DMX512 Physical layer Connectors

- Aug 31, 2017 -


The original DMX512 1990 specified that where connectors are used, the data link shall use five-pin XLR style electrical connectors (XLR-5), with female connectors used on transmitting (OUT) ports and male connectors on receiving ports.
The use of any other XLR style connector is prohibited.

DMX512-A (ANSI E1.11-2008) defined the use of eight-pin modular (8P8C, or "RJ-45") connectors for fixed installations where regular plugging and unplugging of equipment is not required.
Note: Several manufacturers used other pinouts for RJ-45 connectors prior to this inclusion in the standard.

Other form-factors of connectors are permitted on equipment where the XLR and RJ-45 would not fit or are considered inappropriate, for example on equipment intended for permanent installation.

From ANSI E1.11 - 2008 section 7:

7.1.2 Concession for use of an alternate connector (NCC DMX512-A)

A concession to use an alternate connector is available only when it is physically impossible to mount a 5-pin XLR connector on the product. In such cases all the following additional requirements shall be met :
1) The alternate connector shall not be any type of XLR connector.
2) The alternate connector shall not be any type of IEC 60603-7 8-position modular connector except as allowed in clause 7.3.

7.2 Equipment intended for fixed installation with internal connections to the data link

Fixed installation products with internal connections to the data link may use the 5-pin XLR connector, but shall not use any other XLR connector. When use is made of the 5-pin XLR connector, the requirements of 7.1 and 7.1.1 shall apply. When a non-XLR connector is used, this Standard makes no other restriction or stipulation on connector choice. The contact (pin) numbering on the alternate connector should match numbering for the standard 5-Pin XLR

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