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just brew it!
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The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Fri Dec 30, 2016 10:44 am

At least half of the micro-USB cables I own (most of which originally came bundled with various devices) seem to be incapable of reliably establishing or maintaining a data connection. I thought about tagging them as "for charging only" (you can never have too many spare charging cables), but I just got a pile of these (Amazon Basics to the rescue!), so I'm leaning towards just tossing all the dodgy ones in the trash. I have enough junk and clutter in my life without hanging on to a pile of marginally functional USB cables.
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whm1974
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Fri Dec 30, 2016 10:49 am

just brew it! wrote:
At least half of the micro-USB cables I own (most of which originally came bundled with various devices) seem to be incapable of reliably establishing or maintaining a data connection. I thought about tagging them as "for charging only" (you can never have too many spare charging cables), but I just got a pile of these (Amazon Basics to the rescue!), so I'm leaning towards just tossing all the dodgy ones in the trash. I have enough junk and clutter in my life without hanging on to a pile of marginally functional USB cables.

Aren't USB Type-C cables prone to being to being crap?
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Fri Dec 30, 2016 10:50 am

whm1974 wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
At least half of the micro-USB cables I own (most of which originally came bundled with various devices) seem to be incapable of reliably establishing or maintaining a data connection. I thought about tagging them as "for charging only" (you can never have too many spare charging cables), but I just got a pile of these (Amazon Basics to the rescue!), so I'm leaning towards just tossing all the dodgy ones in the trash. I have enough junk and clutter in my life without hanging on to a pile of marginally functional USB cables.

Aren't USB Type-C cables prone to being to being crap?

I've heard that too, but I have no experience with them since I don't have any Type-C devices.
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Fri Dec 30, 2016 11:39 am

Got a sale and sent some of these out as Christmas gifts to people having a similar issue.

https://www.amazon.com/Anker-PowerLine- ... +Powerline

Also my mother claims the 24W power adapter of the same brand charged her electronic cigarette battery better (more run time) than the standard adapter she was using.  Maybe the original one wasn't putting out 5V+ anymore idk...

Not sure I'll be able to vouch for their quality as I'm not the one using them but they certainly seem very well made.  YouTube is littered with videos of people hanging their body weight on them etc.
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Fri Dec 30, 2016 11:52 am

Holy crap those were expensive, JBI. Why didn't you get the mid-grade cables from Monoprice for 33% of the price?

EDIT: Direct link for anyone curious
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Fri Dec 30, 2016 12:08 pm

Legend wrote:
Got a sale and sent some of these out as Christmas gifts to people having a similar issue.

https://www.amazon.com/Anker-PowerLine- ... +Powerline

Also my mother claims the 24W power adapter of the same brand charged her electronic cigarette battery better (more run time) than the standard adapter she was using.  Maybe the original one wasn't putting out 5V+ anymore idk...

Not sure I'll be able to vouch for their quality as I'm not the one using them but they certainly seem very well made.  YouTube is littered with videos of people hanging their body weight on them etc.

Anker seems to be a decent brand. I don't own any of their cables, but I've bought other stuff from them -- USB Ethernet adapters, USB 3.0 hub, charger -- and have no complaints so far.

Vhalidictes wrote:
Holy crap those were expensive, JBI. Why didn't you get the mid-grade cables from Monoprice for 33% of the price?

EDIT: Direct link for anyone curious

The Amazon listing I linked is showing the price for a 2-pack; plus I'm a Prime member so shipping is free. While the Monoprice ones are indeed still somewhat cheaper (but only if I choose their cheapest/slowest shipping option), it's not THAT big of a difference.

