Retrofit the RockBand Hub for Pc Use (without External Power)




Alrighty, well while searching for a decently priced usb gamepad, I wandered into a GameStop, There I did find a 10 dollar usb gamepad, but I also noticed they had a used rockband hub with power supply for 2 bucks. Well, this actually gives me two awesome parts that I could use. The first being the hub itself. The second being a power adapter that I can retrofit a female usb fitting on, and instant usb charging for a cellphone, ipod, w/e. But more on that later. The Rockband hub requires an external power source, rightfully so as those 360 controllers have a pretty mean amp draw on them. However, I have a keyboard, mouse, cellphone, and gamepad that could all be using only one port on my pc, instead of 4. So, not wanting to use the external power to the hub (like a normal person) I wanted to power this off my computers bus. Please note: After you perform this NEVER EVER plug it back into the wall, I'm not really willing to find out what would happen.

Step 1: Crack Open the Casing.

Easily enough, if you have fingernails, running them along the sides where the top and bottom meet, you'll find the casing will pop right open

Step 2: Pretty Basic From the Top

Once the top is off, make sure you didn't break any clips :)

Step 3: Carefully Turn Board Over.

Make sure not to stress the wires attached to the board feeding the usb into this hub.

Step 4: Find Your Solder Points.

You will be attaching a small INSULATED wire between point A and point B.

My board had a small pad on what said L20 next to it that's the feed for the middle pin on the power adapter (the 5v positive).

You want to attach L20 (or where ever you get a 5v feed from the usb hub when it's plugged into the wall only)

You might need a multi-meter for this (I would highly recommend it)

Plug the usb hub into the wall, but not the pc, and probe around until you find a 5 volt feed.

Once you have found your power source, unplug the adapter from the wall socket and get your jumper wire.

I booted into windows for this, because it has that annoying "BE DOOP" sound when you attach for detach a usb device. Plug the adapter into the pc and use your jumper to bridge your two points. If you hear that sound, you're ready to solder.

Detach the hub from your pc and fire up the soldering iron (I used .022 dia solder.) and attach your two points with your jumper. Be VERY careful not to drip, or get any solder anywhere else aside from these two pins (don't wanna short out your pc) Once the solder has cooled off, plug it in and listen for the sound, if you have it. You're done. Make sure your wire is attached firmly and close up the case. Once again. DO NOT plug this back into the wall. It'll now pull it's 5v .5A from your pc.

In linux you'll get
Bus 001 Device 018: ID 0409:005a NEC Corp. HighSpeed Hub

as the output of "lsusb" if you have done this correctly.



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    13 Discussions


    5 years ago on Step 4

    Thanks! I recently picked one of these up (after someone threw it and the microphone out.) and I saw this instructable pop-up awhile back. Now adding a new USB hub to the tool box!

    1 reply

    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    And...... Okay, this is (a) disgusting, and (b) too simple!!! I opened mine yesterday, and looking at the enlarged photo from the last page, I see where you made the jumper.. From the end of missing part R5, to the +5V wire from the USB cable, to the pad of missing part L20, to the center pin of the barrel connector.. and.. If you look at the entire copper trace between the unused side of R5, you'll notice it runs from there, all the way back to the lower pad of L20, and the copper trace bridges both sides of L20 (not required.) All they needed to add, was a chip-diode, where R5 should've been. (band side towards the cable.) this way, both the USB cable would provide voltage, and you could still use the +5V wall-wart. Your fix is still great, but I noticed, when testing the voltage, I was getting close to 5.38V from the wall-wart, hence the diode chip would provide some minor resistance. All because of omitting one part, they crippled the device to only run how they wanted it..


    9 years ago on Introduction

     fail the ps2 ones works without a mod SUCKA :P


    10 years ago on Step 4

    you know you can always bridge them with a diode and then you can use both usb and power adapter.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    Worked beautifully! Took me all of 2 minutes to do the mod and now I don't have to mess with another nasty power cable. Works fine with Rock Band and other add ons (I've tried an mp3 players, my fan stand, and battery charger).


    10 years ago on Introduction

    i keep getting a low power notice ..... any suggestions?


    10 years ago on Introduction

    Thank You SOOOOOO MUCH!! I am horrible at soldering, but i managed to not short things out this time again, THANK YOU! saved me $20 xD

    2 replies

    haha, glad I could show you the way :P Just keep in mind, it may not work all that well with rockband now. It might, but I can't test that as I don't have a 360 :) And what I found helped me a lot when I was trying to start soldering, make sure you tin the wire first, but, if you get wire that's a little thicker, and pure copper and bend it the way you want it, you can normally just let it sit there and go to town :) Glad I could help :)


    haha yeah, i havnt had a chance to test it out with rock band on the 360, but, then again, i have never used it to begin with, the 360 has two usb ports in the front, and one in the back, enough for the mic, drums, guitar, and i have a wireless les paul. yes, tinning makes it so much easier, i actually soldered this thing with a small allen wrench held over a torch, not the easiest or cleanest, but it worked :P and again, thanks for the 'ible, i always wondered if it was possible :)