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I'm able to connect to Arduino+RAMPS through USB. I can even check end stops with M119. However, if I plug it to the power supply, my MacBook goes crazy and restart itself! Things I have tried:

  • Uninstalled OSX, installed Ubuntu, I get readiness error when PSU is connected.
  • Bought a new pair of RAMPS + Arduino.
  • Run RAMPS all naked without anything on it.
  • Measured PSU output, 12.2 V is stable.

I'm at a point I started to think my MacBook's USB ports are messed up. It is a 2008 model, do you think that would be right to blame?


Tried a new and a very short USB cable: It worked for the first time and I'm able to home all axes, but laptop's trackpad gets very hard to control for some reason. I can only use an external mouse.

1 Answer 1

It sounds a bit like you are having (additional) grounding issues1. Are your MacBook and the RAMPS using the same ground, i.e. are they using the same mains circuit?

If you are using the same power strip, then the next thing to check would be that the PSU on the printer correctly grounded (at the bottom of the unit).

From David Crocker's superlative blog, see Upgrading the large delta printer - Power supply output grounding:

Power supply output grounding

While taking some measurements on my machine, I discovered that the negative side of the output of the 12V LED power supply I am using was not connected to ground inside the power supply as I expected. This presents a safety hazard. So I added an additional wire from ground to the spare negative output terminal of the power supply.

Correctly grounded power supply

1 Why do I think this? Three reasons:

  1. Because grounding issues is one of the most common, and over-looked, problems, in circuit design;
  2. I have often had peripheral devices, that use a separate additional power supply, cause a PC laptop to go "haywire" (or worse, die) once connected via RS232/USB (especially charge sensitive devices on the laptop, such as the track pad), due to different, or floating, grounds, and;
  3. I had recently read the blog and made special note to check all of my power supplies as they are all terrible, cheap, Chinese knockoffs, and grounding circuits in Thailand are usually non-existant, or, at best, poorly wired up.