DIY firmware update cable

I think many of us are DIY’ers because we like to:

  1. “Tinker” with things

  2. Save money

  3. Be in control

With that in mind, I have always wondered if there would be a way to make our own firmware update cable. As you are aware, the 2GIG branded cable comes at a steep price. If you are in the business and/or have multiple panels to update then you probably don’t mind spending the $20 to $30 for a single 2GIG branded cable.

A less expensive option would be attractive to people like me who only need to update one panel on one occasion.

It appears to me that the 2GIG update cable is nothing more than a male usb to a 4 pin female connector.

Have any of you tried making your own?

Or have you tried going with a less expensive generic cable?

USB to 4 pin generic

Or this is even cheaper if you already have a USB cable

USB option 2

If you google it, you will see there are many discussion boards with threads on those who want to DIY their own 2GIG update cable.

Usually the outcome is a bricked panel that has to be replaced for around $160 or so.

2GIG on the average releases new firmware twice yearly or so. I have got a lot of use out of my 2GIG firmware cable.

To be honest, I’ve not had a reason to try this (nor do I think anyone else here has either) but as stated above, I have not heard any positive results.

The 2GIG Cable is made so it can only connect to the panel pins in one direction. Instructions specify direction for TS1. Using a generic cable allows for error, and if you look at the 2GIG Cable, it also only uses three of the pins.

I certainly am not going to recommend anyone attempt to use anything other than the OEM cable. Bricking the panel is a very real possibility.

Having said that, should someone come across this post in the future this may be a good place to start.


You can’t just use a USB to 4 pin header cable. The J4 connector on the board is not USB, it is a serial header (like the USB to TTL cable with integrated chip Jrlivin2 suggested). You might also just be able to use a straight up old serial cable (tons of these laying around) and cut one end if you still have a machine that has an old serial port.

I am also not recommending it (because I bricked my own panel) but you could look at this forum thread for hints, maybe only if you have a panel you don’t mind sacrificing: