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SFP VS GBIC

Posted on 2014-04-03
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Last Modified: 2014-05-30
Hi Please can some body explain me the difference between SFP and GBIC
can SFP module take RJ45 cable ?
Please if you can give me the pic of both ? is there any difference visibly.
Also if somebody can explain what is transceiver ?

Regards,
Nitin Mohan
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Question by:mohannitin
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5 Comments
 
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Assisted Solution

by:Zephyr ICT
Zephyr ICT earned 166 total points
ID: 39974540
The difference between GBIC and SFP is mostly the size, SFP is smaller than GBIC.

For the most part, in day-to-day conversations between engineers, GBIC often translates to an SFP that has a Gigabit/rj45 interface...

As for pictures, try a Google search with something like "SFP vs GBIC" and look at the image results.
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by:Hassan Besher
Hassan Besher earned 167 total points
ID: 39974548
the difernce between SFP and GBIC is in the size.

GBIC came into existance before SFPs mostly for fiber connectivity.

The fact was because of big size of GBIC it was not feasible to provide more number of interfaces on a line card or a switch since it occupies more space. In order to resolve this issue people came up with SFPs which were smaller in size hence you can have more interfaces on the same line card or switch as compared to GBICs.

Let's tak an example, have you ever heard of a 48 port GBIC line card on 6500 switch. The answer is no, because its not feasible to have 48 big GBIC interfaces on the form factor of the line card. But a 48 port SFP line card does exists.

Coming to the point when to use what, actually depends on the line card or the switch you are having. Usually [not always], the line cards and switches comes with empty GBIC or SFP slots where you need to purchase the GBIC or SFP modules separately and insert in those empty slot, just like a 6500 chassis which comes with empty slots and you purchase line cards.

Thus if you already have a switch or line card which has GBIC slots you have to use GBICs, simply because SFPs won't fit in and vice versa.

Another case whrere you don't have a switch or line card and want to make a decision whether to use a GBIC or SFP will actually depend on the number of interfaces required and availability of the switches and line cards specific model.

For ex, if you want two fiber interfaces on a line card on 6500 switch, you won't go for a 48 port SFP line card, instead you'l use a 2 port GBIC line card which is available. If you need some 24 fiber interfaces you won't use a 16 [or 18 not sure] port GBIC line card, you'll use a 48 port SFP line card.
gbic-emsfp.gif
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LVL 46

Accepted Solution

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Craig Beck earned 167 total points
ID: 39974931
To supplement what others have said here, yes an SFP will let you connect a RJ45.

There are lots of different types of GBIC; fibre and copper.  The same is true for SFPs.

As an example, the WS-G5483 is a 1000BASE-T GBIC.  Its SFP equivalent is the GLC-T.
A WS-G5484 is a 1000BASE-SX GBIC.  Its SFP equivalent is GLC-SX-MMD.

It's worth noting though that fiber-based GBIC modules typically use SC connectors, whereas fiber-based SFPs only (typically) use LC connectors due to their smaller size.  I say typically because you can buy SFPs with MT-RJ connectors although these are rare.
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Author Comment

by:mohannitin
ID: 39976426
I thanks you all , everyone has given me better understanding about SPF and GBIC
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Expert Comment

by:siaorry
ID: 40100396
As pointed in the earlier post the difernce between SFP and GBIC is in the size.

GBIC came into existance before SFPs mostly for fiber connectivity.

The fact was because of big size of GBIC it was not feasible to provide more number of interfaces on a line card or a switch since it occupies more space. In order to resolve this issue people came up with SFPs which were smaller in size hence you can have more interfaces on the same line card or switch as compared to GBICs.

Let's tak an example, have you ever heard of a 48 port GBIC line card on 6500 switch. The answer is no, because its not feasible to have 48 big GBIC interfaces on the form factor of the line card. But a 48 port SFP line card does exists.

Coming to the point when to use what, actually depends on the line card or the switch you are having. Usually [not always], the line cards and switches comes with empty GBIC or SFP slots where you need to purchase the GBIC or SFP modules separately and insert in those empty slot, just like a 6500 chassis which comes with empty slots and you purchase line cards.
For more SFP you can go http://www.fiberstore.com/
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