Testing Installed Cables on the Cheap

by Scott Helmke, TC Furlong Repair Tech, Project Manager, and Audio Engineer

Proskit-MT-7501Around my repair bench there are probably a half-dozen different cable testers—can’t live without them.

I always test every cable I build (or repair, or modify) to make sure it has the correct pinout, all the lines work, and there are no shorts.

The downside is almost all of those testers require both ends of the cable at the same place, which is a bit tricky when working on installed cables.  Remote testing products for professional audio cables are available, but tend to be expensive—even more so when you consider the variety of connections that might need to be tested.

On the other hand, remote testing products for ethernet cables are cheap.

Remote-Testing-AdaptersThe one we use is the Pro’s Kit MT-7501 (pictured above), which is available for under $30.

All I have to do is make adapter cables and I can test anything I want up to eight pins.  I first stated doing this to test multipin video cables between rooms, then later added XLR adapters and other connectors.

This is an economical way to be prepared for whatever you might find on a job site.

If you’d like more information on this setup, or have any general repair questions, please contact Scott Helmke at 847.367.9588 or shelmke@tcfurlong.com.