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Powering the Matrix Portal thru Screw Terminals?
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Powering the Matrix Portal thru Screw Terminals?

by jasonchildress on Tue Oct 13, 2020 6:33 pm

Can I power the Matrix Portal through the two screw power terminals from an external source? For example an external 5V power supply?

I understand they send power to the connected matrixes, but if I have a large chain of panels which requires external power anyways, can I just use that same supply to power the board? Of course, ensuring proper regulation of 5V.

The documentation I linked to isn't very clear on this either way.
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Re: Powering the Matrix Portal thru Screw Terminals?

by dastels on Tue Oct 13, 2020 7:13 pm

From looking at the schematic and taking a couple measurements, that should be fine. There's only one 5v 'rail' on the board: from the USB port top the panel power screws.

That brings up another point. You should have a diode on the 5v to the board otherwise you'll have trouble if/when you plug in USB. Adding a diode will let USB power the board (but not the matrix) when it's plugged in, and let the matrix power power the board otherwise. See my article in Hackspace #12 (https://hackspace.raspberrypi.org/issues/12) for more on diodes, specifically the section labeled "Power Gates".

Dave

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Re: Powering the Matrix Portal thru Screw Terminals?

by jasonchildress on Tue Oct 13, 2020 10:04 pm

Thanks for the response, I'll give this a try and report back.

Although I'm facing a different issue ATM. I have two Matrix Portals and both seem to have a corrupt file system as I can't edit or remove the code.py file.

I've tried reloading the CPv6 uf2 file (still in beta) many times, but every time, the code.py file is inaccessible. Other py files on there can be loaded, edited and deleted. its just the code.py that can't.

I'll create a separate topic for this new issue.
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Re: Powering the Matrix Portal thru Screw Terminals?

by dastels on Tue Oct 13, 2020 10:19 pm

That's weird.

Have you tried reformating the filesystem? Instructions are about halfway down on https://learn.adafruit.com/welcome-to-circuitpython/troubleshooting.

Dave

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Re: Powering the Matrix Portal thru Screw Terminals?

by jasonchildress on Tue Oct 13, 2020 11:09 pm

Thanks Dave, those instructions did the trick!

https://learn.adafruit.com/welcome-to-c ... 2987288-24
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Please be positive and constructive with your questions and comments.