Pinebook Pro Dock Power Requirements
#1
I have a PinePhone Manajaro Community Edition and I'm looking forward to ordering a PineBook Pro as soon as the Pine64 store enables orders again. Looking at the specs for its dock (https://pine64.com/product/pinebook-pro-...46c16e2e66

"Power Input: USB-C PD Quick Charge, 60Wat" (sic)

Is that 60 watts at 5 volts? Yikes--that's 12 amps!!! Huh  The Rock64/PB power supply only supplies 3 amps maximum:
https://pine64.com/product/rock64-pinebo...46c16e2e66
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#2
I think it's 3A @ 20VDC but I could be wrong. In any case, it's not 12A.
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#3
(12-06-2020, 11:34 AM)calinb Wrote: I have a PinePhone Manajaro Community Edition and I'm looking forward to ordering a PineBook Pro as soon as the Pine64 store enables orders again. Looking at the specs for its dock (https://pine64.com/product/pinebook-pro-...46c16e2e66

"Power Input: USB-C PD Quick Charge, 60Wat" (sic)

Is that 60 watts at 5 volts? Yikes--that's 12 amps!!! Huh  The Rock64/PB power supply only supplies 3 amps maximum:
https://pine64.com/product/rock64-pinebo...46c16e2e66

The dock has a higher watt than the pbpro itself as it can be used to also power accessories connected to it (usb drives, ...)

As written in the announcement: https://www.pine64.org/2020/11/15/novemb...he-future/
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#4
(12-06-2020, 01:09 PM)appelgriebsc Wrote: The dock has a higher watt than the pbpro itself as it can be used to also power accessories connected to it (usb drives, ...)

As written in the announcement: https://www.pine64.org/2020/11/15/novemb...he-future/

Thanks for the announcement link!

I don't think USB Type-C is rated for 12 A. Even USB PD is only 5A maximum. See page 45 here:

https://web.archive.org/web/201612201029...Type-C.pdf

It does say that PD voltage is "configurable." 60 watts would require 12 V at 5 A. Can the dock handle 12V? I don't think such a supply exists on the Pine64 webstore though and I think most 12 V / 5 A capable power supplies will not support a USB Type-C connector (more likely a co-axial barrel connector). An adapter would have to be made.

Okay--there is this one but I think being a "smart" interface, a certified USB Type-C power supply is required:

https://pine64.com/product/rockpro64-12v...46c16e2e66

and it does use a barrel connector but I only see the USB Type-C dongle power connector on the dock.
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#5
I wonder how much power the dock allocates for the PineBook Pro.  If it's just 15 W (3 A at 5 V), then it's another case of poorly designed power circuitry.  We need much more than 15 W for the PineBook Pro.
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#6
The PBP currently (pun?) only draws about 2.5A from the USB-C connector in any case. Except for future modifications, more than 15W won't do any good. Reports are that it draws closer to 3A from the barrel jack; and the power circuitry would need a major redesign to accept more than that.
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#7
I still don't know what PD modes the dock will request. This power supply supports more modes than most. I wonder if it would work. The power supplies I've seen all peak at 3 or 3.25A so 20 V would be required to make it to the 60W dock spec.

Input: 100~240V / 50~60Hz; Output: 65W, 5V-3A, 9V-3A, 12V-3A, 15V-3A, 18V-3A, 20V-3.25A

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08JPD...ct_title_2
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#8
(12-06-2020, 04:54 PM)KC9UDX Wrote: The PBP currently (pun?) only draws about 2.5A from the USB-C connector in any case.  Except for future modifications, more than 15W won't do any good.  Reports are that it draws closer to 3A from the barrel jack; and the power circuitry would need a major redesign to accept more than that.

I don't think it would be a major redesign.  The main power supply, a BQ24171, is rated to 17V.  It should be possible to get 45W with 15V-3A over USB-C with only minor changes to a few components.

(12-07-2020, 09:58 PM)calinb Wrote: I still don't know what PD modes the dock will request. This power supply supports more modes than most. I wonder if it would work. The power supplies I've seen all peak at 3 or 3.25A so 20 V would be required to make it to the 60W dock spec.

