Librem5 does not charge through Nexdock360

I’d recommend lowering the frame rate and/or resolution. That should bring some benefits.

I do not have a way to measure the usb-c power directly. But if I measure the power drawn by the L5s power adaptor I can see a difference around 0.5W between 60Hz and 30Hz for the screen of the N360. That doesn’t seem to be much.

Is there software that still can be optimized?

Are there features planned to make it possible/easy to set a preference like “charge as fast as you can even if the phone is slow”, “optimal performance without discharging the battery” and “best performance”?

Meanwhile I received a baseus dock 8-in-1 (the one mentioned in the compatibility list) and as far as I can tell with not using it too much it does charge the L5 while it is connected to an external screen and keyboard.

Even better: I connected the L5 to the dock and the dock via hdmi and usb (keyboard and touchpad) to the nexdock360. This seems to work as a stationary setup and the nexdock can be charged and switched on/off separately from the L5.

Maybe @dos knows.

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There are still things to be done in order to make using L5 with external screens more efficient. Compressed buffer formats will be one thing that should reduce memory bandwidth significantly, another one is TS buffer sharing, which is already in works:

When it comes to charging, the thing is to have peripherals that can provide enough current at 5V. I’d say that you need at least 2A to charge when using an external screen, and having 3A would give a comfortable headroom - that’s what Baseus dock negotiates here for me.


It is now definitively and openly/honestly answered that 5W isn’t enough power (between 12W and 15W needed) to charge Librem 5 battery when this Linux phone connected to N360:

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@ChriChri, perhaps following setup might help you (where Device 3 would be your Nexdock360):
Rest of this idea is, sort of, explained here: New Setup for 3 Computers Hardware.

Do I understand you right:

  • Device 1 = Librem 5
  • Device 3 = Nexdock360
  • Device 2 = very powerful charger

Video/usb-data gets routed through the “magic device” between Device 1(L5) and Device 3(N360) and both devices draw power from Device 2(very powerful charger).

The “magic device” in the middle talks to “very powerful charger” using PD to get the power specs and tell the charger what it needs and each of the devices N360 and L5 talk to the “magic device” to tell it how they’d like to be provided their power.

Did you try this and is is known to work?

I looked for such a device (I searched for something like “usb-c power injector pd”) and didn’t find anything.

My actual solution attempt is described above:

Baseus usb-c dock connected to:

  • power adaptor (feeding dock and L5)
  • usb-c: keyboard/touchpad to N360 port (left near screen)
  • hdmi: video to N360
  • ethernet: local network
  • usb-a: external mouse

N360 draws power through a different usb-c connection from a second power adaptor.

Seems to work for a desktop setup, but the “magic device” would need a lot less cables.

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That would be original Librem 5 power supply.

No just Librem 5 would draw power from the connected power supply (although I’m not familiar with N360 at this moment).

Sorry but no. I do not possess N360, but still it would be nice that you try this (for the rest of us to be aware if indeed helped), just thought of mine that this “magic device” might be the one that you need in between this combo (and solve this Librem 5 charging issue).

I’ll try and let you know. Found the “magic device” at a reagional dealer so that’ll be easy to return it if it doesn’t work like expected.

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Is it not just a powered USB C hub?

If so it wouldn’t work as expected. It needs to pass through the hdmi signal, also. Furthermore it’d need - as I understood the PD protocol - to intercept the data traffic to deliver meaningful PD information to all connected devices.

Maybe someone with more inside in PD can fill in some knowledge here and correct my simple or even wrong description?

Setup, as I understand above screenshot, for related “magic device” (Device 3 = Nexdock360) should be the very same as shown here (there exist only one USB-C port on N360 that supports DisplaPort, yet please correct me if I’m wrong):

Second option for the same Device 3 = Nexdock360 would be USB-C to HDMI Adapter (for example:, actually both related ports that you plan to be used with this “magic device” are placed on the left N360 side.

And, as hopefully clear from the screenshot above, only device that would get powered from is Librem 5, getting power from its original power supply as 5V/3A. Charging USB-C port for Nexdock360 is on the right side of this device and I have no clue which voltage/power it consumes, as those numbers probably quite irrelevant here, IMO.

Sorry for this late reply! EDIT:

Baseus GN16A dock USB Type-C female port (entrance port for 5V/3A or feeding port) you can still connect to the bottom right side USB-C data port of the N360 and continue using it with the rest of there connected devices (minus Librem 5).

Short: Does not work as hoped for.

