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  #1  
Old 02-11-2018, 01:05 AM
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Lightbulb How To: Make RGB Extension Cables / Repair RGB Fan Connectors

One challenge that I've had with my RGB fans is placement of the RGB Fan Hubs. This is especially challenging in a large case (such as mine) and exacerbated by a desire for some manner of cable management - which means that cables cannot take the shortest, straightest path between point A and point B.

Extensions could help with this. A lot. Sometimes just an extra 30cm or so would be more than enough. But while the RGB strips come with extension and connector cables, the RGB fans do not. I've looked and extension cables can be bought at ModDIY ... $9.99 for a measly 10cm. That's less than 4 in.! Those cables are so short that it's laughable.

1: Connectors
The Corsair RGB Fans use a Molex 50-57-9404 4 circuit female socket connector. This is available from DigiKey for $0.27/each. These will connect to a Molex 70107-0003 4 circuit male pin housing connector and available for 0.57/ea.
The connector for the cable between the Lighting Node Pro/Commander Pro RGB ports and the RGB Fan Hub uses Molex 50-57-9403 female socket connector on both ends. For this cable, only 2 of the 3 connectors are filled. Pin 1 (where the arrow is on the connector; this is +5V power) is not connected on either side. This is the same connector that is used by the RGB LED Strips (except pin 1 is connected for this). If you do wish to make your own RGB LED Strip extension, the other end will be a Molex 70107-0002 3 circuit male pin housing connector.

2: Pins
The connectors are only one part of the equation. You also need the pins. The cables are crimped to the pins and then the pins inserted into the connectors. For the female socket connector, you need Molex 16-02-0102 female crimp connector (0.15) (Thanks to BobKabob for figuring this out ... this was essential in getting me going in the right direction.) On the other side, this will connect to a Molex 16-02-0114 male crimp terminal (0.25 / ea).

All told, the connectors and the pins for a single cable come to a whopping $2.24!

Note that these connectors and pins can also be used to repair RGB fan connectors if you've managed to disconnect the connector from the cable.

3: Wiring
The Corsair cables are 24 AWG twisted strand cables and look like they are probably tin; I doubt aluminum and it certainly isn't copper. Maybe tinned copper? Fortunately, 24 AWG wiring is really, really easy to come by; it's everywhere. That said, you can get cables that look very, very much like the stock Corsair cables from ModDIY. I also had some RGB 5050 extension cables laying around that I don't use anymore because Asus Aura is sooo 2016 ... while copper (so lower resistance), they are also 24 AWG. Here's another thought ... Cat 5 ethernet cables use 8 24 AWG cables. This means that, potentially, you could have a single extension cable for 2 fans! Oh, the possibilities are endless.

4: Tools
You'll want a crimping tool for these. Yeah, you could probably use needlenose pliers and get it done but the results would likely be less than ideal. Search for "Molex Crimping Tool" ... these are different from other crimping tools for larger gauge wire. You'll also want a precision wire stripper that will cleanly strip 24 AWG wire. These, of course, are reusable.

From there ... you strip and crimp, strip and crimp ... then slide the crimped connectors in to the housing. The biggest thing that you need to be careful of is to make sure that the wires are connected to the correct cables (straight through connection).

Parts Listings:

Fan Extension Cable
QtyPartComments
1Molex 50-57-94044 circuit Female Socket Connector
1Molex 70107-00034 circuit Male Socket Connector
4Molex 16-02-0102Female Crimp Connector
4Molex 16-02-0114Male Crimp Connector
14 wire, 24 AWGCable

-----------

Fan Hub Connector
*Note: Only connect pins 2 & 3. Pin 1 should be disconnected. Pin 1 is marked on the female socket connector with an arrow
QtyPartComments
2Molex 50-57-94033 circuit Female Socket Connector
4Molex 16-02-0102Female Crimp Connector
12 wire, 24 AWGCable

-----------

RGB LED Strip Extension
QtyPartComments
1Molex 50-57-94033 circuit Female Socket Connector
1Molex 70107-00023 circuit Male Socket Connector
3Molex 16-02-0102Female Crimp Connector
3Molex 16-02-0114Male Crimp Connector
13 wire, 24 AWGCable

YouTube video walking through the process of making these cables:

And yes, I have now successfully made an RGB Fan Cable extension as well as repaired an LL fan that had the connector detached!

Some results:
RGB 5050 (Asus Aura Sync) cable. Before and after:


Using the custom extension cable with repaired LL-120


Cat 5e Cable, Double Fan Extension cable (If you look closely, you can see the Cat 5e markings too!)


