The XEP1541 adaptor serves as a pair of an XE1541 extended cable and an XP1541 or XP1571 parallel cable, allowing you to reuse your already existing Commodore serial cable and Commodore parallel cable. It's compatible with PS/2, EPP and ECP parallel ports and with Commodore 1541, 1570 and 1571 drives.
You need the following hardware to make use of this adaptor:
A Commodore 1541, 1570 or 1571 drive or compatible clone; for a serial connection only, any Commodore drive or clone, that has the usual serial bus port, will do
The adaptor is fully supported by the following PC software:
The Star Commander (© by Joe Forster/STA, 1994-2005)
For the list of software partially supporting this adaptor, see the page of the XE1541 extended cable and the XP1541 and XP1571 parallel cables.
Don't let the name "XEP1541" fool you. The serial half of this adaptor works with all kinds of Commodore drives that have the usual serial bus port, not only Commodore 1541 drives. And the parallel half of the adaptor works with Commodore 1570 and 1571 drives, as well.
This adaptor itself gives you no parallel capabilities. If your drive doesn't have it already then you should build the Commodore parallel cable first. However, the adaptor works fine with a serial cable only, in which case you won't be able to use the parallel capabilities, if any, of the drive.
If you don't want to use the parallel features of your drive from a Commodore machine then you might want to create the XEP1541 cable combo instead.
There's a variant, called XMP1541 adaptor, of this adaptor which works natively under GNU/Linux and Windows, as well.
We have found this adaptor to fail to work with certain motherboards, including ones with the ALi 5 chipset and some laptops. Check your motherboard's manual before trying this cable. If your PC proves to be incompatible with this adaptor then use the XAP1541 adaptor instead.
When designing and testing this adaptor, we kept having severe problems with the size and shape of this adaptor. At the end, we decided to build a relatively wide adaptor so that even wide user port plugs can be plugged onto it. However, exactly because of its width, it's possible that the adaptor will physically not fit the back of your PC because the case or other ports or cables are in the way. Therefore, before building it, you should have a look at the schematic diagram, indicating the shape and size of the adaptor, in millimeters. Cut it out from paper and check it against the back of your PC. Be warned that, even if it does fit, you might still have problems connecting cables to adjacent ports when this adaptor is plugged into the parallel port.
Unlike the user port in a real Commodore machine, this adaptor has no notches because those would make it too fragile. If your user port plug is coded, that is, it has sticks that fit into the notches of a real user port then this adaptor is, unfortunately, not for you.
You can find the details on how to build this adaptor at the construction page.
The assembled adaptor looks like this: top from PC parallel plug side, top from Commodore serial/parallel port side, bottom circuitry.
These pictures should give you an overall idea on how the adaptor looks like and how it should be properly assembled. However, when building an adaptor yourself, you should not rely on the pictures only; see the construction guide instead.
Take your already existing Commodore serial cable. Connect one serial plug into the serial port of your Commodore drive and the other serial plug into the serial port of the adaptor. Take your already existing Commodore parallel cable. If you have a parallel port on your Commodore drive then you can connect one end of the cable into it; otherwise the cable is, probably, just hanging out of the drive. Connect the user port plug onto the user port edge of the adaptor, being very careful not to do it upside down, that is, the top side of the user port plug should be leveled with that side of the adaptor with the plugs. Connect the parallel plug of the adaptor into the parallel port of your PC.
Important! Do not plug or unplug cables while your equipment is switched on. Make sure that all components of your equipment are connected to the same, properly grounded power outlet. Put your equipment far away from monitors, TV sets and other devices with strong emission, otherwise cables may pick up interference and you may experience data loss or corruption. Never leave the parallel cable connected alone, only if the serial cable is also connected, otherwise the lack of GND connection may severely damage your equipment.
If you have problems with your adaptor then you can test it with XCTest and XCDetect.
The XEP1541 adaptor is © by Mr. Axel, 1998. The XE1541 extended cable is © by Nicolas Welte and Wolfgang Moser, 1997. The XP1541 and XP1571 parallel cables are © by Joe Forster/STA, 1997. If you produce and sell cables or adaptors that are compatible with this adaptor or the cables it implements then you must give credits to the respective copyright owners. If your adaptors are built onto printed circuit boards then you must also make the complete layout available in a format and resolution that is suitable for high quality reproduction.
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