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I'm interested in comparing to the other Powered Up hubs, which are already documented here:

Thanks!

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  • 3
    Welcome to Bricks! I contributed answers for the three linked questions, but I don't have 88012. I'm sure I'll get it eventually, and I'm happy to open it up and document it here when I do, but it would likely be months from now. Perhaps someone else will be able to provide an answer before then.
    – jncraton
    Nov 8 '20 at 13:23
  • thanks @jncraton, appreciated. What I'm interested in is driving the motors at a slightly higher voltage using rechargeables; with either alkaline or nimh AA, the actual driver voltage will be close to 7.x volts. Using a 2s1p lipo would be an easy (moderate) increase, but I can't find a lipo that would come close to filling the volume (so energy capacity would suffer quite a bit). OTOH it would be very easy to fill the 6AA slots with 6 14500 protected LiIon cells, re-wired to 3s2p and with a JST to hook the (removed) battery unit up to a balancing RC charger. Nov 8 '20 at 21:16
  • however this would be slightly above the lb1836 Vcc abs max of 10.5; so I'm looking for if it would be easier to haywire a different motor controller (unfortunately I can't find any pin-compatible IC's with a higher Vcc tolerance), OR cram in a small buck-boost to handle the 3s2p -> 9v, which would be an even 9v for the whole discharge or a ~30% increase in drive voltage. Nov 8 '20 at 21:19
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TLG was kind enough to send me one of these, so I've done my part and cracked it open to see what is inside. The teardown was fairly easy to do without damaging any components. The only tool I used was a brick separator. 😀

There are a few tabs around the edges that can be depressed to allow the main housing to come apart:

bottom cover and battery box

top cover and pcb from behind

I'm not certain what the purpose of the small rubberized button is, but it is accessible from inside the battery compartment. This may be related to detection of a future battery pack.

The PCB simply lifts out:

pcb bottom

On the bottom side, we can see that the main processor is an STM32L431RCT6. It's based on the Arm Cortex M4, can be clocked up to 80 MHz, and includes 256kB of flash memory.

The top side includes the remainder of the components of interest.

pcb top

For Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) communication, the Control+ hub uses a CC2640 from Texas Instruments. This is the same chip used by the Powered Up hub.

The motor drivers are LB1836 chips. They are dual drivers, and there are two on the board, one for each pair of ports. These are the same driver chips used for the Powered Up, Boost, and Robot Inventor hubs.

Overall, this hardware is very similar to the other hardware in the current generation of products (Robot Inventor, Powered Up, Boost, etc).

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  • If I may hypothesize about the button. The EV3 had a button that was pressed when the rechargeable battery was equipped, so it didn't complain about the batteries being drained because of the inherent lower voltage of the rechargeable battery (7.2V vs 9V). So perhaps a rechargeable battery solution is also intended in the future for this hub... Mar 12 at 12:08
  • @MichaelVerschaeve That was my hunch as well. I'd certainly love to see a rechargeable battery pack for this hub.
    – jncraton
    Mar 12 at 12:28

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