# What is the difference between these two cable connectors?

#### jerseyguy1996

Joined Feb 2, 2008
206
I am looking at these two cable assemblies:

http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/FCI/65801-005LF/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMsVSejJL%252b66UaUjgkB84nHzuMN0q834xSk%3d

http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/FCI/65801-105LF/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMsVSejJL%252b66UTbNFNwGeSqwMfvlKyrC3c0%3d

According to the datasheet here http://portal.fciconnect.com/Comergent//fci/drawing/65801.pdf, the only difference is that one says that termination is conventional and the other says that termination is ink. I don't know what that means. Does anyone here know what they are talking about?

#### MrChips

Joined Oct 2, 2009
21,043
Read the data sheet. The difference is indicated in NOTE 6.
Part -005 uses Conventional Termination.
Part -105 uses INK Termination.
(perhaps the way the cover crimps on to the ribbon cable.)

#### jerseyguy1996

Joined Feb 2, 2008
206
Read the data sheet. The difference is indicated in NOTE 6.
Part -005 uses Conventional Termination.
Part -105 uses INK Termination.
(perhaps the way the cover crimps on to the ribbon cable.)
I just didn't get what the difference was between Conventional and INK termination. I was hoping someone on here might know.

#### MrChips

Joined Oct 2, 2009
21,043
Sorry, I didn't notice the bottom bit of your post.

If I had to choose without knowing I would select -005 (Conventional).

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#### jerseyguy1996

Joined Feb 2, 2008
206
The difference is in the flat cable
The -005 connector is intended for application with flat cable having metallic ribbon conductors
The -105 is for flat cable having conductive ink conductors

Check out these two documents:
First the connector spec: http://portal.fciconnect.com/Comergent//fci/drawing/65801.pdf
That is perfect information. I am planning to just re-purpose some old ribbon cables from inside of an old computer so it looks like the conventional one will fit the bill.

#### colinb

Joined Jun 15, 2011
351
That is perfect information. I am planning to just re-purpose some old ribbon cables from inside of an old computer so it looks like the conventional one will fit the bill.
Hold on! I don't think these connectors will fit your PC ribbon cable. Most PC ribbon cables are 1.27 mm pitch so that they work in the double-row 2.54 mm IDC connectors. This connector is one row of 2.54 mm pitch. Check your measurements on your cable and on the connector drawing and see if it will work. I've re-used PC ribbon cables in other projects, but I either use Molex KK-100 crimp connectors, or the double-row IDC connectors as used in the PC.

#### jimkeith

Joined Oct 26, 2011
540
Hold on! I don't think these connectors will fit your PC ribbon cable. Most PC ribbon cables are 1.27 mm pitch so that they work in the double-row 2.54 mm IDC connectors. This connector is one row of 2.54 mm pitch. Check your measurements on your cable and on the connector drawing and see if it will work. I've re-used PC ribbon cables in other projects, but I either use Molex KK-100 crimp connectors, or the double-row IDC connectors as used in the PC.
True! This connector is for a 0.1" pitch flat-flex cable that is different from the typical 0.05" pitch ribbon cable.

#### colinb

Joined Jun 15, 2011
351
Oh! I didn't realize it's for FFC cable. That's a whole different story.

#### jerseyguy1996

Joined Feb 2, 2008
206
Hold on! I don't think these connectors will fit your PC ribbon cable. Most PC ribbon cables are 1.27 mm pitch so that they work in the double-row 2.54 mm IDC connectors. This connector is one row of 2.54 mm pitch. Check your measurements on your cable and on the connector drawing and see if it will work. I've re-used PC ribbon cables in other projects, but I either use Molex KK-100 crimp connectors, or the double-row IDC connectors as used in the PC.
Oh......crud........already submitted my mouser order How about this. If I take a piece of PC ribbon cable that has 10 conductors and feed it into this connector, won't it just tap every other conductor in the cable thereby still giving me a usable connection?

#### jerseyguy1996

Joined Feb 2, 2008
206
True! This connector is for a 0.1" pitch flat-flex cable that is different from the typical 0.05" pitch ribbon cable.
Okay I have no idea what I am doing. When I go on mouser they have so many different connector options that it is mind boggling. What is the difference between flat-flex cable and the computer PC ribbon cable? When I do a google search for FFC cable I see images of cable that looks exactly like PC ribbon cable. What gives?

#### colinb

Joined Jun 15, 2011
351
Flat flex cable (FFC), often (though incorrectly) also called flexible printed circuit (FPC), is a very flat cable, is unlike insulation-displacement connector (IDC) cable (aka ribbon cable) because it does not consist of discrete wires you can separate and strip, but instead is a flat plastic substrate with flat conductive strips. It is very often used in LCD modules to connect to the microcontroller system, but for many other purposes as well. It can be very compact, often with 0.5 mm to 1.0 mm pitch, and it's nice because you don't have to install IDC connectors as you would with regular ribbon cable.

I like to use the 50 mil (1.27 mm) pitch PC ribbon cable (e.g., IDE or floppy drive cables) for prototyping -- you can split off however many conductors you need to make a 5-conductor ribbon cable, 8-conductor, etc.

I use the Molex KK-100 connector kit, you can get it from Mouser for about $50 including a crimp tool, and this is great for making connectors with a smaller number of contacts. The main downside is that it's time-consuming to crimp many contacts, and that is where the IDC connectors (like the real IDE and floppy connectors) are convenient. Most of the IDC connectors you see on Mouser etc. say they require$500 to \$1000 crimp tools, but I use some basic hand tools to do it OK.

P.S. I can't believe the rip-off that most of the crimp tools are. For every of the thousands of variations of connector types, they want you to buy a new hundred-or-thousand dollar tool or die or something. The world of connectors is really hard to navigate for the small-scale solo designer or hobbyist.

#### jerseyguy1996

Joined Feb 2, 2008
206
It is very likely that I am going to forget the connector all together and just solder the darned things directly to the board.

#### jimkeith

Joined Oct 26, 2011
540
Okay I have no idea what I am doing. When I go on mouser they have so many different connector options that it is mind boggling. What is the difference between flat-flex cable and the computer PC ribbon cable? When I do a google search for FFC cable I see images of cable that looks exactly like PC ribbon cable. What gives?
I can understand your frustration with the vast selection--I hate it too!
Flat-flex cables are very thin and have a variety of applications such as keypad cables and laptop interconnections where thickness is a real issue. Printers use them to connect to the printhead that is constantly in motion. Generally flat-flex cables push into a ZIF (zero insertion force) socket, but the one you selected is for adapting the cable to a 0.1" pitch pin socket that could plug onto a SIP pin header. What is doubly confusing is the connector sketch posted by FCI that makes it appear that it is a 0.05" pitch cable--it does not look like that at all!

I generally use double row IDC sockets for connecting to 0.05" ribbon cable of the more common variety.

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