Powering autopilot through USB on bench

Hello, I see that this question has been answered generally before, however, a specific recommendation would be very helpful. The problem I have is that a plane I am working on configuring is not adequately powered by the USB connection to run the RC Rx, therefore, I feel like I am having to plug batteries in over and over again to achieve certain things. The recommendation from an earlier post on this subject was to use a powered USB hub; however, this was from 2017. No recommendation was given for a powered hub. Can someone please recommend a powered hub system or some other technique short of tearing the whole aircraft apart?


USB power can only be used to power up FC and the RX, sik radio, GPS basically any 5V device. The USB should Have sufficient power if your really want to power up all 5V devices Then it should be a USB 2.0 or 2.1A like a laptop USB.

None of your motors and esc will power up via USB. Not enough voltage and current.

You need the batteries if you are doing anything to ESC or motors or Gimbal motors.

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Right, but it is the receiver that is not getting enough power for me. Its through a laptop I should clarify. More specifically, when trying to calibrate ESC’s the instructions specify to first power through the USB port, arm the aircraft, move stick on transmitter up to full throttle, then plug a battery in. This is really difficult if the RC signal is dropped and recovered every two seconds. Spent hours trying to calibrate and it never seemed to take. I ended up using the alternative method of just adjusting the servo outputs. I just don’t think I am getting enough power out of the laptop ports, which surely is just a few hundred ma. I feel like there are instructions everywhere that specify removing the battery for this calibration or the other. And some of these I would need to be doing in the field. But anyway, thanks!

Your RX is connected to SBUs port on FC?

If yes, there should be no issues

This is my bench setup.

I use a desktop power supply for motors and esc and laptop USB to power everything else.

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Yeah, as far as I can tell it totally is. I have it plugged into the VCC Rx port on an mRo X2.1 Rev 2, which according to the diagram is the only PPM in/SBUS in port.

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Your laptop has at least 3 or 2 USB ports. If its not an old one. One of them is USB 2.0 Use that one.

Else you can buy an external USB hub make sure each port is 2.1A like this one.

Just get an external USB port extender that comes with a power supply. You are all set.


If you have a volt meter u can measure the voltage off the FC and see its indeed 5V

Good day, just in case receiver can be powered with a diy cable from the esc… eventually use an ubec, if you are using these two options don’t forget to remove the voltage cable from the receiver.