Siemon intros Cisco-optimized SFP+ direct-attach copper cable assemblies for 10-GbE

May 19, 2014
Siemon notes that, when the new cables are plugged into Cisco equipment, they will not trigger the warning message that a non-Cisco or third party DAC has been detected.

Siemon has introduced a line of SFP+ copper twinax direct-attach cables (DACs) especially designed for compatibility with Cisco equipment. While Siemon’s industry-standard passive SFP+ DAC assemblies have been tested and proven for interoperability through independent testing by the UNH Interoperability Lab, the new cables are programmed specifically to work with all Cisco network equipment having 10GBASE-CX1 ports, including the company's Catalyst and Nexus switches.

As 10 gigabit per second (Gb/s) SFP+ DACs and transceivers become common for top of rack (ToR) applications in the data center where small access switches or port extenders connect directly to servers, Siemon says its Cisco Compatible SFP+ DACs were developed specifically as a cost-effective and lower-power alternative to optical modules for these short-reach, high-speed interconnects. Ideal for high-performance computing (HPC) in networking and storage environments, the new standard-compliant assemblies easily support transfer rates up to 10+ Gb/s per lane with ultra-low crosstalk for enhanced performance.

Related:The hidden costs of top-of-rack in the data center

Like all Siemon SFP+ DACs, the Cisco Compatible SFP+ DACs combine a twinaxial shielded cable construction with robust die-cast housing, superior strain relief and gold-plated contacts for enhanced support at higher frequencies with minimized EMI leakage. Siemon notes that, when the new cables are plugged into Cisco equipment, they will not trigger the warning message that a non-Cisco or third party DAC has been detected. The cables do not violate Cisco's warranty.

“To avoid having to troubleshoot substandard cables, some switch vendors incorporate encryption or ‘vendor lock’ into their equipment to issue a warning message if a non-vendor approved cable assembly is plugged into a port,” explains John Sawdy, Senior Signal Integrity Engineer for Siemon. “While Siemon SFP+ DACs have always been compliant with IEEE and SFF industry standards with proven interoperability, we are excited to now employ encryption that prevents the warning message and offers a greater peace of mind to data center managers.”

Offered in the same lengths and wire gauges as Cisco DAC assemblies but at a significant cost reduction, Siemon's Cisco compatible SFP+ cable assemblies are available in lengths from 1 to 5 meters. The assemblies support data transfer rates up to 10+ Gb/s per lane, meeting or exceeding current industry standard specifications. For more information on the Cisco Compatible SPF+ DAC and to access the related Siemon tech brief that explains the products' encryption, visit

See also: Paper compares top-of-rack and structured-cabling architectures

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