In this paper, we explore the optimization and implementation of multi-wavelength interferometers such that measurements beyond the largest beat wavelength can be achieved reliably. A hybrid beat wavelength approach is presented that also exploits wavelength coincidence between two beat wavelengths in order to measure unambiguously over an extended range. The performance of the approach has been explored both through simulations and experimental validation has been obtained using a fiber interferometer with 4 measurement wavelengths. The initial results have demonstrated 1/200th of a fringe phase resolution giving absolute metrology over 18.16 mm, or a dynamic range of 1 part in 2.4×106.© (2008) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.