[Vrstream] Question Regarding Flash Drive to Mini USBConnectorCable

Tom Rutherford n8euj at sbcglobal.net
Fri Nov 25 14:06:45 EST 2011


Thanks for posting this, Alan.  I sure didn't know it!  I figured the OTG type connector would go both directions, but I guess not.  They need to rename that mini-USB interface.  Call it the (C)USB interface, for (Conditional) Universal Serial Bus.  :-)

-- 73 DE Tom Rutherford, N8EUJ, Burton, MI
"She said it was either her or the ham radio.  Over."


----- Original Message ----- 
From: Alan Lemly 
To: 'Kim Loftis' ; vrstream at vrstreamusers.org 
Sent: Friday, November 25, 2011 1:01 PM
Subject: Re: [Vrstream] Question Regarding Flash Drive to Mini USBConnectorCable


Kim, The Stream's short USB cable has a female Type A connector on one end for connecting flash drives or NLS cartridges and a male mini-A connector on the other end that connects to the Stream.



I'm going to give you a technical explanation of the Stream's mini USB connector since it will come in handy as you try to find a replacement USB short cable. The mini USB connector on the Stream is an OTG compliant connector. The OTG stands for on-the-go. The thing that's a bit confusing about this connector is that it will physically connect with mini-A and mini-B USB male connectors. The problem is that you need a mini-A male connection when the Stream is acting as a host as it does when a flash drive is connected to it and a mini-B male connection when the Stream is acting as a peripheral as it does when it is connected to your computer. So, if you found a USB cable that had the correct type A female connector on one end for attaching your flash drive but it had a mini-B male connector on the other end for connecting to the Stream, even though everything would physically plug in just fine, the flash drive wouldn't work with your Stream because the Stream is acting as host and needs a mini-A connection to do so successfully.



The bad news is that I've scoured the internet looking for a USB cable containing a female Type A connector on one end and a mini-A male connector on the other end and have been unsuccessful. I found several with the female Type A and the mini-B male connector but these will not work as previously explained. Humanware does sell a replacement short USB cable but it charges $10 for the cable and a $20 minimum shipping charge which brings the total to an expensive $30.



The best solution I've been able to find is a USB kit containing exchangeable plugs allowing the cable to be converted to various configurations. I believe the Icarus Universal USB Adaptor Kit which I found at Amazon for $6.59 plus shipping might work. I'm not positive since the description of what exactly it included and the configuration was a bit confusing but it did mention mini-A and standard female A connectors so I think it should work. Here's the link at Amazon:



http://www.amazon.com/Icarus-Universal-USB-Adaptor-Kit/dp/B0044DECLW/ref=sr_1_10?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1316535477&sr=1-10



Here's a TinyURL link should that long one break in the email:



http://tinyurl.com/3csrq8j



I found another product at Amazon that might even be better than the Icarus kit mentioned above. It is the Philips SWR1249/17 Retractable USB 2.0 Adapter Kit for $4.49 plus shipping. Phillips is a name-brand which I recognize which I can't say for the Icarus. Here's the link for the Phillips:



http://www.amazon.com/Philips-SWR1249-17-Retractable-Adapter/dp/B002R5AMD6/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1316539594&sr=1-1



And again, here's a TinyURL link should the long one break:



http://tinyurl.com/3koj3mw



Sorry to get so technical in the above explanation but I can't think of an easier way to explain that mini USB connector and its dual role. I can confirm that someone else on the list has verified that you better have the right mini-A connector for attaching a flash drive or it will not work. Good luck and write back if you have more questions.



Alan Lemly



-----Original Message-----
From: vrstream-bounces at vrstreamusers.org [mailto:vrstream-bounces at vrstreamusers.org] On Behalf Of Kim Loftis
Sent: Friday, November 25, 2011 8:14 AM
To: vrstream at vrstreamusers.org
Subject: [Vrstream] Question Regarding Flash Drive to Mini USB ConnectorCable



Hi Everyone,



First of all, a belated happy Thanksgiving to all who celebrated yesterday.  Hope everyone had a wonderful one.



Okay, I've owned my Stream since early April of 2010.  I generally use a 16 gig flash drive in addition to my SD card, so between my three flash drives, I have a wealth of material and I frequently use the cable to connect said drives to my Stream.



Recently, I've started noticing odd behavior from any of my connected flash drives.  If the cable moves slightly, the drive disconnects.  Sometimes, upon powering up the Stream, the flash drive, though physically connected to the Stream, won't actually connect so that content can be read.  The most alarming change is that sometimes, even when I'm making a big effort to keep the cable and flash drive totally still, the drive will still disconnect from the Stream, often in the midst of playing content.



The mini USB port fits snugly into the Stream, and the flash drives all fit snugly as well.  so I'm guessing there's a short in the cable itself somewhere, although I don't know precisely where.  I always attempt to be exceedingly careful with my cables, etc, but I guess after prolonged use, and hanging at a weird angle by it's nature, this just happens sometimes.



Can someone tell me what the proper title of this cable is, (I said flash drive to mini USB, but that's just my guess), and does anyone have a good source for purchasing them?  Please tell me they aren't proprietary to the Stream...  LOL





Also, any tips for preventing these shorts in future?  All I know is to try to keep the Stream resting on a flat surface, with the cable and flash drive straight out vertically from the top of the unit.



Many thanks in advance!  Happy weekend, all!



Best,

Kim



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