Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Getting optional items with MB

Last response: in Motherboards
Share
April 27, 2008 2:59:44 PM

Hi,

so it's time for me to buy a new motherboard. I decided to get a Gigabyte GA-EP35-DS3R, which fits my needs pretty well. Here's my question:

I downloaded the motherboard manual from Gigabyte website. In the section just beneath what's suppose to be in the box, it talks about optional items. The one that interest me is the LPT port cable (Part No. 12CF1-1LP001-01R), which will be useful for me. But i really don't know how I'm supposed to order it. They say to contact your local dealer, but i'm wondering, do they really have this kind of item in stock ?

Please enlighten me. :) 

More about : optional items

April 27, 2008 3:16:49 PM

This is your local dealer from Xen, if you could kindly send payment via paypal for $19.95 I will be happy to ship your LPT cable through the interplanetary rift. You can then pick your part up at the black mesa store front.


Or you could ask a local dealer if they can order it?
Related resources
April 27, 2008 3:31:36 PM

Haha, funny business aside it's difficult to find an e-tailer. I been looking for a few minutes and haven't hit anything yet. Might have to actually go local.
April 27, 2008 4:39:36 PM

Yeah i know i have other option like the USB to parallel cable you showed. I'm just curious to know, is anyone already ordered one of those "special items" with their motherboard ?
April 16, 2009 7:10:58 PM

I bought the Gigabyte LPT cable, 12CF1-1LP001-01R, directly from Gigabyte USA because I couldn't find any retailer in the United States that sells it. (I already had a GA-EP45-UD3R motherboard). I was disappointed with the cable I got. The quality is fine, but it's a generic cable, it's overpriced, and it's a hassle to order.

Gigabyte motherboards that have the LPT header have an unusual pinout. (Gigabyte provides the pinout on their website and in their user manuals.) The header is in a 2x13 configuration, which seems to be what is used on all motherboards that have LPT headers. Unfortunately, pin 24 rather than pin 26 in not connected, which is what makes Gigabyte LPT headers different. Pin 26 is connected to ground, but usually pin 24 would be connected to ground.

The DB-25 end of the LPT cable has 25 pins. Pins 18 - 25 should be connected to ground. If a straight ribbon cable is used to connect the LPT header (pins 1 - 25) to the DB-25 connector, then Gigabyte motherboards will leave DB-25 pin 25 unconnected (DB-25 pin 25 connects to LPT header pin 24).

Generic LPT port cables are available, and inexpensive. They use straight ribbon cables. They connect LPT header pins 1 - 25 to DB-25 connector pins 1 - 25 (but the pins are numbered differently).

Gigabyte has a LPT cable, part number 12CF1-1LP001-01R, but it is in fact just an overpriced generic cable. It uses a straight ribbon cable that does not compensate for the LPT header pin 24 vs. pin 26 issue.

If a circuit on a device connected to the DB-25 connector (via the Gigabyte LPT header and a generic cable) uses pin 25 for its ground connection alone, it will probably fail. If it ties at least one of the other DB-25 ground pins 18 - 24 to pin 25 (or doesn't use pin 25 at all) then it will probably work.

The Gigabyte LPT cable is not sold at many places, and they are overpriced and identical to the generic cables, which are cheaper and sold more places.

If you need a correct DB-25 LPT port from a Gigabyte motherboard, you could take a generic LPT cable, remove the ribbon cable from the IDC connector (it's not soldered), split the ribbon between wires 23 and 24, twist wires 24 and 25 180 degrees, and reinsert the ribbon cable into the IDC connector: wires 1 - 23 where they were before and wire 25 where it was before, but put wire 24 at the end (where the 26th wire of a 26 wire ribbon cable would go), leaving a gap where wire 24 was.

