Is it safe to use a charger with more than 3A output?
#1
I do not understand the decision to ship the Pinebook Pro with a 3A charger.

If it is a financial constraint in order to meet $200 price point - fine. However, my workflow ends up constantly draining the battery, which I suspect is the result of the low current output of the charger.

I would like to buy a powerful charger (something closer to 5V x 30A) in order to compile in peace of mind, but I don't know anything about the electronics' ability to cope with such an out-of-spec current draw.

Can I buy the big charger or should I not?
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#2
If you find a place advertising a 5volt @ 30amps USB C or barrel charger, avoid everything from that place.
That's a LOT of power, about 150watts and the Pinebook Pro would not be able to do anything beyond a certain point.
And even if our Pinebook Pros could use that much power, you would NEED active cooler, like a refridgerated laptop fan tray.

At present, we don't know if higher amperage power sources will help. Anyone trying, is taking a bit of risk, unless they can read the schematics, specifically the power section. While I can read schematics, my skills with power circuits is quite limited.

So a better question is, can we use 5volts @ 5amps?
--
Arwen Evenstar
Princess of Rivendale
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#3
I admit, I was guessing with the value of 30A. I realise now what I would really need is ability to provide the sum of all device's power needs with USB and PCIe included. I have some time available now, so I will try to find and calculate this information.

EDIT

The only data I was able to find was about voltage.

After searching for actual products I realised I will not be able to buy anything more powerful with the particular type of barrel. I proceeded then to look up USB chargers. I started by loading up a reputable producer's website and found a USB-C to USB-C charger rated for 60W.

My understanding is that the USB connectors are able to negotiate the voltage. What about the current? Will the Pinebook even be able to utilise the power available from such a charger?
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#4
1) Arwen is certainly correct in warning about using a extremely over-sized charger/power supply.

Perhaps Pine or a person more knowlegable of these products could give us some guide lines on
what the maximum input is permisable. . . ?

2)  The supplied charger Does Indeed seem a little Dinky.

..*..  I have seen a few posts discribing the supplied charger as
not able to keep up, and the battery discharging even while the PBP is plugged in while 'in use'.

Myself I would think, in "my opinion" something such as a 25 watt Smart Phone fast charger would be safe,
at least until we see some official posted data.

Warning:  That is my opinion,  Not a Pine authorized statement...
                  But especially if you are running an external drive or something extra, it may prove helpful.
 
                 **   Use caution and common sense
   LINUX = CHOICES
   **BCnAZ**
          Idea
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#5
(01-09-2020, 08:41 PM)bcnaz Wrote: 2)  The supplied charger Does Indeed seem a little Dinky.

..*..  I have seen a few posts discribing the supplied charger as
not able to keep up, and the battery discharging even while the PBP is plugged in while 'in use'.

A regulated charger that can deliver more amps (within reason, regulators look into a load) might work fine.  Although a better question than "Is it safe to use a charger with more than 3A output?" is whether the PBP can draw more current than 3A from either the USB-C or coaxial input.  Having more current available isn't the same as using more current.
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#6
During the weekend I risked a purchase of a 4A power supply at a local electrical shop (this was the biggest 5V available) and had the original barrel jack adapted to it. So far, I was not able to drain the battery anymore. I am not able to test it against a 'completely full load', with accessories attached, but the upgrade was definitely worthwhile.

BTW, I also discovered that the USB-C charger is limited to 3A anyway, so it wouldn't work for this case.
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#7
Do you have a brick that plugs into an AC outlet and measures the power going through it? It's be interested to know how many watts the PBP is drawing...
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#8
(01-14-2020, 03:47 AM)danielt Wrote: Do you have a brick that plugs into an AC outlet and measures the power going through it? It's be interested to know how many watts the PBP is drawing...

Unfortunately, I do not have any measurement equipment.

On top of that, I discovered I was running software rendering on my Manjaro installation. When I upgraded to Mesa GIT, in order to get the newest GPU driver, the power usage got even higher.  I am going to write to Pine directly to confront them about this issue.  It is such a waste that this otherwise wonderful laptop is literally underpowered. I want to use it as my main computer already, but the constant worry about the battery level is sucking away all the joy of having it.
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#9
(01-14-2020, 01:37 PM)Obikawa Wrote: Unfortunately, I do not have any measurement equipment.

On top of that, I discovered I was running software rendering on my Manjaro installation. When I upgraded to Mesa GIT, in order to get the newest GPU driver, the power usage got even higher.  I am going to write to Pine directly to confront them about this issue.  It is such a waste that this otherwise wonderful laptop is literally underpowered. I want to use it as my main computer already, but the constant worry about the battery level is sucking away all the joy of having it.

Do please let us know if you get an answer.  I would like to know the maximum amount of current the PBP can safely draw from the barrel adapter or USB-C.
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