When it comes to testing fiber systems, connector loss refers to the loss of a mated pair of connectors – it’s actually impossible to measure a single connector. To test the loss of the first connector, it must be mated to a similar, known quality connector. That’s where Test Reference Cords (TRCs) come in. But you’ve got to take into account the loss of the TRCs by calibrating your tester to 0 dB of loss. This is done by setting a reference, and it is the most important step in Tier 1 fiber testing using an optical loss test set (OLTS). Setting a reference needs to be done whenever the TRC has been removed from the output port on your tester, and whenever the TRC has been cleaned and inspected.

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