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USB hub things to look for to use as power distribution?

Discussion in 'The Breakroom' started by weylan, Nov 2, 2017.

  1. weylan

    weylan Loaded Pockets

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    I know and have solar power access that can provide 2A at 6V put into 4xD which floats around 5-6V. This means I get 5-6 hrs at 2Ah, for 10AH, that when I use to charge gets stored in the 4xD, that are 10AH. So on a typical camping trip i use some from the 4xD and during the next day i recharge some of the devices and power banks that got used during the night.

    What I want and can do is power most of the USB devices I have. But I am looking for keywords to look for in USB hubs that can power multiple devices at the same time at their full rate since i am pulling power from 4xD batteries i can charge quite a few devices at the same time.

    Some USB hubs are USB 2.0, USB 3.0 but when used without a computer will now power the USB hub. I know I can just buy the USB connectors.

    So what do I look for in a USB hub that i am not really using for USB data, but using for USB power? Or how do you know it will work when you just have power to the hub and it will power or charge the devices?

    What is labeled or what key words do I look for when shopping for the USB hubs? I know I can and am handy with a soldering iron and multi meeter but if I don't have to that would be great. And the packaging of the USB hubs is nice, compact and looks good.


    Dreaming of camping or aquaponics and the pond.
     
    #1 weylan, Nov 2, 2017
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2017
  2. landwire
    • In Omnia Paratus

    landwire Loaded Pockets

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    I would love to see more on this as well. Over the years I have bought various powered hubs thinking it will charge things when the computer is not on but they never do.
     
  3. Westerdutch

    Westerdutch Loaded Pockets

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    Usb charging station. Something like the voltcraft spas 2400/6 perhaps?
     
  4. EZDog

    EZDog EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    I like the Anker & Belkin fast charging hubs a lot and they do seem to work just as they claim.

    I am pretty sure they offer them in 120vac as well as 12vdc power input too.

    I am not sure about the idea of charging directly from D cell batteries but and charging circuit would not know the battery type directly as long as it can deliver the current it is looking for at a certain voltage.

    There are also really inexpensive USB Voltage/Current inline meters available all over the place that should show actual charging A/V as they are used so you can get an idea of charging really taking place or not.

    I look on Amazon for them myself.

    I carry small folding Solar panels with me and a USB Meter a lot to charge on the go and I can directly charge 1.5v batteries with one model and 12v batteries with the other.
     
  5. Moshe ben David

    Moshe ben David Loaded Pockets

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    Which folding panels (mfr, model) and which USB Meter (mfr, model) have you been using? I just looked on Amazon; they have a plethora of choices! In the first page of listings, Amazon indicate the 'Anker 21W Dual USB Solar Charger' (this is a folding panel model) as their most popular seller amongst the chargers....

    Thanks

    L'chaim!

    Moshe ben David
     
  6. EZDog

    EZDog EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    I can't say just now the Models and I won't be able to for a week or so but my USB model is an Anker,either the 20 or 30 watt version and the 12vdc is a Chinese brand that was also really highly rated on Amazon.
    Same for the USB Meter device.

    Each has been higher quality than I expected for sure although I am getting used to that from Anker products these days overall.
     
  7. Ren

    Ren Loaded Pockets

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  8. Moshe ben David

    Moshe ben David Loaded Pockets

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    Anker do seem to be popular on these forums! Hope you'll be able to give us some thoughts once products are in hand and you've had a chance to work with them!

    L'chaim!

    Moshe ben David
     
  9. DeepBlue

    DeepBlue Loaded Pockets

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    It was my impression / understanding that those multiple USB charging hubs are usually mains powered (120/240V) or sometimes 12V. I suspect most won’t work from 4 x D battery that, if I understand right, you are using. I’d use a Lithium Power Bank (Anker or RavPower) to take the charge from the solar charger and then on-charge from there. That’s how I work when off grid. (My Anker PowerCore 26800 has 2 USB ports at 2.4A and one at 2.1A)

    Regular USB hubs (for data distribution) are not really designed for charging but providing some power to other devices (typically around 0.5 - 1A per device). Yes, you can charge a phone but its slower.
     
    Last edited by DeepBlue, Nov 4, 2017
    #9 DeepBlue, Nov 4, 2017
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2017
  10. weylan

    weylan Loaded Pockets

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    They don't have to be mains powered. Some can be 5V powered. But some don't work at all unless connected to a computer. And some can be powered from the computer.

    And some will provide 1-2A to each port. But I don't know what controls that.


    Dreaming of camping or aquaponics and the pond.
     
    #10 weylan, Nov 5, 2017
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2017
  11. DeepBlue

    DeepBlue Loaded Pockets

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    Re what controls that... It should be the Hub that does the controlling and it’s the spec of the hub (particularly the input and total output voltage across all ports) that you need to be looking at.

    Bottom line though, if you are trying to wire your nominal 5V 4xD battery pack into a USB input socket on a hub don’t expect it to draw more than 2.4A or supply more than 2.4A in total to all connected ports. That’s because that is about the max that the USB spec allows for and it’s unlikely any hub is going to depart from this as that 5V, 2.4A has become pretty standardised. (Acknowledging that some ‘smart charge’ devices have snuck this up a little higher but only when the two connected devices communicate this to each other.)

    HTH