Power used by the LED on pin 13 with a nRF24L01L01+

  • SCK on the nRF24L01L01+ is attached to digital pin 13 on the Arduino Nano. The built in LED also uses pin 13. So, pin 13 blinks whenever the radio is used. This is useful when debuging new hardware. However, this also seems like an undesireable power drain in a battery powered node.

    Has anyone quantified the significance of this power drain on battery life?

    Do people often remove this LED on battery powered nodes?

    Thanks much!

  • Mod

    @tomg in my experience, the power drain of that led is insignificant. I have not removed it, but am still getting many years battery life. See this post for some numbers.

  • Thanks for the info. It is good to see some real world experience with this. I search the forum before I posted my questions, but I didn't find your previous post.

  • Mod

    @tomg no worries. There are 200+ posts in that thread alone, and I don't mention the pin 13 led πŸ™‚

  • Mod

    Consider it is just blinking only when radio is transmitting, so in a sleeping node it will be off 99.99% of the time

  • I like that the LED blinks when transmitting, as it is using so little current, due to the node sleeping most of the time. then its easy to see that it is working when replacing batteries or debugging. I have sometimes some unreliability of a mailbox sensor and are unsure of it's my network or that batteries are dead

  • In my experience that led was always half on don’t ask me why as i m using cheap Chinese clone arduino hence power and pin 13 led removed to save battery

  • Mod

    @pihome if it's always on your node is not sleeping...

  • @yveaux thank you for reply, i dont have any arduino with led to test this πŸ™‚ all boards are in use and without led may be i'll order few to test this at some stage.

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