Captivate's MicroUSB Port - HUGE design flaw


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  1. barr08

    barr08 Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    Preemptive Edit: The cause of my problem IS NOT the sliding door. I am opening the door completely (feeling the "click") before attempting to connect the cable.

    Hey all,

    I just wanted to get some other people's opinions on this, as it isn't one of the flaws that is usually brought up when discussing this phone. In general, I am really liking this phone. I switched from an iPhone 4, and everything is working great (with the exception of spotty GPS coverage). I have one HUGE gripe though, and that's the phone's recessed microUSB port.

    I hate how the microUSB port is recessed, and isn't just flush with the top like every other phone. The provided USB cable works fine, but every other microUSB cable I try to use has a very flimsy connection because it doesn't fit all the way in. I'm sure most of us on this board, with our tendency to customize and power-use our beloved device, would normally get a number of microUSB cables to use with the phone - at work, in the car, at home, wherever. I bought 5 microUSB cables from monoprice, knowing this would be an issue. I can make a connection using the cables as long as nothing moves the phone whatsoever when it is connected. Therefor, any major work that needs to be done via a connection with a PC is a HUGE risk while using any 3rd party cable.

    Am I the only one who is really annoyed by this problem? Is there some extender I can buy that has a thinner microUSB port on one end and can be attached to any other MicroUSB cable?

    Thanks for reading!
     

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  2. BookLover

    BookLover Well-Known Member

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    Make sure that the door is open ALL THE WAY. You should feel a click when it's in place.

    All the cables I've purchased have worked.

    The only one that didn't was a mini-to-micro adapter that I bought from Radioshack.

    I subsequently purchased some adapters from Amazon, and those worked fine. Just the one from Radioshack was no good.
     
  3. barr08

    barr08 Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    Yeah this is the go-to solution whenever I see people on this board complaining that they can't connect via USB. I am definitely opening it all the way.

    Frankly, I am blown away that you don't have issues with this. Every microUSB cable I have tried has the same problem. Perhaps you and I have a different definition of what a firm, secure connection should be. I can make a successful connection, but any movement of the phone or cable causes a disconnection.

    Edit: For reference, here are the cables I am referring to: Monoprice microUSB cables, but I have had the same problem with other MicroUSB cables of unknown origin.

    [​IMG]

    The problem is that the girth of the connector is too big (the square black part around the actual metal part that you insert). The connector cannot be fully inserted into the port. I find this to be common among all 3rd party MicroUSB cables.

    Notice in the below picture how the black square part surrounding the actual microUSB connector is whittled down to a smaller size, so it can fit into the recessed MicroUSB port on the captivate. Every MicroUSB connector used with the Captivate needs to be fashioned like this, which is indeed a design flaw, as you can't use any MicroUSB cable with it, unless it is specifically designed for this device.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. BookLover

    BookLover Well-Known Member

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    We have the same definition, I assure you.

    With my RadioShack adapter, any movement of the phone would jostle loose the connector. (It looked like your first pic above). Returned it as soon as I got the other items below :)

    Other than the RadioShack adapter, the generic cables and other mini-micro-usb adapters I purchased, I've had no issues.

    This is the adapter I like, because it has a lanyard to keep it attached to the mini-USB cable so you can use either (kind of a 2 for 1, imo): Amazon.com: Motorola RAZR2 V8, V9, V9m, Q9h OEM Original Micro USB to Mini USB Adapter - SKN6252 (1 PIECE): Cell Phones & Accessories

    I've also bought some BB micro-USB cables from cellphoneshop.net. They fit with no issues.

    The iGo micro tip that I use on my car charger fits good as well.
     
  5. barr08

    barr08 Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    Just wanted to make sure ;)

    This looks promising. Just to be sure, this is for MiniUSB cables, right? Do you know of any solution where I could still use my MicroUSB cables? I'm not sure why they would make such an adapter, but it would certainly be helpful to my specific situation!
     
  6. Segfault

    Segfault Well-Known Member

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    Yea, I've noticed that I have to have the phone setup just right when I'm using my car charger, any tension on the cable and it will pull out enough that it won't charge. The problem seems worse with my bodyglove case since that makes the USB port even more recessed. I wouldn't call it a huge defect but its annoying. I don't have any problem charging with the cables that came with the phone though.
     
  7. barr08

    barr08 Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    Ditto. I suppose the real problem is that I don't want to have to limit what type of MicroUSB cable I can buy, as most/all other Android users don't have this issue. I travel a lot, and have a lot of friends/colleagues with MicroUSB chargers that I can't use because of this.

    Perhaps you are correct. I guess I was just so annoyed at first because I don't understand why anyone would design it this way. AFAIK, there isn't a huge problem with just having open MicroUSB ports that are flush with the phone, so the cover/recession seems unnecessary.
     
