Blog  /  Raspberry Pi PoE HAT: The Ultimate Solution for Power and Data Connection

Raspberry Pi PoE HAT: The Ultimate Solution for Power and Data Connection

You may want to find an efficient way to power a Raspberry Pi computer. Some solutions require a power and data connection, allowing the electronic device to connect to a network. However, this setup might seem cluttered and create undesired effects. Thankfully, the Raspberry Pi PoE HAT overcomes any of those challenges. It allows power and data transmission in a single Ethernet cable to run your Pi. Not only that, but it also supports wireless access points, VOIP phones, smart clocks, IP cameras, and much more! This article will look at the Raspberry Pi PoE HAT and its capabilities. So let’s get started!  

 

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What is PoE? Why use PoE?

 

IPoE powering an IP camera.
IPoE is powering an IP camera.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

 

Power over Ethernet (PoE) refers to special technology in which network cables transmit power in an Ethernet connection (Cat 5e/Cat6). Without PoE, you will require a power and network connection just for the Raspberry Pi.

PoE provides the following advantages:

 

Reduces time and cost

 

  • It offers a more affordable installation process compared to wiring.
  • A cost and time drop for power line installations.
  • You can install network cables without an electrician.

 

Power Control

 

  • The centralized switch allows the user to control power distribution to a device.
  • An undistributed power supply can also store this power.

 

Flexibility

 

  • You can move the PoE anywhere, reconnecting it at any time. 
  • The device also allows wireless access points or security camera installations.
  • Overall, users can attach devices in hard-to-reach areas.

 

Safe

 

  • Since PoE runs on 15W – 90W voltages, it can operate without metal cladding and conduits.
  • It also keeps network equipment safe against under-voltage, overload, and improper installation.

 

What is Raspberry Pi PoE HAT?

 

A PoE HAT.

A PoE HAT.

Source: Geekworm/wiki

A Raspberry Pi PoE HAT refers to a small device that supplies power to the Raspberry Pi. It generally relies on an Ethernet connection and power sourcing equipment to run the Pi. Overall, the PoE HAT offers compatibility with Raspberry Pi 4 Model B and 3 Model B+ boards.

Users can attach a PoE HAT to the Pi 4 Model B. 

Users can attach a PoE HAT to the Pi 4 Model B. 

 

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Raspberry Pi PoE+ HAT vs. PoE HAT Specs Comparison

 

Each device comes with different specifications and features that may suit your needs. The table below shows the Pi’s PoE HAT and PoE+ qualities.

Raspberry Pi Compute Module.

The PoE+ HAY features a current sensor and a lightweight planar transformer. These qualities make the device more efficient than the PoE HAT.

 

Alternative to the PoE HAT

 

Three alternatives currently exist on the market. They include the Compute Module IO board, alternative PoE HAT from DSLR KIT, and PoE splitter adapter.

 

Raspberry Pi Compute Module IO Board

 

Raspberry Pi Compute Module.

Raspberry Pi Compute Module.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

 

Users can connect a Raspberry Pi Compute Module to a compute module PoE board. This provides flexibility for Raspberry Pi resources. It also comes with PoE and integrated interfaces to help assess the module. The board features a GPIO extension to allow connectivity with various HAT devices. 

 

Alternative PoE HAT from DSLR KIT 

 

The DSLR KIT features GPIO, which provides Dupont cable connectivity. In addition, the small-sized design means it won’t completely envelope the Pi board. It will also leave the processor uncovered. 

 

PoE adapter (splitter)

 

The gray and black box represents the splitter.

The gray and black box represents the splitter.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

 

The PoE adapter divides the network connection into data (RJ45 connector) and power (micro-USB connector). It also utilizes the micro-USB for power along with the Raspberry Pi’s wireless LAN connection. Overall, this option provides stability while keeping the Pi board at a sufficient temperature to prevent overheating.

 

Getting started with the Raspberry Pi PoE HAT

 

Follow this guide to connect your Raspberry Pi with the PoE HAT.

 

Required parts:

 

Collect the parts listed below to get started

 

Image showing a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+.

Image showing a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

  • Raspberry Pi PoE HAT
  • Mechanical spacers
  • Raspberry Pi 4 Model B or 3B+
  • Ethernet cable
  • Power source for the 802.3af PoE network

 

Steps:

 

First, place the mechanical spacers on the board’s corners before installing the PoE HAT. Afterward, attach the PoE HAT on both headers integrated on the Pi device. Lastly, the RJ45 network connector will supply power to the Raspberry Pi. 

To disconnect the PoE HAT, carefully separate the connections to remove them from the pins simultaneously. Avoid detaching a connector separately. 

You will not need to change the Pi board for operation purposes. More importantly, the Raspberry Pi must run on the latest software version to work as expected. In addition, the Raspberry Pi’s I2C controls the PoE HAT’s brushless fan. This will only power on and off if the Pi’s processor reaches a certain temperature.

 

Instructions for safe use

 

Follow the safety guidelines while the Pi 4 Model B remains connected to the PoE HAT. 

Follow the safety guidelines while the Pi 4 Model B remains connected to the PoE HAT. 

 

You will need to follow the guidelines outlined below to prevent damage and operation failure.  

  • Keep the device away from heat sources
  • Ensure the fan has a clear path for airflow
  • Handle the device with care to prevent PCB and connector damage
  • Never place objects inside the fan
  • Keep the Raspberry Pi product away from wet or moist environments.
  • Put the device on a non-conductive surface while it runs.
  • Do not handle the device while plugged into a power source
  • Make sure any peripherals meet all the safety standards based on your country’s regulations for safety and performance purposes.

 

Summary

 

As you can see, the PoE provides an efficient solution for your project. Essentially, it makes wiring easier versus other options requiring two separate connections for power and network access. PoE also provides support for many different applications that can run more efficiently through one Ethernet cable. Plus, you can install the device anywhere and in hard-to-reach places due to its flexibility. So you won’t need to worry about power loss or performance interruptions.

Do you have any questions regarding the Raspberry Pi PoE HAT? Feel free to contact us!

 

 

Special Offer: $1 for 5 PCB Assemblies!

One requirement only: Order must be placed using a company account.
Please email [email protected] for details.
Special Offer: $1 for 5 PCB Assemblies!