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Using Nokia DKU-5 cable to program picaxe (Working now!)

Hi guys

I read this article- http://letsmakerobots.com/node/23728 by Ro-Bot-X and i bought the same nokia cable (CA-42) from a local computer shop. It looked like this from 'outside'.


But wait when i cut opened it it wasn't CA-42!. It was nokia DKU-5 cable based on PL2303,

so i searched the internet for it and found that it was like a predecessor to CA-42 and it does the same thing CA-42 does. So i downloaded the drivers for PL2303 and when connected, my PC shows 'Prolific USB to Serial device' connected. i checked in the device manager and it was there and was assigned COM1. I changed the communications port to COM1 to make my nokia cable a communication port (i have to make COM4 the communication port when i use a serial port) shown here-


Now I cut the cable near the phone connector end and found the TX, RX and the ground wires. So it is now like my half arduino cable (I know two more wires are missing in it but i don't need them). I found this article- http://letsmakerobots.com/node/21245 with which one could program picaxe with arduino cable. So i made that HEX inverter circuit and double checked all the connections, started picaxe program editor and selected COM1 in the ports setting.

So far so good, but when i tried to program a led blink code on it, the error "No hardware found on COM1" came. :(

I tried everything possible at my level- checking all the connections,TX,RX and ground wires of the cable etc but nothing good. I am thinking the problem is with the cable being not supported by picaxe program editor, or maybe i am doing something wrong Please help me getting the cable working!

Edited 10 july 2012:

I finnaly got it working! I think the problem was in drivers as when i downloaded and installed the drivers for the original picaxe USB to serial hub from picaxe website and somehow it started working! here is how it looks like-


The Hex inverter-



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Hello sanc04. Thanks for the topic.

I have the same usb adapter here, but i dont have the wires on it, just the usb solded on the pcb..

Can you please identify the grounds and the TX/ RX on the pcb ?? 

Its 5 points to test, i dont have the knowledge to identify it.


Thanks alot

are you sure that it is same as my cable?

Since there are many nokia DKU-5 (or CA-42) cables available on the internet and they all look same from outside, chances are that you may have a different cable.

Have you viewed my cable from inside ( http://letsmakerobots.com/files/userpics/u17926/IMG_0189.jpg )? If you have the same then in the pic the white cable (extreme left 'terminal' in picture) is the computer's serial out (or computer's tx) and blue (adjacent to white cable) is the computer's serial in (or computer's rx) and the black cable (adjacent to green which is the extreme right 'terminal' in picture) is ground.

Yes, is the same! But i have only the usb part, dont have any cable attached on it. so now i gonna follow that you told me and try if works

one more thing, you need to download and install the latest drivers from the picaxe website- http://www.picaxe.com/Software/Drivers/USB010-USB-Adapter-Driver/

I even downloaded and installed the new drivers for win7 from picaxe website, but it didn't work

Seems this guy here...


had similar problems. He thought perhaps he had the wrong flavor of logic chip and went with a transistor-based inverter setup instead.

The PL2303 works with PICAXEs as there is this over at PICAXE.com...


Something you should note: And I quote:

"Kindly note that a large number of 'fake' Prolific USB adapters are now on sale on popular online sites. These adapters, which tend to be a translucent blue or green colour and are sold at very low prices, do not actually contain a Prolific chip (they use a fake inferior clone chip but still 'identify' themselves under the USB protocol by using the Prolific USB PID/VID identification codes). These fake clones will not work correctly with the PICAXE system as the clone chips do not correctly support the RS232 'break' command."

Dude i didn't know picaxe also has real 'Prolific drivers' on their website and i think it is working only because of those drivers. Thank you so much!

Thanks JAX but I don't know if mine is fake or not. It is working with the drivers