Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Cable Guy

One thing I dislike about the zipit is the power adapter.  The connector seems flimsy, and in fact the tiny plastic end sometimes comes off the connector and lodges inside the zipit.  I happen to have one zipit in that sad state right now, unable to get a charge.  This got me thinking again about the Dell Axim x50 and it's expansion cable with the zipit compatible 36 pin connector.  Now I've got a reasonable excuse to make a purchase and see it the Axim cable can be modified for use with the zipit, like for instance as USB charge cable.  So I picked one up online and took it apart.

The connector hood is held together by two screws and some fairly weak clips so it's easy to disassemble.  Here you can see the two screw holes on the left, and the 4 red, black, white, and green USB wires, (is that a standard?) along with 2 jumper wires connecting ground and power to multiple pins.

Here it is from another angle.  And one more shot with the hood removed.  Sorry about the sloppy photography.  I might try to get some better shots.
The interesting thing about this connector is that although it looks very similar to the one from Hirose that's popular with the zipit folks, it's not the same.  The top and bottom rows of pins inside the connector are physically swapped.  Odd numbered pins are routed to the bottom of the Hirose connector, but are sent to the top of the Axim connector.  This threw me for a loop when I tried to match up the colored wires to various online documents describing the Axim pinout.

Next up, I gotta move the wires to different pins so it can charge the zipit.  Wish me luck...


  1. Wher did you get it exactly? I got this one http://www.ebay.com/itm/360367726482 and sadly the connector was not full, only about 13 pins were populated, other positions were empty inside. Fortunately they can be removed and put to any position but still it is not good if one needs all the gpio pins.

  2. I got it from Amazon and left a comment so I could find it again.


    However I'm not convinced the cable they attached my comment to is the same one. I don't think that's the same seller and I know I didn't pay $10 for it.

    Also, I could swear there were maybe 5 pictures of the cable (with zoom) so I could see all the pins were there before I bought it. I think I may have to edit my comment.