Essential Digital Skills Level 1

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Connecting adapters

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3 min 40 sec
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Maybe you are trying to connect something to your computer but the port on the side of the computer is the wrong size. So you can use an adapter to convert these across and there are lots of different types available, so we are going to have a look at a few of them now.

Now the first one will be a standard USB. This cut size here is a conventional USB size socket, so rectangular shape. Inside, there is one side that is filled in, one side that is open, so you can only put it in one way. And in some of the modern connections, you will have what is called USB-C and USB-C is a much smaller port, which has got slightly rounded corners on it. So if you had to connect a USB-C cable to a USB computer, then you would use an adapter like this. It's got the USB normal size on this and on this side, it has the USB-C, so all you do is you take the cable and literally just plug it in and then that will now directly connect from the modern USB-C to the older style.

Another way you can do it is if your computer has got USB-C, so a lot of the new MacBooks are just USB-C, that is all you see on them but you want to convert it to the old USB, you can use a cable like this. So this end has got USB-C and the other end has got standard USB.

Also, you can also connect with other things. So maybe you want to put an ethernet cable, so you want to hardwire the computer directly into the router on your internet. So this would mean you are not using the WiFi signal, you are having a cable directly from your computer to the internet. Now, this is good because it means that it can be a lot faster and also there is no interference within the WiFi signal and if there are any problems with your WiFi, you have got a much stronger signal.

So some computers will have an ethernet port for the internet connection on them, but others will not and again, particularly the newer MacBook computers just will not have that, so what you need to do with those, is have an adapter. So this has got USB-C on this end and on this end, a standard USB... Sorry, a standard ethernet cable. So you literally just plug the cable in there, into your router and this end goes straight into the computer.

There is also gadgets you can get which convert lots of things so this is just an example. This particular one here, you plug that straight into your computer and you can get these for USB-C or USB and on this side, you can connect different things. So here we have got two USB ports, so this will mean you are using one port on the computer for USB, but you have now got two outputs. It has also got an SD card reader, so this would be the sort of SD card that will go into your camera, so you can take that out, put it straight here and you can download the pictures from your camera or video camera straight into your computer.

On this side, it has got a USB-C port, so you have got extra connectivity there and the final one here is the HDMI port. An HDMI would be used for things like connecting your computer up to an external monitor or a TV screen. You can also use this connected up to a projector. Now, another version of that will be this, which goes straight in the computer and then you have got USB-C, USB and this one is a common connection, it's RS-232, which is connected to a projector. It is more of an older type connection, but you will see quite a lot of the televisions do have this connection on and a lot of projectors will have that as well, although using HDMI is properly preferable.