Features and Advantages

Small Form-Factor Pluggable (SFP/SFP+)

Q: Is the footprint for TE’s SFP products compatible with other suppliers' products?

A: It depends. In general, all single port SFP cages are designed to an industry standard. The ganged SFP versions are not compatible with all other sources. TE and Molex are providing drop-in replacement zSFP+ products to the market, but other SFP28 solutions may not be compatible. Please check with the local TE representative for the answer on your exact part or application.


Q: Are the SFP, SFP+ and zSFP+ products backward compatible?
A: Yes, in most cases the connector and cable assembly are all backward compatible – an SFP+ connector is a direct replacement for a SFP connector to ensure simple upgrade to customer systems. As these are standard products, the cable assembly will also be compatible between the systems – an SFP copper cable assembly can be inserted to a SFP+ cage and mate with a SFP+ connector on the board.


Q: Is application tooling required?
A: Single port assemblies do not require application tooling, a flat rock process can be used. TE does recommend an application tooling for the ganged and stacked assemblies.


Q: What are the PCB termination options?
A: Cages are offered in a press-fit and solder tail PCB termination for most styles.


Q: What is belly-to-belly mounting?
A: Belly-to-belly mounting allows a customer to install connectors and cages on both sides of a PCB. This design reduces board space and is an alternative solution to stacked connectors.


Q: What are the performance requirements for the cable assembly?
A: Our SFP+ copper passive and active cable assemblies meet the signal integrity requirements defined by the industry MSA SFF-8431. We can custom engineer cable assemblies to meet the requirements of your specific system architecture.


Q: Are passive or active cable assemblies required?

A: Passive cables have no signal amplification in the assembly and rely on host system electronic dispersion compensation (EDC) for signal amplification and equalization. Active cable assemblies have signal amplification and equalization built into the assembly. Active cable assemblies are typically used in host systems that do not employ EDC. This solution can be a cost savings to you.


Q: What wire gauge is required?

A: We offer SFP+ cable assemblies in wire gauges #24 through #32 to support customers’ specific cable routing requirements. Smaller wire gauges result in reduced weight, improved airflow, and a more flexible cable for ease of routing.


Q: What cable lengths are required?

A: Cable length and wire gauge are related to the performance characteristics of the cable assembly. Longer cable lengths require heavier wire gauge, while shorter cable lengths can use a smaller gauge cable.


Q: Are there any special customer requirements?

A: Examples of special customer requirements include custom cable lengths, electrically erasable programmable read-only memory (EEPROM) programming, labeling and packaging, pull-tab length and color, company logo, signal output de-emphasis, and signal output amplitude. We can custom engineer cables to your specific system architecture.