Reply
Correspondent
ps56k
Posts: 658
Registered: ‎10-24-2009
0 Kudos

Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

[ Edited ]

There are lots of discussions concerning the special charging micro-USB connector and cable for the Nook Color.

 

Here's the deal - the normal USB port or charger produces 5v @ 500ma.  The Nook Color AC adapter can produce 5v @ 1.9A (1900ma).  Actually, any charger will work ok, it just takes longer to charge the battery...  the more "amps" the faster the charging rate; bigger bucket filling the bathtub.

 

To handle the extra current flowing to the Nook Color,  the special micro-USB connector is "longer" and has an extra 12 pins at the tip,  that go deeper into the special micro-USB connector on the Nook Color.

 

A normal micro-USB cable can still be used for data transfers or slow/trickle charging,  since it will only go in the normal depth and not make contact with the deeper special pins.

 

Here's a photo of the special extra long micro-USB connector....

Notice the extra 12 pins at the tip - vs just the normal 5 pins...

That is why this cable will NOT work charging other micro-USB devices,

but the charger works just great when used with other normal USB charging cables.

 

So - when on vacation or travelling - I just bring the heavy duty Nook Color AC adapter, the special micro-USB cable, a normal/standard micro-USB cable,  a mini-USB cable, and finally an ipod/ipad USB cable..... one heavy duty AC adapter for USB & all the different cables.

 

http://forum.xda-developers.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=603499&d=1306026074

 



 

Frequent Contributor
cokids
Posts: 116
Registered: ‎12-16-2010
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

So, I have to have this special cord to charge properly? Why then when I use the cord that CAME with the Nook, does it not charge properly....as fast as stated?  I've only had my Nook color for about 2 months and already the cord appears to be worn out! Come on! Surely these things are more durable than that!

 

Beth

Wordsmith
daenas
Posts: 235
Registered: ‎05-28-2011
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector


cokids wrote:

So, I have to have this special cord to charge properly? Why then when I use the cord that CAME with the Nook, does it not charge properly....as fast as stated?  I've only had my Nook color for about 2 months and already the cord appears to be worn out! Come on! Surely these things are more durable than that!

 

Beth


The plastic part of the usb connector, where the glowing "n" is, actually broke on mine.  Not sure how it happened, but just broke off.  I have scotch tape around it now.  Not so pretty, nor durable.  LOL  I should call to get it replaced come to think of it.

Distinguished Bibliophile
roustabout
Posts: 3,670
Registered: ‎03-31-2011
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

@cokids:  Sadly no, the cables aren't better-made than that.  Fitting that many pins into the opening makes it more likely that some will fail, and the number of failed cables, chargers, etc. up until now is impressive.

 

You can pick up a replacement cable that will charge your NC, slowly, from most places that carry cell phones. 

 

I found that the one I picked up also failed pretty quickly - I think these cables, both the standard USB ones and the NC charging ones, are cheaply made commodity items.  My thought had been to have one for charging and one for communicating to my computers. 

 

If you bought your NC at BN, they're pretty good about replacing them.  Best Buy is good about it as well, at least one report indicates - but it's useful to go to the place you actually made your purchase if you bought it in a physical store. 

"no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution.
Inspired Wordsmith
yocalif
Posts: 817
Registered: ‎01-03-2011
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

As stated in more than a few threads,  because of the factors mentioned above, it is absolutely essential that you gently plug the connector into your NC..  Forcing it can damage and mis-align these pins causing failure or intense heat, etc.  It is a flimsy connector.   I can't tell you how many times that it won't easily slip in, and I have to back off and carefully watch what I'm doing until it connects and seats easily.

 

In addition, reading or using your NC while charging can cause problems.  The flimsy connector just isn't built for that kind of stress.  In reading about laptops, the number one failure is the power cord or connector on the laptop.  Next is the usb connectors, people forget about being plugged in and these connectors get tweaked due to cords at sharp angles, and banging when connect to power or usb.  The same is now obviously true of the NC.

Inspired Wordsmith
donc13
Posts: 1,064
Registered: ‎04-22-2010

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector


ps56k wrote:

There are lots of discussions concerning the special charging micro-USB connector and cable for the Nook Color.

