Different types of internal USB cables?

I've just completed my first complete PC build and nearly everything turned out great! There is just 1 thing I haven't figured out. I tried to re-use my old internal memory card reader and am a bit confused on where to plug it in. As stated on the label, it is a USB card reader. However, the USB ribbon cable that connected it to my old computer's motherboard doesn't fit the USB plugs in my new Asus P5Q.

Here is a photo of the USB ribbon cable used to connect the card reader to the mobo in my old computer: http://xs.to/xs.php?h=xs229&d=08300&f=img_1707295.jpg

Here is a photo of the USB plugs in my new P5Q motherboard (the red arrow is pointing to the USB plug I'm attempting to use): http://xs.to/xs.php?h=xs229&d=08300&f=mobo778.jpg

Here is a photo of a cable connecting my front USB ports to the mobo in my new computer. Unlike the card reader's cable, it actually fits the motherboard's USB port: http://xs.to/xs.php?h=xs229&d=08300&f=img_1704955.jpg

When comparing the card reader's cable to the one running to my front USB ports it looks smaller and doesn't have any pin holes blocked out. Are there multiple types of internal USB cables or what's going on? Thanks in advance!
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  1. The pin outs are identical. The only difference is the connector at the end of the cable. If you can find a cable with the correct end you can swap them, it's not that hard, just make sure you put the cables where they should go otherwise you might damage your motherboard.
  2. The plug on the back of my card reader matches the smaller connector. Do they make USB cables that will have one smaller connector such as that on my card reader and one larger connector such as that on my mobo?
  3. Just let me clarify so I get it right: you want to plug in BOTH the cable for front-panel USB ports (came with the case, and fits the new mobo's connector), AND an older card reader with a different cable and plug. I presume that means you plan to plug those into different mobo connectors, and that you actually do have more than one USB header connector on the mobo.

    It appears the mobo and your front-panel connector cable are both designed for what has become a sort of "standard" 10-pin (2 x 5) connector for this. (Well, actually there are only 9 pins because one is missing.) However, your older card reader did not use that connector.

    I have no doubt the actual signals used are the same - in fact, each mobo USB connector has pins for two USB ports. Looks like you may have to change the connector on the card reader cable, which could be done one of three ways. Either way you need to know before starting exactly which leads in the existing card reader cable are for which signals, and then make sure they get connected to the right pins on the mobo connector. Consult your mobo manual to identify its pins' functions. Look for similar information on the connections to your card reader. Or, failing that, maybe your can find info on the pins of the OLD mobo connector that your card reader used to work with.

    1. Change the entire cable, from card reader to mobo, using a cable with the right mobo-end connector. This will mean changing the connector at the card reader end or, if there is none, soldering its leads onto the card reader board. Here is where keeping leads and signals and pins matched up will be done.
    2. Take the card reader's ribbon cable and replace the connector at the mobo end with the right one to fit there. Again, this is where lines and pins have to be matched.
    3. Sometimes you can get little one-pin connectors that crimp onto the end of a wire and fit over one mobo pin. They usually have small square plastic sleeves on them so that many can fit onto adjacent pins on the mobo connector without running into each other. You replace the existing connector on the end of the ribbon cable with these (9 of them), making sure to label each one. Then you push each onto the right pin of the mobo connector.

    WARNING: - You'll proably find this also in the mobo manual, but be careful because the mobo header for an IEEE 1394 (aka Firewire 400) port uses the exact same connector, but the signals are NOT the same. So if you mistakenly end up connecting a USB device via a cable to the IEEE 1394 port, you can do permanent damage to the device and / or your mobo!! So make sure you do NOT connect a USB cable to an IEEE 1394 port header! Just the cable would not be a problem, but any actual device plugged in would.
  4. Thanks for the great info! I'm a little hesitant to start making my own cables and/or rewire the connectors on my existing cable. Is there anywhere I can purchase a cheap cable that has these connectors already in place? I could always pick up a cheap card reader with the correct cable for about $10 online...
  5. front-panel connector cable are both designed for what has become a sort of "standard" 10-pin (2 x 5) connector for this. (Well, actually there are only 9 pins because one is missing.)


    I need some help in locating this particular internal usb cable that connects the front usb port (came with the case) to the other end which is the "front usb" port on the motherboard.

    I know what this cable looks like but do not know the correct name for this cable.
    I am having a hard time finding one on the internet.

    Please help me.

    Once again, the end that connects to the front usb ports should be the 10 pin (2 x 5) connector and only 9 pins are used..........on the other end of the cable should be the 4 pins VCC, D-, D+, & Ground

    I sincerely appreciate anyone's help on this.

    Thanks again,

    South Windsor, Connecticut, USA
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