As far as using a USB to parallel port converter, or a PCI to parallel port converter, I don't recommend it. For one thing, the converters are much more expensive than a simple cable. For another, a USB or PCI converted parallel port cannot be configured the same as a true parallel port. The PC architecture devotes a specific set of I/O port addresses and interrupt channels to true parallel ports. USB and PCI do not use that same architecture. That's why a computer can operate all of them simultaneously without conflict. Software that requires a true parallel port will likely not work with a USB or PCI converted to a parallel port. I have read that some people have had a difficult time trying to install PCI to parallel port converters and were never able to make their external device work that was connected to the parallel port. (Also, I'm not sure that the voltages of the signals are the same for true parallel ports as compared to USB or PCI converted to a parallel port, either. True parallel ports use, I believe, +5V and ground for signals, but USB and PCI may use +3V and ground for signals, but I'm not sure about that.) Just because a plug fits into a socket doesn't mean that they're compatible. Some devices are more tolerant than others over such differences. Using a converter is a gamble.

By the way, you should be able to find a generic LPT cable (along with a COM cable!) for about $2 to $3, and if you buy it over the internet shipping should be about $2 to $3. Anything more and you're getting ripped off.

(Incidentally, Gigabyte uses the typical pinout for the COM port header. If you want both COM and LPT ports, Gigabyte only sells them as separate assemblies, requiring twice the space in your computer and twice the money. But you can get a single generic assembly with both, and for only about $3 to $4 total. That's what I would have gotten had I known beforehand that Gigabyte just sells generic cables.)


-- david_f_knight
April 22, 2009 9:37:33 AM

Thank you for the good advice David! I was using pin 25 on my previous motherboard and would have run into the problem that you pointed out. I found a combo COM/LPT bracket on Amazon for $3.99 under "COM LPT Bracket". With shipping it ends up $8.98.

To comment on what you said about the voltage, true parallel ports are standard 5V TTL. You can connect the parallel port data and ground pins directly to off the shelf TTL logic chips from Radio Shack. I am using the parallel port to drive the gate of a power MOSFET for example.

I'm not sure what I will do when motherboards no longer support these legacy I/O ports. From what I remember, game ports are also 5V TTL. USB might be a bit tricky for a dinosaur like me. I did notice one I7 board so far with an LPT header however. Not from Gigabyte unfortunately.

July 19, 2009 1:21:32 AM

David,

You are correct that the LPT header has a ground pin error but I have found that the generic COM LPT bracket will work for most applications for the LPT port because there is a lot of redundancy in terms of pins assigned to ground.

On the other hand, I discovered that the COM port header on the Gigabyte MB is completely NON STANDARD and totally wrong for the generic COM LPT bracket!

In order to make it work, all but one wire on the backside of the DB9 connector needs to be desoldered and then resoldered to the correct connector pins.

I know this because I needed to do this for a classroom set (12) of new PCs with the Gigabyte MB and the COM LPT generic bracket. It wasn't that difficult but was time consuming.
a b V Motherboard
August 19, 2009 3:40:33 AM

David, I wanted to thank you for the great explanation on the parallel header and wiring. I'm about to buy a Gigabyte GA-MA785GM-US2H or GA-MA785G-UD3H and downloaded the manual first. One thing I really want is a LPT port. And, like the others, I couldn't find anyone that carried it - especially those eggy or tigery dealers I was looking at.

Believe it or not, I used to have to do similar cable wiring back in the mid-80s for the first battery-powered printers, including those from Diconix, and now I'm hoping to find some of my old cables from those days. I used to have grooves on my thumbnails from pressing the ribbons back onto the old ribbon-style db-25s and Centronics 1284s we used. The only drawback to using a ribbon to the printer directly was the un-shielded nature of them.

I may end up buying one of the generics and either hoping for the best or moving the ground wires as you suggested.