 

Here's the deal - the normal USB port or charger produces 5v @ 500ma.  The Nook Color AC adapter can produce 5v @ 1.9A (1900ma).  Actually, any charger will work ok, it just takes longer to charge the battery...  the more "amps" the faster the charging rate; bigger bucket filling the bathtub.

 

To handle the extra current flowing to the Nook Color,  the special micro-USB connector is "longer" and has an extra 12 pins at the tip,  that go deeper into the special micro-USB connector on the Nook Color.

 

A normal micro-USB cable can still be used for data transfers or slow/trickle charging,  since it will only go in the normal depth and not make contact with the deeper special pins.

 

Here's a photo of the special extra long micro-USB connector....

Notice the extra 12 pins at the tip - vs just the normal 5 pins...

That is why this cable will NOT work charging other micro-USB devices,

but the charger works just great when used with other normal USB charging cables.

 

So - when on vacation or travelling - I just bring the heavy duty Nook Color AC adapter, the special micro-USB cable, a normal/standard micro-USB cable,  a mini-USB cable, and finally an ipod/ipad USB cable..... one heavy duty AC adapter for USB & all the different cables.

 

http://forum.xda-developers.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=603499&d=1306026074

 



 



I suggest you dig a bit deeper.   While a lot of what you say has been posted before and technically is "true" (longer connector, extra pins, etc.), a standard microUSB plug has FIVE pins and the shell for 6 "wires"....but the :A: end of the cable only has 4 connectors.    Power +, Power -, Data + and Data -

 

If you'll notice in your attached picture, there are only SIX wires going to the connector, so even if there are 12 "traces" on the connector, they only attach to 6 "wiper" pins.    Wiper pins are the bent metal "springs" that push against the fixed connector to create a connection.

 

Unlike network or phone plugs and sockets....where the wiper pins are in the socket and the flat traces are in the plug....in USB, the wiper pins are in the plug, and the fixed traces are in the socket.

 

And I would presume, but do NOT know, that the extra traces shown in your picture are simply there for redundancy and current carrying capability.

 

---------
Don
New User
SKjr
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎08-20-2011
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

You are very correct about the Micro connector.  Usually these things plug in easily to devices.  On the NC, a soft, easy touch is necessary to make it go in the hole properly.  Almost makes one think that the Micro socket or the Micro plug is defective.  However, after a few tries, I learned to "ease" it into the socket and if it meets any resistance, to back off and ease it in at a different angle.  Personally I think that Barns & Nobels could have put a better socket in this thing.  Or make charging a separate connector.

 

Wordsmith
doncr
Posts: 493
Registered: ‎12-29-2010
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector


SKjr wrote:

You are very correct about the Micro connector.  Usually these things plug in easily to devices.  On the NC, a soft, easy touch is necessary to make it go in the hole properly.  Almost makes one think that the Micro socket or the Micro plug is defective.  However, after a few tries, I learned to "ease" it into the socket and if it meets any resistance, to back off and ease it in at a different angle.  Personally I think that Barns & Nobels could have put a better socket in this thing.  Or make charging a separate connector.

 


What did they do on new the Nook Simple Touch?  Does it use this same goofy Nook Color cable to charge the device?

 

 

Correspondent
ps56k
Posts: 658
Registered: ‎10-24-2009
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

Most of the tablets with LCD screens have hearty batteries to light up the screens & run the fast CPUs.

 

To charge these batteries, it takes more than a simple USB charger - more like a laptop charger.

 

However, those ereaders with the e-ink screens don't have the same hungry power requirements,

so they don't need the "special charging adapters" like the Nook Color.

 

Distinguished Bibliophile
roustabout
Posts: 3,670
Registered: ‎03-31-2011
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

It uses a lower-current cable. 

 

Even more cheaply made than the NC cable is, but probably less prone to breaking. I can't see any spare leads in the headshell, and it will charge the NC, but slowly as a conventional USB cable will charge the NC. 

"no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution.
Nallia
Posts: 4,758
Topics: 125
Kudos: 3,238
Solutions: 4
Registered: ‎02-15-2010
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector


doncr wrote:

SKjr wrote:

You are very correct about the Micro connector.  Usually these things plug in easily to devices.  On the NC, a soft, easy touch is necessary to make it go in the hole properly.  Almost makes one think that the Micro socket or the Micro plug is defective.  However, after a few tries, I learned to "ease" it into the socket and if it meets any resistance, to back off and ease it in at a different angle.  Personally I think that Barns & Nobels could have put a better socket in this thing.  Or make charging a separate connector.

