D-Subminiature connectors, also known as D-Sub, are important to a broad range of markets and applications, including commercial, industrial, defense, aerospace, and high-performance computer technology.
They work equally well for data, signal, and power transmission, and can be easily assembled in the field. Over time, they have evolved into an almost ubiquitous connector, equally common in both office spaces and harsh environments.
What is a D-Sub Connector?
Unlike more conventional circular connectors, D-Sub connectors have parallel rows of contacts surrounded by a D-shaped metal shell (from which they get their name). This metal shell not only helps with proper mating but also provides support, assists in ensuring correct orientation and can also provide EMI shielding. D-Sub connectors typically have threaded nuts that accept screws to ensure a tight fit and to further relieve any mechanical strain, ensuring the integrity of the connection.
Specifying the Correct D-Sub Connector
D-Sub connectors are extremely versatile and available in a range of shell sizes. D-Sub connectors are available in a variety of contact layouts, including straight and right-angle mounts, solder cups, crimp, and high-density variants. In addition, they are available in standard, commercial, and MIL-Spec versions. Keep in mind that when trying to select the right type of D-Sub connector for your design, the most important characteristics are the type, form factor, size, density, and cost. Let’s take a look at three of the most commonly used types of D-Sub connectors: Micro-D, Combo-D, and High Density.
Standard Density Series Part Numbers Start with the SD, MD, RD, MDX, HDC, and SND Prefixes
- Standard Density D-Sub connectors with size 20 machined contacts.
- Comes with: 20; M24308 & M39029 contacts.
- It is ideal for general signal use for industrial, mil/aero and spaceflight.
High-density D-Sub connectors are designed for use in harsh environments as well as general signal use in industrial, military, and aerospace applications. As their name implies, the contact density is higher than a standard D-sub connector, reducing their overall form factor. Positronic High-Density D-Sub connectors include size 22 signal and thermocouple machined contacts and offer wire, right angle solder, or straight solder termination options. In addition, these Positronic D-Subs are qualified to SAE AS39029 and meet the performance standards for GSFC S-311-P4 and MIL-DTL-24308 Class M standards.
Combo series connectors are available in standard density versions, which have fixed size 20 signal contacts and size 8 power, shielded, high voltage and air contacts. High-density CB series connectors offer fixed size 22 signal contacts, size 8 contacts or size 16 power contacts. These connectors are available in various performance levels for best cost/performance ratio. Thermocouple contact options are also available.
Combo-D Series Part Numbers Start with the CBC, CBD, CBM, CBCD, CBF, SCBC, SCBM, SCBCD, and SCBDD Prefixes
- Mixed density D-sub connectors to mix power, signal, coax, high voltage and fiber optic.
- Comes with: 22, 20, 16, 8 contacts.
- It is ideal for power, signal, coax, high voltage and fiber optic needs.
- Most commonly used in Industrial, Mil/aero, and spaceflight applications.
Air Electro: Your Source for D-Sub Connectors
D-Sub connectors are typically chosen for their ability to maintain a connection even in rugged, harsh environments, not to mention their versatility and wide range of potential applications. At Air Electro, we are certified to build D-Sub connectors for brands including Positronic, ADI, and Amphenol PCD and assemble them in world-class automated facilities. Whether you need the connectors for basic data communication in a commercial setting or for a military design where reliability is critical, our team of experts can work with you to find the right solution to your connector needs.