Ever hear of this cable?



After having some difficulties with my BTC drive, this was their response:

Please check to see if you are using 40 pins/ 80 pins IDE cable. For your DVDRW best performance, you should ultra ATA 33/66 IDE cable. You can purchase this from computer store such as Fry’s Electronics Store.

Is this true for any drive, or just BTC?

Can anyone please clarify.


This is not just for BTC drives but for all drives, 80 wire cables are uneeded for drives that run at ATA33 or lower but its always best to use them anyway.


So it’s better to use 40/80 or 33/66?

I’m a little confused. I don’t even know what all these pins are.


the older IDE cables are 40 wire 40 pin and can be used with drives up to ATA33, the newer cables are 80 wire 40 pin and are used for drives all the way up to ATA133, you can use older cables on newer drives but they will only run in ATA33 mode, the 80 wire cables are better shielded and that means a slightly better signal thats why i use them on drives that dont actually need them.

older cables = 40 wire 40 pin, transfer rate up to ATA33 or 33 mb’s sec
newer cables = 80 wire 40 pin, transfer rate up to ATA133 or 133mb’s sec


You may experience problems using an 80 wire (ATA66+) cable on an interface that does not support anything higher than ATA33 - if the extra lines are not properly grounded, then they will increase the crosstalk between the lines, instead of reducing it.


How do I know what’s in my computer (it doesn’t say anywhere on the cable)?
I got a computer with an ECS k7s5a motherboard. From what I can tell from internet ressources it has a ATA/100 IDE controller. Is that ultra-ATA?
Is there any way to tell what kind of cable I have? Mine is the typical grey, flat and red line on the side cable.
Will be buying my first DVD burner next week, but would love to have it run smoothly from day one.


Ok. I did some research and it turns out that my two harddrives are running on a 80 wire cable and my DVD-rom and CD-burner on a 40 wire cable. And unfortunately, my motherboard will only support that one cable (if I interpet this correctly: PIO mode 4, DMA mode 2, Ultra DMA 33/66/100). Guess I’ll just have to wait and see how it goes as it seems some ppl are able to get good performance from 40 wire cables. Would there be any benifits from putting in a 80 wire cable if the mobo doesn’t support it?



A motherboard that doesn’t support a cable? :rolleyes:
Sorry, but your motherboard surely will support the new cables! Use one like this:

Did research too: Your motherboard has an “Ultra DMA/100 SIS Dedicated EIDE Controller”, that means it supports Ultra ATA 100 which is fast enough.

Please make sure that you are using the latest drivers for your motherboard. Download them here: http://www.sis.com/download/
Choose: Chipset Software - IDE Driver - and then your OS (Windows XP e.g.)


What you are saying makes sense. I just read somewhere that ultra-ATA is symbolized with a blue collor and my motherboard has only one blue and one black IDE socket. So when the 80 wire cable was in the blue I figured that the 40 wire in the black socket isn’t possible to change. But I can definately accept if they are both “high” speed.

I guess this is the kind of stupidity you should sweep under the carpet and never speak of (and certainly don’t post on a forum) :wink:

For illustration (the big ones being for RAM):


Both ports on a motherboard will be the same speed - it seems common for only the primary to be given a blue socket though - I suppose the penny saved (I guess black is cheaper) adds up.


On my Asus, it’s the same: One channel blue (primary) and the other black.
But I doubt the reasen is the price…

It’s a common method to make clear which channel is the primary without reading the manual or searching the little letters on the board itself.