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Confirmed: Raspberry Pi 4 has a USB-C Design Problem

by Hanna WatkinJul 10, 2019

The Raspberry Pi 4 was released last month boasting more RAM, a faster CPU, and USB 3.0, but a non-compliant USB-C charging port means it doesn't work with certain USB-C cables.

At the end of last month, the much awaited for Raspberry Pi 4 was released offering more RAM, a faster CPU, USB 3.0, and much more.

However, it’s come to light that the Pi 4 doesn’t work with certain USB-C cables due to a non-compliant USB-C charging port.

Raspberry Pi co-founder, Eben Upton, has confirmed the issue, telling Tech Republic: “A smart charger with an e-marked cable will incorrectly identify the Raspberry Pi 4 as an audio adapter accessory and refuse to provide power… I expect this will be fixed in a future board revision, but for now users will need to apply one of the suggested workarounds. It’s surprising this didn’t show up in our (quite extensive) field testing program.”

The dimensions of the Raspberry Pi 4 haven‘t changed, yet there are new connectors (image: Raspberry Pi)
Blame a non-compliant USB-C charging port. (Source: Raspberry Pi)

What Can You Do About It?

Tyler Ward aka Scorpia has broken down the underlying issues on his blog, saying: “The root cause of the problem is the shared cc pull down resistor on the USB Type-C connector. Looking at the reduced pi schematics we can see it as R79 which connects to both the CC lines in the connector.”

If you’ve already bought a Raspberry Pi 4 and are facing this problem yourself, the only solution is to use non-e-marked USB-C cables that can deliver a 5.1V/3A power supply. This includes the Raspberry Pi 4 ‘s official power supply which costs $8.

Alternatively, you can sit tight and wait for a future board revision which will rectify this issue. According to Raspberry Pi, it will take a few months to figure out a board revision.

If you’re still interested in the Raspberry Pi 4’s features, you can review the specs, here.

Source: Tech Republic

Dual 4K on a Raspberry Pi? That‘s possible now. (image: Raspberry Pi)
The Raspberry Pi 4 promised dual 4K. (Source: Raspberry Pi)

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