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Single-carrier (SC) and multicarrier (MC) transmissions have emerged as two competitive technologies for long-haul coherent optical fiber transmission systems. In this letter, we compare chromatic dispersion (CD) and nonlinearity tolerances for coherent optical SC frequency-domain-equalization and SC orthogonal frequency-division-multiplexing systems. We establish the simulation systems employing the same structures of transmitter and receiver, the same structure of frame, and almost the same frequency-domain equalization method except the inverse fast Fourier transform processing. Both CD tolerance and nonlinear transmission performance in single-channel and wavelength-division-multiplexing scenarios are investigated. The comparison can reveal the difference of SC and MC transmissions.