usb add-on card


B

badgolferman

I've been looking for an add-on USB 2.0 card since my motherboard only
supports USB 1.1. This one looks pretty nice since it also supports
SATA although I don't know if it is an older technology SATA.
http://www.gearxs.com/gearxs/product_info.php?products_id=8035

The thing that is preventing me from buying it is I don't see how my
front USB connectors will attach to the card. I do have a USB 2.0 hub
but I do use the front panel ones a lot.

Another question is some add-on cards have internal USB connectors.
What is that good for?
 
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R

Rod Speed

badgolferman said:
I've been looking for an add-on USB 2.0 card since my motherboard
only supports USB 1.1. This one looks pretty nice since it also supports
SATA although I don't know if it is an older technology SATA.

Yes it is the older SATA technology.
The thing that is preventing me from buying it is I don't see
how my front USB connectors will attach to the card.

It isnt clear what the headers on the edge of the card do,
even on the Encore site. Its possible they can connect there.
I do have a USB 2.0 hub but I do use the front panel ones a lot.
Another question is some add-on cards have internal USB connectors.
What is that good for?

For the front USB connectors.
 
P

Paul

badgolferman said:
I've been looking for an add-on USB 2.0 card since my motherboard only
supports USB 1.1. This one looks pretty nice since it also supports
SATA although I don't know if it is an older technology SATA.
http://www.gearxs.com/gearxs/product_info.php?products_id=8035

The thing that is preventing me from buying it is I don't see how my
front USB connectors will attach to the card. I do have a USB 2.0 hub
but I do use the front panel ones a lot.

Another question is some add-on cards have internal USB connectors.
What is that good for?

This card has a connector for fitting a proper USB cable, on the
inside of the computer. In parallel with the connector, is a 1x4 header,
suitable for the typical cabling that comes with front panel computer
wiring. On internal connections, you can use either the "metal can"
or the 1x4 pins, but not both at the same time. I believe the internal
connections are sharing the same port.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16815150097

There are a number of USB cards shown on Newegg, but ones with the
discrete pins are not as common as they used to be.

Paul
 
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K

kony

I've been looking for an add-on USB 2.0 card since my motherboard only
supports USB 1.1. This one looks pretty nice since it also supports
SATA although I don't know if it is an older technology SATA.
http://www.gearxs.com/gearxs/product_info.php?products_id=8035

It is the "older", SATA150, but that's not much to worry
about, the drive itself would be the bottleneck.

Of greater concern might be that it uses Via chipsets, which
often have fairly low performance relative other
alternatives (in this case, USB2 is typically better on NEC
chipset based cards). It's a good price for a dual purpose
card, but I think I'd pass on it unless you only have the
one PCI slot available and need both features.

It also has the USB ports at 90' to the board, which can be
a problem on some cases as their rear bracket openings are
just a tad too narrow. Usually they aren't, but it might
require careful alignment and holding in place while you
screw the card in.


The thing that is preventing me from buying it is I don't see how my
front USB connectors will attach to the card. I do have a USB 2.0 hub
but I do use the front panel ones a lot.

If your case is OEM, you might have to do some adapting of
the front USB connector just to plug it into a standard USB
pin header, which the linked card appears to lack. There
are a few cards at http://www.newegg.com et al. that do have
internal 2 rows x 4 pins, headers, but I don't recall any
that also have SATA (but I haven't ever looked for one,
either).

Another question is some add-on cards have internal USB connectors.
What is that good for?

Good question, I've never used an internal connector except
once with a TV Tuner/Capture card that had a remote control
sensor that was USB based, they'd intended it to be dangled
out who-knows-where which seemed undesirable so (on that
particular case the system was in, it had on the front
plastic bezel ...) the inset square meant to hold a case
branding emblem was cut out and a translucent smoked plastic
window was placed there with the IR remote sensor behind it.

Otherwise, if you're handy with a soldering iron and happen
to have a 1 x 4 pin header lying about, you might find that
the internal USB socket can be removed (or there might be a
place on the PCB where a pin header could've gone instead)
and the pin header soldered on. However, these days USB2
cards are common and cheap enough that it's probably better
to just look around a few minutes to find one with the
internal pin headers on it already.
 

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