Battery for Jetson TX1

I’m wondering what type of battery is recommended for use with the TX1, instead of the 19V wall power adapter that it comes with. For the TK1, there’s a great wiki article, but I can’t find that information for the TX1. Any advice would be appreciated!

The JetsonTX1_Developer_Kit_Carrier_Board_Spec.pdf file lists this jack as 5.5-19.6VDC (table 25). The actual power adapter is rated at 19V, but I suspect the same voltages as that JTK1 battery article will work so long as it provides enough current (efficiency may also change with different voltages).

As linuxdev mentions, any battery that remains within 5.5-19.6VDC during all charge states (fully charged/nominal/discharged), should be fine to power your Jetson TX1 with. Normally LiPO batteries are considered for their superior capacity to size/weight ratio (the same reason that motivates drone fliers and RC builders to use them as their go-to power source).

So if you want to do it without using a voltage regulator, a 4S LiPO (4 cell / 14.8V nominal / 16.8V charged) is probably the sweet spot. You can also use a 3S LiPO without regulator (11.1V nominal / 12.6V charged / 9V discharged). However 5S LiPO’s, although 18.5V nominally, are ~21V fully charged, so that will cause damage.

I normally look around on Hobbyking or similar RC sites until I find a battery pack that’s right for the particular project at hand:

If you have a restriction on using LiPO’s, for shipping or otherwise (they can be a fire hazard), NiMH battery packs are a good second option. NiMH are less efficient with size/weight, but are generally safer, and like LiPO’s, are still offered with high capacity (several thousand milliamp-hours).
This place has some good NiMH packs (just select one within 5.5-19.6VDC range):
Also, Robotshop has good NiMH packs too:

Of course, there are a myriad of different battery types out there in addition to LiPO and NiMH - LiFePo4, Li-ion, lead acid, ect. Technically anything that remains within the 5.5-19.6V range and supplies 1-2A (or 15W) of continuous current, should be ok to try. And of course, if you use a voltage regulator in your project, you are basically free to choose whatever - in one of my recent projects, I’m using 6S 24V LiPO’s with a 24V-12V step-down regulator, because my high-torque motors are 24V. So your choice seems to be dependent on the other components in the system that need powering, too.

Thank you! That’s exactly what I was looking for.

Now, where can I see more info about that project? :)

What are the specs on the DC jack? For the TK1 I know it’s a 2.1 mm x 5.5 mm jack, but the TX1 seems to have a slightly larger center pin.

It’s 2.5mm x 5mm. Inspect the plug on your devkit brick to verify the keying.

It’s 2.5mm x 5mm. Inspect the plug on your devkit brick to verify the keying.


Awesome - thanks!

But what about 5v needed for SATA SSDs? Is it safe to power it from the TX1 carrier board that gets power directly from, say, 4S LiPo? 12v is not needed for 2.5" SSDs but still I’m a little bit confused

There are power conversions which supply power to the SATA power port. Having main power come from a battery versus wall adapter won’t matter. In terms of battery life I’m sure running a SATA drive of any kind will consume power in a significant way. The battery will need to be higher capacity (not necessarily higher voltage) if you want to run for the same time length with SATA as compared to a smaller capacity battery without SATA. The same is true for PCIe add-on cards and USB devices being powered by the Jetson host.

Is there anything special I need to do to run it off 12V? I am using item 2710 from connected to a castle creations BEC to get it power and the TX1 won’t power on (but does when I connect the 19V adapter that comes with it.) I’ve double checked the BEC is outputting 12V (actually about 11.8) and that the polarity of the plugs are the same. I’ve also checked on the center pin on the back of the receptacle on the TX1 board and verified that 12V is present.

It certainly sounds like it should work. Do any LED indicators light up even momentarily upon connection, reset button press, or power button press?

One thing you might consider is that several breakout headers have 3.3V, 1.8V, ground, and other power rail access. Simply measuring those with a meter would verify if power has passed through. For example, J21 pin 39 is ground, while pins 2 and 4 are the 5V rail (although the OrCAD schematic seems to mislabel this as “3.3V VDD_5V0_IO_SYS”…not sure where the 3.3V comes in).

I will check those pins on Monday-thanks. I didn’t try hitting the reset button at all, but when I hit the power button, no lights blinked or anything.

What happens if you hit the power button twice in succession?

another cheap source of power if you don’t mind the extra weight is (sealed – you don’t want to have to deal with battery fluid!) lead-acid batteries. Normally found in heavy-duty flash photography equipment, and, of course, UPSes.

(USA-only) I was just at Home Depot – a 7Ah 12V sealed lead battery for alarm systems is around $30.

I took the wall wart that came with the TX1 and cut the cord about 8" above the DC plug and inserted a set of JST connectors. The BEC on my vehicle has JST connectors so the idea is that I could take the newly created 8" pigtail and plug it in to either the JST on the wall wart or the JST on the BEC or a bench top power supply. This would basically eliminate the new DC plug I mention in my post above. So here’s what I’ve done:

  1. If I use the wall wart and its pigtail and plug in the board, it turns on fine pushing the power button only once.

  2. If I take the pigtail with the new DC plug and plug it into the JST connector on the wall wart and plug in the board, it will turn on only if I push the power button twice as dusty_nv mentions. The board is getting 19V in this case.

  3. I take the pigtail with the DC plug from the wall wart and plug it into the vehicle BEC, the TX1 will power on only if I push the power button twice as dusty_nv mentions. The board is getting 12V in this case.

I did not have a monitor hooked up in either of these cases so I can’t verify the board actually booted, but the two green LEDS did come on like they normally would. Next step is to drag a monitor to the vehicle and verify it actually boots.

What does pushing the power button twice do?

Any word on what double clicking the power button does?

One possible reason need hit power button twice is that the JST connector rework increase Direct Current Resistance of the trace from adaptor to board, try better rework with strong weld and clear JST connector plugs/sockets may help.

I am having similar problems as StrikeEagleIII. It will power up if I double press the power button however it will sometimes turn off by itself! I am also running a 12v system on regulated power. Tested resistance of the wires and I am getting 4 ohms of resistance from a switch I am using. Thought this might be the issue so I tried hooking it directly from battery to power jack and now it won’t even boot on double press (different DC power plug but same specs). There is almost no resistance with this set up so not sure what could be wrong. Still works with power adapter so it’s still operational. @StrikeEagleIII did you resolve the issue? Was it as JimWang said? I’ve been testing voltage and resistance as I go, not sure what to try next.

@K4RL- my solution (at least so far) is to live with having to double click the power button. I never really heard back on what that actually does. So far that has been fine–we haven’t had any problems with it turning off on its own. When you say it turns off by itself, is it actually shutting down or just losing power and turning off? What is the switch you’re using for?