Techy question, USB cable


Richard Grant

Link Posted 26/11/2009 - 16:34
Hi,

Advice would be appreciated.

What is the type of plug on the camera end of the USB cable that comes with my K20D (and most other Pentax cameras, I believe). I think it's a USB Micro "B" but looking carefully at it its seems that there are four offset pins (and an earth, I guess) rather than the four equally spaced pins of the "standard" USB Micro cable as displayed on Wikipedia;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USB_connector#Types_of_USB_connector
This does rather suggest a proprietary cable. Is it proprietary (and thus blocking us out from buying A.N. Other's brand)?

Cheers,


Richard

johnriley

Link Posted 26/11/2009 - 16:41
Not sure about that, but the cables are lited in the Pentax User shop under Price List and they seem reasonably priced enough.

One is also supplied with every camera and it's quite likely someone will have one or more that they don't use. An enquiry in Classified Ads might bring results.
Best regards, John

Anvh

Link Posted 26/11/2009 - 18:49
Pentax I USB17 - Camera synchro cable - USB - 4 pin USB Type A (M) - digital camera connector (M)

That's the description at least of the cable, but it looks like a micro USB like you said.
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ

gartmore

Link Posted 26/11/2009 - 18:55
There is mention in another thread about tethered shooting that buying a standard cable from a computer shop works.
Ken
“We must avoid however, snapping away, shooting quickly and without thought, overloading ourselves with unnecessary images that clutter our memory and diminish the clarity of the whole.” - Henri Cartier-Bresson -

Hardgravity

Link Posted 26/11/2009 - 21:00
If you want one to play with, check this out on ebay
Cheers, HG

K110+DA40, K200+DA35, K3 and a bag of lenses, bodies and other bits.

Mustn't forget the Zenits, or folders, or...

I've some gallerieshere CLICKY LINK! and my PPG entries.

Richard Grant

Link Posted 26/11/2009 - 21:18
Quote:
If you want one to play with, check this out on ebay

That's my boy!

I knew someone would be able to point me in the right direction, my thanks go to Hardgravity and also to the others who chipped in with helpful comments.


Richard

DoctorJeff

Link Posted 27/11/2009 - 17:14
The Pentax USB cable has "a" standard smaller end, but not "the" standard smaller end. There are several standard "mini-A" end fittings, and it is quite easy to get the wrong one (apart from some N*k*n equipment when it is very hard to find the right one. There are kits available with a normal "Type A" fitting on one end and a set of push-on "mini-A" fittings to adapt the other end. These can be alarmingly priced (over £20). Aldi sometimes have them in stock them much cheaper, but I got mine in ASDA, but it does NOT have the Pentax fitting adapter (what I wanted was a different one).
Try a Google search for "USB Travel Kits" or "USB mini-A cables" to identify the exact fitting.
Water can wear away a stone - but it can't cook lunch
X-5
istDS
K2000
P50.
Lenses Digital: 50-200, 18-55 KAF: 28-80.
Lenses KA & K: SMC-KA f2.0, SMC-K f1.4, SMC-K f1.7 Tokina KA 28-70 , SMC Pentax 70-210 F4, Sigma KA 75-300 , Hanimex 500mm Mirror, and the Tamron Adaptall-2 stuff.
and then there's all the M42 kit, and the accessories ...

Road_Dancer

Link Posted 27/11/2009 - 20:50
IIRC:
The standard USB connector is USB-A

The standard USB Printer Connector is USB-B

The standard small USB Connector used by most MP3 players and Phones that don't use proprietory cables is USB Mini-B

The Standard USB Mini-A is an underused connector, with most seeming to be variants that have been made proprietory in some way or another. Chances are, you have a camera with something that looks like it, but chances are, your cable from one, doesn't fit the other.

Here are the official USB connectors as defined by the USB Standard.


