Questions and answers about powering the Orange Pi Zero using the "Power over Ethernet" option.
The aim is to answer community questions about Power Over Ethernet options (both official 802.3af/at and unofficial "PoE" solutions) and to improve the wiki page with these answers:
Examples of standards-compliant PoE hardware:
- 802.3af switch:
- 100MBit 802.3af to 5V power supply (10W max):
- Gigabit 802.3af to 12/9/5V power supply (12W max):
Examples of non-standards-compliant PoE hardware:
- 8 port "PoE" injector (you pick the input voltage):
- "PoE" splitter:
- Solder to pads on Orange Pi Zero and use a DC-DC step down converter to get 5V:
1. The Orange Pi Zero says it supports "PoE" how is this implemented?
The Ethernet port on the Orange Pi Zero exposes pins 4/5 and 7/8 via pads on the bottom of the board. Photo here. Note that this is 802.3af mode B, which is not fully standards compliant (802.3af/at specifies mode A and mode B, it is not allowed to have a device which only accepts one mode).
Out of the box, there is NO way to power the board from Ethernet, either with an 802.3af/at switch or with passive "PoE" injectors. More effort is needed.
2. What are the options to power the Orange Pi with "PoE" ?
Solder 0 Ohm resistors across the pads and use a PoE injector with 5V.
+ No additional power supply needed
- 5V cannot travel long distances without voltage sag. You can put in a higher voltage (e.g. 7V DC) but then all the cables would need to be the same length and you risk destroying the Orange Pi if the voltage spikes.
Solder a step-down converter and use a PoE injector with a higher voltage (e.g. 24V).
+ 24V will travel much farther than 5V in a CAT5/6 cable.
- You will need to purchase and solder an additional voltage regulator to take the input voltage and drop it down to 5V.
Buy/use a PoE switch implementing 802.3af/at.
+ Standards compliant
+ 802.3af/at operate at ~48V, which can power devices up to 100m away from the switch
+ Plugging in a non-PoE device will not result in fireworks
+ Cable faults will not result in short circuits because the switch will shut down the port
- Power electronics to turn 48V into 5V may consume more power than the Orange Pi itself
- More expensive