A method includes determining a first subset of a set of optical channels, wherein each channel of the first subset has a bit error ratio (BER) greater than each channel of a remaining subset of the channels. A second subset of the set of optical channels is determined, wherein each channel of the second subset has a BER less than each channel of the remaining subset of the channels. Input power level (P) and/or dispersion compensation (D) of one or more of the channels of the first subset is adjusted, thereby reducing an aggregate BER of the first subset. P and/or D of one or more of the channels of the second subset is adjusted, thereby increasing an aggregate BER of the second subset. A reduction of an aggregate BER of the set of optical channels results from the adjusting of the first and second subsets.
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