The Risks of Using Low Quality Optical Transceivers

Picture of optical transceivers
More than ever before, we have seen a significant increase in the number of Vendors selling "lower quality" optics.

From new clients approaching Solid Optics for optical networking solutions, we've heard many stories of quality issues and problems with 3rd party transceivers being supplied with inferior "low quality" components.

The optical transceiver market is being flooded with cheaper low quality products from vendors in Asia. The main reason for this is the availability of lower quality (Chinese built) lasers and receivers which are the key components in optical transceivers. There is also a lot of “pioneering start-up” transceiver manufacturers which designed their own circuit boards and manufacture their own transceivers for resale. Using substandard compnents and technology they are able to "buy into" the market by pushing their products at near cost price. Most of the time these companies survive only a couple of years but leave a trail of substandard products in the field and the stories of failing systems we hear so often.

Quality & Reliability

Most of Solid Optics new business comes from our reputation for quality and reliability. We are proud of our reputation in the market and will never consider taking risks by using low quality components. We take the long term view and are not interested in short term gains in revenue. We have extensive product knowledge and years of experience to make sure we deliver quality. All our products come with a lifetime warranty, and because we test every single optic individually in our test labs the Netherlands and the US, we can be certain that every product we ship out meets our own exacting standards.

For both high-end and lower specification projects we source our products from all over the world including,  American, Japanese, Korean and Chinese companies but wherever we source the products from, we test everything in-house and take full responsibility for the quality we ship out.

To analyze the quality of an optical transceiver you need extensive knowledge of the PCB (printed circuit board), the components on the PCB and also the TOSA (transceiver part) and ROSA (receiver part). In the case of DWDM technique the TOSA represents 70% of the quality equation so it is critical these components are of the highest standard.

Solid Optics only works with TOSA suppliers that have proven their reliability for many years. If a TOSA component only shifts 0.2nm it can lead to a malfunction in the whole DWDM line. Because we can analyse in our test lab the “age” of individual optics we can already see how many lower end Chinese DWDM TOSA parts there are on the market and how fast they degrade! As we've seen before it will be just a matter of time before we hear about the "fall out" in DWDM lines over coming years as a result!