Hardware improvement suggestions



  • After a few days of using the LoPy, there were some small frictions that might be easily solvable in another version. Some of these come up from trying to use it with lots of students at once, and some are more general. They are generally suggestions - I don't think you can fix them in software!

    In no particular order:

    • having the analogue reference voltage available would be really helpful, especially as it is a strange one (1.1v).
    • more ground pins would also be good
    • a jumper for firmware boot mode on the expansion board would surely be useful - I've had to bodge that with funny bits of metal so many times, and never used any of the other jumpers. maybe dip switches would help? The jumpers often fall off, and then strange things happen.
    • the LoRa antenna socket is not labelled, and looks just like the wifi antenna socket. This wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't for the warnings that running LoRa without the antenna can damage the board. I've got it wrong a couple of times, and the students do it a bit more than 50% of the time.
    • similar vein - orientation between the LoPy and the expansion board would really help
    • the heartbeat could be less obnoxiously bright
    • the boxes/bags that they come in should really take a lopy and an expansion board, as that's how they mostly get used
    • a small antenna clip (or slots for a zip tie) would save the terror of the antenna being yanked or dropped
    • WiFi addresses on the boards would really help
    • rationalising the pinouts. The order of pins is strange, and there seem to be two different labelling schemes, which is dead confusing.
    • if there was space on the expansion board for a few 3 pin sockets (e.g. gnd, GPIO, 5v on each one) that would help with rapid prototyping


  • @mo-seph said in Hardware improvement suggestions:
    In addition to what other said:

    having the analogue reference voltage available would be really helpful, especially as it is a strange one (1.1v).

    Yes, for application where a reference voltage is required it would be good to have it, even if that will create new trouble. But .. I did not find an esp32 pin in the specs.

    more ground pins would also be good

    Yes, solid GND posts on either side

    a jumper for firmware boot mode on the expansion board would surely be useful -

    Yes, or better a switch. That would sort out some confusion.

    the boxes/bags that they come in should really take a lopy and an expansion board, as that's how they mostly get used

    In the box I got both a lopy and the expansion fixes. so no complaint.



  • @mo-seph
    really good practical overwiew

    having the analogue reference voltage available would be really helpful, especially as it is a strange one (1.1v).

    i do not suppose that you really need 1.1V - look for attenuation for analog pin

    more ground pins would also be good

    +1

    a jumper for firmware boot mode on the expansion board would surely be useful

    +1 but for me better will be having micro switch then jumpers

    the LoRa antenna socket is not labelled, and looks just like the wifi antenna socket. This wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't for the warnings that running LoRa without the antenna can damage the board. I've got it wrong a couple of times, and the students do it a bit more than 50% of the time.

    +1

    similar vein - orientation between the LoPy and the expansion board would really help

    +1

    the heartbeat could be less obnoxiously bright

    yes it is now bright - but you can label it with mask

    the boxes/bags that they come in should really take a lopy and an expansion board, as that's how they mostly get used
    a small antenna clip (or slots for a zip tie) would save the terror of the antenna being yanked or dropped

    +1

    WiFi addresses on the boards would really help

    +1 really help for starters :)

    rationalising the pinouts. The order of pins is strange, and there seem to be two
    different labelling schemes, which is dead confusing.

    really, really big big plus here - because pins are marked in software
    and i also do not understand that mixing...

    if there was space on the expansion board for a few 3 pin sockets (e.g. gnd, GPIO, 5v on each one) that would help with rapid prototyping

    good point but why 5V not 3V3?
    all signals are 3V3 compatibile and not tollerant for 5V


  • administrators

    @mo-seph sure! Trying out things for best fit! I'll move this to the expansion board as I need to work out where hardware will fit in.



  • @bucknall BTW, this seems to be in Firmare / Hardware which is not very obvious, while the expansion board has its own section. 80% of this relates to the expansion board, so maybe this should be moved there.


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