A Digital Signal 3 (DS3) line, also known as a T-3 line, is an ultra high-speed connection that is capable of transmitting data at rates up to 45 Mbps. Digital Signal (DS) and T designations are used synonymously, which means that DS1 implies T1, and DS3 implies T3. DS3 is the second fastest, non optical connection and is equivalent to 672 regular voice-grade telephone lines, each of which supports 64 kb/s. This means that it is fast enough to transmit a full-motion, real-time video, and large databases over a busy network. A DS3 line is comprised of 28 T1 lines, each operating at total signaling rate of 1.544 Mbps. DS3 circuits provide businesses and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) up to 45 Mb/s of Internet connectivity. Each channel is capable of transmitting 64 Kilobytes per second (Kbps.)

A DS3 line is typically installed as a major networking artery for large corporations and universities with high-volume network traffic. Different levels of DS3 are available for different functions like hosting a high-traffic website. DS3 lines also provide high-capacity bandwidth on an as-needed basis. For instance, if you require more bandwidth than a T1 line, but do not require the full capacity of a DS3 line, you can opt for a fractional DS3 connection.

DS3 is an ideal solution for businesses that require high-bandwidth Internet access at reduced prices. The pricing for connections vary depending on the carrier, location of service, and the application for which the connection is being used. There are two monthly charges in using a DS3 connection. They are the local loop and port charge. The local loop charge is based on the distance between the customer's location and the edge of the carrier's network.


DS3 provides major benefits for users who are in search of unlimited, high-capacity Internet access. It includes SLAs, also known as Service Level Agreements, which guarantees uptime and performance. DS3 lines are of high bandwidth and can be deployed for a wide variety of applications. The most common uses are DS3 Internet, DS3 voice, DS3 point-to-point, DS3 frame relay, and DS3 VPN. DS3 Bandwidth is highly beneficial for corporations that have a need for high speed electronic data transfer between plant sites or offices. Data transport through DS3 may be a cost effective substitute for point-to-point transmission. This reduces the total monthly cost and provides an additional capacity.

How It Works

DS3 signal is composed of 28 DS1 signals and is constructed using a two-step multiplexing process. Firstly, 28 DS1 signals are multiplexed into seven DS2 signals. Secondly, the seven DS2 signals are multiplexed into one DS3 signal. Each multiplexing step uses bit stuffing for handling different input frequencies. Overhead bits provide in-band communication, bit stuffing control information, error checking, and alignment. DS3 lines are commonly delivered through fiber optic cables rather than coaxial copper cables.

There are different types of DS3 circuits: full DS3, fractional DS3, Burstable DS3, and point to point DS3. Full DS3 lines have 28 times the bandwidth of a T1 line, so they carry more traffic and deliver a faster response time. A Fractional DS3 line has 3 to10 times the bandwidth of a T1. A Burstable DS3 line provides up to 28 times the speed of a T1, but is more expensive than a full DS3. Point-to-point DS3 line is a very secure circuit. Surveillance Cameras, CCTV Systems, and VLAN Trunks are some of the examples of point-to-point DS3 lines.


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