Any connector that isn't one of those, isn't a USB Standard, but a proprietory connector of some description.
Pentax K10d; Metz mecablitz 48 AF-1; Pentax A 50mm F2; Pentax 18-55mm DAII; Sigma 28-300mm F3.5-5.6; Koboron 24-70mm F3.5-4.8. Pentax MZ-7, Zenit 35mm
My Flickr Photos
Last Edited by Road_Dancer on 27/11/2009 - 20:54

DoctorJeff

Link Posted 28/11/2009 - 20:42
For another look at the variety of USB fittings, read:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_Serial_Bus
and note that I have at least two pieces of kit that have mini-USB connectors that are not listed.
Water can wear away a stone - but it can't cook lunch
X-5
istDS
K2000
P50.
Lenses Digital: 50-200, 18-55 KAF: 28-80.
Lenses KA & K: SMC-KA f2.0, SMC-K f1.4, SMC-K f1.7 Tokina KA 28-70 , SMC Pentax 70-210 F4, Sigma KA 75-300 , Hanimex 500mm Mirror, and the Tamron Adaptall-2 stuff.
and then there's all the M42 kit, and the accessories ...
Last Edited by DoctorJeff on 28/11/2009 - 20:43

Anvh

Link Posted 28/11/2009 - 23:01
Road_Dancer wrote:
Any connector that isn't one of those, isn't a USB Standard, but a proprietory connector of some description.

What about the micro?
Micro-B looks like the one of the camera don't you agree?



If you say they aren't supported connectors by USB then here is their documentation link (last pages)
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ
Last Edited by Anvh on 28/11/2009 - 23:11

Road_Dancer

Link Posted 29/11/2009 - 14:22
Ah, yes, the wonderful world of technology. Micro-AB and Micro-B are new, and I did preface my post with 'IIRC'

TBH, I've seen so many different USB connectors on different phones and cameras that look similar and don't fit each others cables I tend to assume they're all proprietory.
Pentax K10d; Metz mecablitz 48 AF-1; Pentax A 50mm F2; Pentax 18-55mm DAII; Sigma 28-300mm F3.5-5.6; Koboron 24-70mm F3.5-4.8. Pentax MZ-7, Zenit 35mm
My Flickr Photos

Richard Grant

Link Posted 29/11/2009 - 14:39
Hi All,

I'm very grateful to all those who've responded but regrettably, many of you, whilst being extremely well-intentioned are completely wide of the mark. Those of you who have pointed me to the various USB documentations on the net describing the international standards for USB sockets have clearly never looked closely at your own Pentax USB plug which I did mention initially is probably proprietary in design and varies from the international standard although the overall shape and dimensions are likely the same.

To put this one to bed for once and all, I've taken a close-up picture of my own Pentax lead (which incidentally fits both my K20D and my *istDS) and which shows clearly the non-equally-spaced nature of the Pentax plug contacts.




I hope this helps.


Richard

Anvh

Link Posted 29/11/2009 - 15:42
Richard you answered your own question, it isn't a Micro USB since it doesn't apply to the standards set by USB.
It's as simple as that.

@Road Dancer
Som do are combinable though while being proprietory.
HTC have a slightly different connector for their products but the female connectors in the phone still supported Mini-USB.
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ

DoctorJeff

Link Posted 29/11/2009 - 16:02
And apart from the above - we all seem to have missed one vital point:
The Pentax port in question is also a video-out port. It would need some adaption to feed a USB2 connection, hence the assymetric mini plug.
Makes me wonder if it was originally planned to feed a Firewire setup.
Water can wear away a stone - but it can't cook lunch
X-5
istDS
K2000
P50.
Lenses Digital: 50-200, 18-55 KAF: 28-80.
Lenses KA & K: SMC-KA f2.0, SMC-K f1.4, SMC-K f1.7 Tokina KA 28-70 , SMC Pentax 70-210 F4, Sigma KA 75-300 , Hanimex 500mm Mirror, and the Tamron Adaptall-2 stuff.
and then there's all the M42 kit, and the accessories ...

Richard Grant

Link Posted 29/11/2009 - 16:36
Hi to Anvh and to DoctorJeff,

Yes, to some extent I have answered my own question but this public discussion has revealed the fact that the makeup of the Pentax plug is clearly proprietary and is very much non-standard and has placed that information in the public domain. It's also revealed that nobody knew anything about it - something I would never have known had I not enquired

Your comment, DoctorJeff, is an intriguing one, it's probably something we will never know but I guess it may have something to do with Pentax's forward planning, something which we know is central to their product development, the wide lens mount and the lens mount contacts being two such examples.

So, alltold, I think a positive outcome for all.


Richard
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