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Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

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kishy
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Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

#1 Post by kishy » Tue Jul 18, 2017 11:19 am

I have been looking into the availability of any generic/aftermarket/universal AC adapters with the IBM 4-pin connector, and it seems very few options exist (at least not anymore), particularly if you have a preference to stay with reputable brands. Presumably Targus made one a long time ago, I know they made one for Dell's funny looking connector from the same time period.

I did, however, find this...apparently the Czech company Avacom sells (and possibly produces) an adapter from a normal-looking barrel connector to the IBM 4-pin one:
In original Czech language
In English via Google Translate

Photo, in case Avacom's links change: http://imgur.com/YgXFMua
They seem to refer to it as C.12.

Does anyone know how/where to source this in North America? This would be a much cleaner solution for those missing an original AC adapter than to hack something else together. You'd just need to source something of the right voltage and sufficient amperage with a barrel connector of the right size...and that's a much more future-proof solution than hoping the original chargers last forever.

50,00 Kč = 2.80 Canadian dollars. It looks worth looking into, at least.
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Re: Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

#2 Post by Thinkpad4by3 » Tue Jul 18, 2017 11:50 am

Just put 19~ Volts on The plus and minus pins. It works fine.
Probably should be Thinkpad16by10.

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Re: Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

#3 Post by kishy » Tue Jul 18, 2017 12:04 pm

Thinkpad4by3 wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 11:50 am
Just put 19~ Volts on The plus and minus pins. It works fine.
Yes, of course. But for someone looking for a cleaner implementation, the adapter is available extremely cheaply. The logistics of obtaining it, on the other hand, are potentially tricky.
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Re: Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

#4 Post by kfzhu1229 » Tue Jul 18, 2017 12:11 pm

You mean the 4 pin power found on ThinkPad G series and many docks? I sourced mine second handed from ebay
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Re: Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

#5 Post by kishy » Tue Jul 18, 2017 1:06 pm

kfzhu1229 wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 12:11 pm
You mean the 4 pin power found on ThinkPad G series and many docks? I sourced mine second handed from ebay
No, I'm referring to this one used on most of the early models: http://imgur.com/YgXFMua

If you buy the inexpensive-but-not-exactly-cheap aftermarket chargers for, say, a 760 on eBay, they seem to include this adapter. But there's no way to buy this individual piece on its own if you wanted to use a different actual AC adapter brick.

If, by chance, the barrel connector is the same size as an Acer charger connector (it's a long shot, but maybe), that would be perfect, since Acer chargers of adequate specs are everywhere and fairly cheap as well.
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Re: Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

#6 Post by TankPad » Tue Jul 18, 2017 1:25 pm

Check these out. I think its what you need.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Laptop-Notebook ... 1180580814

Edit: Here's just the single jack on its own, if you don't want all the others. Very handy to have though.
http://www.ebay.ca/itm/2pcs-Adapter-4Pi ... Swqu9VEllI
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Re: Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

#7 Post by kishy » Tue Jul 18, 2017 2:34 pm

TankPad wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 1:25 pm
Check these out. I think its what you need.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Laptop-Notebook ... 1180580814

Edit: Here's just the single jack on its own, if you don't want all the others. Very handy to have though.
http://www.ebay.ca/itm/2pcs-Adapter-4Pi ... Swqu9VEllI
Well, would you look at that...yeah, that'd be it (in both cases). Good links to have, thanks. I wonder what Toshiba models use the same plug, since the eBay sellers seem to think it's a Toshiba application. I bought a pair and will verify the pinout maps out right before connecting it to the ThinkPad.

In my case, I have the original IBM charger and it works fine. I just like to plan ahead for when 20 year old things inevitably break. Having a spare $2 connector isn't going to cost me anything meaningful now ($2), but will certainly be appreciated if I need it down the road.
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Re: Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

#8 Post by kishy » Fri Sep 01, 2017 12:58 pm

The eBay adapters linked above described for a Toshiba laptop did arrive some time ago. I finally got around to checking their pinout.

They are marked with a letter "M". The connector is an exact perfect fit for the ThinkPad connector.

Looking at the face of the connector with the narrower side down (the same orientation as how it plugs into the laptop, wide surface to the top, narrow surface to the bottom), both top pins are wired to the outer shell of the barrel connector (typically negative) and both bottom pins are wired to the centre pin of the barrel connector (typically positive).

