Difference Between Fiber Trunk, Harness, and Patch Cables

Pre-terminated fiber cables are considered as a convenient and cost-effective solution for today’s fiber-optic network, which helps save up to 65% installation time. Pre-terminated fiber optic cables are generally divided into fiber trunk cable, harness cable and patch cord. To many newbies, these classifications often make them confused. Don’t worry, this post will take you easy to understand the difference between them.

Fiber Trunk Cable

Trunk cables are available with today’s required fiber types with MPO/MTP, LC and SC connectors. Trunk cable is generally used for data center infrastructures and backbone applications where cable distances are reasonably predictable and can be easily determined. In a word, it is used as backbone cabling.

Fiber Trunk Cable

Fiber Harness Cable

A fiber harness cable, also called fan-out or breakout cable, is a cable assembly used to break out an MPO/MTP trunk to discrete connectors (such as LC SC, etc.), in order to feed in to active equipment. The most common configurations of fiber harness cables are 8-fiber MPO/MTP (QSFP+ standard) to 4 duplex LC, 12-fiber MPO/MTP to 6 duplex LC, and 24-fiber MPO/MTP to 12 duplex LC.

harness cable

Fiber Patch Cable

Fiber patch cable, also called fiber patch cord or fiber jumper, is a shorter length fiber cable that is usually used to make connections between a patch panel and active equipment or between two switch ports. According to the connection requirement, there is a variety of connector options for fiber patch cable, such as LC, SC, ST, FC, MPO/MTP, and so on.

patch cable


Do you have a better understanding of these three types of pre-terminated cables after reading the above contents? If so, can you able to buy the right fiber cables for your need? FS is professional in supplying all kinds of cost-effective fiber cables, fiber transceivers and fiber switches, you may visit our website www.fs.com for more information.

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