Electrical connectors are components that join electrical circuits, making electronics easier to manufacture and assemble. They facilitate design and modification flexibility and can be permanent or temporary. There are many types of connectors used with circuits throughout a wide spectrum of industries, ranging from communications to computers, industrial machinery, and more.
Electrical Connector Types
Since electrical connectors are used in such a wide array of products, they come in many varieties. Some of the most commonly used types include:
- Audio: Both digital and analog connectors are used in applications ranging from home theaters to professional audio equipment. Most audio connectors are easy to use and don’t feature release tabs, latches, or thumbscrews.
- Centronics: These standard parallel interface devices connect printers, portable disc drives to computers, and others. They are named after the first printer that used them.
- DB style: D-subminiature or D-sub connectors are commonly used in computer, audio/video, and data applications. Its name comes from its trapezoidal shape. Most DB connectors feature two rows of pins.
- Digital video: These connectors deliver high quality video signals using TMDS to transmit large amounts of data from a source to a display.
- DIN: Named for a German manufacturing industry standards group, this type of electrical connector features a circular pin pattern. It is widely used with computer keyboards, MIDI instruments, and similar specialized equipment.
- Fiber and networking: Fiber-optic connectors precisely align microscopic glass fibers to facilitate communications. There are many types of these connectors available, all sharing similar design characteristics.
- Firewire: Also called IEEE 1394, these devices are typically used to add peripherals to a computer, such as connecting an external hard drive. They deliver high transfer rates of up to 800 Mbps.
- High Voltage: H.V. connectors up to 100,000 volts are available while the average H.V. ratings are typically below 30,000 volts.
- Internal: Internal connectors, such as socket connectors, are located inside computer cases. They mate with pins arranged into a header, which is built into a circuit board. Power connectors are another type of internal connector. They distribute power to a computer’s internal devices.
- Modular: Commonly used for data networks, telephone systems, or low-speed serial connections, these connectors are inexpensive and simple to install. They feature a clear, plastic body and a tab that locks them into place when connected.
- Power: Power connectors get plugged into wall receptacles and provide power to a device. They are suitable for many types of electronics and can carry either an alternating or direct current.
- SCSI: Small computer systems interface connectors join devices with computers. They work by connecting all devices to a central bus that is controlled by a host controller, typically built into a motherboard.
- USB: Universal Serial Bus ports are standard cable connection interfaces for many consumer electronic devices. USB ports allow devices to transfer digital data.
- Video: Digital video connectors deliver the highest quality video signal using TMDS technology. Large amounts of digital data can be transmitted in high quality.
Industries for Cable Connectors
With such a variety of cable connectors available, it’s no surprise that they are used throughout many industries, including:
- Military & defense: Throughout this industry, soldier-worn defense technology has influenced the demand for smaller-sized connectors. New designs have increased connector ruggedness and throughput while decreasing weight. This is important for wearable devices that need to function reliably in harsh environments while being as compact as possible.
- Oil & gas: The oil and gas industries require rugged, explosion-proof connectors for applications such as petrochemical plants, downhole and subsea, as well as topside drilling.
- Energy & power: Cable connectors in this industry must be designed to withstand incredibly demanding environments and temperature extremes. They also need to be resistant to moisture and humidity. Applications include wind, solar, and other types of energy production.
- Submarine communication: Throughout this industry, cable connectors are used in temperature cycling and deep sea applications. They must be built to withstand seawater corrosion, shock, and high levels of pressure. High pin density and reduced size are important characteristics for connectors used throughout this industry.
Connectronics for All Your Cable Connector Needs
Cable connectors come in many varieties and are used throughout a number of industries. There are many highly demanding applications for cable connectors that require ruggedly designed products able to withstand challenging environments. Connectronics provides reliable, high-quality connectors for industries ranging from aerospace and nuclear power to medical, oil exploration, and more.
Visit our product catalog to discover the connectors we offer and contact us with any questions. To get started on your cable connector solution, request a quote today.