Close view of Palm Multi-Connector. Data cable connector features a hotsync button.
|Type||Communication, power supply, USB|
|Superseded||Palm Universal Connector|
The Palm Multi-Connector (also Athena Connector) is a power, audio and data interface connector designed by Palm, Inc.
Palm, Inc. has changed the connectors it uses over time:
- some machines connect via Palm Universal Connector (Older Standard for Palm Handhelds)
- some machines use a standard Mini USB (Some Low-Budget Handhelds)
- some machines use a Multi-Connector (Newer standard for palmOne and Palm Handhelds)
- some early models used model-specific connectors.
The Connector can be used to charge the device, transfer data to a computer, HotSync, and play audio. It is the new standard to replace the previous Palm Universal Connector, which performed similar functions but did not have an audio output capability.
The connector is divided in two sections: the longer one has thirteen pins numbered from right to left (5 to 17); the shorter one has three pins, on the left (3), top (2) and right (1). The cable shield connectors (4,18) are located on each side of the thirteen pins.
|Pin # on device/Multiconnector||Pin # on charger/adapter connector||Pin# on data/cable connector||Name||Direction with respect to the device||Default state with no attachment||Function|
|1||1||VDOCK||Power||CHRG_IN||DC charging voltage, 5 V|
|2||2||ADAPTER_ID||Input||VCC, weak pull-up||Adapter identification|
|3||3||VDOCK_RTN||Power||GND||DC charging return|
|5||2||VBUS||Power||VBUS_IN||USB charging voltage, 5 V typical, 500 mA max|
|6||3||USB_DP||Input/Output||Floating||USB Data +|
|7||4||USB_DN||Input/Output||Floating||USB Data -|
|8||5||DGND||Power||GND||Digital ground, and VBUS return|
|9||6||Reserved||NA||NA||Do not connect|
|10||7||TXD||Input/output||VCC, weak pull-up||Transmit data, 3.3 V logic level|
|11||8||RXD||Input||VCC, weak pull-up||Receive data, 3.3 V logic level|
|12||9||HOTSYNC||Input||VCC, weak pull-up||HotSync input, active low, pulled up on device|
|13||10||POWER_OUT||Output||High impedance||Power output to external devices|
|14||11||SPKR_L||Analog output||AC coupled||Speaker output left|
|15||12||SPKR_R||Analog output||AC coupled||Speaker output right|
|17||14||MIC_IN||Analog input||DC coupled||Microphone input|
Pins 10 and 11 have TTL levels and cannot be directly connected to the RS-232 port.
The Multi-Connector has received criticism from users who were familiar with previous connectors such as the Universal Connector. Users have been frustrated with the requirement to replace their Universal Connector cables, cradles, keyboards, sleds, and attachments as they have become incompatible. Another criticism is that the connector is fiddly, harder to remove and feels fragile.
All that is needed to charge the Treo is to connect +5 V to VDOCK and 0 V (negative) to VDOCK_RTN.