buck downconverter: solar –> RasPi

The laptop I was using to record and process Rains County police scanner audio is failing.  Since some aspects of the audio processing are CPU-intensive I picked up a Raspberry Pi 2 B to carry those duties going forward.  Previously I’ve been playing with a Raspberry Pi  (A? B?) bought used on eBay in 2014.  It works fine in light use but gets CPU- and RAM-bound when doing heavier lifting.

Part of the Pi-based recording project will be a move to solar power.  I already have a small 45-watt setup feeding a deep cycle battery here and use it for charging phones, running a 2m rig, and similar duties.  The solar charge controller has a built-in USB/5v output but it’s only .5A, not enough to run a Pi.

While pondering this I remembered some cheap 3A USB/5v buck converters used for other projects.  They have screw input terminals and the USB port already installed:


A useful component to have around in our USB-centric world.

The converters are cheaper straight from China but I want to get started so I paid double ($4!) for units from the U.S.  Until I get the converter I’ll keep doing the Pi setup off a wall wart.


2 thoughts on “buck downconverter: solar –> RasPi

  1. Pingback: Pi scanner project: solar powered | Moving Back to Point, Texas

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