24-Port Switch SFP Port vs RJ45 Port: How to Choose?

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Gigabit switch that offers greater speed and compatibility continues to gain in popularity in the realm of networking world. In the present market, Gigabit switch generally has two kinds of ports: SFP port vs RJ45 port. Different ports are endowed with relevant sizes and specifications which prevent the incorrect type of connector from being plugged into them. So what are the differences between SFP port and RJ45 port of the Gigabit switch? And how to choose the proper one from them? In this article we will take 24 port switch as an example to explore the distinctions and provide some considerations when choosing SFP vs RJ45 port.

Comparisons Between 24 Port Switch SFP vs RJ45 Port

  • 24 Port Switch with SFP Port

Built-in SFP ports on 24 port switch enable optical or copper links by inserting the corresponding SFP module: fiber SFP or copper SFP. When SFP port is inserted in 1G copper SFP module, the Ethernet copper cables (Cat5e, Cat6 and Cat7) must be used for data transmission. While when SFP port is plugged into Gigabit fiber SFP module, fiber optic patch cables (LC fiber) are needed to support connections.

Take FS S3800-24F4S SFP port switch as an example:

sfp vs rj45 port switch: FS S3800-24F4S 24 port switch

This 24 port managed switch comes with 1 console port, 4 1GE combo ports, 20 100/1000BASE SFP ports and 4 10GE SFP+ ports. What needs for special attention is that FS S3800-24F4S 24 port switch includes 4 combo SFP/RJ45 ports which allow users to use either SFP port or RJ45 port at a time for short-distance connections.

  • 24 Port Switch with RJ45 Port

Built-in RJ45 ports on 24 port switch follow the 1000BASE-T Ethernet standard. It only supports RJ45 cables (Cat5e, Cat6 and Cat7) for 1Gbit/s transmission with the distance of up to 100m (330ft).

Take FS S3800-24T4S RJ45 port switch as an example:

sfp vs rj45 port switch: FS S3800-24T4S 24 port switch

This 1000BASE-T 24 port managed switch is equipped with 1 console port, 24 10/100/1000BASE-T RJ45 ports and 4 10GbE SFP+ ports that can be used in data centers for server switching, LANs and etc.

All in all, compared with FS S3800-24T4S 24 port Gigabit switch using merely RJ45 port, FS S3800-24F4S SFP port 24 port Gigabit switch supports more types of communication cables and longer reaches of links. For short-distance links on a 24 port switch, there is not much difference for using SFP port or RJ45 port. In addition, SFP port can exchange with the port of 1000BASE-SX, 1000BASE-LX/LH, 1000BASE-ZX or 1000BASE- BX10-D/U. The following table lists the RJ45 connection and SFP connection of 24 port switches:

Parameter SFP Port RJ45 Port
Connection Types
  • RJ45 SFP module + network cable (Cat5e, Cat6 or higher)
  • fiber SFP module + fiber optic cable (SMF fiber / MMF fiber)
  • network cable (Cat5e, Cat6 or higher)
Max Distance MMF (550m) / SMF (150km) / Cat5 (100m) 100m (330ft)
Data Rate 1000Mbps (1G) 1000Mbps (1G)

Common Considerations When Choosing 24 Port Switch SFP vs RJ45 Port

For 24 port switch SFP port vs RJ45 port, how to choose the proper one for efficient network construction?

Distance: when the distance of the run is over 328ft/100m, fiber SFP port of 24 port switch must be selected instead of copper RJ45 port since 1000Mbps could only go as far as 100m over copper cabling.

Reliability: on account of electromagnetic interference, fiber is considered as more reliable than copper RJ45 Ethernet cable that uses electric signal. Therefore, if the cable run will go through some places where the electric signal can be interfered, choosing 24 port switch with fiber SFP port rather than copper RJ45 port would be more secure.

Cost: due to the lower price of Cat5e/6 cable, choosing RJ45 ports to connect 24 port switches might be more economical since RJ45 port and SFP port actually run at the same speed.

Future consideration: if you will move to higher bandwidth in the future, fiber optic cable is more future-proof one compared with Cat5e/Cat6 RJ45 Ethernet cable. So in this case, choosing 24 port switch with fiber SFP port would be more preferable.

SFP vs RJ45 Port Switch: Which Will You Choose?

From the aspect of performance, 24 port switch with RJ45 port and SFP port are basically the same. From an economic point of view, SFP port’s cabling costs higher. While it is still a necessary choice since it supports both fiber and copper SFP optical modules. What is more, it is in possession of superior advantages to achieve longer distance, reliability and future-proof. For SFP port or RJ45 port of 24 port switch or 48 port switch, FS is a great choice.

Related Articles:
RJ45 vs SFP Port: Which Should I Use to Connect Two Switches?
What Is SFP Port of Gigabit Switch?

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