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Break-apart D-Sub VGA cable?Helpful Member!(2) 

wahnula (TechnicalUser) (OP)
25 Feb 08 12:53
Hello,

I have a PC display & wireless keyboard in my kitchen, with the PC itself in the laundry room behind the common wall.  I had planned to connect the VGA D-Sub cable via a 1-1/2" hole I had planned to cut into the wall, but I recently learned of break-apart VGA cables, that have a 1/2" round connector between the 15-pin D-Sub terminals.  This would make for a much neater installation.

The problem is that the cables I found were very expensive, like $25 per 3-foot cable (each, I would need two).

http://www.cablestogo.com/product.asp?cat%5fid=4101&;sku=42103

Does anyone know of a more economical source?  Thanks!  

Tony

Users helping Users...

Helpful Member!  robertjo24 (MIS)
25 Feb 08 22:53
If you are going cheap, and can solder, buy a long VGA cable and lop the end off to run through the wall and solder on a new connector.
If you can do a little dry wall patching (much cheaper) install a cable and be done with it.
For a little extra money, use Cat-5 VGA extenders. Your hole in the wall will be 1/4" and the signal quality will be fine.
Look up Cat5 VGA extenders on the web and you will find many to choose from.
wahnula (TechnicalUser) (OP)
25 Feb 08 23:08
robertjo24,

Thanks for the reply.  My multipin soldering skills are good, I used to do pro audio and lighting, and constantly had to solder multi-multipins, like audio & lighting snakes, but I'm getting lazy in my old age.

The Cat-5 VGA extenders seem to be even pricier, I can route the VGA cable through the cabinets, not the wall, use a hole saw, not a spade bit, and plug the majority of the hole with the bung...or...just bite the bullet, satisfy the wife (wiring-wise smile) and spend $50 on a 6-foot cord.  $50 on a 6-foot cord??? Did I just write that???  Maybe I will try the soldering idea.

On the other hand, my time (and sanity) is worth something...

Tony

Users helping Users...

Helpful Member!  wires (TechnicalUser)
26 Feb 08 0:00
"$25 per 3-foot cable (each, I would need two)"

If you go with the RapidRun system you would also need the "runner" cable to connect them.

1.5ft RAPIDRUN™ HD15 (UXGA) BREAK-AWAY FLYING LEAD $21.99ea    

15ft RAPIDRUN™ PC/VIDEO (UXGA) RUNNER™ CABLE - CL2 $64.99ea     

total of about $110

For low cost just drill a bigger hole. 1.5" should do it.
 
Otherwise look for cat5 KVM extenders on eBay. I have bought several good ones for under $100 each.
wahnula (TechnicalUser) (OP)
26 Feb 08 10:41

Quote (wires):

If you go with the RapidRun system you would also need the "runner" cable to connect them...total of about $110

OUCH!!!  Thanks for pointing out the fact that I will need an in-between cable.  I can see this system being a life-saver for snaking VGA (I installed empty 3/4" conduit throughout my home during framing for future tech runs) but my need is not THAT great.  Plus I only need 5-6' of cable.  The CAT5 KVM extenders would mean a lot of extra hardware in areas I am trying to keep 'clean'.

I will try first drilling a small hole and running the wire and soldering a new end on, if my patience (or my eyesight, or my soldering skill) fails then I will use that hole as a pilot hole for a 1-1/2" hole saw.  Thanks everyone for your input.

Tony

Users helping Users...

wires (TechnicalUser)
26 Feb 08 11:24
"I will use that hole as a pilot hole for a 1-1/2" hole saw."

Here is a neat trick.

Most hole saws have a 1/4" pilot bit. It you drill a 3/4" hole and later try to enlarge it to 1.5" the 1/4" pilot bit has nothing to "grab" and you end up making a mess. However if you drill enough material with the 3/4" hole saw that you can fit the "waste plug" over the 1.5" hole saw pilot to where it covers the bit you will have a 3/4" pilot. You then fit this into the existing 3/4" hole and it won't wobble as much and with practice you can make a decent hole.

A piece of 2x4 will usually yield enough "depth" for the "waste plug". You can then wrap the "waste plug" with duct tape to make a nice fit.

I did this a while ago to enlarge a hole in stainless steel and it works great.


"I will try first drilling a small hole and running the wire and soldering a new end on."

Get the hd15 connectors with loose crimp on pins and you can solder first (or crimp) then insert the pins into the shell. Much easier than soldering in a three row solder cup type connector.


