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From The Tips Box: Repurpose an Old CD Case as a Cable Organizer

Tips-How-To-Geek-TemplateOnce a week we take a look in the tips box and share the tips and tricks you mail in. This week we’re focusing on a great tip that turns an old (and probably unused) CD case into a cable organizer.

How-To Geek reader Chris send in this terribly clever tip—so clever that we’re a bit disappointed you didn’t think of it first!


Like many people these days I have several electronic devices, from cell phone to tablet to an external hard drive to Bluetooth headset. With each device come the data/charging cable and the tangled mess we all must deal with toting them wherever we go. This would not be an issue if there was an industry standard in charging/data plugs, but Samsung is doing its own thing, while my external hard drive is sporting the mini-USB plug and my phone is rocking the micro-USB port.

With all of these cords all tumbling around in the pocket of some computer bag, both big and small, there tends to be some sort of intermingling that takes place and when you pull the one cord you need, the entire pocket empties and you end up holding what looks like a ball of deadly vipers.

I began thinking the other night of a way that I can keep these cords in a easy to use, yet portable container that is flexible and will fit easily into any bag I choose to carry. I wanted something that I can set up in file cabinet type fashion where I’m not rifling through everything to find that one cord I need.

Then, it dawned on me. Nobody uses CD’s anymore…it’s all downloads and MP3s. However, almost everyone still has that CD case lying around. So, I opened up the junk drawer, pulled out my Case Logic circular CD case, and began to file my cords one by one in the now empty CD sleeve.

This is what it looks like:

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Regular Case Logic Circular CD case

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Cable filing system. Here I have my audio aux to aux cable.

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Behind my aux cable I have my Evo 3D charging/data cable.

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And so on, and so on.

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I even have a place in the back for my screen rag.

Now I can easily find the cable I want and without having to untangle it from the rest of the cables I’m toting around with me that day. The CD case is small, flexible, and even if you don’t have one laying around it shouldn’t cost you more than $5-$10 to get one.


Great tip Chris; in fact as soon as you sent it in we dug out a few old CD cases and tidying up our laptop bags. Nice work!

If you have a tip of your own to share—the more details and pictures the better!—drop us a line at tips@howtogeek.com.

Jason Fitzpatrick is warranty-voiding DIYer and all around geek. When he's not documenting mods and hacks he's doing his best to make sure a generation of college students graduate knowing they should put their pants on one leg at a time and go on to greatness, just like Bruce Dickinson. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 09/22/11

Comments (11)

  1. Lady Fitzgerald

    Clever!

  2. stacy reeves

    good one chris!!!

  3. lastlifelost

    Brilliant!

  4. me

    good thinking!

  5. Sam

    It is about time to contributed to the benefit of mankind!

  6. Sam

    It is about time you contributed to the benefit of mankind!

  7. Metalvain

    Nice, I’m going to use this!

  8. Carolynn Middleton

    I guess this will do until manufacturers wake up and decide to standardize all cables between input and output devices, thereby eliminating the need for all these darned cords and cables…

  9. Carolynn Middleton

    Here’s an even better idea;

    Manufacturers could make attachments for devices that provide cordless functions, like my cordless mouse and cordless keyboard. This way all those darned cables would be eliminated. Maybe someone could write to the manufacturers and tell them about this…!

  10. david

    Carolynn Middleton they already did its call blue tooth/wifi, but you still need a cable to charge it.

  11. SKC

    Great idea!
    I’ve tried to tidy up in a similar way using a “Flip File” Works quite well except I’ve had to use a bungee chord to keep it all closed.

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