PoE technology allows a user to send both power and data to a device using a single, compatible Ethernet cable.
Users can power a Screenly Player with Power over Ethernet (PoE). Note that only Screenly Players that use a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ are compatible with PoE. Screenly Players that use a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B (not B+) are not compatible with PoE.
PoE technology is useful in deployments where a power outlet is not available nearby. Additionally, PoE technology is useful for aesthetic purposes in settings where users want to minimize the number of cables that are used by their Screenly Player.
What do I need to power my Screenly Player using PoE?
You will need to purchase a Raspberry Pi PoE HAT, a device that sits on top of the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ board found within your Screenly Player. You can purchase a Raspberry Pi PoE HAT here.
Note that there are many PoE HAT devices available that are not manufactured by the Raspberry Pi Foundation. We have not tested these other devices with the Screenly Player, and we do not make any claims about their compatibility.
Of course, you will also need a PoE compatible Ethernet cable. Most CAT5, CAT6, and CAT7 cables are compatible with PoE (meaning that they can transfer both power and data). However, you should check with your Ethernet cable vendor to ensure that the cable is PoE compatible.
Also, note that your Raspberry Pi PoE HAT will only work if the PoE-compatible Ethernet cable is connected to a compatible network device, commonly a PoE switch or a PoE injector. These devices should use the IEEE 802.3af or 802.3at standard. If you have questions, check with your network vendor to ensure that your equipment is compatible with those requirements.
How do I install the PoE HAT on my Screenly Player?
Your compatible Screenly Player consists of a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ minicomputer inside a case. Remove the Raspberry Pi device from the case.
On the top side of the device (the side with the USB, HDMI, and Ethernet ports), you will need to screw in four “spacers” that come with your Raspberry Pi PoE HAT. A spacer is a small, plastic column that keeps space between any add-on device and the Raspberry Pi chip. You will need to screw in a spacer into each of the four yellow holes on your Raspberry Pi device. Each hole is near a corner of the visible chip.
Next, lay your RaspberryPi PoE HAT on top of these connectors and connect the pins on your PoE HAT with the PoE and GPIO pins on your Raspberry Pi device. Then plugin your PoE compatible Ethernet cable into your Raspberry Pi device, and that’s it! You can now power your Screenly Player using PoE.
Need help setting up PoE with your Screenly Player?
If you need help with powering your Screenly Player using PoE, feel free to reach out to us at Screenly Support! We’re always happy to help our users.