USB Type-C® Cables and Connectors

Last modified by Microchip on 2023/11/09 08:55

USB Type-C® calls for a cable with 24 signals:

USB Type C pinout

Type-C Signals

Pin NumberSignal NameDescription
A1, B1, A12, B12GNDGround
A4, B4, A9, B9VBUSPower Upstream Facing Port (UFP)
A5CCUsed in Power Delivery Protocol signaling
B5VCONNSupplies Power to Electronically Marked Cables
A6D+USB 2.0 legacy signal, also used by USB 3.x
A7D-USB 2.0 legacy signal, also used by USB 3.x
A2, A3SSTX1+ / SSTX1-Differential Transmit Signal 1 for USB 3.x
B11, B10SSRX1+ / SSRX1-Differential Transmit Signal 1 for USB 3.x
B2, B3SSTX2+ / SSTX2-Differential Transmit Signal 1 for USB 3.x
A11, A10SSRX2+ / SSRX2-Differential Transmit Signal 1 for USB 3.x
A8SBU1Used in Alternate mode only
A8SBU2Used in Alternate mode only

There are three types of USB Type-C cables. Depending on the type of cable used, not all signals are required.

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Passive Type-C Cables

Passive cables are required to carry the USB 2.0-compliant signals: CC and VCONN. Super Speed and Super Speed Plus protocols cannot be run on passive cables. Passive cables do not work with the Power Delivery Protocol but can allow the Downstream Facing Port (DFP) to advertise and deliver additional power for the current mode of operation (see the USB Power Delivery page for more details on power delivery options of USB).

USB passive cable

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Electronically Marked Powered Cables (EMCA)

EMCAs carry all Type-C signals and are capable of running all USB 3.1 speeds. Inside these cables is an integrated circuit used to process the Power Delivery communication protocols. The electronic marking allows for role switching, Alternate mode selection, and enhanced power options. Details of how these three items are implemented are provided on the Power Delivery Protocol page.

The embedded electronics are powered by VCONN. Type-C requires both CC1 and CC2 to be capable of performing both the VCONN and CC functions.

USB electronically marked cable

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Managed Active Power Cables

Managed active power cables have the same basic circuitry as electronically marked cables, but have additional signal reconditioning capability. Managed active power cables are needed to extend the cable length.

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