The device is a more or less simple switch:

Device1 is either connected to Device2 or to Device3. If the button in the middle is pushed the connection from Device1 alternates between Device2 and Device3.

Furthermore: “not magic device” does not work if there is no power connected to an additional micro-usb port.

Will send it back.

Edit: This leaves the position open to fill in a real cool hacker device. We are missing an “usb-c pd power injector” :wink:

Yes, I’m noticing this now, tricky but mentioned in description. The best way to power this “non magic device” would be through DC5V to microUSB plug, as quite sure that it is otherwise useless (according to some review). Therefore adapter from DC power input needed, 3.5×1.35mm or 5.5×2.1mm:

And this USB to DC5V power cable is quite compact:

I finally got my L5 so I can dock successfully and have a few suggestions that might be helpful. First I gave a hub with good reviews a try and luckily everything works. It’s a Mokin 9in1 MOUC0505B. Got on -g m-a-zon for a moderate price. The HDMI cable works, my wired usb keyboard, mouse and storage devices work and it powers and charges via the included purism usb-c power plug. The wired RJ45 works to but the L5 sees it as a USB ethernet…for a heads-up

So all good. The biggest problem was the temperature on the L5 would rise from ~35C to 55C in about 15 minutes. Not good. So I followed Kyle’s advice to have the battery charged to +90% or so. It did slow down the heat rise but after about 30 minutes it was the same thing. It was approaching 55C again.

So I did Kyle’s next advice. I had a small (4") D-cell fan that I aimed at the aluminum edge of the L5. Even with the fan at slow speed and nearly noiseless it kept the temerature at right about 40C give or take and this was with the battery starting at a charge of about 35%

The other advice is if I disconnect the power to the hub from the purism usb-c charger, at some point all the power just starts getting sucked out of the L5 battery and the heat rises real fast. I’m guessing at that point the L5 battery is powering not only the mouse and keyboard but also the monitor. Since the monitor is plugged in to the wall it seems unfortunate but that’s the only explanation I have for the battery going from 40% to 10% in about a minute and a half. At that point of course it’s a mad scramble to undock the L5 and recharge it.

So having a dock that works and keeping the L5 cool enough have me on convergence. Now I’m figuring that out to hopefully get it as a real alternative to a dedicated desktop.

Not powering the monitor, but certainly everything else. Your little collection of devices there sounds like a lot for a tiny phone battery.

Well, it’s only a mouse and keyboard and the only reason I took the A/C power off is to experiment with the L5s heat rise and just to see what happens. I certainly wasn’t thinking the L5 battery would power everything adequately. I wouln’t have imagined the mouse and keyboard to drain the L5 battery that fast however, thus my questioning the monitor while hooked up to hub via the HDMI cable. And the same observation with battery drain was observed wthout the RJ45 or any usb storage devices plugged in.

Is that a little more clear? Maybe my observations with be helpful to someone.

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I have a MNT Reform. It uses the same SBC as the Librem 5. Granted it powers a much larger screen, but with the screen off, and the system powered on, I’m seeing about 5.5 watts getting pulled. Since the Nextdock can only supply 5 watts, this is why it is not charging.

If the nextdock can only provide 1 amp at 5 volts it simply cannot provide enough juice to power the phone, display, and charge the battery.

On the MNT under heavy load, the system has pulled easily 7-8 watts. This would strain the power supply even more.

All this to say that the nextdock cannot charge your L5.

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Yeah, I read your list of things that work as things you were using at the time.

Maximum Continuous Discharge CurrentThe maximum current at which the battery can be discharged continuously. This limit is usually defined by the battery manufacturer in order to prevent excessive discharge rates that would damage the battery or reduce its capacity. This term is taken from here:, so please do not experiment like this every day, especially if only one Librem 5 battery available. Other overheated parts of your Linux phone might be easily damaged as well.

And in short, out there exist simple 18650 battery cells that can be drawn down with max. continuous discharge rate of 25A (max. pulse discharge: 70A) without significant damage to them (even achieving ordinary life expectancy), but Librem 5 battery is not the one for such purposes, not one of them (vaping devices use those, but not smartphones). Therefore max. continuous discharge rate of 1.0A or even 2.0A should not cause such overheating issues over there (in total, for example I’ve just ordered microSD card that consumes for read/write: 160mA, which also means preferably without some external “extremely” power hungry device, certainly not for prolonged time), just my guess, but still recommending you not to accelerate unnecessary Amperage numbers (not even for testing purposes).

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