 


What did they do on new the Nook Simple Touch?  Does it use this same goofy Nook Color cable to charge the device?

 

 


No, it uses the same cable the N1E uses.

Contributor
mtdewed
Posts: 14
Registered: ‎08-26-2011
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

So can the NC cable be used with other chargers ... to charge a cell phone that has normal USB? Just the cable part?

 

I charge my phone a lot, and was wondering if I could use one with the computer, and one with the phone's charger.

Distinguished Bibliophile
roustabout
Posts: 3,670
Registered: ‎03-31-2011
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

The NC charging cable will pretty much only seat in an NC.  The extra pins at the tip get in the way if you try to insert into a normal USB socket on another device and prevent it from seating. 

 

I suspect it's not a good idea to try 'fast charging' another device using the transformer - the transformer puts out a lot more current than a normal USB cable is designed to carry, despite being pin-compatible on the transformer output side. 

"no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution.
Contributor
mtdewed
Posts: 14
Registered: ‎08-26-2011
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

I didn't want to fast charge it ... just use the cable part. But you're probably right. It probably wouldn't seat good.

 

Thanks

New User
a24kgoldphoto
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎02-01-2012
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

:smileymad: You seemingly do NOT understand the concept of how a potentially high current well regulated charger operates. The voltage on a USB charger is supposed to be REGULATED to 5 Volts DC. THIS determines the the charge current  to a fixed load I.E.. Your device. The input impedance (resistance) is( for all intents and purposes) FIXED  (it can vary higher as the battery charges reducing the charge current). It is basic OHMS LAW not metaphysical black magic... R=E/I...R=5v/1.9a... R= 2.632ohms... R=5v/.5a.... R= 10ohms. The other way is to regulate the maximum current of the power supply output at a given voltage.

There fore with proper design(possibly problematic)the potentially higher current charger will safely charge a lower current device. But a El-cheapo not fully regulated (most) low current wall wart's may potentially overheat/burn out with a high current device connected...

The only way to raise the charge current is to increase the wall wart's output voltage not a good idea... besides you would have to deconstruct the charger and modify it internally. not something I foresee you doing...

Inspired Wordsmith
MatthewH
Posts: 271
Registered: ‎05-20-2011
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

The best technical solution to the design challenge of charging an LCD device, which needs more power than standard USB can deliver for quick charging, is to do what many portable disk drives do: put two standard USB connectors on the product. One of those connectors carries both power and data, the other only carries power. Downside of this standard solution is mostly cost: the device and charger would each need two connectors, and two cables would be needed. For a device that will only be powered from a laptop (such as a portable disk drive that does not come with its own A/C brick and might be used in places where A/C is not available) there is no choice but use two standard USB ports. BN could have chosen the two-cable method, but probably were under intense cost pressure.
Remember: the big print giveth, the small print taketh away.
New User
JoeBobTheLlama
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎07-05-2011
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

i have an other microUSB but it doesn't sync. am I doing something wrong?

Correspondent
ps56k
Posts: 658
Registered: ‎10-24-2009
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector


JoeBobTheLlama wrote:

i have an other microUSB but it doesn't sync. am I doing something wrong?


hard to say -

Does the cable charge & show data with any other devices ?

 

Some cables and/or adapters/connector may only supply charging power without the data pins..

and some may do data, without the power pins.

New User
Chocolatefox
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎01-21-2012
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

Hi I know this topic is old but i've had problems with my NC charger for some time now and had to purchase at least three so far, finally today I called the store mngr myself and complained, she was very polite and  understanding as she have experienced the same problem and stated they were aware of the issues where the NC chargers were concerned, at the closing of our phone conversation she told me to come in and pick up a replacement at no cost..

Correspondent
ps56k
Posts: 658
Registered: ‎10-24-2009
0 Kudos

Re: Nook Color charger uses special micro-USB connector

I'm not sure what or why you bought a new charger - when it is pretty well known here that as you found out, if you take your charger & cable back to the BN store, they will "probably" give you a replacement.

 

I replaced mine once - when the connector end had trouble with the color leds - but charged fine.

It now shows "red" when un-connected, but the "yellow" and "green" appear ok when charging.

SO - for me - it works... even if not quite right -