"The CAT5 KVM extenders would mean a lot of extra hardware in areas I am trying to keep 'clean'. "

Yes there is some additional hardware, a small box and "wall wart" power supply. I usually velcro the box to the back of the monitor and run the power cable along with the monitor power cord. With some work it is fairly clean as long as the monitor is against a wall.

The BIG advantage of the extender is that the PC can be located anywhere within 300' not in a hot dusty laundry room.


Another option is to use a all-in-one iMac or mount a laptop to the wall.
wahnula (TechnicalUser) (OP)
26 Feb 08 12:20
Thanks wires,

The laundry room in question is climate-controlled, in fact the warm air from the SFF PC serves to lower the humidity in the room, making it great to hang clothes to dry!

This project started as a "recuperation diversion" while recovering from a long illness last year, it's not mission critical, it started with a spare wall-mount LCD and grew from there.  It is a neat little AM2 AthlonX2 machine and basically serves as a slideshow screen.  Right now it's working with a VGA Cable running under the door, I think my wife has had enough of it.

The display is mounted under the kitchen cabinets with cabinets on the opposite wall too so everything except the screen will be hidden within the cabinets.

I can see the advantage to the CAT5 KVM  but in this case it will either be the HD15 connector or a 1-1/2" hole.  Thanks again.

Tony

Users helping Users...

wahnula (TechnicalUser) (OP)
5 Jul 08 19:00
UPDATE:

It took a Holiday weekend, but I got it sorted.  After a few attempts, I drilled a 1/2" hole through the stud below the cabinet using a spade bit, cut the cable, got out my soldering iron, shrink-wrap, and patience, and neatly spliced the cable back together.  Works like a champ!

Now I'm doweling & puttying my mistakes & prepping for paint, the first effort went halfway through the bottom shelf and came out below the middle of the shelf!  What are the odds of that?  Luckily I had a 12" long bit that kept going until it reached daylight.   I figured drilling through the stud would be easier to get the cable through and no chance of hitting an AC cable.

Anyway, it's done, and splicing was the answer.  Did not even have to sacrifice another cable, the 6-footer was plenty long.  Thanks again for all your ideas.

Tony

Users helping Users...

dgyde (MIS)
15 Jul 08 16:50
Glad to hear that the splice worked out for you.  In commercial environments, that wouldn't be an option, however, there are some other options available.  This post is more for people reading this later on, and need some other ideas.

For short runs there is an option of using an HD15 to screw terminal adapter.  This is only recommended for short runs as the Cat5e used between is not shielded, and can pick up interference easily.  (It is nice for short runs that need to be plenum, as Cat5e plenum is significantly less expensive than plenum rated VGA extension cables.)

For long runs that need to be pulled through conduit, "wires" was exactly right, and a system like RapidRun is recommended as it comes in plenum also if needed (can be costly, but that's what needs to be done to do it right).

For Non-Plenum areas, VGA extension cables are available in a variety of sizes for very reasonable prices.

HD15 to Screw Terminal adapter (only 8 pins are needed of the 15):

TecNec HD15F-TBCM Female HD15 To Screw Terminals.

http://www.google.com/products?q=HD15+screw+terminal&btnG=Search+Products&show=dd

 

- Dave
http://www.theinsidewire.net
 

IrishKevin (Programmer)
27 Aug 08 18:12
I saw that IOGear are coming out with a wireless USB-VGA connection (w/ 30ft range).  http://gizmodo.com/5041211/iogears-usb-to-vga-kit-puts-wireless-gap-between-pc-and-monitor
I thought, that's cool, but really expensive at $230.  
So I googled extra-long vga and found this thread.  
Thanks everyone, very informative.

I also found this link on buy.com for a 50ft pull-apart cable ($50 incl shipping) :  
http://www.buy.com/prod/tripp-lite-svga-vga-ez-pull-monitor-extension-cable-1-x-hd-15-1-x-hd/q/loc/101/203245639.html

-Kevin
kmefford (Vendor)
27 Aug 08 18:28
A much easier option for the original poster would have been a "bulk cable" faceplate.  Leviton and I'm sure others also have a faceplate that is spit in half with a small hole in the middle.  The part number escapes me right now but I've used them many times for restaurants that want a printer cable through the walls.

The bulk cable plates are pretty common for home theater etc and can be found at any of your normal cable sources and even places such as "Best Buy".  A couple of dollars for a faceplate or two is sure easier than patching holes, soldering, etc.

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