USB Type C Frankenstein Project

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by WCNEO, Dec 24, 2015.

  1. WCNEO, Dec 24, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2015

    WCNEO macrumors newbie

    Dec 1, 2015
    Hey all, I have a hair brained idea that comes in the form of a Frankenstein wire connection, so, please bare with me. The idea is to make the Macbook's Thunderbolt port into a USB Type C port. (Or at least having them connected to adequately transfer data.) Here is how I want to go about doing this:

    Thunderbolt Port with Thunderbolt cable (Link) to USB Type C adapter (Link). Then with the use of a USB Type C extender adapter or cable with TWO FEMALE ends (Link not provided, I can not find one as of right now), I connect the USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter (Link), thus allowing me to have an HDMI port for a monitor and a USB port to allow for USB use via a USB hub.

    So is it possible for this to work? If so, can someone please help me find a USB Type C extender adapter or cable with TWO FEMALE ends? Sorry for such a crazy question, I promise you the reasoning behind this is a long convoluted story, but trust me when I say this is the last option I have other than replacing the logic board, or for me to buy a $200.00 thunderbolt dock. Thanks!
  2. RMo macrumors 65816


    Aug 7, 2007
    Iowa, USA
    Unfortunately, I don't think what you're proposing will work. First, the second (USB Type-C) adapter you listed is intended to be used the other way around, i.e., USB Type C to Mini DisplayPort (honestly not sure that it's really Thunderbolt, either, though they do mention the term). It may not work the other way. Second, you can't find any female-to-female USB Type- C adapters because they (probably) don't exist, as the USB specification does not permit cables with any female Type-C endings. Finally, the USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter from Apple works using a feature in the USB Type-C spec "Alternate Mode" to send DisplayPort signals through USB-C cabling, but it's unlikely that any "external" adapters would support this (the MacBook does and so this adapter works there).

    Is your goal simply to hook up an external display and have a USB port? Did your Mac's native USB ports die (just guessing based on the logic board comment)? If the logic board replacement is too expensive and you don't want to do a Thunderbolt dock (which, while expensive, I think is a good option), you can also try some workarounds. For example, Kanex makes a couple Thunderbolt "adapters" that also include USB ports, including this Thunderbot to eSATA and USB adapter: (they also make one with Ethernet and USB, which I almost got instead of the dock I ended up getting). You could then use a USB hub (if you need more ports) and then use a USB video adapter. DisplayLink is the company that makes the actual brains behind these products, but they are included in products from Pluggable, StarTech, and others. This Pluggable USB 3 to DVI-I adapter is one such product. I've used a similar USB 2 device in the past to create dual monitors on a MacBook that had only one display output, and it worked well for some things, but it probably won't work well for gaming or videos, and there have been some problems with it on newer versions of OS X, though the most problematic ones (e.g., random crashes and logouts) had been resolved for me by the time I stopped using it.

    Just throwing that out there in case it helps--not really sure what you're going for.

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