USB expansion

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Jim McDonald

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I need more USB outlets on my machine. Currently there are two and are used for a modem and printer. I was thinking of a Belkin product but would like some advice on whether it is better to have one externally powered to avoid extra load on the machine. Any thoughts out there please?
 
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Hi Jim.
I use a Belkin 4 port USB (v1.1)hub. It is powered and has a switch to either use the pc power or transformer power. I have it switched to use transformer power so that the load is on the hub, not my motherboard.............I believe this is the best option.
MY pc does have 4 x USB ports on the rear and 2 x ports on the front. But, to run my scanner, camera and printer I run them off the powered Belkin hub and just have the one USB cable from the hub to the rear of the pc, so am only using one of the pc ports. I also used to run my USB modem from it too when I was on dial up, but on cable modem now.
I reckon it is the best way to go, and gives your puter less to worry about...........:)
 

Jim McDonald

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Thanks XP. I thought intuitively this would be the answer but I'm always pleased to hear others' views on this site.
Jim
 
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No worries mate.............get the hub, something else to clutter up your desk with.....:) But worth the money.........around £25..??
Bought mine about a year or so ago, and no problems with it.
It is a darn sight easier to have one USB cable in the back of your machine, and all the useable ones for your bits to be plugged into the Belkin within easy reach...............no more scrabbling around the back of the puter case..............:D
 

Jim McDonald

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Thanks XP I'll go this way but what's all this I hear about USB2? It's probably a dumb question as my machine is USB1. I will upgrade before long though ...
Jim
 
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USB 2..............the latest flavour...............:)
You can buy USB v2 add in cards to slot into a PCI slot.......if you have a free one...:)
Faster than the USB 1.1 but only good (I think) for if you have USB 2 accessories. Whether it will make any difference running USB 1 bits off a USB 2 card I haven't a clue................but plenty of knowledgeable members here will.
 

Jim McDonald

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Thanks XP. I'll wait for any other thoughts on this but will start looking at Dabs for prices in the meantime. Thank you again for your help.
Jim
 

JohnWill

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FWIW, this is a no-brainer! USB 2.0 is the way to go, and the expansion cards are only $15-20 for a 5 port card (one internal). I have used a number of them, and they support full speed hard disks and CD drives on the USB bus. Since they're backward compatible to USB 1.1, it's the clear choice IMO.

USB 2.0 hard disks make a great backup medium, they're safe, and you can take them with you. You can also access them on any system with a USB port.
 

Jim McDonald

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Thanks JohnWill (and XP) for your advice. I've decided to go with USB2 and will now order with far more confidence.
Have a good day.
Jim
 

Jim McDonald

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Hi both
Just to let you know I've ordered a Belkin USB 2 hub from DABS. It finished at £37. Thanks for your help.
Jim
 

JohnWill

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A hub? You need an expansion board, not a hub! A hub is to expand your existing USB connection, and you don't have a USB 2.0 connection yet. :)
 

Jim McDonald

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Johnwill - I thought these were backwards compatible. I was planning to use it with a higher spec machine in due course.
Jim
 
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Hey Jim. What I think johnwill is trying to say is that the hub you purchased will not work at the usb 2.0 speed. Since your current usb port is 1.1, a usb 2.0 hub may work, but only at the usb 1.1 speed. What you need is the expansion board that goes into your PCI slot. Since you have the usb 2.0 hub now, you'll need to buy a usb 2.0 expansion bus to take advantage of the usb 2.0 hub.
 
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