Pros and Cons of DB9
Serial communication used to be one of the major ways to connect
peripherals like scanners, joysticks and printers to PCs for several
years. One of the most commonly used cable connector for this
type of communication was 9-pin D-Subminiature connector which
is also known as DB9 cable or a DE-9 cable.
DB9 serial cables has nine pins which were enough to carry data in
the series. But it has certain drawbacks which made their usage less
frequent. People started to prefer USB cables over DB9 cables.
However, if you shop for electronics, you will still find several
devices having DB9 cables or ports on them. Let us check out some
of the advantages and disadvantages of DB9 D Subminiature
Advantages of DB9 Subminiature Connectors
DB9 connectors have several advantages. You can easily customize
them with 9 individual pins to carry serial data. Although the speed
of these connectors is low as compared to other standards like
USB, the length of these cables is quite long. For eg, USB, has a
five-meter length limit, but RS-232, which is the most commonly
used standard for serial data doesn’t have a particularly defined
length limit. RS-422 has been used at length which is hundreds of
meters long with special equipment.
In case you have an old device having DB9 connectors on it, you will
find several options for conversions. Converters from other
standards like USB, Ethernet etc also enable you to make use of
your device on any computer.
Drawbacks of DB9 D-Subminiature Connectors
As the connectors are large, it becomes difficult to connect and
disconnect them in small spaces. The pins of these cables are
usually exposed so there are more chances for them to get
damaged or break. Although you can mate the connector without
any thumbscrew hardware, there are less chances that it will hold
on to the equipment. On the other hand, if you use thumbscrews,
the connector will take a long time to get plugged and unplugged.
And as mentioned before, serial communication is a slow and old
way of exchanging data. So the speed is quite slow when there are
cables of long length. This also causes breaks in communication and
makes the software of PC freeze. Due to such issues, other
standards gained more popularity over DB9 cables.
But this in no way means that DB9 connectors aren’t used. If you
use right angle adapters, they can help you solve the tight space
issue without causing any damage to the connector. You can attach
the connectors with D-Subminiature plug and jack covers which can
protect pins from getting damaged when not being used.
Before you make a buy for DB9 connectors, make sure you
precisely know what your needs are. If there is a smart alternative
for DB9 cables, you can go for that as well!
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