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Building the XXP1541 Serial+Parallel Y Cable

Parts needed:XXP1541 cable parts

Visit the ports, parts & pinouts page for a descriptions of all the above parts.

Tools needed:

This is called an "X serial-parallel" cable because it combines the X1541 and the XP parallel cables. See the X1541 cable page for the summary of the X1541 cable limitations. The XXP1541 allows for high speed transfers but you must have the C= parallel option installed in your disk drive in order to take advantage of the parallel portion of the cable. Like the X1541, it is a simple cable to make as it requires no extra components like diodes or transistors, and is restricted to working under DOS. It is not recommended to build this cable due to its limited usefulness and its requirement for older parallel ports. Instead, look at the XM1541, XMP1541, XA1541 or XAP1541 for better options. This cable works with Star Commander, but not MNIB/NIBTOOLS as the X1541 portion is not supported.

If you're not sure this is the right cable for you, see my cable picking guide to check.

X1541 cable copyright Leopoldo Ghielmetti, 1992
XP cable copyright Joe Forster/STA, 1997

Step 1: Prep the DIN6 plug and attach the wires

Step 2: Prep the DB25 connector and attach the DIN6 wires

Step 3: Prep the DB15 connector and attach the wires

Note that there is no ground line on this half of the cable. This portion of the cable relies on the ground from the serial cable portion.. Inclusion of a ground line here could cause a ground loop condition, something which must be avoided. Also, the parallel port add-on on the C= disk drive doesn't contain a ground line for this very reason.

Step 4: Prep the other end of the 8 conductor wire and attach to the DB25

Step 5: Check the cable

Cable pinout chart

DIN6 (male)
DB15 (male)
DB25 (male)
2 (GND)
18-25 (GND)
3 (ATN)
4 (CLK)
5 (DATA)
16 (INIT)
1 (PB0)
2 (DATA0)
2 (PB1)
3 (DATA1)
3 (PB2)
4 (DATA2)
4 (PB3)
5 (DATA3)
5 (PB4)
6 (DATA4)
6 (PB5)
7 (DATA5)
7 (PB6)
8 (DATA6)
8 (PB7)
9 (DATA7)
18 to 25 shorted

Step 6: Finish the cable. Mount the DB ends in their hoods

XXP1541 schematic

Schematics drawn using ExpressPCB, a free and excellent solution which also supports PC board layout editing.

Email the author: Peter Schepers | Last updated: Mar 17, 2009