HP Scanner - USB cable issues
Posted on 2009-04-18
I have a client with an HP Scanjet 5590; basically a document scanner with an ADF (Automatic Document Feeder) which has support for up to 50 sheets at a time, double-sided support etc. etc.
On two totally separate computer systems (laptop and new Dell PC) we are having problems using any USB cable for connecting to the device other than the HP-bundled cable.
The problem here is that the cable included in the product is very short, 1 metre at most, and does not fit safely or neatly into the client's office configuration. I therefore suggested using either a USB "extension" or a longer USB device cable (A-to-B) to connect the device to the PC.
On both occasions, each attempt to extend the cable fails miserably. The computer detects the scanner is present but no data is ever transferred; it is possible to initiate a scan and the scanner accepts this by loading paper, but no scanning ever takes place - the scanner locks up and never scans or sends data to the PC, requiring us to force reboot it by removing the power.
The HP-bundled cable does have a black ring on the 'B' (device) end which looks typical of the usual interference-ring on many cables. I can understand that this may be required to be used in the connection, which is why I expected the USB extension approach, which still makes the HP cable and the interference-ring part of the connection part of the connection between device and PC.
* I know the USB cables are working, as the computer and laptop detects a device by way of the usual Windows "USB connected" tune on connection, and in Device Manager. They also work flawlessly on a USB-based printer or other USB device.
* The cables do *NOT* exceed the 5 metre limitation on USB; they are 2 - 3 metres at most.
* It is not a software issue, as per the above, the scanner works as when using the 1 metre HP USB cable which came bundled with the device.
I thought USB was pretty flexible up to cable lengths of 5 metres. Could some sort of USB controller in the scanner be at fault here, or be particularly picky about cable length/interference/cable power? If so, does anyone have any possible solutions and/or explanations?