From the DIY drawer: Compact Samsung USB host adapter
I have a tendency to choose the DIY route for more things than is perhaps necessary. I don't really care how something looks, so if duct taping a USB cable to the side of my computer helps me get at the port quick, you better believe there will be duct tape there. Because of how my creations often look however I don't post many of them online. Due to how practical I personally find a lot of it to be though, I've started to think I should – so here we are. First out is my semi-DIY Samsung Galaxy Tab USB host adapters.
These adapters will work with all of Samsung's Galaxy Tabs, though the one I have and made these to use with is the 7-inch Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus. I originally bought the official kit, but because of the design of the adapters and the way they end up pointing stuff, they just end up looking ridiculous on the tiny 7.0 Plus. I bought a tiny handful of cheap adapters from Dealextreme and started working away at getting them smaller. I made several versions, including one that stripped away even the original plastic protective casing and had some direct re-soldering, but in the end I had two versions I liked the best – the ones in the photo.
The first adapter is the "Sugru lump" adapter. Sugru is basically a made-for-DIY material that is initially easy to work with and form, and then hardens into a harder rubber-like substance in about a day of air exposure. For this adapter, I simply used Sugru to turn the short cable adapter into a single lump that also points any SB peripherals down the side of the tablet rather than sticking or hanging out. I use USB host adapters and tiny flash drives a lot for watching video, and having an adapter that points stuff downwards means I can hold that side of the 7.0 Plus with my hand without the adapter being in the way.
The second adapter is a bit more work because I actually shortened the cable itself by splitting it in two and soldering it back together shorter. Honestly it didn't save me much in terms of cable salad, but I also relocated the female USB port to the same level as the 30 pin connector (rather than stick those two together) in order to make it the same thickness as the 7.0 Plus. This means the USB port is near the bottom of the tablet (held in landscape mode), which in turn means that if I use anything besides my SanDisk Cruzer Fit or a similar flashdrive it will stick out that way instead.
I tend to use the "Sugru lump" adapter the most, because some of my peripherals (like the USB plug for the Xbox 360 wireless controller adapter) are too long for the other one. They both work infinitely better than the official ones though if you ask me, and having adapters sit as flush to the device as possible means it's less hassle to have them there for extended periods of time. I haven't made one for my Galaxy S II yet, but I have the parts, and have been considering it. I would highly recommend this type of mod to anyone who is annoyed by the adapters you can buy in stores, official ones or not.