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Other Hardware and Peripherals Other Apple systems and peripherals discussion.

Long USB cables okay?


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MacLover2011

 
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Out of necessity I had to place my USB printer and USB scanner on the other side of my room. Can I use USB cables 6 to 8 feet with out a problem? I hope so.
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Up to around 10 feet should be OK for a printer or scanner. Just don't try to use a cable that length with an external hard drive or optical drive....
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The USB 2. specification has a maximum cable length of around five meters. I have run cables to near that distance without issues but it was for low drain devices (keyboard, mice).

You should be OK at the distances you are covering for a printer. If you start having issues you might be able to use a self-powered hub mid way through the run to help things along. I ran that way for a time. One cable ran from the computer to the hub about eight feet away and another cable rain from the hub to the device. For much longer runs there are also devices such as USB Extender 150 Maximum Cable Length CAT5 USB convert Booster but I have not tried them.

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Thanks for your help everyone.
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chscag

 
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The USB 2. specification has a maximum cable length of around five meters. I have run cables to near that distance without issues but it was for low drain devices (keyboard, mice).
I've been able to get some devices to work OK with 10 foot cables. I know the spec says around 15 feet, but like you say, mice, keyboards, printers, are usually OK. I couldn't get a powered USB antenna to work with a 6 foot cable (it came packed with a 3 footer), so your mileage may vary.....
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Does the new iMac use USB 3 or just USB 2?
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Your new iMac has USB 2 and Thunderbolt, however, USB 3 devices are backward compatible with USB 2 and will operate at USB 2 speeds. You can attach a USB 3 hard drive to your iMac (with the proper cable) but it will operate at USB 2 speed.
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