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Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

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Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

Postby mken » Mon Apr 23, 2018 9:47 am

Hi, I have recently made a custom stagebox which I have populated with XLR and TRS jack sockets. To make the job easy I opted for neutrik NJ3FP6C chassis connector which had the same footprint / housing as the XLR's. I didn't purchase them for their locking capability since I suspect most people that use the stagebox won't have lockable jack plugs. I did enquire before purchasing that these sockets would take a non- lockable jack plug and was assured they would. Now the box is finished , if I try and insert a standard jack plug it is very tight to insert and extremely tight/ difficult to remove to such an extent that feel you are damaging the internal contacts. I am used to working with mixers and amps and know what force is usually required to insert / remove a jack plug. I have tried several jack plugs which all fit my mixers without problem but they are all tight in the NJ3FP6C. The spec for the NJ3FP6C says it is compatible with all mono / stereo plugs Type A which I assume is the standard jack that you'd find on most instrument cables. Though I'm using non-locking jack plugs I can't see that the locking mechanism in the socket is causing this stiffness since its just a spring loaded lug that slides along the body of the plug. So has anyone else come across this or have any advice?
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Re: Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Mon Apr 23, 2018 11:18 am

It's not the jack plug that locks -- no special plugs are required -- it's the socket that contains a mechanism which grabs the standard (type-A) jackplug.

I often use these types of locking socket too, and there is no excessive stiffness involved in inserting the plug -- no more than a standard socket. To remove the plug the release button must be pressed first, of course.

I suspect that what may have happened in your case is that you have either inserted the socket into the stage box cutout incorrectly (from behind rather than in front), or the cutout is too tight -- in either case the latch operating mechanism is fouling against the casework so that it can't move out of the way when a plug is inserted, and hasn't enough room to retract when a plug is released.

I've come across that same problem before with the same symptoms of difficulty inserting and removing plugs. So you may need to file away the area around the latching mechanism, or mount the socket from above rather than below the cutout...

If you remove the socket from the stagebox and try inserting a plug you'll see it feels little different from a standard socket, and if you observe the latch mechanism as you do it you'll see how it works and thus what was impeding its action when mounted.

H
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Re: Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

Postby ef37a » Mon Apr 23, 2018 2:01 pm

I am sure Hugh has this nailed in this instance but in this "Global Market" world it pays to check things.

A few years ago I bought some XLR 3 male plugs from Maplin and found they would jam tight into female chassis sockets, to the extent that gas pliers were need to extract them!

The female sockets were of varying brands and ages, some probably 30 yrs old from Radiospares. In some 50 years of messing with audio kit I had never come across such an issue before and have used XLRs of various brands, Switchcraft, KMAL and RS Comps and Neutrik.

I complained to Maplin of course but never got a satisfactory response. I Have just remembered, the internal pin carrier would MELT if you kept a solder iron on a pin for more than a second or two! I had make sure to fit a carrier into a socket to keep them aligned during wiring. Before the days of Pbfree, would never have coped with that.

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Re: Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

Postby Luke W » Mon Apr 23, 2018 2:50 pm

Something I’ve noticed on a few occasions is these locking sockets being a little fussy with cheaper non-Neutrik plugs. I’d always assumed it was down to higher manufacturing tolerances of said plugs. It’s something I’ve only had happen a handful of times though, and I use the Neutrik sockets quite a lot.
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Re: Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

Postby mken » Mon Apr 23, 2018 7:14 pm

Thanks for everyone's prompt reply. I was interested in Hugh's explanation that no special jack plug is required. I can see the red plastic mechanism that does the locking and can see the red bit that "rubs " on the jack shaft. I assumed that this slotted into a groove on a " locking plug" but evidently that's not the case. So I'm not sure how the locking occurs other than sideways friction on the plug. Regarding possible incorrect fitting I can confirm that the socket is mounted on the front of the chassis and is not interfered with. Also the problem is just as evident before the socket is even fitted onto the chassis. I will see if any more suggestions are forthcoming.
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Re: Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

Postby Sam Spoons » Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:02 pm

I believe locking occurs via the neck of the tip conductor, no special connector required.
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Re: Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

Postby MarkPAman » Tue Apr 24, 2018 11:58 am

I've just pulled a few "rescued" ones out of a drawer. Some do seem to be much stiffer than the others to insert a jack into.

Upon closer examination, I believe they may not be a Neutrik product - no makers name at all, though the design is very similar at a glance, and until now I'd thought they were all the same.

Are you sure yours are the genuine thing?
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Re: Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

Postby MarkPAman » Tue Apr 24, 2018 12:00 pm

Sam Spoons wrote:I believe locking occurs via the neck of the tip conductor, no special connector required.
Meant to say yes it does - very obvious if you look from behind the socket as you put the jack in.
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Re: Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

Postby Sam Spoons » Tue Apr 24, 2018 12:13 pm

I have had cheap Neutrik clones that were tight in a standard jack socket. Also no logo on the shells. Other than that they were sturdy and appeared well made.....
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Re: Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

Postby mken » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:29 pm

Well regarding authenticity I don't know. They were bought from an ebay seller and advertised as and invoiced as Neutrik brand. Unfortunately the box is now installed at customer so won't be able to verify if they do have the Neutrik logo on but I guess even if these do it doesn't prove they're genuine. I will speak to the supplier to ask if anyone else has had issues and maybe get them to pull one from stock and try a jack in it. Will update if I find anything.
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Re: Advice needed on Neutrik NJ3FP6C connector

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Apr 25, 2018 7:58 am

it was the clone plugs that were causing the issue in my case not the sockets. Don't forget the latching sockets will work with any plug so if you're trying to remove them without pressing the latch button (and assuming 'cos they ain't special) they will be very tight :headbang:
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