Have you considered the new ME2600X series? On the 2600x a vlan tag is local to a physical interface, and it's not related to the same vlan tag on another interface. This gives you more flexibility in how you connect your customers. On the me3400 vlans are global, and apart from the UNI/NNI interface config they are basically office switches in my opinion. The 2600x implements the EVC features and are more suited for carrier ethernet products.
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The primary differences between "LAN" switches and Metro Ethernet switches is feature support and/or some hardware differences. For example, on the latter, some of the Metro Ethernet switches have larger interface buffers than the "comparative" series of LAN switches (making them more suitable for heavier usage). Or, for example, some LAN switches support stacking and/or VSS, I don't recall any Metro Ethernet switches having those features.
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