USB 3.0 is the new industry standard for connecting peripheral devices (such as mice, keyboards, and headphones) to computers. Use of the USB 3.0 standard is expected to grow rapidly.
This new standard uses what is called Spread Spectrum Clocking which can affect how some peripherals perform. Spread Spectrum Clocking produces a broad spectrum of radio frequency (RF) radiation. To other wireless devices, this RF energy can create “noise” which may cause interference. Unfortunately, the Spread Spectrum technique produces a significant amount of RF noise in the 2.4GHz band which is widely used throughout the computer industry for wireless peripheral devices such as mice, keyboards, and headphones.
Depending on both the quality of the PC and the USB 3.0 peripheral device, it is possible that the RF interference may result in a significant loss of range for many wireless products.
This interference may result in:
- Delayed response to mouse or keyboard inputs
- Missing keyboard characters or mouse commands
- Decreased operating distance between the USB 2.0 wireless device and its receiver
There are some techniques that can help early adopters of USB 3.0 to mitigate potential problems with their existing 2.4GHz wireless devices:
- If your PC has multiple USB 2.0 connectors available, separate your USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 receivers by as much distance as possible. For example, if your PC has a choice of USB 2.0 connectors, use the one on the opposite side of the PC from the USB 3.0 connector.
- Position your USB 2.0 receiver as close as possible to your wireless peripheral (mouse, keyboard, headphones, etc.).
- Use a standard, USB-adapter cable to position your USB 2.0 wireless receiver as far away as possible from your USB 3.0 connector.
Note: A USB 3.0 connector, sometimes referred to as Super Speed USB or SS, normally has a blue plastic insert in the connector. Unlike a USB 2.0 connector which has 4 pins within the connector, a USB 3.0 connector has 9 pins.
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