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LKasp2
Beginner
268 Views

Suggestion - Connecting two USB Type-C portable monitors

Hey guys,

 

I am looking for some suggestions regarding NUCs.

 

I am looking for a mini pc that can power 2 portable monitors (ASUS MB16AC). The monitors only have one I/O port (USB Type C) to draw power and display. It's possible to connect them to USB A via an adapter. Therefore, the PC needs enough power to drive these.

 

Apart from the power requirements, the specs can be minimal. The host OS only needs to be able to connect to a remote server via RDP.

I thought Raspberry Pi would be the way to go, but one monitor requires 1.5A power and the Pi only outputs 1.3A. The result was being able to connect one of the monitors at 55% brightness.

 

The pc should small and portable and easy to set up, connect cables, etc. The end result will be 6 stations each comprised of:

·        mini pc

·        two external monitors

·        mouse and keyboard

 

These stations will be transported and set up relatively quickly.

 

Is Intel NUC the right product for this use case? Have you guys got any recommendations which NUC to go for?

 

Thanks for your help!

 

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3 Replies
n_scott_pearson
Super User Retired Employee
62 Views

Only the high-end NUC models, NUC8i7HNK and NUC8i7HVK, offer two USB-C ports. A number of other NUC models support a single USB-C port, however.

 

In all cases, the USB-C ports provide 3A (15W) of power. Most NUC models also provide four USB 3.0 ports, typically three standard (blue) USB 3.0 ports and one (orange) USB 3.0 charging port. The standard (blue) USB 3.0 ports provide 900mA (4.5W) of power. The (orange) USB 3.0 charging ports provide 1.5A (7.5W) of power. Bottom line, most of the NUC models can support the power delivery necessary.

 

For more information on the available NUC models, consult these pages: https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/products/boards-kits/nuc.html.

 

Hope this helps,

...S

LKasp2
Beginner
62 Views

Thanks Scott

 

I can use a USB-C to USB-A adapter, so two USB-C ports is not required.

 

Do you know if I can pool the power from several USB ports? If I connect the two monitors to two USB ports and they each draw 1.5A of power (3A total). If I get a model with 4 ports (3xUSB A, 1x charging port) does that give me (3x0.9A + 1x1.5A) 4.2A? Therefore, sufficient for the two monitors? Or is it restricted to a maximum of 0.9/1.5A per port?

 

Sorry for these beginners questions, I don't know a lot about this topic.

 

Thanks for your help.

n_scott_pearson
Super User Retired Employee
62 Views

I have seen cable assemblies that plug into two USB ports so that the power available from both ports can be drawn by the device, so yes, this can be done. I have never seen it done with three-way or four-way connections, however; you would be making a custom cable assembly for this.

...S

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