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Frequently Asked Questions

In order to serve you better, Icron’s Customer Support team continues to compile a list of Frequently Asked Questions. If you would like to obtain additional technical information or support, please visit our Tech Support web page.

Icron is now part of Maxim Integrated, what does this mean for Icron?

Icron Technologies Corporation has been acquired by Maxim Integrated, a leader in analog and mixed-signal technology. With this acquisition, Maxim extends its focus on solutions for Industry 4.0, building automation, and healthcare/wellness. Icron’s primary focus will remain on sustaining the continuity of its quality products and services, which our customers have come to expect. Our globally-recognized technology compliments Maxim’s own innovative product portfolio. This acquisition reaffirms Icron’s commitment to maintain its current portfolio of high-performance USB extension products, while leveraging Maxim’s global resources to successfully deliver the next generation of USB and video extension solutions.

Icron will be a subsidiary of Maxim, which means that the brand and ExtremeUSB® extension technology you respect and trust will remain. You’ll be able to interact with us in all of the usual ways for order entry, sales fulfillment, product development, and support. Together, our combined expertise in USB and video extension technologies will result in next-generation solutions that will assist you in overcoming your design and installation challenges.

For any questions, please contact icron@maximintegrated.com.

What is USB?

The Universal Serial Bus (USB) is the most widely deployed PC peripheral interface in history, enabling simple plug and play connectivity for a wide variety of devices to enhance the computing experience. Developed to improve ease of use and provide flexible port expansion, USB has become an indispensable computing technology.

What is USB 1.1?

USB 1.1 provides support for two interface speeds: Low-Speed at 1.5 Mbps and Full-Speed at 12 Mbps. The two interface speeds target specific classes of devices to provide the most efficient and cost-effective interconnect solution. Low-Speed devices are typically interactive input devices such as keyboards, mice or game controllers. Full-Speed devices are typically application specific input devices such as microphones, cameras and printers.

What is USB 2.0?

USB 2.0 was developed to offer a complementary High-Speed transfer rate at 480 Mbps. Backwards compatible with the full speed and low speed transfer rates of USB 1.1; USB 2.0 delivers a significant bandwidth increase. USB 2.0 will continue to provide cost effective and convenient peripheral connectivity. Typical High-Speed devices are External Hard Drives, Flash Drives, Web Cameras and Scanners.

What is USB 3.0?

USB 3.0 Super-Speed systems will provide a performance enhancement of speeds up to 5 Gbps with distances up to 3 meters for newer storage and multimedia devices, greatly improving transfer times for large files and blocks of data. USB 3.0 devices and controllers are designed to be backwards compatible with USB 2.0 devices and controllers. For example, you can plug in a USB 3.0 device into a USB 2.0 controller port, or you could plug in a USB 2.0 device into a USB 3.0 controller port. However, the new USB 3.0 Type-B plug has been designed to only attach to USB 3.0 receptacles and devices.

What is ExtremeUSB®?

ExtremeUSB was developed and patented by Icron Technologies to enable native USB connections to extend beyond the desktop, breaking through the 5m cable length limitation imposed by the USB standard. The ExtremeUSB® protocol manages the strict timing requirements of the USB specification to enable USB connections over any physical media.

What is “LEX” and “REX”?

LEX stands for Local Extender and REX stands for Remote Extender. These two units comprise a standard Icron Extension solution. The LEX unit interfaces to the Host PC via a Type-B USB connector, or a built-in Type-A USB cable. The LEX interfaces to the REX unit over the extension media (Cat 5e UTP, Fiber, etc.) and the REX unit provides connectivity for one or more USB devices at the remote location.

Can I daisy-chain ExtremeUSB® systems together for longer reach?

ExtremeUSB systems cannot be daisy-chained by connecting multiple systems in series (i.e. Local Extender to Remote Extender to Local Extender to Remote Extender).

Do my extenders need a driver?

ExtremeUSB is designed to be truly Plug-and-Play, and appears completely transparent to the host computer. No drivers are required.

USB Extenders

What are the power requirements of my USB extender?

The table below provides details regarding power consumption of Icron’s USB products.