  8. ndfi79

    ndfi79 New Member

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    I have the same monoprice cable, I just shaved a little of the plastic off and it works fine.
     
  9. barr08

    barr08 Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    I was considering this. May I ask what type of tool you used to do this?
     
  10. glg

    glg Active Member

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    I haven't had any problems with other chargers. I have a work provided blackberry and my wife's feature phone (LG somethingorother) that both use microUSB as well. The blackberry one is usually in my office and goes with me on the road, my wife's lives in the kitchen and mine that came with the Captivate in the bedroom. I haven't had problems connecting any of those to my Captivate.
     
  11. frizzlefry

    frizzlefry Member

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    plantronic's micro usb cable works. it has a slimmer profile than most 3rd party micro usb cables out there.
     
  12. NorCal Einstein

    NorCal Einstein Well-Known Member

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    I've purchased probably 8+ MicroUSB cables from MonoPrice now. Yes, they don't quite fit as-is, but it takes a razor blade/knife and like 10 seconds of time to get them to fit.

    The Captivate doesn't have a design flaw when it comes to the MicroUSB port. It's a feature, not a bug...and if you couldn't figure out how to get around it given what you have, I have greater concerns...
     
  13. barr08

    barr08 Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    What you consider a feature, I consider a major design flaw, but to each his own I guess. Also, I don't remember ever saying that I have no idea how to get around this, I was simply asking for opinions.

    Obviously there are solutions (use a different cable, whittle away the excess plastic, etc.). The reason it's a design flaw is because these things need to be done in order to use many MicroUSB cables, whereas most phones don't need this extra step.

    Your cool message board sarcasm is very helpful here, though. Thanks for posting.
     
  14. ScuroRaven

    ScuroRaven Well-Known Member

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    I have several different cables and they all work fine. The one made for the mytouch works best
     
  15. barr08

    barr08 Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    I am surprised that so many of you have been able to use different 3rd party MicroUSB cables successfully. For these cables, does the small plastic part fit all the way in, or is the metal part longer?
     
  16. Rardac

    Rardac Active Member

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    Yes, I find the micro-usb an annoyance as well. Works well when the phone is just sitting there on the desk, but often a problem in the car. There needs to be some kind of clamp to hold the thing in place.

    One other note: AT&T sells micro-usb cables that work for charging only...no data transfer. WTF!?
     
  17. rfound

    rfound Well-Known Member

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    The micro usb cables usually just have a huge chunk of extra rubber around the connector. Shave that off with a knife and forget it.

    This is WAAAAAY less of a big deal than the fine whittling work required to get headphones to connect to a 1st gen iphone. (Every stereo-mini-jack cord I own has been whittled down to the bare minimum... funny really)

    I think some connector modification is a small price to pay for having the closing door.
     
  18. barr08

    barr08 Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    Perhaps, but what advantage does the door add? Do MicroUSB ports have a big problem with getting debris in them? This is my first MicroUSB device, so I don't see why the door is so important.
     
  19. NorCal Einstein

    NorCal Einstein Well-Known Member

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    Charge only cables generally have pins 2 and 3 connected together which generally allow a device to charge at 5V - 1000mA. Data transfer cables do not have pins 2 and 3 connected, and generally charge at 5V - 500mA.

    Data Transfer cables are dual purpose, charge only cables are not.

    ---
    And barr, no problem! My pleasure to post! ;) Anytime you need advice on things like fitting a square peg in a round hole, and how to make it work with a hacksaw, let me know. I'm available via email, PM, IRC.
     
  20. rfound

    rfound Well-Known Member

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    Well, All connectors do... the door keeps the pocket lint out of it.
     
  21. b534202

    b534202 Member

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    I got a ebay ship from china 2 for $1 special and they work fine. The metal part is definitely longer than your picture's though.
     
  22. mnemonicj

    mnemonicj Well-Known Member

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    All of the cables I bought have the Samsung name written on the transformers. I purchased 2 car chargers and 2 extra home chargers and I have not had any issues with the connection. Most of the time, you really get what you pay for.
     
  23. BookLover

    BookLover Well-Known Member

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    I have two of them and they work great!

    Yes they convert your minis into micro connections that fit the Captivate and any other devices that need micro USB connections.
     
  24. sremick

    sremick Well-Known Member

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    Just another person here who bought several of those Monoprice cables. The rubber molding is soft and a few seconds tapering the connector was all it took for a perfect fit. Can't beat the price, so well worth the few moments of manual labor customizing them.
     
  25. kaepos

    kaepos Active Member

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    To further expound :)

    Pocket lint and other debris can actually short out the contacts if there's enough of it and then you'd have a really big problem. I don't mind the door just for that, but it is an annoyance I'm willing to live with.
     

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