Cables & Connectors

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For information on cables for a specific purpose, see the relevant category page - Lighting, Power or Sound.

The Ents Crew uses a colour coding scheme to identify cables, marked with (usually) three rings of tape at either end of the cable. The ring closest to the connector signifies type (see further down the page), the second is white-black-white tape signifying the cable belongs to Ents, the third signifies length and are decoded as follows:

Cable Length Code
Colour Length
< 1m
1m - 2m
2m - 5m
5m - 10m
>> 10m

Ceeform

CEEform - also known as C-form or CEE plugs, and more correctly as IEC 60309 - is a standard used to define plugs and sockets for power distribution.

Identification

There are a range of colours, sizes and pin configurations available - and importantly it is not possible to mate the wrong combination of plug and socket.

The colour of the plug and socket identifies the voltage which it is designed for - in our case, blue for 200–250V (i.e. Single Phase) and red for 380–480V (i.e. Three Phase).

The diameter identifies the current the connection is expected to carry. Most of the ceeform we work with is rated for 16A, though for distribution to the Rubber Boxes we also use connectors rated for 63A and 125A.

Adapters


Cables & Connectors/Jack Cables & Connectors/Phono

XLR

3-pin XLR
5-pin XLR

Of all the cables we use, XLRs are probably the most versatile. They are used in sound engineering to carry line level, instrument/mic level and speaker level signals, in lighting to carry DMX data and even to carry low voltage electricity. Because of this, they come in many different thicknesses - and it's very important you don't use the DMX cable instead of speaker cable if you don't want to melt them!

To make it less confusing, the first coloured strip of tape at either end of XLR cables tells you what you should use that cable for. This chart, which can also be found on the door of the metal cupboard in the Ents Cupboard, decodes the colours:

XLR Colour Chart
Colour Use Category Use
Sound Mic/Instrument/Line Level
Sound Speaker Level
Lighting DMX Control
LV Power Low voltage, eg for Birdies

XLRs are used to carry balanced signals which are more protected from interference than Jack or Phono cables.