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  1. Hey everybody. A few months ago I discovered the sad truth that wireless keyboard and mouse sets are not as good as wired for gaming.

    So rather than get a wireless set are there any keyboard and mouse combos out there with long cords?

    I think it would be better than using USB extension cables, that's all.
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  2. Disgustipated TooLFooL's Avatar
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    i have never seen a keyboard or a mouse with more than a 3-ft cord. you could always use the extension cord to make longer cables yourself if you have soldering skills..
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    You can actually purchase such extension cables but usb extension cables would be more popular ... check out you local tech shops to see what they have available.
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  4. Member AlanHK's Avatar
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    USB extension cables are dirt cheap. You could tape the join if you're worried about it getting pulled.
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  5. Member Seeker47's Avatar
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    Just some other input for the mix: I recently had a situation (hopefully infrequent or temporary) calling for the use of long USB cabling -- like up to 50' or so. I was told that at some limit well short of that -- like maybe 15' or 20' (?), I can't remember -- the USB signal suffers a bad speed degradation. Too much to be useful with a printer for example. A special adapter kit for "USB over Ethernet" was recommended as an alternative. I bit the bullet and coughed up the $30. for this at Fry's. It worked really well, and is something I'm now glad to have in the hardware accessories arsenal. I'd have to double-check the brand and item # for you, but I think it was from one of the better mfr.s of accessories gear, like SIIG.
    When in Las Vegas, don't miss the Pinball Hall of Fame Museum http://www.pinballmuseum.org/ -- with over 150 tables from 6+ decades of this quintessentially American art form.
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  6. Mod Neophyte Super Moderator redwudz's Avatar
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    USB is limited to about 16.5 feet (5 Meters) for stable operation with full speed devices. http://www.usb.org/about/faq/ans5 With powered extenders, thirty feet or more is possible.

    Monoprice sells USB>CAT5>USB adapters, along with powered extenders: http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=103&cp_id=10303&cs_id=1030313&p_id=...seq=1&format=2

    Other USB cables and adapters from them: http://www.monoprice.com/products/subdepartment.asp?c_id=102&cp_id=10303#1030305
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  7. Member Seeker47's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by redwudz View Post
    With powered extenders, thirty feet or more is possible.
    I did a 50' run with no problem, using the kit I mentioned above. (The proof was in the printing, which worked just like a close direct connection, no delay.) I don't believe it was powered, but I could be wrong.
    When in Las Vegas, don't miss the Pinball Hall of Fame Museum http://www.pinballmuseum.org/ -- with over 150 tables from 6+ decades of this quintessentially American art form.
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  8. Mod Neophyte Super Moderator redwudz's Avatar
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    I saw this on the Monoprice page for the USB/Ethernet adapter: 'Self-powered so no external power source is required.' I'm guessing that means it's powered from the USB 5VDC lead. They also mention it working with powered USB hubs. The regular USB extenders are also powered. Mine has a fair amount of circuitry in the socket end, but it's only 15 feet long, though I think you can put two together.

    Ethernet cables use twisted pair wiring, so they would have a bit of shielding which probably helps with longer runs. The Ethernet adapter does sound like a good way to do a longer USB run. The Ethernet extender at Monoprice is only rated for USB 1.1. I don't know if some printers needs USB 2.0. I suspect a USB hard drive would. The regular extender I use is USB 2.0 specification. Mouses and keyboards, and probably game controllers, should be fine with USB 1.1
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  9. Member AlanHK's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Seeker47 View Post
    Originally Posted by redwudz View Post
    With powered extenders, thirty feet or more is possible.
    I did a 50' run with no problem, using the kit I mentioned above. (The proof was in the printing, which worked just like a close direct connection, no delay.) I don't believe it was powered, but I could be wrong.
    Some USB devices draw power, some only use the data (like most printers).

    Things like USB wifi dongles, hard disks say, will get flaky if they work at all with insufficient power due to over-long cable. These need a powered extender.

