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SLCentralHardwareReviewsPeripherals Apr 25th, 2019 - 11:32 AM EST
TCWO 4-Port USB Bay Mount Hub
Author: JonnyGURU
Date Posted: October 17th, 2001
Rating: 9/10 SystemLogistics

Customizing The Hub's USB Connection

My motherboard, like 99% of the ones available today, has what is referred to as the "front USB port". So why the hell would I want to put a front USB hub in my PC and run a cable out of an expansion slot and into a USB port in the back of the PC?

Unfortunately, unlike the Antec unit, there is no provision given for connecting the four-port hub to your motherboard. But if you are like many computer geeks that I know, you have a bunch of computer cables in a shoebox stashed away in a closet. At first I thought a CD Audio cable would do the trick, but today's audio cables use a common ground. Dig a little deeper in the shoebox and we find two SPDIF cables. Ooooooh yeah! There we go!

Knowing that hooking up a USB wire incorrectly can screw up that USB port on the board as well as fizzle your wires, I made extra certain that I lined up the 5V lead with the 5V lead and the ground with the ground.

It seemed to me that this 4-port hub used the same color-coding on its wires that all of the motherboard manufacturers used to denote the wires on their USB header cards.

On your typical USB pin out, red is 5V bus power, white is the negative data signal, green is the positive data signal and black is ground.

Using the first of the two SPDIF cables, I hooked the red up to what I assumed was the 5V pin on the hub. The black wire went onto the pin right next to this one, which I was counting on being the negative USB signal. This cable then went to the motherboard and plugged into the first two pins on the motherboard's front USB header.

I then hooked my second SPDIF cable's red wire to what I hoped was the USB positive signal, and the black wire to what I hoped was the ground for bus power. I hooked this second SPDIF cable to the motherboard and fired her up.

No smoke. No glow. I must have gotten it right!

I shut the PC down and hooked the power connector up to the hub. I boot the PC all of the way into Windows and plugged in my Ratoc Smart Media card reader. The green light on the card reader came on and Windows immediately plug and played the card reader!

I now have, what I consider to be, the perfect front access USB port for my purposes. And, due to my own wiring ingenuity, it has a personal touch.

>> Conclusion And Overview

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Article Navigation

  1. Introduction
  2. The USB Bay Mount 4 Port Hub
  3. Customizing The Hub's USB Connection
  4. Conclusion And Overview

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