A novel receiver front-end is proposed for short-range optical communications over low-cost polymer optical fiber and, in particular, for home area networks. This paper focuses on the experimental verification of the IC prototype POFchip-II, implemented in a standard 0.18-<i>μ</i>m CMOS technology plus a commercial Si-PIN photodetector and a 1 mm step-index plastic optical fiber (POF) transmission channel. A 1.25 Gb/s data transmission rate is attained for POF lengths ranging from 10 to 50 m thanks to a continuous-time adaptive equalizer included in the receiver chain that compensates the limited and length-dependent speed of POF. The measured sensitivity of the receiver leads to an eye-safety approach up to almost 30 m reach.
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