What are SC connectors?

By AJ Born | February 28, 2023

Meet the Connector: SC Connector

SC fiber-optic cable connectors are widely used in optical network applications, such as internet and cable TV.  The name comes from the shape (square connector), although it is actually a rectangular connector. The name may also refer to standard connector, subscriber connector, or stick-and-click connector.

The SC connector features a snap-in design with a push-pull latching mechanism that is easy to connect and disconnect. The SC uses a 2.5 mm ceramic ferrule for performance and durability, the same as ST, FC, FDDI, and ESON connectors. The square shape makes the design of the SC more compact and easier to use than its predecessors; however, it is larger than the LC connector which followed it.

The SC was developed in the mid-1980s by the laboratories at Nippon Telegraph and Telephone (NTT), following the introduction of ceramic ferrules. Initially its high cost, compared to the ST connector, prevented the SC from being widely used. With improved materials and manufacturing processes, however, the SC is now a less expensive option and much more commonly used.

Design Notes

Due to its excellent performance, SC is often specified for single-mode and multimode systems. It is also available in a duplex configuration. One cable is used for single-direction communication. For full duplex mode, two cables and two connectors are used in tandem.

Mating – The connector is rated for 1000 mating cycles and the insertion loss is only 0.25 dB. The square shape and key features ensure that the correct position is easily obtained when latching. The snap keeps the connector in place, maintaining the optical signal.

Color coding – SC connectors are color coded based on type.

Standard – The SC connector was the first one chosen as the standard connector for TIA-568-A (Telecommunications Industry Association specification).

Hirose SC type fiber optic connector supporting IEC 61754-4 and JIS C 5973(F04)

Hirose SC type fiber optic connector supporting IEC 61754-4 and JIS C 5973(F04)

Markets and applications – Datacom, telecom, optical network applications such as internet and cable TV (CATV), optical cabinets, media converters, FTTX (EPON, GPON, etc.).

Suppliers include Arrow, Hirose Electric, Phoenix Contact, Molex, Radiall

Related products

  • LC, ST, FC, FDDI, and ESON connectors
  • SC cables

Like this article? Check out our other articles on Cable, Cable Assemblies, our Wire and Cable Assemblies Market Page, and our 2023 and 2022 Article Archive

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AJ Born
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