Color-Coded, Keyed LC Connectors and adapters
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Color-Coded, Keyed LC Connectors and adaptersExpand / Collapse
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Posted Wednesday, May 27, 2009 8:57 PM
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Does anyone know if there is a TIA standard that addresses or is soon to address the problem of sole-sourced color-coded Keyed Connectors and adapters? I am currently working on designing a data center and part of my fiber distribution plan was to utilize color-coded, keyed connectors for added security and easy recognition of the different networks within the data center. I found out that many vendors offer this solution, however, the connectors and adapters that they plug into are vendor specific. For example, a yellow keyed LC connector made by Corning will only connect to a yellow keyed adapter made by Corning. I cannot buy Corning Yellow Keyed LC connectors and then buy Panduit Yellow keyed adapters to install in a patch panel; the two vendor keys will not match up. I spoke with sales reps from Corning, Panduit, and Tyco Electronics and confirmed this. This poses several problems for me, 1st, if I use this solution, then I have to stick with one vendor for all future installs and 2nd, if the TIA standards does get around to standardizing these keyed connectors, and lets say they chose Panduit's design, then my new data center is not up to standards and I have to spend more money and time to get to this standard. With that said, my question is, Does anyone know if this will be addressed by the TIA standards, and if they are already looking at this, what vendor's format are they leaning towards?

Thanks for whatever help this forum can provide.

Dave
Post #3490
Posted Thursday, May 28, 2009 11:41 AM


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As soon as you move from a standard (LC) there is no standard. Each manufacturer of keyed connectors and outlets has done their own thing. Therefore there is no interopperability therefore they are not compliant with the standard.

Steve Banks RCDD

Nightlake Ltd U.K.
Post #3503
Posted Thursday, May 28, 2009 9:23 PM
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The Color-Coded LC Connector still complies with the FOCIS-10 Standard, its the keyed ferruel that is the problem. That is what I would like to see standardized.
Post #3508
Posted Saturday, June 06, 2009 9:31 PM
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Dave,

I know of nothing in the TIA standards which would address sole-sourced color-coded keyed connectors and adapters.

So, the problem in a nutshell for you and possibly others is that there is no industry standard with respect to color coded keyed connectors or adapters (at least not across the board). Well, I could see your concern but it should not be in the area of standard compliance. See, once you Key something so as to not allow another type of the same connector to connect into it, you have in fact strayed away from interoperability. So, don’t worry about that, it’s not relative. The sole bases of having a keyed LC connector is for security and you are making that happen for the customer.

The second problem you pose is that what happens if I buy one manufacturers keyed LC adapter, will I have to buy the same Keyed LC connector? The answer is yes. At this moment in time there is no need to be interoperable with the keyed connectors because they are keyed to secure your network. One manufactures blue might not be the same blue as the other ones. The only change I can see possible down the road is if a standard was put in place in that the respective manufacturers would design a matching patch cord for the legacy adapters if required to be in compliance, but I would not hold my breath for that.

Which bring me to your last question; what if the TIA Standardizes Panduit’s design? Well, the good news is that your decision to use a Keyed LC and Adapter in your Data Center is not one of performance, at least in theory it’s not. My opinion is that you move towards a vendor that you feel meets the performance requirements of the Data Center, and then see if they have a Keyed Connector / Adapter solution. The thought of bringing in another manufacturer post installation seems to me as a violation of the design if you are trying to segregate your network with secured keyed connectors and adapters. Remember, the idea was to not allow for another patch cord with dissimilar color to connect into the network.

Good post Dave, very interesting topic. I hope I provided some insight or comfort.

SyngINC, Corp.
www.synginc.com/forum
contactus@synginc.com
Post #3544
Posted Monday, July 13, 2009 3:48 PM
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I am having a similar problem.  My customer requested a change to a keyed solution and the price for the jumper was 50% of the total bill of material.  We're talking about a $1million BOM with $500k of it in jumpers.  I anticipated finding out that the keys were proprietary.  This is something that should be addressed immediately by the standards and I am a little shocked that it wasn't handled at the onset.

Jason Crist, RCDD
Lynchburg, VA
Post #3669
Posted Wednesday, July 15, 2009 11:20 AM
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hi all,    We manufacture a lot of secure/keyed cable assemblies for data center applications.   In our experiences, we have found several of these manufacturers use the same spec per color.   If you ask them, they will tell you their product does not mate with another manufacturer.   However, we use 3 manufacturers for Keyed LC adapters and connectors, and they all mate.    If i can see your BOM, i can make some suggestions for lead times and best cost.    We made an extremely large  order going to Qatar for an Air Force base that was to be all keyed LC.   We offered doing a standard LC and color coding the connectors and adapters as a much cheaper alternative.   The customer selected this option when they saw it saved over $1million dollars in material.    feel free to call or email me if you want some help on pricing and logistics -- its what i do.    Brandon@dmsimfg.com 770-888-6000

Brandon Woodward
DMSI
Post #3675
Posted Wednesday, July 15, 2009 1:36 PM


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BrandonDMSI (7/15/2009)
hi all,    We manufacture a lot of secure/keyed cable assemblies for data center applications.   In our experiences, we have found several of these manufacturers use the same spec per color.   If you ask them, they will tell you their product does not mate with another manufacturer.   However, we use 3 manufacturers for Keyed LC adapters and connectors, and they all mate.    If i can see your BOM, i can make some suggestions for lead times and best cost.    We made an extremely large  order going to Qatar for an Air Force base that was to be all keyed LC.   We offered doing a standard LC and color coding the connectors and adapters as a much cheaper alternative.   The customer selected this option when they saw it saved over $1million dollars in material.    feel free to call or email me if you want some help on pricing and logistics -- its what i do.    Brandon@dmsimfg.com 770-888-6000

Thanks for your post Brandon.  Please send me some info on your products.  Thanks in advance.

kevinwhittle@usa.net

-Kevin J

 

A picture is worth a thousand words. 

Post #3676
Posted Wednesday, July 15, 2009 2:07 PM


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@Brandon,
WOW! What a quick turn-around. Got your email thanks to the BICSI boards.


 

A picture is worth a thousand words. 

Post #3677
Posted Tuesday, August 25, 2009 11:14 AM
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Keyed LC connectors and adapters produced by different manufacturers are not compatible.  This approach is not the same as the keyed MTRJ connector where keyed MTRJ connectors from several sources are mostly compatible.

Color coding standard LC connectors will not provide a secure installation.  Not only will color coded standard LC connectors not be secure, they will not mate with keyed LC adapters.  This is very poor advise.

Atlantic Vision is the ONLY manufacturer that provides both Tyco and Corning keyed LC patch cords, multi fiber assemblies and MTP-Keyed LC cassettes for data center applications. 

Edward Berman

ieb@atlanticvision.com

508-845-8401

Ed

Post #3806
Posted Tuesday, September 01, 2009 4:12 PM
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Please do not misunderstand what i posted regarding mating a standard to keyed LC.  Standard LC will not mate with a keyed LC.   I was simply stating that we have many occurrances where a customer wants a keyed solution until they see the cost -- they then change to a color coded solution (non keyed) to get a similiar function.  You are correct that this color coded non keyed option will not offer total security.  

I also never said all manufacturers Keyed LC's will mate.   I do know of one manufacturer that builds and private labels their Keyed LC solution for a handful of other companies, and these will mate with each other.    This is why I said "send me your BOM and I can make suggestions"

Brandon Woodward
DMSI

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