Product Power Current USB Ports
USB 1.1 Rover® 1850 N/A N/A 1
USB 1.1 Rover® 2850 N/A N/A 1
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2301 5V at Remote 3A 1
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2301GE-LAN 5V at Remote 3A 1
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2311 24V at Local or Remote 1A 1
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2312 24V at Local or Remote 1A 2
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2304 24V at Remote 1A 4
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2304GE-LAN 24V at Remote 1A 4
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2324 24V at Remote 1A 4
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2344 24V at Remote 1A 4
Icron USB 3-2-1 Raven™ 3104 24V at Local and Remote (Locking) 1A at Local, 2.71A at Remote 4
Icron USB 3-2-1 Raven™ 3124 24V at Local and Remote (Locking) 1A at Local, 2.71A at Remote 4
USB 3.0 Spectra™ 3001-15 N/A N/A 1
USB 3.0 Spectra™ 3022 24V at Remote (Locking) 1A 2

Can I use my own power supply?

Only the Power Supply included with the product is covered by warranty.

Do the USB 3.0 Spectra™ 3001-15 and 3022 support USB 2.0 or 1.1 devices?

No, both Spectra extenders are designed to only support USB 3.0 devices.

Do the USB 3.0 Spectra™ 3001-15 and 3022 support industrial machine vision cameras?

Yes. In fact, both Spectra extenders have had their interoperability validated by most major vision camera manufacturers including Acamar, Basler, Hamamatsu Photonics, JAI, Lumenera, NET New Electronic Technology, Pleora, Point Grey, The Imaging Source, Sensor Technologies, Sentech, The Imaging Source, Toshiba Teli Corporation and XIMEA.

What USB 3.0 extender should I use with my Kinect for Xbox One?

We recommend the Spectra 3001-15 active cable since the Spectra 3022 is not optimized for the Kinect. The Spectra 3001-15 will provide 15m extension.

Can your USB extenders operate through a standard Ethernet hub, switch, or router?

Our USB 2.0 Ranger® 23xx series has select models that are able to extend USB through an Ethernet hub or switch (i.e. extend through the same local area network). None of our extenders are capable of extending USB through a router (i.e. extend from one network to another).  The table below depicts this in a visual format.

Product Point-to-Point Over LAN
USB 1.1 Rover® 1850/2850 X
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2200 series X
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2301 X
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2301GE-LAN X X
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2311 X
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2312 X
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2304 X
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2304GE-LAN X X
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2324 X
USB 2.0 Ranger® 2344 X
Icron USB 3-2-1 Raven™ 3104 X
Icron USB 3-2-1 Raven™ 3124 X
USB 3.0 Spectra™ 3001-15 X
USB 3.0 Spectra™ 3022 X

What is the USB device limit for your USB extenders?

The USB 2.0 Ranger® 2300 series extenders can support up to 31 USB devices or hubs, and the USB 2.0 Ranger® 2200 series extenders can support up to 15 USB devices or hubs.

What does a blinking host LED mean?

The USB extender is in suspend mode. Hubs are placed in suspend mode by an operating system when no USB devices are connected. The hub will wake up from suspend mode when a USB device is connected.

How can I upgrade the firmware on my USB extender?

To upgrade the USB 2.0 Ranger® 2300 extender series or 2201, 2204, 2212, 2224, or 2244 extenders, please contact Icron’s Tech Support. The extender can be programmed in-field by the user.

There are no upgrades available for the USB 1.1 Rover® 1850/2850 or USB 2.0 Ranger® 2211 products.

The USB 2.0 Ranger 2200 series LEX and REX extenders both have sockets for power, do I need power supplies for both units?

On the USB 2.0 Ranger 2201, 2204, 2224, and 2244, only the REX needs a power supply. The LEX only needs a power supply during the firmware upgrade process. On the USB Ranger® 2211, the power supply can be connected to either the LEX or the REX.

What type of Cat 5e cable is required for my product?

All Cat 5e extender models require at least solid-core Cat 5e UTP for extension distances longer than 10 meters.

What is the Cat 5e pin out for my product?

The Cat 5e extender models use all four pairs of the UTP cable. They all use a standard straight-through connection, referred to as TIA/EIA-568-B.1-2001 T568A or T568B.

What powering options are available in your extender models?

The USB 1.1 Rover® series extenders are all bus-powered (power is supplied by the host computer). The USB 2.0 Ranger® 2201, 2204, 2224, 2244, 2304, 2304-LAN, and USB 3.0 Spectra™ 3022 are all powered by a power supply at the REX. The USB 2.0 Ranger® 2212 is powered by a power supply at the LEX. The USB 2.0 Ranger® 2211 can be powered by a power supply at either the LEX or REX.

How do I ground my USB extenders?

