The 6 Best Fiber Identifiers

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This wiki has been updated 17 times since it was first published in January of 2019. Fiber identifiers clamp on to the exterior of fiber optic cables, detecting signals on the line by safely inducing a tiny insertion loss. They're especially useful during maintenance, allowing technicians to check whether lines are live or dark without disconnecting. Our selection of instruments is comprised of some of the best offerings on the market at a range of price points. When users buy our independently chosen editorial choices, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. Noyes OFI-400

2. Exfo LFD-202

3. Greenlee FI-100

Editor's Notes

June 07, 2019:

Before deciding to purchase any of these selections, make sure the identifier in question is designed to accommodate every size of fiber dictated by your needs. One major differentiator between these instruments is what sizes of conductor they'll accept, and whether or not they're only designed to read single-mode fibers, or both single-mode and multi-mode.

Another consideration is whether you want an instrument that relies on detachable adapter heads, or an adjustable, fixed clamp block. While constantly switching out adapter heads can be inconvenient, and potentially a recipe for lost parts, the sensors on these testers are often the part that goes first and, if this wear occurs after your warranty expires, the possibility of ordering new adapter heads from the manufacturer might be appealing. It should be mentioned that none of these companies advertise replacement heads for their identifiers, but it's an issue that would likely be resolvable via customer service channels.

Lastly, while we're talking about longevity, given the high cost of these devices, I'd urge you to consider the manufacturer's warranty offered with them. Noyes, for example, comes in ahead of the pack, offering a five-year warranty against defects. And, a special tip of the hat to Greenlee, who backs all their testers with a lifetime warranty for the original owner.

Special Honors

AFL OFI-BIPM For those who like to work with flashiest technology possible, this identifier packs all the functionality of the company's OFI-400 model, and packages it with a sleek, backlit, 2.4" touchscreen.

4. Viavi FI-60

5. Joinwit JW3306B

6. Tribrer AFI420L

Christopher Thomas
Last updated by Christopher Thomas

Building PCs, remodeling, and cooking since he was young, quasi-renowned trumpeter Christopher Thomas traveled the USA performing at and organizing shows from an early age. His work experiences led him to open a catering company, eventually becoming a sous chef in several fine LA restaurants. He enjoys all sorts of barely necessary gadgets, specialty computing, cutting-edge video games, and modern social policy. He has given talks on debunking pseudoscience, the Dunning-Kruger effect, culinary technique, and traveling. After two decades of product and market research, Chris has a keen sense of what people want to know and how to explain it clearly. He delights in parsing complex subjects for anyone who will listen -- because teaching is the best way to ensure that you understand things yourself.

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