DEC power connectors (UNIBUS PDP-11s, mostly)

Noel Chiappa jnc at
Wed Jul 25 14:09:04 CDT 2018

So, it turns out the power connectors (plastic female shell with metal male
pins, etc) widely used in UNIBUS PDP-11's (e.g. to provide power to
backplanes, etc) are still available, if anyone else wants any. (No doubt some
of you already knew this; this is for those, like me, who didn't! :-)

The 3-pin ones are used for the remote power on/off cables (used extensively
in DEC gear, not just UNIBUS PDP-11's).

They are 'Commercial Mate-n-Lok', now made by TE Connectivity, who bought AMP.
Here are the current part numbers:

  1-480305-0      3-pin female shell
  1-480276-0      6-pin female shell
  1-480277-0      9-pin female shell
  1-480324-0      15-pin female shell

  60620-1         14-20AWG male pin

The 6- and 15-pin are for the backplane power connecters; the 9-pin were used
to power backplanes in older machines (e.g. PDP-11/10). There's also a pin for
smaller gauge wires, e.g. for the power control cables, but I don't have the
number right here.

I have checked, and these do plug into old DEC gear properly.

I got mine from Digikey; their page for the line is here:

Go to the bottom, where it says 'Housings', and click on that, and they will
all show up. (There are cross-links to the pins when you click on a particular


PS: I'm also tracking down the 8-pin connectors used in the H744/H745/etc
regulator 'bricks'; an update on them in a day or so.

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