According to the USB specification, you can use passive extension cables (i.e., cables without an active repeater chip in them) for distances up to 16 feet. Beyond 16 feet, you need a cable that will boost the signal in order to avoid losing data or, worse yet, damaging USB equipments This device is an extension cable between USB device and host (computer) with embedded into connector "intelligent" integrated circuits on both sides of the cable. The USB cable with the chip inside is not a passive extension cable. It is an active device. Unlike passive USB cables the IC prevents signal degradation. The embedded "intelligent" integrated circuit cleans, amplifies USB signal. ASIC chip built in to buffer the incoming and outgoing USB signals with accuracy, not like those passive type usb extension cables, which have no booster chips inside so data signals can not be carried efficiently over the distance. No setup configuration required. No driver installation needed. Doubles as a single port hub so multiple units can be serially connected. No external power needed. Works with all low and high-speed USB devices.