Connection standard USB Type-C™ & USB 5 / 10 / 20 Gbps


The USB Type-C™ form factor

The USB Type-C™ male with its characteristic elliptic shape is already widespread used in the area of mobile devices. The user friendly 24 pin male enables the simultaneously transfer of current, data, video and audio signals in high quality.

Male and female of the both-sided usable USB Type-C™ form factor

Specifications & advantages of USB Type-C™

Protocol diversity

Beside the USB variants 1 to 3.2, also DisplayPort™, PCI Express, Thunderbolt™, HDMI or MHL signals are compatible. Via a USB Type-C™ connection, the transfer of audio and video data is even possible parallel to the USB data and USB charging current. With appropriate converters, also a VGA monitor can be connected.

Supports 20 Gbps data transfer rate

USB Type-A males are constructed in a way to reach maximum 10 Gbps using these, which corresponds to the specification USB 10 Gbps. The maximum 20 Gbps of the new USB 20 Gbps protocol need the USB Type-C™ interface. - For the USB versions and data rates in an overview, see the table below.


The USB Type-C™ male is twisting-safe constructed. It cannot be plugged into the female the wrong way round and it is therefore not necessary to distinguish between "top" and "bottom". Also with the cable USB Type-C™ to USB Type-C™ you do not have to pay attention to "start" or "end": It does not matter which end of the cable is connected to the host, which is connected to the device, since both connection ends are equivalent in their functionality.

The USB Type-C™ pin assignment shows the mirrored functions of the two pin lines and so the both-sided usability


The USB Type-C™ male is much more robust than its predecessor. According to the USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF) the male is designed in a way that it withstands 10,000 mating cycles. That means, in terms of figure, a Smartphone could be charged once a day for 329 months (= plug in / pull out again), for example. Compared to these 10,000, for the USB 5 Gbps Type-A male a lifespan of up to 5,000 mating cycles is stated.

Slim and resistant design

The USB Type-C™ connector has a slim design similar to the Micro USB connector, but is robust enough to be completely suitable for use with laptops, tablets or other mobile devices. The USB Type-C™ male with its small measurements of only 8.4 x 2.6 mm is ideally suitable for slim smartphones as well as desktop PCs and entertainment electronics devices.


With USB Type-C™ connectors, connections can also be made to different USB devices (= non USB Type-C™ devices) by using adapters or cables. In this way, pre-existing hardware or peripheral devices can still be used.


Thanks to their functionalities, the USB Type-C™ interface will gain more and more importance. So already today and also in future at an increasing rate, fewer power adapters for connected devices are and will be needed. For example a laptop can be connected to a docking station that supplies the laptop and other devices with power.

Improved EMC

USB Type-C™ can reduce malfunctions of involved devices because the electromagnetic compability has been upgraded.

USB 20 Gbps – What is it?

The USB 20 Gbps specification has, compared to its predecessor USB 10 Gbps, a doubled maximum possible data transfer rate of 20 Gbps. In the following, it is about the standard USB 20 Gbps in connection with the USB Type-C™ form factor, so firstly an overview of the USB specifications with the old and the new names may be helpful.

ATTENTION: The USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF) decided on 2 September 2022 new designations for the different versions of the USB standards. The reason given was the previous confusing naming schemes. The new syntax follows the system "USB X Gbps" whereas X stands for the maximum data transfer rate each.

Old specification Old marketing-name New (marketing-) name Max. data transfer rate
USB 1.1 Full-Speed 12 Mbps - 12 Mbps
USB 2.0 Hi-Speed 480 Mbps - 480 Mbps
USB 3.2 Gen 1 SuperSpeed USB 5 Gbps USB 5 Gbps 5 Gbps
USB 3.2 Gen 2 SuperSpeed USB 10 Gbps USB 10 Gbps 10 Gbps
USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 SuperSpeed USB 20 Gbps USB 20 Gbps 20 Gbps
USB4 20 Gbps - USB 20 Gbps 20 Gbps
USB4 40 Gbps - USB 40 Gbps 40 Gbps
USB4 Gen 3x2 - USB 40 Gbps 40 Gbps
USB4 Version 2.0 - USB 80 Gbps 80 Gbps

USB specifications and interfaces at a glance

USB 20 Gbps plus USB Type-C™ = The super-fast duo

Data transfer performance

The predecessor of USB 20 Gbps is USB 10 Gbps. Through this predecessor protocol, data rates of up to 10 Gbps can be reached. The subsequent, faster transmission mode is the USB 20 Gbps protocol. With it, you can achieve a data rate of up to 20 Gbps.

