FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS OF LAVA PRODUCTS
LAVA Computer MFG is a leading provider of smart connectivity solutions boards. Our expertise in making better communications products hinges on our core philosophy: make it simple, reliable, and configurable. We engineer and manufacture serial port interfaces for POS, computer, industrial, and many other markets.
A technology developed by LAVA that allows select mobile devices to operate as an USB Host Controller, while being charged simultaneously.
A feature within the USB Standard, in which, the tablet detects that a USB Accessory has been plugged in and automatically switches to operate as a USB Host Controller. When operating as an OTG USB Host, the tablet is expected to supply power to the attached accessories, which means power is drained from the tablet battery. Not all tablets support the USB OTG feature.
A select number of manufacturers have implemented proper hardware specifications, within their devices, to accept SimulCharge technology. In fact not all devices within a manufacturer’s product line may be compatible due to this reason.
There is a risk it may not. LAVA publishes mobile devices that it has managed to test in-house and verify that they are compatible with LAVA products.
LAVA does operate a free testing program where you can send your device to be tested for compatibility. After testing is complete LAVA will ship back your tablet, with details on its compatibility with LAVA devices.
LAVA strongly recommends that if you are planning a larger role out of devices to check compatibility and have LAVA test your chosen device.
The mobile device can be located up to 1 meter (3.3 feet) away from the LAVA unit.
In some cases the mobile device may be placed up to 1.25 meters (4.1 feet) away from the LAVA unit, but great care must be taken to ensure that sufficient power is being supplied to the mobile device. A power budget and use of LAVA’s Battery Info app is recommended before deployment of the 1.25 meter cable. Do not extend cables beyond 1.25 meters.
OEM and BM-OEM boards should not be used with cables longer than 20 centimetres (8 inches) as the resulting power loss will lead to unreliable device charging and operation.
Available cables for the STS and LTS product families are 20cm (8”), 1m (3.3ft) and 1.25m (4.1ft).
Available cables for the Sync product families are 20cm (8”) and 1m (3.3ft).
Note: The STS and LTS product families use custom cables and cannot be replaced with off the shelf cables. Off the shelf cables will prevent proper unit operation (SimulCharge).
Do not extend the “to tablet” cable. Extension of this cable will introduce further power losses into the system that may result in improper mobile device charging and operation.
“Daisy Chaining” of cables will result in the mobile device being unable to operate in SimulCharge mode and may also lead to improper charge (introduction of power losses in connectors).
The Micro USB cables come in 4 lengths
20 cm (8”)
50 cm (20”)
100 cm (39”)
125 cm (49”)
The most common cables used are the 20 cm (8”) for the OEM and BM-OEM units and the 100 cm (39”)
The USB-C cables come in 2 lengths
20 cm (8”)
100 cm (39”)
No. The Micro USB cable supplied is a custom cable designed to decrease the power loss of the cable as well as allow the mobile device to enter SimulCharge Mode.
It is not advisable to create your own USB C cable as all pins need to be used in order to operate in Simulcharge Mode.
This is not an option. You will need to have your LAVA unit within 1 meter (maximum 1.25 meters in some cases) of the mobile device.
Please see “How far away can I place my mobile device from the LAVA unit?” FAQ for a more in depth explanation of why this is not an option.
The distance is restricted by the length of the mobile device provided power cable.
No. It is essential that you use the mobile device supplied power cable as the supplied power brick is able to compensate for power losses in that cable. This ensures that a stable 5 volts are supplied to the LAVA unit.
If your application requires that the LAVA unit be placed farther away from the AC power source, then the VC or PoE equipped LAVA units should be considered/used.
This is not recommended, as power bricks come with different ratings and are matched to each mobile device. This ensures that sufficient power is supplied to the mobile device.
Yes you can. You will have to make sure that the power bank (USB Battery Pack) is capable of supplying 5 volts, preferably at or above 1 Amp (1000mA). If the power bank is not capable of supplying such a high current at 5 volts you may see the mobile device slowly discharge as it is receiving insufficient current.
Yes, but you will have to ensure that the adapter is capable of supplying more than 500 mA at 5 volts through a USB A port.
You will need to purchase a LAVA adapter with the VC option included. The VC option includes a built in voltage converter that is able to step down the 12 volt input to the require 5 volts. The VC option units draw power through a 2mm center positive barrel plug connector. Power supply is sold separately.
