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4 pin to 5 pin dmx

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by jayvee, Apr 23, 2019.

  1. jayvee

    jayvee Active Member

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    Is there any compelling reason I can't take all this 4 pin "scroller" cable and put new ends on it to make it regular 5 pin dmx?
     
  2. Ravenbar

    Ravenbar Active Member

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    As far as I can recall(been out of this for a decade), 4-pin scrollers needed a controller to control them. DMX standard calls for 5 pin and 3-pin has also become common as only 3 of the 5 pins are actually used. I've never heard of a 4-pin.

    If your solely looking to put unused 4-pin cable to use, converting it to 3 pin or 5 pin DMX(as long as you mark the 5-pin as such, since I'm distantly recalling some things use the other 2 wires), should be doable.
     
  3. tdrga

    tdrga Active Member

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    Real scroller cable has a larger size power pair of wires and a smaller size data pair of wires. You could re-purpose it for DMX if you use the data pair on pins 2 and 3 and the shield on pin 1. Don't connect the power pair of wires - they won't have the correct impedance for DMX.
    Not many things use pins 4 and 5 but it might not be a bad idea to mark the cable to show that pins 4 and 5 aren't connected.
    -Todd
     
  4. RonHebbard

    RonHebbard Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    @jfleenor Would you or your father care to comment??
    Toodleoo!
    Ron Hebbard
     
    Ravenbar likes this.
  5. jfleenor

    jfleenor Active Member

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    Make sure the wires are REALLY WELL DOCUMENTED. And have good insurance. *winks*
     
  6. jayvee

    jayvee Active Member

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    Well this is all interesting. I do believe they are actual scroller cable - they are more robust than my other data cable. I don't know if I am adventurous enough to convert them then. I will think on it. Thanks, all!
     
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  7. Stan Longhofer

    Stan Longhofer Active Member

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    You might consider selling them. On the used market I’m stunned how much more expensive 4-pin scroller cables are than 3- and 5-pin DMX. Use the proceeds to buy the DMX you need.
     
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  8. RonHebbard

    RonHebbard Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    @Stan Longhofer and @Jay Ashworth The price differential is likely due to the differing quantities in the amount of shielded twisted pair cables sold compared to the vastly lesser amount of raw cables manufactured with one pair of shielded thinner gauge conductors plus one pair of unshielded larger gauge conductors with both pairs enclosed in a single, durable / flexible insulating protective jacket. I honestly suspect this accounts for the appreciable differences in the relative costs; both the costs of raw cables / soldering your own and the costs of factory made cables. @derekleffew Care to comment?
    Toodleoo!
    Ron Hebbard
     
  9. Jay Ashworth

    Jay Ashworth Well-Known Member

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    I'm not at all surprised by that thought; the S-curve drives most pricing... and Cat-5/6 and XLR are both over it, while DMX and scroller cable, not nearly so far.
     
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