25

What is the use of this socket/port seen on an airplane passenger's seat?

enter image description here

Seen on flight LA 833.

  • Maybe something for either hearing aid or braille machine/devices ? or an older power connector for laptop ? – Max Feb 6 at 17:53
  • I had a connector like that on my stereo in the 80ies. – Aganju Feb 6 at 17:54
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    The FlightAware link shows the status of the flight today, which is not necessarily helpful in knowing the situation on the flight when you took it. Do you know the type of aircraft that was used on your flight, or perhaps even the tail number? In which class of service is this seat? – Nate Eldredge Feb 6 at 18:03
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    It's a 9-pin mini-DIN connector, used for connecting an Acorn Archimedes mouse. – Mark Feb 7 at 2:11
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    Yes, it's a mini-DIN, but the Wiki category is "Audio and video interfaces and connectors". Common for the breakout cable on old video cards. – Mazura Feb 7 at 9:30
45

It's a port called an eXport. It was part of the Panasonic IFE system

OK I think I found it! About 10 years ago Panasonic's IFE system (which appears to have been used on the B773ER and A333) contained a new port called eXport. It was a 9-pin mini-DIN port for iPods. You could purchase an adapter cable made by Griffin that was essentially an adapter between the 9 pin mini-DIN and 30-pin ipod dock connector. It would allow you to charge your ipod, control it via the IFE and stream media from it into the IFE system.

From Reddit

Edit, I've looked about for some actual port specifications but it's searching for "Panasonic Export" just seems to return information about panasonic's exports. I did find this from a guy who took a multimeter to the port to find out which port is which. Port information

The box for the cable

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    I did some digging and found this on the wayback machine. In the article they mention "Panasonic's X series IFE", googling that brought me to here. So turns out, Panasonic is a somewhat large manufacturer of in flight entertainment systems. Who'd a thought it eh? – MindSwipe Feb 7 at 6:30
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    I feel like the eXport socket never really took off (no pun intended) though. I can't find anywhere that still sells them. I'd imagine USB superseded it. – zeocrash Feb 7 at 11:24
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    I'm pretty sure Airplay, or w/e it's called, obsolesced it. – Mazura Feb 8 at 1:16
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    It always puzzles me that AV manufacturers keep trying to make proprietary connectors happen, when a common standard would not only be more practical but probably cost less to manufacture – zeocrash Feb 12 at 18:11
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    @zeocrash , me too although the common thought I had with this ( and it goes back to some vintage 80s stuff ) is simply to try to force the consumer into buying a specific brand. As you know does not work only increases sales for adaptor manufacturers... – AndyF Feb 12 at 23:19

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