Crazy idea of the day: Get rid of the USB connector

… and replace it with something smaller. Like maybe the same connectors that are used for QWIIC:

It means we would need an adapter for programming (and maybe charging on a V3 board), but it would take up less space, and it would make moving the USB connector somewhere else really easy.

Or maybe there is an even smaller connector we could use?


I second this 100%. Why not just put PTH pads for the power and D1/D2 lines?

It would be even easier to make a test rig that way,

1 Like

If you test the pads but not the connector, it may still not work.

I get why. Better connection, less chance of tearing the cover off, space paying for itself, but I dunno. I’ve used the Qwiic on various stuff and inevitably something small gets bent and you’re back at square one anyhow. *This applies to those that do a lot of code flashing but still applies overall.

Is there a way to just have no USB or QWIIC connection at all? Some sort of pogo pin or PCB idea?

Then how will you program the board?

Take pity on me because I really have no clue, but Bluetooth? Wi-Fi? Maybe it just better to keep the USB connection separate from the board, but still attached via ribbon cable?

1 Like

The trick is to find small connectors.
I’m going to go spelunking on digikey & mouser and see what I can find.

1 Like

I don’t have any better ideas at the moment, but all I can say is: please no USB to TTL programming! :joy:


QWIIC connectors are smaller than all of those.

Yeah, no, I don’t want that either.

Is the Proffie 2.2 reverse polarity-safe from the charging port? Was wondering if I could prototype a barrel plug with magnetic contacts not unlike the Pebble, but don’t want to fry it!

Yes, but other components (like neopixels) might not be.

QWIIC is SH1.0 Connectors

SH1.0 is fairly small, but even smaller would be better.
I like using connectors in my sabers, and it would be even easier if they were on the board itself. We could have connectors for the speaker, display, accent LEDs, buttons and USB. Blade and battery is a little iffier since they need a lot more power. AFAIK, there is no such thing as a small connector that can also carry a lot of power.

^Steer clear of mag connectors. For data transfer the risk of a poor connection or accidentally knocking them loose is too much a factor. Charging is one thing, this is another. **O/T @profezzorn I happen to know the patent holders on the mag connector. LMK if you want me to ask them for ideas.

As far as blade and battery, there are options but they’re big pieces. Having played with high draw remote controlled things, r/c’s as well as battle robots yes, hard wired is best given space constraints.

Mag connectors might be good for things on the outside of the saber, but I don’t think they would be helpful for board connectors.

Agreed, but given I know the guys involved I’m happy to see if they can help. No worries either way. I just don’t agree with plastic shelled mini connectors. Too much use and accidental force and they break. They’re meant for main usage where they’re let be, not constant connect and disconnect.

A fair point, USB connectors are fairly durable.
(Although micro-usb is the worst of all USB connectors unfortunately.)

I’ve used Molex Pico-lock connectors:

They also have Zero-Hachi:

1 Like