You will need to purchase a LAVA adapter equipped with either the VC option or PoE. For VC units a higher voltage (up to 36 volts) is required the further away the LAVA unit is from the AC power source. The higher voltage will compensate for the power loss over the power line.
You will need to purchase a LAVA adapter equipped with PoE. Please note, PoE is rated for distances up to 100 meters (328 feet).
No. You will need to use one of the SynC families of products, as they are specifically designed to work with USB-C devices.
Products designed for Micro USB devices will not be able to enter into SimulCharge when attached to USB-C devices. This is due to the hardware changes required by the USB-C connector.
Currently LAVA has units that are capable of supporting more than 4 USB peripherals for USB-C equipped devices.
If you require more peripherals than what is available through standard LAVA products you may use the u series’ of devices (placed in Hub Mode) to create a “daisy chain” of multiple LAVA units or a LAVA unit and 3rd party hubs. Careful power budgeting must be performed to ensure that all peripherals and mobile device are receiving sufficient power. VC capable LAVA units are strongly recommended in this case.
RBM is a term used by LAVA to describe two technologies that are present on select LAVA devices. The “R” in RBM stands for Network Recovery and the “BM” in RBM stands for Battery Modulation.
The Battery Modulation feature helps reduce stress on the tablet battery. Battery Modulation is a feature in which the battery is charged up to an upper set point, and then allowed to discharge to a low set point. This feature electronically mimics the process of charging a battery and then disconnecting the charger. This behaviour follows the expected use-case for a tablet. After a set number of user-defined charge/discharge cycles, a “full” cycle is performed to reset the tablet battery calibration.
Without Battery Modulation implemented mobile devices, with Lithium Ion batteries, have been observed to experience severe battery bloat and diminishment of battery charge capacity.
This technology is critical for 24/7 or near 24/7 applications.
A wired network is more reliable and secure when compared to WIFI solutions. Wired networks, such as Ethernet enabled ones; also have the capability to transmit low voltage DC power over the same network cable.
Ethernet enabled LAVA products provide 10/100 Fast Ethernet capabilities. The Ethernet feature relies on standard support available on the mobile device.
LAVA adapters equipped with RBM technology, have a configurable option to manage the mobile device’s screen brightness. If a screen is set to be too bright the mobile device may draw more power than can be supplied to it, causing a slow discharge of the battery to occur. By adjusting screen brightness (a major source of power consumption and heat generation) the system designer can ensure that the power consumed by the device is less than what can be supplied.
Screen Brightness can be adjusted, and turned on/off, through the LAVA supplied LTM application.
PoE stands for Power over Ethernet and is an industry term/standard that allows devices to draw power, along with data, through standard Ethernet cabling. Power is low voltage DC with a maximum transmission distance of 100 meters (328 feet). PoE can be applied through PoE capable network switches or through add-on PoE injectors that apply power to the existing Ethernet cable and network.
PoE is an excellent power and data alternative for large installations that are located far from existing AC power sources, as PoE’s low voltage category does not require licensed electricians to install the required infrastructure.
All PoE capable LAVA units are marked with a letter “P” in their name (ex/ eSTS PE).
The Ethernet Port is an IEEE 802.3 100BASE-T / 100BASE-TX compatible Fast Ethernet interface. The Ethernet port on PoE capable LAVA units accepts a standard RJ45 connector.
The PoE Ethernet Port has the ability to receive power from the Network Cable. All power for the LAVA unit, mobile device charging, and attached USB accessories are provided by the PoE-Ethernet Port.
PoE capable LAVA products resolve the problem of getting power to the mobile device and peripherals. The PoE specification allows the powered device to be up to 330 feet (100 meters) from the Network Switch or PoE Injector.
Deploying network cabling with PoE support can be significantly cheaper than installing dedicated power lines through a facility.
Non PoE capable Network Switches can use a PoE Power Injector, for each port, to supply power over the existing network cable/port. PoE injectors are cost effective solutions for installations that do not want to replace non PoE capable switches. PoE injectors can be found at most network switch vendors or electronics suppliers.
The LAVA unit is supplied with 10.4 Watts of power, which is then divided to supply power for the mobile device, LAVA unit and attached peripherals. The 10.4 Watt limit allows the LAVA unit to be treated as a PoE Class 0 device by the switch.
Yes you can. However, you will have to disable the Ethernet option on your mobile device.
15 meters (50 feet). It is strongly recommended that a 24v or 36v power supply is used.
100 meters (328 feet). If using a PoE injector to pass power then the distance is from the power injector and not the switch.