Powering the system


Hey guys,
i supported the kickstarter and am excited to get this cool little gadget! i was wondering about powering the entire system. i have an nxt motor shield that requires 9V. if i send the power through the shield, will the pi get the 5V through the arduino or will i need a separate power source at 5V to power the pi?



Hey Joshua,

Great, thanks for backing our Kickstarter!

Does your 9V shield send power back through the 5V line? If it does, and it can send up to 1A through, then it might power the Pi. However, your sure bet is to power the Arduberry through the USB port with an external power source.

Maybe you can send us more information about the shield you’re trying to hook up?


Hey Mister Master,

Thanks for the reply. I was interested more in figuring out the arduberry, but i think i got it taken care of. I was concerned with the difference between the actual arduino uno/leo board and yours. If i pipe 9V into an arduino, i can take 5V off the 5V pin. I wasnt sure if i could power the Pi that way with the arduberry without frying something.

in talking with my co-worker, it seems like the best thing to do would be to branch off the 9V power supply, with one branch going to the arduberry and the other to a 5V DC-DC step down converter into the Pi. keep up the good work dudes!


You can call me John! I am sorry I originally responded to this as if it were for the BrickPi. So some confusion if you saw the original post before I figured out what was going on.

Yes, the RPi is a hungry beast for power. It can take in up to 1A. So if you want to use an external power supply, or supply it off the 5V rail, you’re going to have to plan for it.

Sounds like you have a plan though. And a DC-DC power supply sounds good. Thanks!!


Hey John,

i can’t tell how the power is routed based on their schematic. i bought it from these guys: tkj electronics (cant get the link to work)

when i hook the power up to the 9V input, it seems to power the arduino with no issues. the reason i am interested in using the same power source is because i want this robot to be mobile. the fewer things i need to attach, the easier it will get around.

you guys obviously know about the NXT and those motors are pretty power hungry as well. i am confident rechargeable AA batteries will do the trick based on them being the power source for the NXT which can handle 3 motors.

i tried to link a video to my prototype but i cant get the links to work. do you guys block links on the forum?