Antec MX-1 External Drive plug problem

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I've had this unit for about a year without any problems. A week ago, the
unit would not switch on and I tracked the problem to a broken Switching
adapter. The model is PA-225 produced by Vantec (Opti) and I found a
replacement online and it arrived yesterday. Exactly the same model number
and identical in all respects except for the plug that inserts into the
Antec unit. Both have 4 pins but the new model has 4 thick pins roughly
evenly centred whereas the original has two pins on each side and a lug at
the top. The origina is more like a DIN plug and it does insert into an
S-video connector. I've never before seen the new plug before.

I've searched the net but cannot find images of the particular plugs I have
(part of the problem is finding the right keywords to enter into Google).
I'm a bit p*d off that ordering the same model number that I have came with
a different plug. It might be possible to find an adapter but I wouldn't
know where to look.

If anyone has any familiarity with external drive plugs, I'd surely be
grateful for some advice on what these types of plugs are called or wheter
there might be an adapter available.

Re: Antec MX-1 External Drive plug problem

pbl wrote:
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The picture of the MX-1 is showing a mini-DIN connector. With four
pins, it could be +5,+12,GND,GND for example. I don't know which pin
is which though. =

Some pictures of mini-DIN connectors are here.

There is a reference here to a "snap n' lock" dc power connector or
"power mini-din". It has thicker pins and I don't see an internal
key in this one. The thicker pins would prevent it from being
plugged into an S-video connector by accident (by a child), and
the thicker pins may allow more contact area and a higher
current rating.

This is an example of a 4 pin mini-DIN male, at $1.32 each.

The datasheet for that mini-DIN, says the pins are rated for 2 amps max.

I'd also be a little worried, about whether there are standards
for what power is on what pins. You can certainly measure the
new adapter (being careful to not slip off the pins or short
power to the shell), but because the old adapter is dead, it is going
to be pretty tough to verify what is what. I'd probably open
the enclosure, and take a guess based on the wiring inside.

Using an ohmmeter, you could buzz (do a zero ohm check) from
the 15 pin pad pattern in this picture, back to the four pins
on the mini-DIN., in the SATA article, has a pinout
for the 15 pin SATA power. So you'd be able to select the 5V pins
or the 12V pins in the Wikipedia diagram, then touch the four pins
on the mini-DIN on the back of the MX-1, and figure out the assignment.

A new MX-1 here, is $53.

Good luck,

Re: Antec MX-1 External Drive plug problem

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Thanks Paul for your comprehensive reply. From you links I have found that
was sent this one:

The wiring is shown on the side of the switching unit. I'm not sure whether
you can break these things a part but I will attempt the broken one first
and see whether I can swap the exit cables. It would be easier if there was
an adapter that converted one plug to the other.



Re: Antec MX-1 External Drive plug problem

pbl wrote:
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There are too many adapter types out there, to offer conversions
for everything.

My guess is, getting that adapter open, could be harder than you
think. If the manufacturers wanted to be bastards, they could
use plastic cement to hold the two halves of the adapter


Re: Antec MX-1 External Drive plug problem

Paul wrote:
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Typically they will use ultrasonic welding to fuse plastic case parts
during manufacturing. It is very quick and involves no nasty-smelling toxic
solvents as the old method did. Then again, if the maker is in China they
may not care overly much if the old method is a hazard.

John McGaw
[Knoxville, TN, USA]

Re: Antec MX-1 External Drive plug problem

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Actually, the case came apart without too much force, which was a big
surprise. It is welded but it snapped open quite easily. There are only 3
wires attaching to the circutboard so I will have to test which pin is not
used. I'll get my multitester and soldering iron out later today.

Re: Antec MX-1 External Drive plug problem

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Success!! Both units were exactly the same inside. Cracked the second case
when opening it and used the old one to re-house the circuitboard. Completed
the soldering and it works perfectly.

Thanks very much for your help.

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