I will not be attempting to connect my 760E with these adapters. Internal to the laptop (facing the charging connector) the lower left and upper right terminals are connected to each other as well as the laptop chassis/shield/ground. Using these adapters would dead short positive to negative.

Furthermore I do not know what the "G" terminal is for (upper left looking at back of laptop) but it would be connected together with negative inside the adapter, and without knowing exactly what it's for, that doesn't seem wise. It does not stand for "ground" though as the laptop chassis does not have continuity to that terminal.

Is anyone here an editor for ThinkWiki? This info would probably be helpful there: http://www.thinkwiki.org/wiki/Power_Connector
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Re: Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

#9 Post by RealBlackStuff » Fri Sep 01, 2017 4:34 pm

Here's some more info: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=112233

Using the Thinkwiki picture:
Image
what is each hole for?
./ 1 2 \
/ 3 . 4 \


1=
2= POS (according to above link)
3=
4= NEG (according to above link)

And what about that eBay adapter?
Once the data is complete, I can add it to Thinkwiki.
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Generic 4-pin AC adapter: relevance and notability?

#10 Post by automobus » Sat Sep 02, 2017 6:11 pm

kishy wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 11:19 am
I have been looking into the availability of any generic/aftermarket/universal AC adapters with the IBM 4-pin connector

This would be a much cleaner solution for those missing an original AC adapter … and that's a much more future-proof solution than hoping the original chargers last forever.
Or, buy an original AC adapter to "use it up". After its power supply dies, it might be repairable: a "dead power brick" is often due to expired/failed electrolytic capacitors, which can be replaced. If recapping (replacing capacitors) is not an option, then reuse its (quality, original) power plug; 'hack something else together'. Either make a connector converter, or transplant cable assembly to an other power source 'of the right voltage and sufficient amperage'.

This would be a much prouder solution for those with means; and that's a much more planet-friendly solution than buying a new aftermarket plug for good-old equipment.


kishy wrote:
Fri Sep 01, 2017 12:58 pm
Is anyone here an editor for ThinkWiki? This info would probably be helpful there
What info? Offence not intended; what information in this topic is noteworthy?

2017-09-07 edit : single glyph typo
Last edited by automobus on Thu Sep 07, 2017 3:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

#11 Post by kishy » Wed Sep 06, 2017 10:33 am

RealBlackStuff wrote:
Fri Sep 01, 2017 4:34 pm
Here's some more info: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=112233

Using the Thinkwiki picture:
Image
what is each hole for?
./ 1 2 \
/ 3 . 4 \


1=
2= POS (according to above link)
3=
4= NEG (according to above link)

And what about that eBay adapter?
Once the data is complete, I can add it to Thinkwiki.
1 and 2 are both connected to the centre pin in the adapters I mentioned. Polarity will depend on the brick you plug into the adapter, but most of the time that's positive.
3 and 4 are both connected to the outer shell in the adapters. Typically negative.

So 2 and 4 are correct, it's 1 and 3 that would introduce a problem.

automobus: given that the ThinkWiki page makes specific instructions of how to power the ThinkPad without the correct adapter, wouldn't it be beneficial to state these much more attractive, cheap, plentiful adapters will possibly damage the laptop and prevent people from going down that road to begin with?

Most folks do not have the means or knowledge to recap a power supply. As it happens, I do, but most don't, and will look for the easiest route to their desired goal. A $2 adapter sure looks appealing in that scenario. Furthermore, if they check the polarity only of the two pins they care about, the two they didn't care about are going to release some magic smoke.
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Re: Generic 4-pin AC adapter availability?

#12 Post by kishy » Fri Sep 08, 2017 9:40 am

It was brought to my attention that I may have been unclear:

Internal to the laptop, chassis screws have continuity to both the (-) and (S) terminals of the DC in port.

Internal to the ebay DC port adapter, the (G) and (-) terminals have continuity, and the (S) and (+) terminals have continuity.

Therefore, if you connect the ebay port adapter to the laptop, you are shorting positive to negative. I expect this would toast the AC adapter that is being used and/or melt things. I verified this by connecting the ebay adapter to the laptop (no power applied of course), then finding there is continuity between the centre pin and outer shell within the adapter.
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