Understanding Media Converters And How They Work
In networking, media converters are hardware equipment that is used to convert data signals from one type to another. For example, if at one end you have an Ethernet signal from a copper cable, you can use a converter to change the type of signal and deliver it as an Ethernet signal on a fibre optic cable. The media converter modules usually work on the physical layer of the network. This means that while the device is converting media format between two devices, it is hidden from the rest of the networking devices.
Broadly speaking, these devices can be divided into two main categories: unmanaged converters and managed media converters. The unmanaged type is very basic and does not have any other features and is used to simply convert the media. While on the contrary, managed media converters are advanced devices that come with a lot of configuration options. By using the managed devices you can easily monitor and manage the network. Apart from this, these converter modules can also enhance the reach of your network while encrypting the data alongside.
Different Types of Media Converters
The media converter modules come in a lot of different types and form factors. However, usually, you will come across the following most commonly used types:
Ethernet media converters: Among all the types, the Ethernet media converters are the most widely used type. They are made to convert data between Ethernet and fibre optic devices. The most common application of these converters is to connect computers to networks and cameras to NVRs.
Single-mode media converters: They are used for long-distance connections such as connecting multiple buildings on a campus. They can convert between single-mode fibre optic media and other types of media, such as Ethernet.
Multi-mode media converters: These converters convert between multi-mode fibre optic media and other types. Multi-mode fibre optic cables are used for shorter distances, such as connecting computers within a building or connecting a network switch to a router.
Gigabit media converters: This is a relatively different type and is used in high-speed data transfer applications such as video surveillance and data centre networking.
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