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Which 3 and 4 pin waterproof connectors are compatible with each other?

Discussion in 'Computers, Cabling & Other Miscellaneous Hardware' started by Jerry-Rigs, Jan 31, 2014.

  1. Jerry-Rigs

    Jerry-Rigs New Elf

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    I have Rainbow Floods from Seasonal Entertainment and I have 10W RGB LED Floods (CCF's?) from LOR. Both designs use round, 4 pin, keyed, screw seal waterproof connectors. I know that Ray Wu sells a similar design as well. Does any know which, if any, are compatible with each other?

    I want to commit to only one style/size so I can reduce my layout headaches. Ideally, all my pixels would be 3 pin and my dumb elements would be 4 pin. That way I wouldn't risk confusing the two.

    I'm looking for and answer reasonably soon so I can be sure to make SE's pre-sale.

    I'm open to thoughts and advice.
     
  2. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

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    The best way to check this is to measure the plugs face as I know there are 2 different sizes that Ray sells 13.5mm and 15mm
     
  3. tonylights

    tonylights Guest

    I don't know if you have already had your question answered. I have bought both ray Wu 's 13.5 MM amd 15 mm Black connectors and then recently the 10 w RGB spots from Lor and that are not compatible. The LOR units are of a much smaller size,
    regards tonylights
     
  4. OP
    OP
    Jerry-Rigs

    Jerry-Rigs New Elf

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    I am looking suppliers for inexpensive, round, keyed, 3 & 4 conductor, IP67+ rated pigtails or similar connectors. "Keyed" means the connector has a mechanism to prevent incorrect alignment on joining. Different manufactures use different sizes and key types such that none are interchangeable. The suppliers I've ID'ed so far are: Ray Wu (RW), Light-O-Rama (LOR), and Seasonal Entertainment (SE). None of their connectors are interchangeable with each other.


    Standards are great. Everybody should have their own.




    LOR uses this type of connector with their 10w RGB floods. They do not sell the connectors although they said they could source them for me. They never got back to me. Scratch LOR.



    RW sells 13.5mm and 15mm with 3 and 4 conductor in black and white. If I read the specs right the wire gauge is .5mm squared which equates to about 20AWG. They are the least expensive.


    SE uses 4 conductor connectors on their products and perhaps 3 conductor on their pixel strings. They sell the 4 conductor style and say they will be selling the 3 conductors soon. They are changing from white to black. They are comparatively expensive. I don't know the wire gauge (I will check) but they use them on their Rainbow Floods which are not low power (they arc an RJ-45 connector)


    I haven't done all the math to figure out exactly the electrical specs I need but beefier (larger gauge, smaller gauge number) is better to avoid voltage drop. [font=verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif]I am targeting 18AWG for my cabling. I've sourced 100 & 1000 ft spools of 18AWG/4conductor at prices I'm wiling to pay. I really should try to do the math. Nah. Trial and error. Cheap suddenly becomes expensive. Never been there before.[/font]

    [font=verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif]RW's connectors are the right price, but I don't know if they are beefy enough. I trust SE's connector given they've been using it for a few years but, even at pre-sale prices, it is too expensive for me.[/font]

    [font=verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif]Given the run lengths of the pigtails, I can probably get away with lower gauge from RW and be fine.[/font]

    [font=verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif]Still thinking...[/font]
     
  5. OP
    OP
    Jerry-Rigs

    Jerry-Rigs New Elf

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    I used a wire stripper to check the gauge of the SE supplied pigtails I have. This is not the best tool for the job but it appears that the the wire gauge is about 18 or maybe even 20AWG. That's getting close to RW's gauge.

    Of course the real concern with connector pigtails is the connection mating and these solid.
     
  6. arw01

    arw01 Full Time Elf

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    I'll toss another in is the connectors at DIYLEDEXPRESS.COM


    And I have their pixabulb 3 wire pigtails and those are different again, smaller.


    Alan
     
  7. David_AVD

    David_AVD Bite my shiny metal ass!

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    If you have a micrometer to measure the individual strand's diameter, you can count the number of strands and use my calculator to work out the metric CSA.
     
  8. davrus

    davrus Silent Elf

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    I am starting the same journey. I have the same dilemma ... I also want to have one consistent type of pigtail.
    I find it strange that no-one has a pigtail with decent sized cable.
    At the moment, my idea is to go with Ray Wu's pigtails, and join them to a much thicker cable (probably 12AWG). My reasoning is that there will be only a small voltage drop over the short length of the pigtails, and the 12AWG cable will provide a longer distance for the same voltage drop of a shorter 18AWG or 20AWG cable. The total voltage drop being the sum of the drop over the two pigtail cables, plus the drop over the 12AWG, giving a longer distance than if everything was 20AWG.
    The decider for me on which pigtails to use was to buy the Ray Wu 2811 strings that have the same pigtails as used by the "plug and play" E682.
    http://www.aliexpress.com/store/product/100pcs-DC12V-input-IP68-WS2811-LED-pixel-light-all-black-wire-input-end-with-2m-long/701799_1603691720.html
    I am presuming that SanDevices did their homework and chose a good pigtail.
     
  9. battle79

    battle79 Full Time Elf

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    I use the 4pin raywu and for power injection I use 2pins for positive and 2pins for ground. When using for data I use 1 for data and positive and 2 for ground. Need to ensure you label everything though.

    Using the second for ground seemed to extend the distance I could get till the first pixel. My guess is I'm getting a better Ground reference for the data signal.

    Regards,
    Rowan
     
  10. damona

    damona Full Time Elf

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  11. Greg.Ca

    Greg.Ca Apprentice Elf

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    Rowan, you are a smart man. I do exactly the same. I double up on the ground. --Greg--
     
  12. Bill Ellick

    Bill Ellick Full Time Elf

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    You will find quite a few different sizes out there for these connectors.

    The Chinese "tend" to use 18 awg wire on many of theirs although 20 awg is fairly common now to see on the light strings and connectors as they push to save a penny here and there! You can also find that you can end up getting both size wires in a single shipment unless you are careful.
    Sorry for not doing metric as it is early here in the states and I haven't had my coffee yet!

    The "pinout" of the connectors from China is something else to watch out for as they can come made up differently (more of a problem with 4 or more wires). The Chinese connectors can also come with different color wires in the cable as they do not tend to hold to standards that close and will use whatever they have (another reason to spec closely).

    It is tough to get the Chinese to use any wire larger than 18 awg due to varying reasons from them such as "you no need larger wire for lights", "too hard to solder pins on larger wire", "it make harder on assembly line to change size", and others.

    It does "seem" that for the most part, the 13.5 mm and the 15 mm size connectors are a larger portion of the "standard sized" going at the moment although everybody has their own personal favorites.

    I too agree with the statement "Standards are great. Everybody should have their own" as it does make things tougher to find what you want. Sadly making things like these somewhat propriatory is the way that it makes it all the harder on the folks who are just trying to make a display run and the business just trying to have a gimmick to use to lock you into their one of a kind connector instead of allowing you to find these anywhere.

    About the only thing that works best is to buy a quantity of the same connector leads at one time and then you have them for future needs but can be expensive as well as this hobby grows quickly into a monster as you get the "bug" top do more and more!

    I would personally "spec out" which ones you want with Ray or another Chinese manufacturer and get the specs "formalized" and on paper as to exactly how your connectors will be built and with what size wire and such you want. Buy a reasonable quantity for your immediate needs and maybe some extra spares and then later you can always purchase more of the "same" if you need too.
     

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