Edit: Hard to say for certain from the pic on the Monoprice site, but it also looks like the over-mold on the micro-USB end is a little too thick to fit through the opening on many smartphone cases. This is a problem with most of the older micro-USB cables I own; using any of those cables with a smartphone in a case requires a little creative modification to the plug over-mold with a pocketknife. This was one of the desirable features of the Amazon Basics ones -- the over-mold is intentionally made narrow enough to work with most accessory cases:
Amazon wrote:
Compact connector head works with nearly all cases

Edit 2: This also reminds me of the only time I've ever been disappointed with some cables purchased from Monoprice. A few years ago I ordered some 3.5mm TRS audio extension cables from them. Unfortunately, the rubber molding on the plugs was so big that you could not use two of them in adjacent jacks of a typical motherboard audio I/O panel. The plugs were WIDER than the spacing between the jacks! W. T. F.
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Fri Dec 30, 2016 1:59 pm

I've probably thrown out 50 pounds of cables over the past couple years.  There's no reason I need several dozen USB2.0 A-to-B cables, or six full sets of heavy component cables (when I'll probably never use even one of them again).

Maybe I should've scrapped them for copper weight.
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Fri Dec 30, 2016 2:20 pm

Somewhere in my crawlspace is a cardboard box stuffed full of old floppy and IDE ribbon cables...
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Fri Dec 30, 2016 3:10 pm

just brew it! wrote:
Somewhere in my crawlspace is a cardboard box stuffed full of old floppy and IDE ribbon cables...

Already cleared out most of that. Up until 10 years ago I had been saving everything, and it started to get a little ridiculous. I did retain a couple nice Asus ribbon cables of each, but considering SATA has been around since 2003, it would require a crappy situation for me to need to use one.
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Fri Dec 30, 2016 7:55 pm

Don't think I've encountered such problems. But I rarely use cables for data.

The Egg wrote:
Maybe I should've scrapped them for copper weight.
You mean CCA. :)
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Mon Jan 02, 2017 1:30 am

Hm, maybe that'd explain why the 4TB external Western Digital drive I bought some time back was constantly disconnecting/reconnecting repeatedly every second to the point it corrupted any files transferred to it. I didn't think to try a different cable since it was new and shipped with the drive. 

The HTC 10 uses a Type C port and it's been great. The included cable is like two gauges thicker than then the micro USB shipped with my Kindle reader.  Type C is much more durable than the crappy micro-USB connector that is always begging to get damaged. Nevermind that the omnidirectional plug is nice... hopefully microUSB goes away soon.
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Mon Jan 02, 2017 2:03 am

Kougar wrote:
Type C is much more durable than the crappy micro-USB connector that is always begging to get damaged. Nevermind that the omnidirectional plug is nice... hopefully microUSB goes away soon.

Even micro-USB is way ahead of the original mini-USB in terms of durability. The original motivation for micro-USB (which TBH isn't much smaller than mini-USB) was mostly to move the parts of the contact mechanism that tend to wear out from the (more expensive) device to the (cheaper) cable.
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 11:42 am

Would be news to me then. Never had a mini-USB device wear out, but I've had nothing but problems with micro-USB devices like that external HDD until I shucked it to remove USB from the equation. Seen enough people wreck micro-USB ports because a kid or pet yanked on the cord and type-C ports look to be modestly sturdier in that regard.
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 12:21 pm

I've had damaged mini-USB connectors before. Never killed a micro connector, only cables.
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 12:34 pm

JBI wrote:
I've had damaged mini-USB connectors before. Never killed a micro connector, only cables.


Same here.

The solution seems to have worked. I'm surprised they even designed mini-USB like that to begin with.
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 12:38 pm

Glorious wrote:
JBI wrote:
I've had damaged mini-USB connectors before. Never killed a micro connector, only cables.


Same here.

The solution seems to have worked. I'm surprised they even designed mini-USB like that to begin with.

Cell phones would be my guess.
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 1:00 pm

whm1974 wrote:
Cell phones would be my guess.

Before I finally sent the old Droid 2 Global to the sky, it was very picky about micro-USB cables plugged into it directly (which is why I've got at least 3 cradles in the spares bin). I've also had no luck at all with micro-USB/Type C adapters on the Nexus, so I wandered over to Monoprice and went native Type C for all the cords I need.
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 1:04 pm

whm1974 wrote:
Glorious wrote:
JBI wrote:
I've had damaged mini-USB connectors before. Never killed a micro connector, only cables.


Same here.

The solution seems to have worked. I'm surprised they even designed mini-USB like that to begin with.

Cell phones would be my guess.