The USB Type-C™ male can be used for all USB connections, even for older USB devices and cables. To reach the highest possible data rate of 20 Gbps, please note that both connected devices must support the USB 20 Gbps protocol. But older cables which support „only“ USB 10 Gbps can be used also for applications with 20 Gbps.

USB Power Delivery & charging function

Since USB 10 Gbps, the power supply specification called USB Power Delivery (shortened: USB PD) is supported. Thereby a maximum power consumption of 5 A and 20 V (100 watt) is possible. The power supply works in both directions.

How does it work? Power supply unit and end device negotiate the combination of voltage and current intensity and so the performance, that means they create a profile. The PSU offers the available combinations and the end device chooses an appropriate profile out of these. USB PD detects and takes notice of the charging direction of the devices connected to each other.

The topology of USB PD

Thanks to USB Type-C™ and USB PD, not only smartphones or tablets can be charged, but also larger or powerful devices such as monitors or laptops can be supplied with power. The prerequisite is USB PD support, for the device on the one hand and the cable on the other. For example, a monitor with USB Type-C™ connection and USB PD support which is connected to a power supply can charge a laptop while simultaneously transmitting signals from the laptop to the monitor.

The USB Type-C™ DisplayPort Alternate Mode

In addition to the USB data line, the USB Type-C™ connector of the laptop and other devices has another function. This function is called DisplayPort Alternate Mode (DP Alt Mode). It allows to connect a monitor adapter to the appropriate USB Type-C™ port of a device. In case this port supports the DP Alt Mode, the signal can be transmitted to the monitor via the adapter or cable.

Monitor diversity thanks to DP Alt Mode

If the device supports DP Alt Mode, appropriate USB Type-C™ to DisplayPort™, HDMI, DVI or VGA adapters can be used in order to connect corresponding monitors.

The relationship between USB Type-C™ and Thunderbolt™ 3

Basic idea of the USB Type-C™ interface is to transfer various kinds of data or signals via a single cable. The initially in 2009 by Intel and Apple introduced standard Thunderbolt™ was following the same purpose. Since middle of 2015, Thunderbolt™ 3 has also been using the USB Type-C™ connector, which can be used on both sides. Thunderbolt™ 3 is using the same male and female connector like USB Type-C™ and supports all USB Type-C™ functions. In addition, the Thunderbolt™ 3 controller has a USB 3.2 controller integrated.

Product examples by Delock

Item 85291
Cable USB Type-C™ male to HDMI male (DP Alt Mode)

      1 x USB Type-C™ male >
      1 x HDMI-A 19 pin male
High Speed HDMI with Ethernet (HEC) specification
Resolution up to 3840 x 2160 @ 60 Hz (depending on monitor / system)
Supports 3D Displays & HDCP 1.4 / 2.2
Gold-plated connectors
Length: ca. 2 m (without connectors)

Also available with following lengths
Item 85290  ca. 1 m
Item 85292  ca. 3 m

Item 85255
Cable USB Type-C™ male to DisplayPort™ male (DP Alt Mode)

      1 x USB Type-C™ male >
      1 x DisplayPort™ 20 pin male
DisplayPort™ 1.2 specification
Resolution up to 3840 x 2160 @ 60 Hz (depending on monitor / system)
Supports 3D Displays & HDCP 1.4 / 2.2
Gold-plated connectors
Length: ca. 1 m (without connectors)

Also available with following lengths
Item 85256  ca. 2 m
Item 85257  ca. 3 m

Item 83870
Cable USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A male to USB Type-C™ male

