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The micro ribbon or miniature ribbon connector is a common type of electrical connector used particularly in computer and telecommunications applications. They have a characteristic D-shaped metal shield similar to that used in D-subminiature connectors, but a different type of contacts, called ribbon contacts, instead of pin contacts.
This connector type is also known as Telco, 25-pair, Miniature Delta Ribbon, Mini D Ribbon, Delta ribbon, MDR, Amphenol, or CHAMP miniature ribbon connector. Although it was invented by Amphenol, many companies now produce it, such as 3M, Cinch Connectors, TE Connectivity (formerly Tyco Electronics, formerly AMP), and Hirose Electric Group. These names may or may not be ambiguous as to physical size (contact pitch). There are at least two sizes, as well as different numbers of contacts, and various means of holding the mated connectors together.
The larger size has 0.100 inch contact pitch. This size, with 36 pins and bail locks, is also known as a Centronics connector (because of its introduction by Centronics for use with the parallel port on their printers), and is standardized as IEEE 1284 type B. Other connectors of this size are also called Centronics connectors.
The smaller size has 0.050 inch pitch. This size, with 36 pins, is also known as a mini-Centronics connector, and is standardized as IEEE 1284 type C. Other connectors of this size are also called mini-Centronics connectors.
A micro ribbon connector contains two parallel rows of pins within a shielded case. There are 14-, 24-, 36-, 50-, 64-, and 100- pin varieties, for mounting on boards, panels, or terminating cables. Contact is achieved by means of solder, crimping or insulation displacement. Female connectors have bail locks for a sturdy connection to the male connector. In the telecommunications sector screws are used instead, since a loose connector would have a greater impact.
- 24-pin connector: IEEE 488 (GPIB) interface
- 36-pin connector: IEEE 1284 parallel interface
- 50-pin connector: SCSI-1 interface (SCSI connector)
- 50-pin connector: RJ21X "telco connector" (telephone systems)