Nailed it. I've had two Micro connectors fail on the host side, and both were Android devices. A Note 8 tablet that needed the connector replaced anyways (part of a battery replacement), and on a Moto X (1st gen). Both still worked after a fashion, but were very loose whichever cable I used.
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 1:12 pm

Captain Ned wrote:
whm1974 wrote:
Cell phones would be my guess.

Before I finally sent the old Droid 2 Global to the sky, it was very picky about micro-USB cables plugged into it directly (which is why I've got at least 3 cradles in the spares bin).  I've also had no luck at all with micro-USB/Type C adapters on the Nexus, so I wandered over to Monoprice and went native Type C for all the cords I need.

I haven't into this problem myself, but I have heard of of this before, at least with cell phones.
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 1:14 pm

whm1974 wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
At least half of the micro-USB cables I own (most of which originally came bundled with various devices) seem to be incapable of reliably establishing or maintaining a data connection. I thought about tagging them as "for charging only" (you can never have too many spare charging cables), but I just got a pile of these (Amazon Basics to the rescue!), so I'm leaning towards just tossing all the dodgy ones in the trash. I have enough junk and clutter in my life without hanging on to a pile of marginally functional USB cables.

Aren't USB Type-C cables prone to being to being crap?

Crappy Type-C cables are crappy.
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 1:15 pm

Wife picked these up a couple weeks ago.  Very impressed with them so far.
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 1:17 pm

just brew it! wrote:
At least half of the micro-USB cables I own (most of which originally came bundled with various devices) seem to be incapable of reliably establishing or maintaining a data connection.

2005 called while you were out.
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 1:18 pm

SHOES wrote:
Wife picked these up a couple weeks ago.  Very impressed with them so far.

Those, or something quite like them, were the only reliable micro-USB cables I had when I retired the Droid. Slap a micro/Type-C adapter on them, though, and they were junk.
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:01 pm

Captain Ned wrote:
SHOES wrote:
Wife picked these up a couple weeks ago.  Very impressed with them so far.

Those, or something quite like them, were the only reliable micro-USB cables I had when I retired the Droid. Slap a micro/Type-C adapter on them, though, and they were junk.

https://www.anker.com/products/A8160011
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:27 pm

Glorious wrote:
JBI wrote:
I've had damaged mini-USB connectors before. Never killed a micro connector, only cables.

Same here.

The solution seems to have worked. I'm surprised they even designed mini-USB like that to begin with.

They screwed up the first time, plain and simple. They took a mulligan.

End User wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
At least half of the micro-USB cables I own (most of which originally came bundled with various devices) seem to be incapable of reliably establishing or maintaining a data connection.

2005 called while you were out.

A lot of recent/current devices still use a micro-USB connector.

What *I* don't get is why you still see mini-USB connectors on anything made in the past ~5 years.
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:27 pm

End User wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
At least half of the micro-USB cables I own (most of which originally came bundled with various devices) seem to be incapable of reliably establishing or maintaining a data connection.

2005 called while you were out.

OK, I'll bite. WTH are you talking about End User?
 
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:30 pm

Vhalidictes wrote:
OK, I'll bite. WTH are you talking about End User?
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:34 pm

just brew it! wrote:
End User wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
At least half of the micro-USB cables I own (most of which originally came bundled with various devices) seem to be incapable of reliably establishing or maintaining a data connection.

2005 called while you were out.

A lot of recent/current devices still use a micro-USB connector.

Are you talking about Micro USB 2.0 or Micro USB 3.1 Gen 1?
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:36 pm

Vhalidictes wrote:
End User wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
At least half of the micro-USB cables I own (most of which originally came bundled with various devices) seem to be incapable of reliably establishing or maintaining a data connection.

2005 called while you were out.

OK, I'll bite. WTH are you talking about End User?

Micro USB 2.0 for data in 2017? I hope not.
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Re: The sorry state of micro-USB cable quality

Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:46 pm

Most people don't replace their devices every year.

I also expect it'll take a while before micro-USB disappears from devices like hubs, card readers, external optical/HDD drives, etc... there *are* devices besides smartphones/tablets that people occasionally want to transfer data to/from. Heck, I have a recently purchased external BluRay burner that still has a *mini* USB connector on it.
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