      SuperSpeed USB 10 Gbps Type-A male >
      SuperSpeed USB 10 Gbps USB Type-C™ male
Host = USB Typ A; Device = USB Type-C™
Data transfer rate up to 10 Gbps
Cable gauge:
      30 AWG data line
      22 AWG power line
Cable diameter: ca. 4.5 mm
Length: ca. 1 m (incl. connectors)

Also available with the length
Item 83869  ca. 0.5 m

Item 84845
Cable Thunderbolt™ 3 (20 Gbps) USB Type-C™ male to male passive

      1 x Thunderbolt™ 3 USB Type-C™ 24 pin male >
      1 x Thunderbolt™ 3 USB Type-C™ 24 pin male
Data transfer rates
       Thunderbolt™ 3 up to 20 Gbps
       DisplayPort™ 1.2a up to 21.6 Gbps
       SuperSpeed USB up to 10 Gbps
       Thunderbolt™ Networking up to 10 Gbps (Peer-To-Peer)
Supports PCI Express 3.0 protocol (4 lanes)
Supports Displayport 1.2a protocol (8 lanes, HBR2 and MST)
Cascadable up to 6 Thunderbolt™ devices (Daisy Chain)
Cable gauge:
      32 + 34 AWG data line
      24 + 34 AWG power line
Gold-plated connectors
Threefold shielded cable
Cable diameter: ca. 4.4 mm
Length: ca. 1 m (without connectors)

Also available with
Item 84844  ca. 0.5 m • 5 A • 40 Gbps
Item 84846  ca. 1.5 m • 5 A • 20 Gbps
Item 84847  ca. 2 m • 3 A • 20 Gbps

Item 62904
Adapter USB Type-C™ to 1 x Serial DB9 RS-232 + Adapter DB25

      1 x USB Type-C™ male >
      1 x Serial RS-232 DB9 male with screws
      1 x Serial RS-232 DB9 female with nuts >
      1 x Seriell RS-232 DB25 male with screws
Cable length: ca. 1.8 m (incl. connectors)

Item 65842
Audio Adapter USB Type-C™ male to stereo jack female

      1 x USB Type-C™ male >
      1 x 3.5 mm 4 pin stereo jack female
USB 2.0 and USB Audio Device Class 1.0 specification
Gold-plated connectors
Cable diameter: ca. 2 mm
Cable length: ca. 14 cm (incl. connectors)

Item 89582
PCI Express Card to 1 x external USB Type-C™ 3.1 female +
1 x external USB Type-C™ 3.1 (DP Alt Mode) female

      1 x SuperSpeed USB 10 Gbps USB Type-C™ female
      1 x SuperSpeed USB 10 Gbps USB Type-C™ female (DP Alt Mode capable)
      1 x DisplayPort™ 20 Pin female (for DP Alt Mode function)
      1 x PCI Express x1, V3.0
DisplayPort™ 1.2 specification
Data transfer rate up to USB 10 Gbps
Resolution up to 3840 x 2160 @ 60 Hz (depending on monitor / system)
Power supply via PCI Express interface
Supports eXtensible Host Controller Interface (xHCI) specification 1.1

Application example

Close application example

Item 87298
USB Type-C™ 3.1 Docking Station

      Front side:
      1 x Gigabit LAN 10/100/1000 Mbps RJ45 jack
      1 x mini Displayport 20 pin female
      1 x VGA 15 pin female
      1 x USB Type-C™ female (power supply)
      Back side:
      3 x USB 3.0 Type-A female
      1 x Headset 3.5 mm 4 pin jack
      1 x SD / SDHC / SDXC / MMC slot
      1 x Micro SD / SDHC / SDXC slot
      1 x USB Type-C™ male
Extended and mirror (HDMI and DisplayPort)
Resolution up to 2560 x 1440 @ 60 Hz oder 3840 x 2160 @ 30 Hz (depending on monitor / system)
VGA resolution up to 1920 x 1080 @ 60 Hz
Cable length: ca. 18 cm (incl. connectors)
Dimensions (LxWxH): ca. 13.7 x 7.5 x 1.7 cm