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Subscriber terminals ONU: what is it, where and for what do you need?

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Subscriber terminals ONU: what is it, where and for what do you need?

Subscriber terminals ONU: what is it, where and for what do you need?




Among the main advantages of PON technology, which we have already talked about — independence from the power supply in the area, obtaining an always stable signal, the ability to instantly increase the speed up to 1 Gbit/s. The popularity of using this technology is due to the high reliability of PON-networks due to the absence of active components on the way from provider to subscriber — there are passive components in the form of optical cables and splitters.

The main active components are transmission OLT, which is installed on the provider's side, and receiving equipment ONT (Optical Network Terminal) or ONU (Optical Network Unit), which is installed on the subscriber side. It is ONU as a component of passive optical network technology and we will consider it in more detail.

What an ONU is and how it works

The ONU subscriber terminal is a small device in a plastic case designed to receive traffic over optical fiber and transmit data back. It is equipped with an optical port for connecting to the GPON network and a copper port for connecting via twisted pair cable (UTP).

The principle of the ONU device is that it receives an optical signal from the central OLT switch and converts it into an electrical signal. The twisted pair is connected to the user's receiving device (computer, TV, router), from which ONU receives electrical signals, converts them into optical signals and sends them back to the OLT.

The ONU is controlled entirely remotely from the central optical switch, which is located on the provider side.

Scope of applications ONU

ONU subscriber optical terminal is widely used when you need to connect to the Internet multi-storey apartment complex or private house. Also there is a demand for modern equipment on the part of business centers and some offices of companies, when it’s necessary to create a local network within the enterprise using PON or GPON (gigabit passive optical network) technology.

ONU devices have proven to be excellent because they allow the use of a minimum number of active nodes. In addition, the cost of cable products is reduced in this way.

Which subscriber terminal to choose

There are different models of ONUs that differ in the functions they perform. The choice depends on the purpose for which you need the device.

For example, to connect the Internet at home, standard subscriber terminals equipped with one optical and one copper port are the most common.

Standard ONU

To use the device as a router, a good option is the ONU with additional copper ports, which allows you to connect several devices to the subscriber terminal. Usually there are 4 ports, but there are models with more ports and additional functions: with a combined optical port for cable TV, with built-in Wi-Fi or a port for Wi-Fi adapter, with a port for the use of telephony.

ONU with TV output

ONU with Wi-Fi port

Also relevant is the technology of the network in which the ONU operates. Depending on this, there are terminals that are suitable for EPON networks usually at up to 100 Mbit/s, GPON at up to 1 Gbit/s, XGS-PON at up to 10 Gbit/s.


Before you choose an optical terminal, make sure that your provider has the technical capability to connect the Internet using PON/GPON technology. Maxnet has successful experience in building networks based on GPON technology with the use of ONU subscriber terminals, which it provides on favorable terms. If you are interested in the possibility of Internet connection on the basis of a passive optical network at your address, please contact our specialists by phone numbers 0800-31-0700 or (057) 720-9-720.



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