BrewPi Spark USB Port Broken

The BrewPi spark that runs my fermentation chamber appears to have a broken USB port. The spark powers on when using the 12v port, but I have tried several different USB cables and none seem to work. I have 2 questions:

  1. Can the port be fixed/replaced? If so, could someone tell me the exact Photon model I would need to buy? (I think I have the Spark v1 or v2, I ordered it in January 2015)

  2. Could I just upgrade to the new Brewblox and switch it out? Will the Brewblox work with a Raspberry Pi 2 or would I need to upgrade that to a 4 as well?

Ok, update. Sorry, I was wrong. The Spark USB port is fine. Turns out, the Raspberry Pi itself seems to be fried. Not sure if it is just the USB ports on it or if the whole thing is dead, but I think I will just switch it out with a new one.

New question:
Will the old Spark work with a Raspberry Pi 4 or do I need to track down an old Raspberry Pi 2 as well?

If the SD card is functional, you can place it in a new Pi 2. The Raspbian OS on the card will likely not be compatible with a Pi 4.

If the card is fried, it gets more difficult. The old brewpi software relies on other software that’s no longer supported or even readily available.

A Spark v2 is compatible with brewblox, a v1 will need an upgrade to the photon chip.

Thanks for the quick reply!

I assumed the SD card was fine, but now I actually cannot get it to mount on my laptop. I have had issues with the port that is supposed to read SD cards before though, so I will try it on a different computer.

Assuming it is fried though, is my only realistic option to upgrade to the brewblox and a Pi 4? How can I tell which version of the Spark I have?

Yes. Installing the old software, which has been deprecated for ~3 years now, is an excercise in archeology.

Could you please take a close-up picture of the board?

Yes, it’s a V1 I believe.

Would you be able to tell me which Pi I would need to run the new system? Is the 1GB package ok or does it need more:

Correct (assuming you haven’t changed the chip already).

1GB is sufficient, but for most uses, 1GB to 2GB upgrade is very much worth it. 4GB/8GB is more situational.

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Ok thanks for all your help! Looks like I have a few things I need to order and get set up if I want to get brewing again!

My Pi4 runs more than just BrewBlox for example, it runs some docker stuff as well and I use it as a browser during brewing. I happily spent another E15 to future proof it with some more RAM, but as Bob says, it is situational.

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Thanks for the insight. The reason I asked is because there appears to be a shortage of the 2,4 and 8gb versions. The 2gb options all seem to be back ordered until mid or end of March right now and I saw a 1gb for sale that I might be able to get shipped right now. Based on what you guys are saying though, I think I’ll hold out for the 2gb. Mine will only be running my fermentation chamber for now, but you never know in the future. Doesn’t hurt to future proof it a little if I can.