The duplex SC connector raised high hopes three years ago when the tia endorsed it in the commercial building wiring standard as an alternative to at&t`s proprietary, but popular, ST connector. The SC`s open architecture may have been a benefit to connector manufacturers. But even for installers, the SC design was considered an improvement over the ST because the SC took less space than the ST, resulting in higher-density patch panels, outlets, and hubs. Yet, the SC never really caught on with installers, who still look to the ST as their fiber connector of choice.
"The SC is not easy to field-terminate and is about 50% more expensive than the ST," notes James Hayes, president of Fotec Inc. (Medford, MA), a fiber-optic test equipment sup-plier. "The ST may not have made it as a standard, but it made it in the marketplace." In a bicsi member survey, 71% of the respondents say they "specify or install the ST over the SC." And with the advent of sleeker, small-form-factor connectors, the chance of the relatively bulky SC becoming mainstream is even more remote.