I'm planning to buy a pi-top to use my RPi on the go, like a laptop:
The problem is that I have made modifications on GPIO connector to the point I'm not sure it will be compatible with their breakout cable. I wonder if I will still be able to use a pi-top if I leave GPIO cable unconnected. As I understand it, I will lose the ability to control display brightness (done via PWM on GPIO pin) and won't get battery charge information, but the rest of it should work nevertheless. Can anyone confirm this?
I have found and read pi-top manual which didn't seem to answer my question.
I disconnected the the cable from the GPIO on mine and installed
Ubuntu Mate. The screen brightness and volume control keys don't work
and the shutdown becomes a two step process. To shut it down you need
to run the "shutdown -h now" command, wait until it shuts down, then
hold down the start buttons until the red LED goes out. In my opinion
a small price to pay to regain access to the GPIO.
If you don't use the GPIO cable, the notebook seems to work just fine for the first look.
I am using PiTop together with MinnowBoard and XUbuntu without this cable.
But I'm observing following issues:
No EDID access so the display only shows one resolution (the biggest)
which avoid to play some older games
The battery symbol under the OS is odd. OS has no chance to access Smart Battery Manager chip (if there is any, I assume that it is).
This implies whether it is a cause of my battery failure - I'm not able to charge it anymore.
This behavior is based on my personal experience, but I cannot exclude another root cause.