    Anyway, I doubt the OP wants his keyboard and mouse 50 feet from his PC, so this is getting a bit academic.
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  10. Member AlanHK's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by redwudz View Post
    Ethernet cables use twisted pair wiring, so they would have a bit of shielding which probably helps with longer runs. The Ethernet adapter does sound like a good way to do a longer USB run. The Ethernet extender at Monoprice is only rated for USB 1.1. I don't know if some printers needs USB 2.0. I suspect a USB hard drive would. The regular extender I use is USB 2.0 specification. Mouses and keyboards, and probably game controllers, should be fine with USB 1.1
    USB keyboards and mice need power.
    Ordinary ethernet doesn't supply any power. I doubt they would work via an ethernet extender, unless it has its own local power supply.
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  11. Originally Posted by AlanHK View Post
    USB keyboards and mice need power.
    Ordinary ethernet doesn't supply any power. I doubt they would work via an ethernet extender, unless it has its own local power supply.
    Not all the wires in an ethernet cable are used to carry data. The others can be used to carry USB power. The USB over ethernet adapters probably conform to the PoE spec.

    This one claims to work with mice and keyboards:
    http://sewelldirect.com/Cables-Unlimited-USB-Extender-over-Cat5-150-ft.asp
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  12. Member AlanHK's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    Originally Posted by AlanHK View Post
    USB keyboards and mice need power.
    Ordinary ethernet doesn't supply any power. I doubt they would work via an ethernet extender, unless it has its own local power supply.
    Not all the wires in an ethernet cable are used to carry data. The others can be used to carry USB power. The USB over ethernet adapters probably conform to the PoE spec.

    This one claims to work with mice and keyboards:
    http://sewelldirect.com/Cables-Unlimited-USB-Extender-over-Cat5-150-ft.asp
    I said "ordinary ethernet", not wanting to complicate matters even more.
    PoE needs special ports.

    That device is basically a USB extender, it has USB plugs at both ends and ethernet in the middle, who knows what spec they followed.

    Also, it costs $40. I think preferable and probably cheaper to use a standard network adapter, or wireless.
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  13. Member Seeker47's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by AlanHK View Post
    That device is basically a USB extender, it has USB plugs at both ends and ethernet in the middle, who knows what spec they followed.

    Also, it costs $40. I think preferable and probably cheaper to use a standard network adapter, or wireless.
    In my case, I didn't care about the spec, only that it worked, which it did. This was the easy and expedient solution for me, so I tolerated the cost. The printer in question has wireless capability, but came with a separate wireless manual -- a PDF that clocked in at 200 pages (!) when printed out -- and which was all techno-gobbledygook that I couldn't really follow. I'll get the wireless thing going one of these days, probably with much help from someone who really knows networking, but for now it's either take a laptop to where the printer is, or run that long cable down the hall temporarily if I want to connect it to one of my desktop systems.

    I'm also leery of screwing up the VOD and Netflix streaming capability that already exists on the network, which has happened before when I tried to make some changes. That capability, plus laptop access to the internet, is far more important to me than implementing a wireless printing solution, when I have other options.
    When in Las Vegas, don't miss the Pinball Hall of Fame Museum http://www.pinballmuseum.org/ -- with over 150 tables from 6+ decades of this quintessentially American art form.
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  14. Member AlanHK's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Seeker47 View Post
    I'm also leery of screwing up the VOD and Netflix streaming capability that already exists on the network, which has happened before when I tried to make some changes. That capability, plus laptop access to the internet, is far more important to me than implementing a wireless printing solution, when I have other options.
    I haven't networked my printer, because it's 2 feet away from my PC. But I've been planning to do so so my daughter can access it from her laptop, when my PC is off. Having it connected to the router would allow that.

    You don't need, or probably want, to make the printer accessible to anything outside your local network; setting that up right is probably some of what the manual is about. It shouldn't impact Internet connectivity at all.

    Back in the day we used to have 20-foot parallel printer cables snaking around the office and hanging from the ceiling.
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