Add USB Ports to PCI Card!!!





Introduction: Add USB Ports to PCI Card!!!

About: Ex-Navy Gunner Learned to repair I.T. equipment because nobody local knew what the hell they were doing!

Who couldn't use more USB ports?? Seriously.....
Using a PCI USB card and some Pin Headers, I was able to add TWO more ports to my USB card, giving me a total of SEVEN ports!!

Let the fun begin!!!

Please RATE & COMMENT!!!

Step 1: Parts!!!

1 VIA VT6212L PCI USB card (4 external ports, 1 internal)
You can get one from Amazon for less than $9 (

And you will need one of these part number 274102 $.25 from

Take a close look behind the internal USB port, I wonder what we could do with that.... ;)

Step 2: Trim the Header Pins.

Using a knife, you can just chop off what you need, then pull one of the pins on the corner using a pair of pliers.

Step 3: Solder!

Solder your new pin connector into the holes, and VOILA!!

You will have TWO more ports!

You can also use this on a USB card that only has ONE row of pins, you just will only be able to add ONE Port instead of TWO.



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    20 Discussions

    That internal USB port looks like a mighty fine place to plug in one of those wireless adapter things.

    you said that if only 1 row were there I could only have 1 extra usb plug / connector ; allow me to throw this idea out there for your next instructable .... what is wrong with or could you take and soldier 2 sets of connectors or an interface onto the single set of pins and allow for more usb connections through a single pin chasis ? it would draw the same amount of power as the dual pin connection would it not ? also in general for a average computer mother board what is the total allotment of power for the pci to host bridge ( the pci cards all of the slots and how would that break down per slot ? I have been building and working on computers since i was 13 but havent ever thought of that until now when im 29

    1 reply

    I hear what you're asking and don't we wish it was that easy! But, the answer to your question is, "No", soldering multiple sets of pins to the same root connection will not work.
    Here's why: Each USB device (jump-drive, MP3 player, Cell phone, camera, etc.) that you plug in to your computer, gets it's own special USB-address. That address is what's used by the system to access the devices functions, upload & download stuff, play, stop, etc. So only 1 device per root connection can be had. So, if you soldered 2 ports to just 1 row and plugged in, let's say a web-cam and a MP3 player (like an iPod), the USB Root Controller wouldn't be able to figure out which device is which. Or it would address the FIRST device plugged in but not the second. Not to mention if the power drain from both devices exceeded the limit of the controller and end up damaging the port or the whole controller.
    The exception is the HUB. A HUB is a device that you plug into single USB port that allows even more devices to connect to the computer but using only 1 of the ports on the computer.
    The ultimate limit to how many USB devices that one can connect to a computer is something like 277... That something that's probably easy to look up on Wikipedia...
    Anyway, hope this answered your question and clears up any confusion.

    Be warned though, some manufacturers are distributing the cards with a "generic" common PCB, and what you get is a shared port inside. Header + Plug are in fact the same port, and you can't use the two plugs at once. For example, take my Syba 4+2 USB 2.0 card. It's EXACTLY the same pcb & VIA chip as your card, but it already has its internal header plug. Anyways, nice Instructable!

    1 reply

    Only thing to watch out is that your not overloading the USB hub inside the computer or on the card, by draining too much power! Otherwise, i nice clean mod. Good work.

    8 replies

    I know that's the risk, i'm pointing out that with more ports, then it only takes a few extra low power devices to wreck the card, or even worse, your motherboard - aimed as a warning more for others reading this ible, opposed to a warning for you.

    Most USB ports have current limiters which will turn off the port if it takes too much current.

    Well, nice thinking... Let me scrape up 7 devices to plug into it, and I'll see what happens!

    Great positive attitude. No worries, this is what is plugged into ALL of the ports: 3 devices charging (Dell AXIM, MIO GPS, Creative ZEN 32GB) 1 USB LED light 1 Lenovo Slimline DVD Burner 1 External 2.5" SATA HD in USB Enclosure (using 2 ports) Everything is running fine.

    Yeah, my equipment would probs over do it! I think it also depends on how many pci cards are being used.