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Thread: inquiry on cable lengthening!!!

  1. #1
    aye is offline
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
    tacloban city, philippines

    Lightbulb inquiry on cable lengthening!!!

    im plannig to extend the data cable of my cd-rom dirve (like i meter+) from the mboard, is it true that data transfer from the cd rom, becomes poorer when the original length of the data cable is lengthened? Is this also true for the hard disks?

  2. #2
    FLAC Gutter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 1999


    I had planned to put a CDROM in my dashboard and attach it to the PC in the trunk. I found out that IDE cables can stretch only about 5' at most before dataloss becomes too great. You can buy premade 4' cables, but don't try to go longer. I think SCSI can go up to 6', but not sure. I ended up buying an equalizer at Radio Shack that had a CD input on the front so I could just plug my discman into that.

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  3. #3
    Variable Bitrate
    Join Date
    Aug 1999
    Yorba Linda, CA


    There are only three ways (aside from mounting the PC closer to the device) I know of that will accomplish what you are trying to do:

    1) Get a USB CDROM drive. USB cables are shielded and can span several meters without problems. This is a good solution for in-car PCs since you can run a single cable to the PC and place a small hub up front and connect several devices to the hub.

    2) The signal over the IDE cable suffers from noise (interference) and voltage drop as the cable length increases. Using a shielded cable or adding buffering circuitry on both ends of the cable will help extend the distance before data loss occurs. Both of these approaches would require technical expertise and patience to get right.

    3) Buy a USB hard drive case with built-in electronics to convert a USB signal to an IDE signal. You should be able to connect any standard IDE device to the connector where a hard disk is meant to connect. I've seen these for around $69 in some online catalogs.

    The only sure-fire solution is #1; the others are purely theoretical and haven't been tested (by myself at least).


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    Jason Johnson
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