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Thread: Powered USB Hub Anyone?

  1. #1
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    Powered USB Hub Anyone?

    Are there any Powered USB 2.0 Hubs floating around that people recommend for CarPC application? Will anything do?

    The application is like this:

    * CarPC in the Boot (ie the Trunk) - USB WiFi, USB GPS Local

    * In the Dash I have USB requirements for:
    * USB Touchscreen Overlay for Factory Screen (Australian BA Falcon - Touchkit 4-Wire resistive with 70mA typical, 100mA Max)
    * USB Slot Load DVD (~450mA)
    * USB Bluetooth (?? 50mA best, 220mA worst?)
    * (Optional) USB Thumb Drive

    So
    (A) You can see that I'd reduce cabling if I put a USB Hub up the front (The wireless unit is compelling, but still needs to be powered, and the price hurts) then run a single USB line to it, and
    (B) You can see that the USB Slot Drive alone would consume the power budget of a non-powered USB Device (which is 5 x 100mA in total). Which means I'd need to power the hub itself.

    Is there a best-practice for doing this? Do i even attempt to run this direct from the vehicle power supply? Or is it best to power this with an additional power line from the carPC DC-DC smart power supply?

    Either way, does anyone have any advice on a suitable USB Powered Hub? I am assuming they'll all take 5V DC input.

    And yes, I am guilty as charged of semi-blatant paralleling of the Wireless USB Hub thread (Wireless USB hubs anyone?)


    Lukeyson

  2. #2
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    Bugbyte's Avatar
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    The way most people do this is to add on a 5 volt regulated power supply. The Carnetix supplies have them. You run the power into the hub from the 5v secondary device.
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
    Want to:
    -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
    -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

  3. #3
    Constant Bitrate insaneramman's Avatar
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    Thumbs up U get what you pay for...

    I've been happy with belkin and kensington (just the simple ones). I power mine with the 5v line off my power supply(m-4 atx) cut and spliced the plug. I am about to wire a second one with a 12v to 5v cigerette lighter adapter or maybe run a second line off the pwr supply.

  4. #4
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    Can the adaptor supply 500 ma to each port?
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
    Want to:
    -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
    -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

  5. #5
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    The only problem I see with wiring direct from an uncontrolled 5V regulated power supply is that it would suffer from the same under and overvoltages that the CarPC DC-DC power supply is already being used to correct. Would the Hub and USB devices also always be on and hence drain the battery?

    You prompted me to have a look into how much current the DC-DC supplies can provide.

    In my situation I might need as much as 1000mA up the front on the USB Hub. But with a 4-Port USB Hub this could potentially hit 2000mA, or, as I'm looking at a 7-port Hub (4 inward-facing for in-dash components, and 3 forward-facing for external use - ie something like this http://cgi.ebay.com.au/NEW-HI-HIGH-S...1%7C240%3A1318 - where the Blue LED would also match the theme of my interior), as much as 3500mA.

    The Intel D945GCLF2 motherboard says it needs up to 7.34A on the 5V line (Dual Core Atom, 2GB RAM, HDD, optical drive, all peripherals enabled....does that mean all USB port's in full use at 500mA each? I can drop that to under 7.0A since there's no local optical Drive ).

    So that means I'd need about 8.0A Nominal on 5V, but could expect to peak to 10.5A ? That puts it within spec of the M2-ATX, since the M2-ATX can run at 8A all day and peak at 12A, so I should be alright. The next option is the M4-ATX which might be a bit of overkill.


    Lukeyson

  6. #6
    Low Bitrate ephect's Avatar
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    i purchased a couple of cheap $3 4port hubs thinking i'd be able to run my external dvd drive but they failed miserably, then i purchased this one http://cgi.ebay.com.au/USB-2-0-Hub-7...1%7C240%3A1318 and it works a treat! i have 2 usb ports on my aopen cube, i runs teh dvd drive and the other connects to the above hub and i dont need power to the hub. i have 2 wireless keyboards (1 madcatz ps3 and 1 mini keyboard, bluetooth, gps unit, touchscreen and 2 spare for usb keys)

    worked great for me

  7. #7
    Neither darque nor pervert DarquePervert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lukeyson View Post
    The only problem I see with wiring direct from an uncontrolled 5V regulated power supply is that it would suffer from the same under and overvoltages that the CarPC DC-DC power supply is already being used to correct.
    How do you figure?
    The whole idea of regulatin the power output is to provide a consistent, stable voltage, in this case 5vDC. It would not suffer from teh voltage fluctuations you describe because the thing is designed to provide regulated power.

    Would the Hub and USB devices also always be on and hence drain the battery?
    That is a potential issue, certainly. There are ways around this with relays. Another option is to wire it into an IGN line and have it power off with the ignition.


    So that means I'd need about 8.0A Nominal on 5V, but could expect to peak to 10.5A ? That puts it within spec of the M2-ATX, since the M2-ATX can run at 8A all day and peak at 12A, so I should be alright. The next option is the M4-ATX which might be a bit of overkill.
    I'm leery of the M4-ATX simply because of a number of reports of issues with the units being faulty and outputting improper voltages and so on.
    I'd do some reading about the M4 on these forums before making a decision.
    That said, I agree that an M2 is probably going to do you quite well.
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?



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  8. #8
    Constant Bitrate insaneramman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarquePervert View Post
    I'm leery of the M4-ATX simply because of a number of reports of issues with the units being faulty and outputting improper voltages and so on.
    I'd do some reading about the M4 on these forums before making a decision.
    That said, I agree that an M2 is probably going to do you quite well.
    I too am keeping a close eye on mine as well but, I only use it as a standard PSU (no auto cut on/off). I boot straight into RR and close that way as well. SO FAR(knock on wood) NO problems. It powers all my stuff and has been a good power supply. I do want to get the usb connected and the firmware update but, if it ain't broke....

    to bugbyte-
    If you were asking me about 500ma to each port yes it is rated at 3000ma and it is a 4 port I will be using.

  9. #9
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    Stupid-Slackin-Fricken-Dipstick-USB-Hub's-Atrocious....

    I just bought a 7-port powered USB Hub off eBay, almost deadset perfect for my application, requiring only a 5V input as I am after, 4 ports hidden in the dash for my kit, 3 ports exposed for dynamic add ons, bla bla bla.

    BUT, for some reason whenever I plug in the Slimline CD I have here (not even a slot-load DVD yet, still doing proof of concept) it knocks off some of the other USB devices, tries to fire itself up, fails, and then the other devices hook up.

    That sounds like a power issue to me too, but it does that even when the USB has the auxillary 5V input connected, receiving power from a mains supply - which is good for up to 3.5Amps. It does it on ALL of the 7 ports.

    Drive works fine when connected direct to the PC, through any one of it's 8 USB Ports (4xbackpanel USB or 4xadditional via 2 x Mobo headers).

    That sort of stuff shytes me. I suspect there's nothing I can do. I'll try and see if it is specific to the brand of drive I'm using. But other than that, any suggestions? Power the drive itself directly perhaps?


    Lukeyson

  10. #10
    Neither darque nor pervert DarquePervert's Avatar
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    Why don't you get a long USB extension and connect it directly to the motherboard, since it works correctly that way?
    I honestly believe you're trying over-think this.
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?



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