Why does (USB 2.0) appear after Altair camera name, even when using a USB3.0 cable?

If AltairCapture or ASCOM driver shows (USB 2.0) after the camera name when using a USB3.0 cable, this is usually for the following reasons:

1) USB 3.0 cable damaged, shielding cracked, moisture in cable.

2) USB 3.0 cable too long for a USB3.0 signal to propagate so defaulting to USB2.0. NOTE: The official limit for a USB3.0 cable is 1.8 metres.

3) Using active hub or cable which is overpowered (over 5.5v) or underpowered (under 5.5v) NOTE: Be careful! Inadvertently plugging your USB hub into a 12v power source on, for example the Pegasus Powerbox will destroy the camera circuitry and is not covered by warranty!

4) USB socket damaged. Caused by cables being pulled out at an angle when slewing telescope, or cable catching, dropping camera with cable plugged in. Check if the internal contacts are bent, or if the cable is very loose in the socket.

5) Dirt or moisture inside the USB socket on active hub, PC or camera. Inspect and clean.

6) USB device device driver issue, where USB3.0 emulation fails and reverting to USB2.0 (often fixed by updating drivers on host PC).

This is not necessarily a problem for cameras which support both USB2.0 and USB3.0 but it does mean slower frame rates for video and slower download between still frames. Image quality will be the same unless there is an electrical short or bad noise interference. On the positive side, USB2.0 does allow for longer cables which is more convenient in some situations.