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Powering the Pineapple - Observations


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Hey all,

I've been looking into different ways to power the mkIV, and so far I've noticed a few issues/theories that are either buried in other posts or not quite covered.

1. AC adapter, 1 amp @ 12v (12w). No questions here, actually - just the "standard".

2. USB with barrel jack adapter (home brew or hakshop) - provides 5v, 500 mA for 2.5w (PC usb port). This one is odd because while it provides power for the device, those I've seen with it have extensive trouble running larger capacity flash drives (16-32 gigs), not to mention other wifi gear.

It's not quite consistent enough to narrow down, but I'm guessing it's more the amperage than the voltage? Has anyone tried powering the device off of a wall plug @ 1A (or more) to see if this fixes the problem?

3. Power over Ethernet (PoE). The AP-121U appears to support it per the specs, but I have yet to hear of anyone able to get this working. Has anyone heard anything? (I'd asked this a few months back but nobody seemed to have confirmation)

4. Battery packs. I figure if the issue with #2 is Amps, then any battery pack should work just fine. However, does anyone have opinions on regular packs vs packs like the Anker that will do 12v barrel jack power? Ideally you could power the pineapple via the 12v jack, then accessories via the usb ports.

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The lower current might be an issue as well, but I can definitely say the voltage is an issue. Even if you powered the MKIV with a 5V 2A power supply, the internal voltage regulator doesn't have enough voltage to work with, and the MKIV USB port will only output around 3.5v-4.5v. USB devices expect 5v. Some might happen to work at a lower voltage, but I'd say that's just luck.

As for POE, I'd be careful. I've seen a bunch of proprietary voltages and connections, but most are in the 24V-48V range. I haven't tried it personally, but I thought I read on here that anything over 12V has the chance to smoke your MKIV. If you use a 12V POE injector, I imagine it would work, assuming it's actually wired for POE.

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This was discussed early on somewhere on forums. But since it's obscure and I don't feel like searching for it.

Per spec of the Alfa AP121U aka Mark IV:

  • PoE: 12V Passive PoE

This means the PoE port will not auto detect a setting with PoE injectors. You need to use a 12V PoE injector that only does 12V passively.

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