DACs and AOCs remain critical building blocks for Data Centers, but the transition to 400G and 800G Ethernet has created a gap in the medium range of 2-8 m where these cables are no longer ideal. The industry has responded to this emerging niche with the development of active copper cables. Unlike their passive counterparts, active copper cables have circuitry at either end that amplifies the signals passing through them, giving them a longer effective range, and lower profile, than DACs. These new copper solutions also vastly outstrip AOCs in terms of power consumption and cost at short to medium range.

To enable companies looking to adopt this new technology, MultiLane has devised specialized testing solutions for the two most common types of active copper cables on the market: Active Copper Cables (ACCs), and Active Electrical Cables (AECs).

AEC Testers

Using our specialized instruments, MultiLane tests AECs for CMIS validation, linkup capabilities, and real-hardware pre- and post-FEC measurements, as per the parameters set by the HiWire consortium – of which MultiLane is a member.

ACC Parametric Cable Testing

As standardized specifications for ACC testing have yet to be established, MultiLane tests these cables using the most common parameters in the field today: frequency and time domain measurements including eye diagram optimization, insertion loss, and potentially Bit Error Rate.