Thanks to all that commented on this!
a b V Motherboard
November 18, 2009 12:27:48 AM

Good find. I got one at my local store, also available online
www.altex.com

November 25, 2009 8:09:33 PM

david_f_knight said:
I bought the Gigabyte LPT cable, 12CF1-1LP001-01R, directly from Gigabyte USA because I couldn't find any retailer in the United States that sells it. (I already had a GA-EP45-UD3R motherboard). I was disappointed with the cable I got. The quality is fine, but it's a generic cable, it's overpriced, and it's a hassle to order.

Gigabyte motherboards that have the LPT header have an unusual pinout. (Gigabyte provides the pinout on their website and in their user manuals.) The header is in a 2x13 configuration, which seems to be what is used on all motherboards that have LPT headers. Unfortunately, pin 24 rather than pin 26 in not connected, which is what makes Gigabyte LPT headers different. Pin 26 is connected to ground, but usually pin 24 would be connected to ground.

The DB-25 end of the LPT cable has 25 pins. Pins 18 - 25 should be connected to ground. If a straight ribbon cable is used to connect the LPT header (pins 1 - 25) to the DB-25 connector, then Gigabyte motherboards will leave DB-25 pin 25 unconnected (DB-25 pin 25 connects to LPT header pin 24).

Generic LPT port cables are available, and inexpensive. They use straight ribbon cables. They connect LPT header pins 1 - 25 to DB-25 connector pins 1 - 25 (but the pins are numbered differently).

Gigabyte has a LPT cable, part number 12CF1-1LP001-01R, but it is in fact just an overpriced generic cable. It uses a straight ribbon cable that does not compensate for the LPT header pin 24 vs. pin 26 issue.

If a circuit on a device connected to the DB-25 connector (via the Gigabyte LPT header and a generic cable) uses pin 25 for its ground connection alone, it will probably fail. If it ties at least one of the other DB-25 ground pins 18 - 24 to pin 25 (or doesn't use pin 25 at all) then it will probably work.

The Gigabyte LPT cable is not sold at many places, and they are overpriced and identical to the generic cables, which are cheaper and sold more places.

If you need a correct DB-25 LPT port from a Gigabyte motherboard, you could take a generic LPT cable, remove the ribbon cable from the IDC connector (it's not soldered), split the ribbon between wires 23 and 24, twist wires 24 and 25 180 degrees, and reinsert the ribbon cable into the IDC connector: wires 1 - 23 where they were before and wire 25 where it was before, but put wire 24 at the end (where the 26th wire of a 26 wire ribbon cable would go), leaving a gap where wire 24 was.

As far as using a USB to parallel port converter, or a PCI to parallel port converter, I don't recommend it. For one thing, the converters are much more expensive than a simple cable. For another, a USB or PCI converted parallel port cannot be configured the same as a true parallel port. The PC architecture devotes a specific set of I/O port addresses and interrupt channels to true parallel ports. USB and PCI do not use that same architecture. That's why a computer can operate all of them simultaneously without conflict. Software that requires a true parallel port will likely not work with a USB or PCI converted to a parallel port. I have read that some people have had a difficult time trying to install PCI to parallel port converters and were never able to make their external device work that was connected to the parallel port. (Also, I'm not sure that the voltages of the signals are the same for true parallel ports as compared to USB or PCI converted to a parallel port, either. True parallel ports use, I believe, +5V and ground for signals, but USB and PCI may use +3V and ground for signals, but I'm not sure about that.) Just because a plug fits into a socket doesn't mean that they're compatible. Some devices are more tolerant than others over such differences. Using a converter is a gamble.

By the way, you should be able to find a generic LPT cable (along with a COM cable!) for about $2 to $3, and if you buy it over the internet shipping should be about $2 to $3. Anything more and you're getting ripped off.

(Incidentally, Gigabyte uses the typical pinout for the COM port header. If you want both COM and LPT ports, Gigabyte only sells them as separate assemblies, requiring twice the space in your computer and twice the money. But you can get a single generic assembly with both, and for only about $3 to $4 total. That's what I would have gotten had I known beforehand that Gigabyte just sells generic cables.)


-- david_f_knight

!