NVIDIA LinkX InfiniBand AOC Cables

Learn about active optical cables (AOCs) and splitters for GPU-accelerated computing.

NVIDIA® Mellanox® LinkX® Optics AOC cables are the lowest-cost way to create high-speed fourteen data rate (FDR), enhanced data rate (EDR), high data rate (HDR) and next data rate (NDR) optical links in InfiniBand networks for NVIDIA GPU-accelerated systems. InfiniBand is all about high bandwidth and low latency interconnects. LinkX InfiniBand AOC cables are designed and manufactured by LinkX Optics, the largest and longest-running AOC manufacturer in the industry with installations in the majority of the TOP500 HPC systems. LinkX Optics AOC cables are extensively tested in live GPU and switching systems and used in NVIDIA-Certified Systems™.

Low-Latency and High-Bandwidth InfiniBand

LinkX Optics offers a wide range of products in quad small form-factor pluggable (QSFP) options and data rates of quad data rate (QDR) and FDR10 (40G), FDR (56G), EDR (100G) up to 100m, and HDR (200G) and NDR (400G) up to 150m. In addition to meeting InfiniBand Trade Association (IBTA) standards, LinkX-certified cables are 100 percent tested in actual NVIDIA networking and GPU-based systems to ensure optimal signal integrity and the best end-to-end performance. LinkX AOC cables are designed for use in supercomputers that have the most stringent requirements—far greater than Ethernet AOC industry standards.

H-Cable is a unique LinkX Optics cable. The top view looks like the letter H, with four HDR transceivers on each end with 100Gb/s HDR100 (2x 50G-PAM4) cross-connected to each other at 100Gb/s. Enables linking four switches using only four switch ports with one H-cable instead of four separate EDR cables and eight switch ports.

NVIDIA Mellanox LinkX AOC CAbles





1x, 2x, 4x




25G NRZ, 50G-PAM4, 100G-PAM4

* FDR: fourteen data rate (4x14G-NRZ), EDR: Extended Data Rate (4x25G-NRZ), HDR: High Data Rate (4x50G-PAM4), NDR: Next Data Rate (4x100G-PAM4)
** QSFP: quad small form-factor pluggable; OSFP: octal small form factor pluggable
*** NRZ: non-return-to-zero; 50G-PAM4: 50G-4-level pulse amplitude modulation, 100G-PAM4

Low-Latency and Lengths up to 150 meters

LinkX AOC cables are used extensively in cloud and supercomputers due to their low-cost, high-value proposition and increased reliability over connectorized transceivers. LinkX AOCs match the same splitter configurations as direct-attach copper (DAC) cables but are lighter, more flexible, allow more airflow, and support longer reaches, extending up to 30–150m. AOCs are used extensively to link NVIDIA GPU-based artificial intelligence systems to InfiniBand networks and InfiniBand storage fabrics.

Key Features

  • Reaches from 3 to 150-meters
  • Lowest-cost, lowest-power-consuming optical link
  • A complete cable assembly with no optical connectors
  • Available in the same configurations as DAC cables
  • Extensive FDR10/QDR, FDR, EDR, HDR, NDR products offering for every need
  • Tested and certified in NVIDIA GPU, DGX™, EGX™, and DPU systems
  • 400Gb/s OSFP NDR (4x100G-PAM4) cable coming soon in 2021


  • Thin fiber cable enables maximum air flow cooling
  • Light weight enables dense fiber runs with minimal support
  • No MPO optical connectors increases reliability and reduces maintenance
  • Designed and manufactured by LinkX Optics
  • 100 percent factory tested in live switching and GPU-based systems
  • Designed to go beyond IBTA industry bit-error-rate (BER) standards for reliable operation under harsh operating conditions


InfiniBand is the protocol of choice for creating high bandwidth, low-latency networks linking NVIDIA GPU-based systems to other DGX and DPU systems. The DGX A100 supports eight 200Gb/s HDR host channel adapters (HCAs) linking to other DGX systems via Quantum network switches. Two 200Gb/s HDR InfiniBand or Ethernet interface cards link to storage HDD, SSDs and flash memory subsystems.

InfiniBand transceivers extend networks inside a cluster where the transceiver and fibers need to be disconnected from each other and outside the cluster linking to other clusters and infrastructures. Multi-mode transceivers for short reaches <100m and single-mode transceivers for up to 500m, 2km and 10km in large link budgets.


InfiniBand AOC Straight Cables

  * LSZH: low-smoke, zero-halogen jackets; OFNP: optical fiber nonconductive plenum.
  ** See product briefs for detailed product codes, specifications, and reach lengths; “xxx” refers to a reach-length code.

InfiniBand AOC Splitters Cables

                  Splitter cables are also called “breakout” cables.
                  * LSZH: low-smoke, zero-halogen jacket; OFNP: optical fiber nonconductive plenum.
                  ** See product briefs for detailed product codes, specifications, and reach lengths; “xxx” refers to a reach-length code.