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 Forum index » DIY Hardware and Software
3.5 Jack Plug/Socket woes
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AndyR1960



Joined: Feb 16, 2007
Posts: 287
Location: Manchester UK
Audio files: 5

PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 1:28 am    Post subject: 3.5 Jack Plug/Socket woes Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I'm at my wit's end here...

As many of you may know, I build my modules to the Eurorack format, using 3.5mm jack sockets.

The problem I have at the moment is that I've found some jack plugs (particularly the ones I've just purchased) just don't fit snuggly causing all kinds of havoc. I've heard a rumour that jack plugs from the US are slightly different to "eastern" manufactured ones (commonly available here in the UK), and that the end pin on US plugs are shaped differently, and fit correctly.

Can anybody confirm this, or am I just going loopy?

If anyone can point me to somewhere in the UK where I can purchase US plugs, I would be most grateful.
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andrewF



Joined: Dec 29, 2006
Posts: 1174
Location: australia
Audio files: 4

PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 5:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I can confirm it happens. I once bought a big pack of jacks which were too big for my 3.5mm sockets. You could get them in but it was not easy. Strangely they are perfect for a friends's ARP2500, where regular jacks are too loose.

Can't help you with sources, just you aint crazy
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Dave Kendall



Joined: May 26, 2007
Posts: 413
Location: England
Audio files: 3

PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 11:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Hi Andy.

There is a difference in types of socket, as well as jack. Several years back I did a bulk buy for me and a friend, of Cliff (doepfer-style) sockets. At the time there were two models; the old type - CL1384, and a slightly more expensive type - CL13841. In the latter, the tip connector was slightly bent inwards, so as to accomodate both types of jack - far eastern and US.
IIRC, new Cliff socket production only lists the CL1384, but it is actually the "bent connector" 13841 type. I don't know about Kobiconns, or other types of socket.
Hope this helps.... Smile

cheers,
Dave

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AndyR1960



Joined: Feb 16, 2007
Posts: 287
Location: Manchester UK
Audio files: 5

PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 10:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

@Dave - Ah, yes, the old Cliff sockets Rolling Eyes

My first modular used the dodgy ones, and I used the "Doepfer" screwdriver trick to bend the contacts down... trouble is, that it often rendered the switch side useless (when you pulled out the plug, the switch no longer made contact).

I've got to the point where I'm considering ditching the euroracks and rebuilding everything in Dotcom format, as there doesn't seem to be a problem when it comes to 6.3mm jacks - I'm just worried about the size my system will end up!
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yerpa58



Joined: Mar 08, 2008
Posts: 56
Location: Wisconsin
Audio files: 4

PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 8:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

This might have been mentioned here before. I think the problem stems from English/metric conversion. In the US, the standard guitar cord uses 1/4" plugs, and the old mini-jacks used 1/8" plugs.

3.5mm is approximately .138", which is quite a bit larger than .125" (1/8"). This means that a 1/8" plug will be sloppy in a 3.5mm jack.

On the other hand, 6.3mm is approximately .248", which is very close to .25" (1/4"), so a 1/4" plug will fit pretty well in a 6.3mm jack, and vice-versa.

A lot of discounters will use 3.5mm and 1/8" interchangeably, so the buyer must beware. Sometimes these same errors plague the Euro/US space programs too, so we are in good company!
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steffensen



Joined: Jul 11, 2012
Posts: 95
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Sat Jun 01, 2013 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Get some Kobiconn's or Erthenvar.
I use nothing else.
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