Information: Why choose Advance compatible transceivers?


Why choose Advance compatible transceivers?

The simple answer to this question (as most other suppliers will tell you), is cost, but that is only one of the benefits of choosing a compatible SFP, QSFP, direct attach cable or other optical module.

For example in a scenario where Gigabit speed is needed to run across a long point-to-point link, the engineer assesses the distance between the link length and chooses an appropriate SFP transceiver module native to the host device.

If, for example, a Cisco platform was in situ then the choice of module would be limited to one of the following; 550m (GLC-SX-MMD), 10km (GLC-LH-SMD), 40km (GLC-EX-SMD) or even 70km (GLC-ZX-SMD).

With an Advance compatible SFP you can choose from a wide range of distance limits from 550m up to 100km in various increments, and even distances of 160km being achievable on some specialist product lines.

Another benefit offered solely on Advance compatible transceivers is the freedom to tailor the transceiver to your individual requirement.

  • Custom serial numbers can be added both to the product label and also hard coded to the device itself
  • A logo can be added to the device label
  • Latches can be colour coded for high density link identification

Advance also offers a re-coding service in the UK meaning existing SFPs can be adapted if the host device is to be changed. In some cases even cross-device compatibility is achievable.


Compatible transceiver FAQ


  • Will compatible transceivers affect my host device warranty?

No, host device warranties will be unaffected. Please note that host device warranties do not cover transceiver modules, which are normally limited to 90 days or at best 1 year. However, Advance offer a lifetime warranty.


  • How does transceiver compatibility work?

It’s not magic as most manufacturers would have you believe! Each module holds its own memory in EEPROM; this memory is coded with unique identifiers such as part numbers and manufacturer details.  The firmware of the host device then checks the memory for the correct information to confirm compatibility.


  • I have a compatible SFP, why does it not work with the host device?

This is a common problem, a large amount of host devices do not have a firmware check for compatibility, this is known as an ‘open platform’. Many transceivers are sold as compatible when in fact they are just open platform, they will work fine in many host devices but not in any that specifically require coded transceivers.


  • Does this mean an SFP transceiver will work with any brand of host device?

Yes, a transceiver will work in any host device as long as it has the correct coding. Advance transceivers are coded specifically to suit each host device to avoid this problem.


  • Is compatibility guaranteed?

Yes, at Advance we guarantee the compatibility of all of our products against the host device which they are programmed for.


  • Can I use the transceiver modules on other host devices than originally intended?

In some cases yes, the modules can be cross-compatible. We have a dedicated team of technical experts to hand that can help, get in touch if you have any questions on 01942 718493 or e-mail us at


  • Are extended distances of 160km achievable on any host device?

Yes, laser performance is controlled by the module itself and does not need any additional assistance from the host device to operate.


  • Do compatible transceivers have DDM capability?

Yes, our Advance transceiver range generally has Digital Diagnostics Monitoring (DDM/DOM/DMI) built in.