Input: 100~240V / 50~60Hz; Output: 65W, 5V-3A, 9V-3A, 12V-3A, 15V-3A, 18V-3A, 20V-3.25A
The USB PD spec allows up to 3A without a fancier cable that has a chip in it.  So usually a power supply with top out at 3A.  Only for >60W will >3A be used, since the max voltage is 20V and it's required.

The spec only requires voltages of 5V, 9V, 15V, and 20V, and only if the adapter is powerful enough to reach 3A at the previous voltage.  So the 12V and 18V are optional voltages that adapter has that will be less common.

I wonder if the schematic for the dock will be available.  I've never worked on hardware with an externally powered USB hub and don't know what's done.  Does it have a buck-boost supply to allow any combination of input and output voltage?  Or does it just have a buck converter to 5V, so you can get either 5V or the input voltage?  Do they do dynamic power management as new USB-PD devices are attached?
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#9
(12-11-2020, 03:30 AM)xyzzy Wrote:
(12-06-2020, 04:54 PM)KC9UDX Wrote: The PBP currently (pun?) only draws about 2.5A from the USB-C connector in any case.  Except for future modifications, more than 15W won't do any good.  Reports are that it draws closer to 3A from the barrel jack; and the power circuitry would need a major redesign to accept more than that.

I don't think it would be a major redesign.  The main power supply, a BQ24171, is rated to 17V.  It should be possible to get 45W with 15V-3A over USB-C with only minor changes to a few components.

(12-07-2020, 09:58 PM)calinb Wrote: I still don't know what PD modes the dock will request. This power supply supports more modes than most. I wonder if it would work. The power supplies I've seen all peak at 3 or 3.25A so 20 V would be required to make it to the 60W dock spec.

Input: 100~240V / 50~60Hz; Output: 65W, 5V-3A, 9V-3A, 12V-3A, 15V-3A, 18V-3A, 20V-3.25A
The USB PD spec allows up to 3A without a fancier cable that has a chip in it.  So usually a power supply with top out at 3A.  Only for >60W will >3A be used, since the max voltage is 20V and it's required.

The spec only requires voltages of 5V, 9V, 15V, and 20V, and only if the adapter is powerful enough to reach 3A at the previous voltage.  So the 12V and 18V are optional voltages that adapter has that will be less common.

I wonder if the schematic for the dock will be available.  I've never worked on hardware with an externally powered USB hub and don't know what's done.  Does it have a buck-boost supply to allow any combination of input and output voltage?  Or does it just have a buck converter to 5V, so you can get either 5V or the input voltage?  Do they do dynamic power management as new USB-PD devices are attached?
Great information and some great questions too, KC9UDX. Thanks! Regardless, I think I might order one of the power supplies I linked after placing my PineBook Pro order, which hopefully will be open for purchase on the store very soon.
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#10
(12-06-2020, 04:54 PM)KC9UDX Wrote: The PBP currently (pun?) only draws about 2.5A from the USB-C connector in any case.  Except for future modifications, more than 15W won't do any good.  Reports are that it draws closer to 3A from the barrel jack; and the power circuitry would need a major redesign to accept more than that.

Actually, I was referring to the dock being poorly designed from the standpoint of getting the PineBook Pro modified to take and use more input power.  We'll get it there eventually, Smile so having an inferior dock would be sad.

The BQ24171 chip inside the PineBook Pro is configured to pull less power from the Type-C port, compared to what it is configured to pull from the barrel jack.  Unfortunately, all that is configured using SMT resistors on the PCB, which makes any modifications rather inconvenient.

(12-11-2020, 03:30 AM)xyzzy Wrote: I don't think it would be a major redesign.  The main power supply, a BQ24171, is rated to 17V.  It should be possible to get 45W with 15V-3A over USB-C with only minor changes to a few components.

Right, it should not be overly complicated as a modification, and using 3 A at 9 V from the Type-C port should be the easiest option.  All that is already on my to-do list.
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