Which fibre tester should you buy?
3 February 2020
Fluke Networks

Fluke recently announced price reductions in their extensive range of market-leading hand-held fibre certification and inspection products and as we’re making sure every penny of the offer is passed onto our customers, now’s a good time to go shopping!

However, we understand that it can be slightly bewildering, even for the experienced fibre engineer, knowing what kit they should have in their Test & Inspection armoury. There are dozens of white papers out there explaining how and what to test on every configuration of fibre. Some of these run to over 30 pages, but what they don’t tell you is what product to choose and with fibre becoming increasingly the media of choice, more companies are involved in deploying, inspecting or maintaining fibre networks so need to know what kit is the best kit for the job.

Fluke Networks have an easy to understand table listing their fibre test and inspection machines but it’s worth taking a minute to run through what these products will do for you. There are 25 fibre certification and inspection products included in the offer. This breaks down into four groups:

The DSX-5000 and DSX-8000 Kits

The DSX is the versatile workhorse of the Fluke range. Built on the modular Versiv mainframe platform it is capable of certifying all forms of Copper and Fibre cable from one piece of test equipment.

The kits available under this offer provide a wide range of options from the all-singing, all-dancing DSX2-8000PRO/G INT. With the two Versiv (main & Remote) mainframes comes the full array of copper (Up to Category 8) and fibre test modules. This contains Quad Optical Loss Test modules for single & multimode fibres with LC/SC/ST/FC connecting test reference cords and adaptors for all jumper lead test methods. It also contains a Quad OTDR module with 39 single and multimode launch cords covering all popular connecting possibilities including SCAPC. Nowadays, end-face inspection is just as important as measuring optical loss. This kit comes with two USB inspection camera probes, adaptors and end face cleaners. Lastly, for peace of mind, this kit comes with 1-year gold support which means calibration, replacement units and repairs are all covered.

8 DSX kit options are available so ff you don’t need to test Category 8 fibre or run OTDR traces then perhaps the DSX2-5000QI kit is more suitable. This will still cover your Category 6A certification needs as well as Single and Multimode Optical link loss testing.

CFP Kits & Modules

If you just need to test fibre link losses and have no need to use an OTDR or test copper cables then the CertiFiber PRO Optical Loss Test Set is what you will need. Again, based on the proven and intuitive Versiv platform this product will be an invaluable tool for Fibre Engineers whether working on LAN or WAN fibre networks. Four kits are available to choose from in the offer.

The CFP2-100-Q/GLD kit comes with a Versiv main and remote, Quad Optical Loss Test Modules and reference cords for single & multimode in LC & SC connection. Complete with one-year Gold support for. Alternatively, if you already own a Versiv DSX and want to supplement with fibre link loss testing modules then the CFP2-Q-ADD is what you are looking for.

OFP Kits & Modules

For troubleshooting and analysis of fibre cabled links an OTDR (Optical Time Domain Reflectometer) is the go-to tool allowing the user to ‘see’ the link and any connection and splice losses from end to end. It is the ultimate tool for fibre engineers and OTDR traces are also frequently required for certification. The Fluke Networks offer includes their latest HDR (High dynamic range) OTDR modules such as the OFP2-200-S1625. This is what you need for single modes at 1310, 1550 and 1625 nm wavelengths or alternatively the OFP2-200-S1490 which tests single modes 1310, 1490 and 1550 nm. You will also need a Versiv mainframe to use these modules. However, the OFP2-100-Q includes a Versiv mainframe and an OTDR module for multimode which if you only work in a LAN environment may be all you require.

We hope this helps you understand what kit you should look to invest in next, but if you have any questions about Fluke Networks, our fibre range or any of our services and solutions, then reach out to a member of the team and we’ll be more than happy to assist you.

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