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Fathom-X case?

(Jake) #1

Has anyone put their topside Fathom-X board in a case to protect it? I am working on designing a 3d printable case now but am curious if anyone else has already come up with a solution.

Thanks, Jake.

(Brendan Coffey) #2

Great question. Also, how are you getting power to the topside Fantom-X board? I can pull power from the battery inside the vehicle, but I’m wondering if there’s some obvious solution people use on the other end.

(Rusty) #3

@Brendan, we always power the topside Fathom-X board through the USB connector on it, which is specifically (and only) for power.

(Brendan Coffey) #4

Oh! Awesome.

Is it intended to get power via USB on the vehicle side, too?

(Rusty) #5


It can be powered equally well by USB or the terminal block power input. We use the terminal block input on the vehicle since there’s power available and the USB connection on the surface since that’s more readily available.


(Paul) #6

I’m using a NEMA water-proof case and some water-proof bulkhead connectors to protect my Fathom-S topside board.

(Jake) #7

Thanks Paul; I may have to rethink my case design after seeing yours. I was planning a simple protective case for the X but may move towards something more protective like what you are using.

(Mark Langille) #8

We just put this 3D print case design together. Not waterproof, more just to protect the board from damage.

(TCIII) #9


Nice work. Looks good.



(Rusty) #10

Hi all,

We are working on a topside case for the Fathom-X as well. It’s pretty similar to the ideas on here except that we are including a USB to Ethernet adapter in the box so that the box only requires a USB connection to the computer.

We’re still figuring out the case design. We have a few 3D printed prototypes but we’ll probably end up with an extruded aluminum case.


(John Griffiths) #11

I have likely misunderstood Rusty’s comment that the topside case for the Fathom-X he is working on will have a USB to ethernet adaptor as I had thought the Fathom-X allowed for using just a USB connection to a computer as it is. Can anyone enlighten me? At the moment I have my computer connected to the topside Fathom X with a USB cable and am soon to try running my Bluerov2 for the first time so this might be an issue that arises soon for me.

(TCIII) #12


I believe that you are confusing the Fathom S with the Fathom X.

The Fathom S is the serial interface while the Fathom X is an Ethernet interface.

The Fathom S interface uses the four twisted pairs in either the Fathom Tether or a Cat5 cable and the Topside Interface communicates with your PC/Laptop over a USB cable which also powers the TopSide Interface.

The Fathom X interface uses a single twisted pair between the ROV and the Topside GCS and communicates with the PC/Laptop over an Ethernet cable, but does require a USB cable connection for power.

If you are communicating with the BR Fathom Interface using just a USB cable and not a USB cable and an Ethernet cable, then I believe that you have a Fathom S Interface.



(Rusty) #13


The Fathom-X has a USB connection, but it is purely for power. It does not act as a USB to Ethernet converter. We put that on there so that you wouldn’t need a separate power supply besides your computer on the surface! Sorry for the confusion.


(John Griffiths) #14

Thanks Rusty and TCIII for the response and clarification. I knew I had the Fathom X boards but didnt realize that the ethernet and USB both had to be plugged in having erroneously assumed that power was supplied to the topside board by the ethernet cable.

I now have it all configured with the IP address on the ethernet port on my computer but am still unable to get the pixhawk to show up in q ground control which keeps telling me to plug the device in via USB. I have tested the pixhawk by plugging it into my laptop and it is fine. I put the preloaded raspberry pi SD cards in but am unsure now with them being preloaded, just how much of the instructions for setting up the pi on ardusub is still relevant or whether the card is all preconfigured to go when inserted. any assistance would be much appreciated.

(Brendan Coffey) #15

Nice, @schoonerlabs! Any desire to share the STL?

(Mark Langille) #16

Yes I plan to post them on our blog, hopefully next week once i get time do do a small article.

(Rusty) #17

Hi John,

The SD card that comes with the BlueROV2 is completely ready to go. All you have to do is plug everything in and it should work out of the box.

If you’re still having trouble then I can walk you through some steps to try to figure out what is going on.


(John Griffiths) #18

hi Rusty.


that would be greatly appreciated. contact me any time and we can start the process.

(Rusty) #19

For anyone reading, this conversation is continued here: https://www.bluerobotics.com/forums/topic/ardusub-and-pixhawk-issue/

(Michael) #20

Here’s a Fathom X enclosure that a friend made up for me on his CNC mill…