There are four mounting holes on the bottom of the silver or black enclosure of the USB 3.0 Spectra/SP3022, USB 2.0 Ranger/RG2300 and 2200 series. If your installation mandates grounding of the extender system enclosures, please refer to the instructions below. Both the local and remote extender units would need to be grounded. Note, while grounding does not impact the performance of the product, do not ground the extender units unless specified by your installation requirements.

Materials Required:

  • 2 x M3.0 4mm Screws
  • 2 x Crimp Connectors
  • 2 x Wires (select size to accommodate your use case)
  • 1 x Screwdriver

Step 1: Turn local extender unit over to expose unit’s four mounting holes.

enclosure showing four mounting holes

Step 2: Attach crimp connector to wire and place over one of the mounting holes. Insert screw and tighten.

attaching ground screw and wire into enclosure

Step 3: Ensure connection is secure, and attach the other end of the wire to your ground source. Repeat these same steps for remote extender unit.


USB Extender Product Series Differences

Icron Technologies Corp. has produced a number of different USB 1.1 and USB 2.0 extender solutions. Newer extenders have been designed to replace older versions of the extenders, and the differences between the older and newer products are listed below.

What are the differences and advantages between the USB 2.0 Ranger® 2200 and USB 2.0 Ranger® 2300 product series?

The USB 2.0 Ranger® 2300 product series is our latest USB 2.0 extension platform and allows for extending USB over a Local Area Network, integrating SwitchableUSB™ control for OEM customers with increased hub compatibility. The 23xx series includes our patented Mass Storage Acceleration feature allowing mass storage transfers to maintain a throughput rate close to 80% of what would normally be available if directly connected. Moreover, two of the models (2301GE-LAN and 2304GE-LAN) can additionally extend over a Local Area Network.

Are the USB 2.0 Ranger® 2300 extenders compatible with your existing USB 2.0 Ranger® 22xx series?

No. The new 23xx series uses our latest ExtremeUSB ASIC and is not compatible with the older 22xx series.

Will the 23xx series cost more than the 22xx series?

No, in fact the 23xx equivalent models cost slightly less. Please contact your Account Manager for more details.

What are the differences between the USB 2.0 Ranger® 2100 and USB 2.0 Ranger 2200 product series?

The USB 2.0 Ranger 2100 series is a legacy platform that comes with the LEX in a plastic enclosure. The Ranger 2101 REX also comes in a plastic enclosure, and the Ranger 2104 comes in a metal enclosure. Please note the 2100 series will be only available for sale until Nov. 14, 2013; read our End of Life notification.

The USB 2.0 Ranger 2200 series have improved device compatibility, are field upgradeable and have improved ESD and Immunity protection than the USB 2.0 Ranger 2100 series. As well there are fiber based models for extended reach, and variants that allow powering at the LEX end or at either end. Lastly, a mounting kit is available for many of the Ranger 2200 series products for more flexible product placement.

What are the differences between the USB 1.1 Rover 1650/2650 and 1850/2850 product series?

The USB 1.1 Rover 1850/2850 series has superior circuit design delivering more current to USB devices connected to the remote extender, is compatible with more Hosts and USB devices, and has better ESD and EFT performance than the discontinued USB Rover 1650/2650 series.



USB and Video Extenders

What are the power requirements of my USB and Video Extender?

The table below provides details regarding power consumption of Icron’s USB and Video products.

Product Voltage Current Power
EL5100 LEX: 5V REX: 5V LEX: 3A REX: 3A LEX: 15W REX: 15W
EL5200 LEX: 5V REX: 5V LEX: 3A REX: 3A LEX: 15W REX: 15W

Can I use my own power supply?

Only the Power Supply included with the product is covered by warranty.

Why can I not select a support resolution when using my USB and Video Extender?

Either the latest video drivers are not installed, or the resolution is not supported. If the specific resolution is not listed by the monitors EDID, or is not supported by the USB and Video Extender, it will not operate.

What cable is recommended for best performance with the EL5100 or EL5200?

Icron recommends Cat 6/6a U/FTP or better cabling with solid core conductors and Cat 6/6a rated RJ45 jacks. That is, Cat 6 or 6a, with pair shielding. At minimum, standard Cat 5e UTP cable can be used but it must have solid core conductors and requires a very good environment and good installation practices, such as having no loops in the cable, ensure it is not placed near other cables or power lines, and that it is properly terminated with Cat 5e RJ45 jacks.