The MintyBoost v3.0 Kit (“small battery-powered USB charger” for peculiar mobile devices like the iPhone) just arrived via @adafruit .
All the way from the US to Germany within 7 days. Cool.
I opted for the Kit and bought this directly from LadyAda via her shop @ http://www.adafruit.com because a) I wanted to see how fast this would pass through German customs (well documented on the envelope, btw), b) buying this part by part in Germany is more expensive, c) I wanted to see if the quality of the delivered items is as good as the online tutorial (it is!) and d) – the main reason – it’s very hard to find this (LT1302) IC in Germany & they are often expensive.
There’s an excellent tutorial available online as well as various blog posts that already cover the assembly of this little kit, so I won’t go into detail + it’s really just a few parts that are quickly soldered onto the pcb. After testing the voltage output, I soldered the female USB connector on the pcb and connected my iPhone. And yes, it works! It will probably and hopefully also work with more recent phones, like the iPhone 4 (this is version 3.0 of MintyBoost), but I couldn’t test this.
This post, however, made me remember that my initial plan was to add a little switch and find a better case than the Altoids tin I have (the MintyBoost was designed for the Altoids bubblegum, not the mints)…
…so I am currently searching for a better box, or I’ll take this one and use the extra space to accommodate the cable.
Oh, and about these “1900mAh External Battery Chargers“ with a said output of 5V/800mA – they never worked for me (and mine is just an iPhone 2G & her iPod Touch 1G which are very humble when it comes to charging peculiarities):
I think the MintyBoost kit currently is one of the best systems because it’s not limited to a certain phone like the iPhone, but also supports it and can be modified (even though these portable batteries like the one pictured above or the more expensive ones rated A- on iLounge probably are the more elegant solution).
In any case: thx 2 everyone @ Adafruit Industries for this well-documented kit, the quality of all parts and the quick delivery!
Well ok, the pics may be a bit too dark, but I managed to install the MintyBoost in a bigger Altoids tin (the ones sold in Germany) and used the extra space for a switch and to accommodate the cable.
The interim Smintyboost solution turned out to be a bit too short, so I went back to the Altoids tin:
Just where would I be without my Leatherman?
Yeah it may still look a bit too jua kali…
The original cable actually fits inside this box with a bit of squeezing, but I’ve also bought this shorter version which should do a better job. Also, with a bigger box there’s enough room for future improvements like a battery mod.