Last updated: 22 August 2005

Autostar Cable Problems

Sent:	Sunday, August 21, 2005 09:05:44
From: (
Through various returns and replacements, I have two Autostars and three
of the special coiled Autostar cables.  I use a standard Cat 5 Ethernet
extension cable to allow using the Autostar at a distance from the
scope.  As I'm sure you know, you can not use an Ethernet cable directly
because of the connector wiring, so I have an RJ45 inline coupler
between the Autostar cable and the Ethernet cable.

In this configuration, I have had problems with two of the Autostar
cables.  Specifically, when they "click" into position in the coupler
they do not make full electrical contact.  The same thing happens when I
connect them to an RJ45 jack I have wired to a battery pack I use for
power when I install an update with ASU and don't want to move the scope
to the computer.

I found that by pushing the connector into the jack after it is already
locked, it works.  On close inspection of the connectors and cables, it
is apparent that there are minor differences.  In fact, one of the
cables has a different color coding for the wires.  All this leads me to
believe Meade uses various suppliers for their cables, connectors and
the RJ45 jacks in the scope and Autostar, and not all are identical.

There are several parameters that can vary between supposedly identical
components, e.g. the depth of the contacts in the connector, and the
angle of the contact wires in the jack.  Also, as shown in the attached
photo, the design of the face of the connector that determines how far
it enters the jack before locking into place.  These are very small
things, but together they can affect the quality of the electrical

I've rambled long enough. As I said in an earlier email, your site keeps my brain from vegetating, and my whole career has been understanding how things work, and why they don't when they should. Best Regards, Mike Hogan

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