20 votes

Why are symmetric bi-directional communication port cables not always crossover cables?

RS-232 is a special case. The original purpose of RS-232 was to connect a computer or computer terminal (a.k.a., "Data Terminal Equipment" or "DTE") to a modem (a.k.a., "Data ...
Solomon Slow's user avatar
  • 2,101
14 votes

Why are symmetric bi-directional communication port cables not always crossover cables?

Answering this for all kinds of connections is simply way too broad. But there are three basic facts: Connected devices have specific functions. Connecting devices of the same function is an ...
Raffzahn's user avatar
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13 votes

What was the earliest that it would have been practical to manufacture a USB-C plug for consumers?

TL;DR: Yes, But... Yes, it would have been possible, but what would have been the use case? Inventions without a use case will not be picked up and thus not produced. The Details In the early 1980s, ...
Raffzahn's user avatar
  • 223k
12 votes

Why does my PlayStation RGB video cable cause the picture to be all orange-y unless pressure is applied?

The fact that another cable type works fine doesn't rule out damage to the PlayStation itself. The relevant signal lines are only used for RGB output, so testing with a composite (non-RGB) cable ...
ssokolow's user avatar
  • 6,766
11 votes

What were/are "T-cables" and what makes them thinner and less expensive compared to coax cables?

I will propose that "T-cable" is 300-ohm twin lead (aka ladder line). This was (still is) commonly used in amateur radio, and was quite common in the 1960's/1970's for connecting a roof-top ...
Jon Custer's user avatar
  • 1,328
9 votes

Parallel port to IDE cable standard?

That board will not convert IDE to parallel. It has no components to do that. It's simply an adapter to bring out the IDE interface to an external connector, to be used with an USB to IDE adapter with ...
Justme's user avatar
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8 votes

Why did the IBM PC design twist 7 wires in the FDC cable and not 3

The reason why IBM PC needs to swap also the motor-on wires is that the standard Shugart interface has a single motor-on wire for all drives and IBM PC has a separate motor-on for each drive. On an ...
Justme's user avatar
  • 31.5k
7 votes

What were/are "T-cables" and what makes them thinner and less expensive compared to coax cables?

Not really retrocomputing so much as general history of technology, but I can't resist posting an answer: My hunch is that T-cables is a fancy way of saying either "telegraph cables" or &...
manassehkatz-Moving 2 Codidact's user avatar
7 votes

Parallel port to IDE cable standard?

There is a guide on ifixit for this device that shows some better pictures that demonstrate how the drive is supposed to work. Look particularly at the images for step 2, which shows the back of the ...
bta's user avatar
  • 939
6 votes

Why does my PlayStation RGB video cable cause the picture to be all orange-y unless pressure is applied?

Maybe the old cable is just broken or has some sensitive contacts. When setting up the old TV set of my parents, I had a lot of trouble with loose contacts of old SCART cables. Ordered a new one and ...
Clocktower's user avatar
5 votes

IBM Model F XT is typing random characters / what cable is this?

Thanks for the answers and comments. The problem has been intermittent but really bothered me today so now that I have a soldering iron, I took a blade, cut out the damaged part of the cable, stripped ...
cardamom's user avatar
  • 311
5 votes

IBM Model F XT is typing random characters / what cable is this?

I think what you have there is an IBM Model F keyboard. The pictured cable is certainly suspect, though it does not have to be the main/only culprit. If you can easily find a replacement cable, it is ...
Brian H's user avatar
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5 votes

Why are symmetric bi-directional communication port cables not always crossover cables?

Data communications connector standards are specified for the majority use case of interconnecting different types of equipment : Terminal / printer / computer (DTE) <-> modem (DCE) for RS-232 ...
grahamj42's user avatar
  • 1,162
4 votes

Why are symmetric bi-directional communication port cables not always crossover cables?

For example Ethernet (8P8C) Original 10BASE5 Ethernet used a long coaxial cable with vampire taps to connect a complete subnet. When this switched to star-topology with hubs with 10BASE-T, there was ...
dirkt's user avatar
  • 27.3k
4 votes

Is a S-VIDEO-to-RCA cable worse video signal quality than an S-VIDEO-to-SCART cable?

So let's sort out the way all those signals work. RGB uses three lines, R for the "red" signal, G for the "green" signal, and B for the blue signal. Each signal's amplitude ...
dirkt's user avatar
  • 27.3k
3 votes

What were/are "T-cables" and what makes them thinner and less expensive compared to coax cables?

The term and concept are likely speculative. If, for instance, the comic said that television broadcasts would be replaced by "Z-rays" we might better see that as some golden-age naming ...
Adam Hyland's user avatar
3 votes

Why are symmetric bi-directional communication port cables not always crossover cables?

Fundamentally, it traces back to how the components are asymmetric, right down to how components in your block diagram (whether ICs or clusters of more discrete components) are easier and cheaper to ...
ssokolow's user avatar
  • 6,766
2 votes

Is a S-VIDEO-to-RCA cable worse video signal quality than an S-VIDEO-to-SCART cable?

If you can get a converter to render either S-video or SCART to component or HDMI, those should give the best possible quality. Converting S-video to composite would be a definite downgrade, though ...
supercat's user avatar
  • 36.1k
1 vote

Why are symmetric bi-directional communication port cables not always crossover cables?

It has been done that way; the Macintosh serial cables for printers and modems and such were all crossover types. The problems start when one describes the pinout of a cable; is the pin #3 TXD- ...
Whit3rd's user avatar
  • 2,170

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