MDPC CTX3: A load of doubtful marketing bollocks lands on my crimp connectors page

I promise the day will come when I stop banging on about crimp tools, but, indulge me just one more time. Somebody just posted a link to the below crimp tool on my crimp connectors page:

MDPC CTX3 Crimp tool: £55. Like a well choreographed cooking channel, it’s pictured on wood. Hoping to invoke a woody reaction among prospective purchasers. Source: cable-sleeving.com.

Update: I have recently taken delivery of an CTX3, and compared it in detail to the SN-28B. Read more about it here.

Update: I’ve done detailed comparisons of the CTX3 vs SN-28B crimps on this page.

Website link. It looks rather like a re-badged IWISS SN-28B to me, with a slightly different insulation anvil (for the larger sleeved type cable), for double the money.

IWISS SN-28B. Made in China, £25 and common as blow-flies.

Thier website is loaded with incredible assertions (quoted):

“The MDPC “10th Anniversary Edition” crimping tool MD-CTX3 replaces the legendary CT1 model, which earned the reputation of being the reference for the last 7 years.”

I was not able to find any pictures or references (other than that statement) of the fabled “CT1”. Unexpected for a tool that’s been around 7 years? Own a CT1? I’d love to see a picture of it! As for it being a reference – A reference crimping tool can only ever be the connector manufacturer original tool, which can cost hundreds to over a thousand dollars, and for a good reason. I have detailed many of these (all of the relevant tools for PC modding) on this page.

“5-axis CNC shaping of the essential structures, made in Germany, to achieve the highest standards in crimp terminal shaping over all 3-axis (!) of the crimp terminal – based on the official MLX guidelines.”

Made in Germany? It seems rather improbable that two nearly identical looking tools would be made in both China and Germany. I have many German made crimp tools in my collection, the cheapest retails for over £300. Wezag GmbH is an example of a German crimp tool manufacturer. You’ll find many examples of their tools on my crimp connectors page.

CNC? Yeah, so what. Computer controlled machines are involved with the manufacture of all low cost crimp tools. That’s why they’re cheap.

As for those “MLX guidelines”… Let’s google that shall we?

A highly scientific looking diagram provided by the marketer. Must stick out? You’d bloody hope so. Even if it does, you haven’t scratched the surface of crimping considerations. Note to the knuckleheads who produced this graphic: The “Top” is called the Crimper and the “Bottom” is called the Anvil. The “Rear” is the wire die, and the “Front” is the insulation die. Source: cable-sleeving.com.

If you’d like to learn some actual science about crimping – take a look at this video:

A further note to PC modders

I recently looked at a new tool from IWISS – the SN-025 which may do a better job at crimping the main two types of connector used in PCs (DuPont / Mini-Fit Jr), than the IWISS SN-28B (and by extension, the illustrious MDPC CTX3).

It is not suitable for crimping Commercial Mate-n-Lok terminals or look-a-likes. You will still need the SN-28B for those, but I wouldn’t imagine many are used anymore. Having not purchased the CTX3, you’ll be able afford both, with money left over for a couple of beers.

More nonsense?

Looking around PC modding forums I’ve noticed people referring to these connectors:

Molex Mini-Fir JR connectors
Molex Mini-Fir Jr connectors

… as “ATX” connectors? I’m pretty sure that’s not what they’re called. I first started modding PCs 22 years ago, just before these began to replace the traditional Molex 90331 type mainboard connection. These, then, and now have always been Molex Mini-Fit Jr connectors.

Where-oh-where has this “ATX” Connector name come from?

MDPC hope you’ll feel the way this contact is feeling. Source: cable-sleeving.com

MDPC of course. This is some pretty stiff tactics. Molex’s logo has been liberated for another very woody marketing image, depicting a suitably erected contact, yet the marketer is selling it under a different name. At least the true name is mentioned in the fine-print. Conveniently a detail which didn’t make it to the product page of this re-seller.

Given the specious assertions attached to the CTX3 tool, it is worth questioning whether or not genuine Mini-Fit Jr contacts is what you’ll actually receive if paying the rather lavish prices attached to these. There are a hell of a lot of fakes out there.

If you want to be sure, buy a bag of 100 from a reputable re-seller (UK) (or from here – US). You’ll definitely get genuine contacts, and you’ll save quite a bit of money too.

Oh so much wood. These Mate-n-Lok look-a-like contacts aren’t feeling it so much. Source: cable-sleeving.com

It was a relief to see that MDPC managed to refrain for slapping a Molex logo on this these. Molex weren’t the creator of this type of connector, but they did used make them. They are now discontinued.

Molex original Disk Drive Power Connection System, housings, contacts and crimp tool manufactured by Wezag GmbH in the German Germany, not to be confused with the other Germany next to Japan.

The males were discontinued back when I first started modding PCs – in the dotcom era. Today, my small stock of them is rare and difficult to obtain collection. My image above is the one featured the Wikipedia page explaining the history of them.

If you are looking for quality examples of these connectors, the original Mate-n-Lok series remains in full production.

Oh my it goes on…

MDPC are also selling the 11-03-0044 contact extractor, which is accompanied by this (quoted):

The Original Pin Remover by the MOLEX Company. Each one is double checked for perfection and signed, before it gets into your hands. You will only get the tools, which will work 100% perfectly. Discolorizations of the stainless spring-steel can exist, which is not a fault, but part of the manufacturing process.

With MDPC’s price a little higher than other outfits stocking it, I assume it’s the genuine item. Given the high levels of quality control connector manufacturers like Molex perform – It’s OK MDPC, you don’t need to check it again.

13 thoughts on “MDPC CTX3: A load of doubtful marketing bollocks lands on my crimp connectors page

  1. Looks like that the inferior jaw has a different radius than the IWISS? Maybe this piece is made in Germany, also the “Highest quality German made hardened stainless steel screws” and the packaging is also made in Germany… Maybe those are the 3 companies from Germany stated in the description. The other 3 are of course from Taiwan.

  2. Interesting. I sent a message to the owner of MDPC-X what the difference between the CTX3 and the Iwiss SN-28B is (they do look very similar). I wonder why everybody in the PC Modding community is all over the CTX3 if it actually is worse than the SN-025?

    1. SN-025 has only appeared very recently. As to whether it’s better, I’d say it is for “dupont” types, for others, that is more a matter of opinion. As I said, you can afford both by buying direct.

      MDPC having an established sales channel with the PC modding community would likely explain the popularity of the CTX3. I’d fall for it too.

      1. I will return here after I bought both. I guess the CTX3 can’t be THAT bad if everyone is falling in love with it. If it actually does its job I will return the SN-025, should be quite easy on amazon. Thanks for your work here though!

        1. I have a CTX3 on order, will be looking at it in details soon.

          From looking at many photos, it looks like the insulation crimper or anvil (possibly both) may be slightly larger on the CTX3 compared to the SN-28B, understandable given that it’s sold for sleeved cable use. Can’t see any differences on the wire side yet however.

          1. Just thought I’d mention, the sleeving is actually done after the terminal is crimped on the cable so the anvil shouldn’t need to be larger I think as it’ll be crimping a regular cable.

          2. Not necessarily. I purchased some Chinese made sleeved cable assembles, they have quite nicely crimped the sleeve into the insulation support.

      1. At 2:00, I think that mdpc crimper with the black handles is in fa t the CT1 as there is only two crimping dies on it if you zoom in, instead of the 3 crimping dies you see on the CTX3.(Apologies if “does” is the wrong terminology)

        This is what I am assuming however and could be completely wrong.

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