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USB extension is always helpful when you don't want to have individual devices right next to your Mac or PC. Even if you want to use existing devices in the office, home office or co-working space, but sit too far away, extension cables, USB repeaters or a USB hub are ideal. But when is which solution is worthwhile and which products are recommended? I want to answer exactly these questions in this guide.
First of all, the individual options for extending the USB cable should be explained. Perhaps you will then find out whether you would prefer to use a longer USB cable, a repeater or a USB hub. Corresponding recommendations are then listed below.
It's been almost three years since that question last answered on this page has been. Then as now, it is true that passive USB cable maximum 5 meters long should be. With longer cables, the quality of which may not be outstanding, it can lead to very slow transmissions, to interruptions of the same or to data errors.
As with WLAN, one takes care of it Repeater for amplifying an existing signal. With regard to a USB connection, it is not (necessarily) a stand-alone device. Rather, they are common active USB cablewhich amplify the input signal. This means that distances of more than 5 meters can be bridged. But repeaters are not only worthwhile if you want to use 10 meters of USB cables, they can also ensure faster transmissions and fewer data errors up to 5 meters.
As already mentioned in the post linked above, they are suitable USB hubs as connection points between two USB cables eachwhen it comes to their extension. In general, however, a USB hub is a distributor that ensures, for example, that a keyboard, mouse, one or two devices for charging their batteries, etc. can be connected to a USB port on a Mac or PC. USB hubs serve as connectors between USB cables for distances of up to 30 meters ( ).
In addition to the possible costs and effort of cabling (for example, bridging 30 meters requires six cables of 5 meters each and five USB hubs), you should also take a look at the connected device. If you just want to connect a printer, it doesn't have to be the most expensive solution. Even with temporary problems, simple cables and hubs may be sufficient.
But if you want to find a long-term solution and / or connect more complex devices and systems, then you should not only use simple and inexpensive cables and hubs. Instead, active USB cables, i.e. USB repeaters, are more suitable. Especially when you feed a NAS or another RAID system with data you shouldn't skimp on the quality of the data transmission!
In order not to drag out this guide unnecessarily, I would like to present the products to be recommended in the form of a list. If you are missing important information, you can click the corresponding link to access further information on the product page:
There are different approaches to bridging longer distances between computer and USB device or hub and device. Not only the costs, but also the duration of the solution and the quality of the data transmission must be taken into account when making a decision. If you have any questions on the topic, please use the comment function!
After graduating from high school, Johannes completed an apprenticeship as a business assistant specializing in foreign languages. But then he decided to research and write, which resulted in his independence. For several years he has been working for Sir Apfelot, among others. His articles include product introductions, news, manuals, video games, consoles, and more. He follows Apple keynotes live via stream.