, and market competition, allowing organizations to deploy these transceivers without breaking the bank.

How Does 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 Work?

The QSFP28 CWDM4 optical transceiver module converts four input wavelengths of 25Gb/s electrical data to four channels of CWDM optical signals and then multiplexes them into a single channel for 100Gb/s optical transmission. On the other end, the QSFP28 100G CWDM4 de-multiplexes a 100Gb/s optical input into four channels of CWDM optical signals and then converts them to four output channels of electrical data on the receiver side.

QSFP28 CWDM4 Working Principle.jpg

Figure 1: QSFP28 CWDM4 Module Working Principle


Features of 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 Optical Transceiver

The 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 optical transceiver boasts a range of features that make it a compelling choice for modern data networks. Here are some of its key features:

  • High Data Rate: The 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 supports a data rate of 100 Gbps, making it an excellent choice for high-bandwidth applications.

  • CWDM Technology: Coarse Wavelength Division Multiplexing (CWDM) technology enables this transceiver to transmit and receive multiple optical signals at different wavelengths over a single fiber, maximizing the utilization of available optical infrastructure.

  • Dense Wavelengths: CWDM4 technology operates with 4 separate wavelengths, each carrying 25 Gbps of data. This allows for efficient use of the optical spectrum, effectively quadrupling the available bandwidth over a single fiber.

  • Compact Form Factor: The QSFP28 form factor is compact and suitable for high-density environments, maximizing space utilization in data centers and network racks.

  • Hot-Pluggable: The hot-pluggable design allows for easy installation and replacement of the transceiver module without the need to power down the system, reducing downtime during maintenance.

  • DDM Function: As mentioned earlier, the DDM function enables real-time monitoring of vital transceiver parameters, improving network management and reliability.

Applications of 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 Optical Transceiver

The 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 optical transceiver has a wide range of applications across various industries and network types. Some of the primary applications include:

  • Data Centers: In large-scale data centers, the demand for high-speed, high-capacity data transmission is paramount. The QSFP28 CWDM4 is widely used in data centers to support fast data exchange and storage, ensuring that applications and services run smoothly.

  • Telecommunications: Telecommunications networks often require high-speed connections to handle voice, data, and video traffic. The 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 is a reliable choice for backhaul, metro, and long-haul network applications.

  • Enterprise Networks: Enterprises leverage this transceiver to support the growth of their network infrastructure and ensure efficient data transfer within the organization. The compact form factor and affordability make it a suitable choice for enterprise networks.

  • Cloud Computing: With the increasing adoption of cloud computing, the 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 plays a pivotal role in connecting data centers and ensuring the seamless flow of data between cloud services and users.

  • Wireless Networks: In the realm of wireless networks, especially in the rollout of 5G, the QSFP28 CWDM4 is used for high-speed, low-latency connections to facilitate faster data transfer between base stations.

  • Transportation and Utilities: Industries such as transportation and utilities rely on high-speed, high-capacity networks for mission-critical applications. The QSFP28 CWDM4 supports these requirements, ensuring data transmission reliability in harsh environments.

FS 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 Transceiver Datasheet

All FS QSFP28 100G CWDM4 optical transceivers are manufactured to satisfy the industry standard and have been recognized by numerous customers. They are proven to be compatible with over 200 vendors, such as Cisco, Juniper, Arista, Brocade, Dell, and so on.

QSFP28 100G CWDM4 Specification

Form Type QSFP28
Wavelength 1271nm, 1291nm, 1311nm, 1331nm
Connector LC Duplex
Cable Type SMF
TX Power ~-6.5-2.5dBm
Protocols 100G Ethernet, MSA Compliant
Max Data Rate 103.1 Gbps
Max Cable Distance 2km
Transmitter Type DML CWDM
DDM/DOM Supported
Receiver Sensitivity <-11.5dBm
Commercial Temperature Range 0℃ to 70℃ (32 to 158°F)

QSFP28 100G CWDM4 Cabling and Connectivity

The QSFP28 100G CWDM4 adopts WDM technology to transmit signals with a maximum transmission distance of 2km on a single fiber, greatly saving optical fiber resources. In most cases, QSFP28 CWDM4 transceivers can be used for 100G to 100G interconnection in enterprise networks and data centers.

100G-100G Interconnect Cabling Solution with Fiber Adapter Panel

The method to connect with the FHD fiber adapter panel is very straightforward. As the following diagram shows, two QSFP28 CWDM4 modules are plugged into two 100G switches. The 100G to 100G interconnection can be achieved by using an FHD fiber patch panel, rack mount fiber enclosure, and LC duplex single-mode fiber patch cable. This solution uses fiber enclosures and adapter panels for structured cable management.

QSFP28 CWDM4 100G-100G Interconnect Cabling.jpg

Figure 2: QSFP28 CWDM4 Module 100G to 100G Interconnection



Q1: Is FEC required to be turned on to operate a pair of the 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 optics?

A: When using the QSFP28 CWDM4 modules, both ends need to open or close the FEC at the same time (the FEC function is turned on to reduce the bit error rate).

Q2: What is the main difference between QSFP28 100G CWDM4 and 100G CLR4 Modules?

A: The main difference is the Forward Error Correction (FEC) function. For QSFP28 100G CWDM4, it is required to support FEC. As for the 100G CLR4, the FEC is an optional function. It can support operations with and without FEC. The 100G CLR4 can enable the FEC function to increase link margin or maintain the performance of low latency and low power without the FEC function.

Q3: How QSFP28 CWDM4 Differ from the QSFP28 100G PSM4 module?

A: The QSFP28 CWDM4 and QSFP28 100G PSM4 both can be transmitted on four wavelengths. However, the QSFP28 PSM4 uses four independent wavelengths to transmit signals via 8-fiber MTP/MPO single-mode fiber patch cables. While the QSFP28 100G CWDM4 enables four wavelengths to be multiplexed to transmit on a single fiber, the transmission can be achieved by just 2-fibers LC duplex single-mode fiber patch cables.

Q4: What is the power consumption of the QSFP28 100G CWDM4 module?

A: The maximum power consumption of QSFP28 CWDM4 is 3.5W. All FS 100G QSFP28 switch ports are designed to handle QSFP28 100G transceivers that draw up to 4.5W. If a 100G QSFP28 CWDM4 draws greater than 4.5W, FS cannot guarantee the performance since there are other dependencies like airflow direction, ambient temperature, elevation, etc.

Q5: Is it necessary to clean the connector of the QSFP28 CWDM4?

A: Yes, it is highly recommended that a data center facility implement cleaning procedures for all fiber optic connectors to reduce link failures and unnecessary replacement of expensive and critical network equipment.

Q6: Will using compatible QSFP28 100G CWDM4 optics in my equipment negatively affect my manufacturer’s warranty?

A: No. Network equipment manufacturers do not require that you use only name-brand optics. In fact, when a product fault or defect occurs in the network, and the fault or defect is not attributable to third-party optics, they will continue to provide support for the affected product under warranty or covered by their support program.

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