What printer cable type is this?

Published on March 29th, 2009 at 5:52 am

Last modified on August 13th, 2012 at 11:43 pm



You’ve just disconnected a printer from an older computer, and you’ve found the end of this cable connected to the printer. What kind of cable connection is this?


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A) 36-pin serial

B) Null-modem

C) Centronics

D) BNC


Answer: C) Centronics

Although many of the newest printers use USB ports to connect the computer, older printers commonly used parallel cables with Centronics connections.

The incorrect answers:

A) 36-pin serial
Although the Centronics connection has 36 pins, it’s not a serial connection. Most serial connections have 9 pins or 25 pins.

B) Null-modem
A null-modem connection is normally used to connect two serial devices directly together, and the connections usually have 9 or 25 pins in a D-subminiature connection.

D) BNC
A Bayonet Neill-Concelman connection is normally seen on older Ethernet network connections.

Want to know more? Watch “Connectors and Adapters.”


Every personal computer cable connector is designed to provide a specific function, and some of these capabilities have changed dramatically through the years. In this video, you’ll learn about standard computer connectors and how to use cable adapters to change gender, connect serial connections, or extend network connections.

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Category: CompTIA A+ Pop Quizzes

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