Using the Cat 5e Double Fan Extension Cable with 2 LL 120's
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Last edited by DevBiker; 08-11-2018 at 01:35 AM. Reason: Added parts listing table
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  #2  
Old 02-11-2018, 02:28 AM
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Brilliant guide dude...
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Old 02-13-2018, 09:10 AM
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impressed with the multiple in one option.. would certainly cut down on the FSM around the hubs.
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Old 02-13-2018, 06:33 PM
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You can additionally run two fans from one connector as well. I ended up splicing two fans each into one connector with some extra pins I had from my order and ended up running a push/pull config on my rad. My rad has 6 fans on it with the intake and exhaust fan on each channel going to the same port on the lighting hub.


Pins doubled up in the hub


Synced fans!

Last edited by BobKabob; 02-13-2018 at 06:37 PM. Reason: Fixing pics
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Old 02-13-2018, 07:04 PM
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Nice! I've also been thinking about how to do custom cables that, say, have 3 ML fans on one port that you configure like an HD fan. This actually gives some cool effects across the fans.

Now that we have all of the pieces, there's a lot of interesting stuff that can be done with some wire cutters, wire strippers and crimpers.
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Old 03-14-2018, 03:15 PM
Krash3470 Krash3470 is offline
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How did you add two wires to 1 pin so that you can 2 fans run off one connector? Is a single pin large enough to fit two 24 awg wires? What strand size is the wire you used? I am looking to do this project for myself and there are many options from a wire stand point in the 24 awg. Thanks in advance!
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  #7  
Old 03-14-2018, 03:23 PM
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While I've not done it, you should be able to fit two wires into one pin without difficulty. There are, however, two notes of caution:
1) one of those cables is a return data signal. Now, apparently that's not an issue with his setup but it could be an issue.
2) Current rating - you do have limited current and, especially with LL fans, you have the possibility of exceeding the rated 5V current for a SATA connection (4.5A). How much current is actually used by the fans depends on the lighting effect, with pure white consuming the most current.
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Old 06-07-2018, 01:56 PM
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Anyone know where to find the RGB strip connectors (70107-002). Minimum order through DigiKey for these is 1500 units lol.
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Old 06-07-2018, 02:02 PM
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DigiKey's search is messed up.
Here it is: https://www.digikey.com/product-deta...2534-ND/210969.
No minimum required.
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Old 06-10-2018, 02:17 AM
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Default Great Post wish it existed

Great post friend! Seems crazy that Corsair hasn't either made or responded with a simple extension cable. Don't mean in the least to be negative just seems like something that should already exist?!?!

I also have this issue and had to forgo using LED Corsair fans since the pin extension was not available. I wanted to place the fans on the back panel of the case which is removable so I wanted 8-12in at least so I could comfortably remove the panel without fear of ripping out the Corsair link.

Simply brilliant post hope it helps others till a reasonable work around is available.
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Old 06-10-2018, 11:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clubman1 View Post
Great post friend! Seems crazy that Corsair hasn't either made or responded with a simple extension cable. Don't mean in the least to be negative just seems like something that should already exist?!?!
I have mixed feelings on this ... I think the challenge, from a Corsair side, is whether it's worth the effort and cost to productize it when there is likely an extremely limited market. But yeah ... it's sometimes challenging with all of the wires and placement, especially in large cases. But this is also needed info for fixing fans if something happens that the wires get ripped out ... which I've had happen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by clubman1 View Post
I also have this issue and had to forgo using LED Corsair fans since the pin extension was not available. I wanted to place the fans on the back panel of the case which is removable so I wanted 8-12in at least so I could comfortably remove the panel without fear of ripping out the Corsair link.
Completely understand. I have them on side panels as well and that extra length is absolutely necessary. And combining them into a Cat 5 cable makes them easier to handle too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by clubman1 View Post
Simply brilliant post hope it helps others till a reasonable work around is available.
Thanks! I've also made some for folks on a one-off basis. I have all the parts ...
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Old 07-26-2018, 07:05 PM
KaspyX KaspyX is offline
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What cable should I get to make my extension? 22AWG or 24AWG and why?
22 offers less resistance than 24 but in your topic you have the 24 one,, so which one should I get?
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Old 07-27-2018, 04:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KaspyX View Post
What cable should I get to make my extension? 22AWG or 24AWG and why?
22 offers less resistance than 24 but in your topic you have the 24 one,, so which one should I get?
24 AWG is what Corsair uses for their cables. 22 AWG should work but I, personally, like to stick with the design spec.
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