Alex Sidorenko writes:
From time to time many of us are facing the same problem when trying to charge your smartphone or tablet from the USB port – it just not charging. Recently I have bought USB car charger to power my Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 on the road just to discover it doesn’t work. Even though the Galaxy actually sees the charger connected is just marking it as unrecognized power source. I was trying to power up my Motorola Droid 3 phone – it won’t work either. The reason is simple – the Galaxy Tab doesn’t recognize the charging device as “native charger”.
What is “native” charger?
The native charger for smartphone or tablet often have a special voltage signature on USB data pins to let the device recognize the charger and figure out the maximum charging current it can consume from the power source. The intent is twofold. First, it is stopping the device from consuming too much current from the charger. Second, it is preventing the charging from unrecognized power sources. The “unrecognized” is the keyword here, as profiting from selling additional device accessories (chargers) is definitely a business strategy.
Charging your Smartphone from USB without fear - [Link]
Another low component count USB to serial converter module is based on the FT230XS from FTDI Chip. The FT230XS is outfitted in SSOP-16 packaging. The first incarnation of FT230X chips got a nasty bug when the chip inadvertently goes into suspend mode triggered by certain byte sequences. The FT230X releases A, B and C were affected, see FTDI Chip TN_139 Technical Note. The resistor R1 connected to CBUS3 pin is providing workaround, keeping the chip awake. The Eagle projects files are here.
USB to Serial Breakout Board for FTDI FT230X - [Link]
keolerea @ instructables.com writes:
This work includes, GTP USB (not plus or lite) .
The schematic, photos and PCB have been developed by PICMASTERS based on some valuable works done before.
This programmer supports pic10F, 12F, 16C, 16F, 18F,24Cxx Eeprom.
Unfortunately, it works with only Winpic800 v.355. We have succesfully tried it with some pics; PIC18F252, 18F2455, 18F2550, 18F2520, 16F84, 16F628 and 24C32 eeprom.
GTP USB Pic Programmer - [Link]
With an enhanced offer of X-chip series USB chips, it´s possible to immediately choose a type suitable for your application.
The family of X-Chip series USB chips we introduced to you in the article „New X-chip series will connect you to USB even easier and faster!“. Gradually these USB chips gain still more popularity thanks to a relatively very simple implementation into a target device. It can be said, that a concept of the X-Chip series is based on a direct conversion USB to a chosen serial interface. i.e. to an interface used in our device (UART, I2C, SPI…), we can choose a suitable chip supporting “our” serial interface. Naturally almost every version is available in various packages. For development and production in smaller quantities it is usually easier to work with packages like SSOP and similar, but for a bigger serial production it´s often more convenient to use a QFN package providing another space saving on a PCB. That´s why we enhance our stable stock offer with the FT230XQ-R chip in the QFN16 package.
For development support, you can find in our store also so called breakout modules providing the simplest way to begin working with X-chips. A novelty in our offer is the UMFT234XF module with the FT234XD chip. FT234XD is almost identical to FT230X, the difference is only in the package with a less pins count.
In case of interest in any FTDI component, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
X-chip series – USB while you wait – [Link]
This little device shows you the CPU-load, how much physical and virtual memory is used. It shows this data per 10% on 3 ledbars. To do so it uses a VCP (Virtual COM Port), so that it can be connected to a PC via a USB connection to receive the data. Collecting the data and sending it to the device is done by a Python script.
USB CPU and Memory monitor - [Link]
Milen @ instructables.com writes:
The purpose of the project was to create an external USB audio card, which could be able to:
1) serve as usual external USB audio card with headphone/line output and audio line input
2) can transmit the digital audio data at relatively long distance (20m -100m)
3) can receive and process the digital audio data send by the similar card and either transfer it through the USB to the PC, or convert it to analog audio signal
As long distance transfer media was chosen the POF.
A short explanation of the POF technology will be presented:
External USB audio card with optical S/PDIF POF interface - [Link]
Here’s a handy USB Breakout Board that makes measuring USB 2.0 current draw, data, or whatever, a snap.
USB Breakout Board - [Link]
Mats continues his challenge of designing one PCB every week. In week 17 he came up with USB Spypow, it displays the actual charge rates of a USB device:
Yesterday I saw the “The Practical Meter” on Kickstarter – a small unit that is placed inline with the USB when charging your phone and shows the actual charging power (in watts) on a row of LEDs. I wanted to have a go at it as well so I did the following last evening.
USB Spypow - [Link]
Steve Taranovich writes:
This is a first in a series of stories called “EEvolution of an idea” showing how a good idea got its start and evolved into a viable product in the electronics industry. I would ask our faithful EDN readers to comment on this series idea and if there is a good positive response which views this as something useful and educational to our readers, then I would like to continue with more interesting and innovative stories like this.
I was recently alerted to an innovative new product called the PortPilot in a comment to an article on EDN.
PortPilot Pro is an inline USB power analyzer, designed by J. Loren Passmore. Passmore describes himself as “an entrepreneur who consults with companies in a variety of industries to envision innovative products and speed their path to market.
Innovative inline USB power analyzer - [Link]
Florin @ youritronics.com writes:
This is a little project I made recently, I call it USB A to micro USB bridge and it does what the name says: it’s just a bridge between the USB A female connector and the female micro USB. In the middle there is a DIL pin header that allows you to connect or disconnected individually the USB signals. I needed this because recently I started working on a USB project and I wanted to have an easy way to hook up a multimeter for measuring things like voltages or current passing through.
USB A to micro USB bridge - [Link]