Tools like the iPad have brought us lots of nice new things – day-long batteries, ultra-thin lightweight devices, beautiful touchable apps, less time spent troubleshooting. But then they’ve also forced us to make weird choices. Do you want electricity or do you want accessories. (Um, both? Wait, what?!)

And so it is that I’m writing this piece of news. Now, you can plug into a wall for electricity! (Wow!) And, you can use USB accessories! And you don’t have to choose!

IMG_3351

We knew this should work in theory, but it was time to test it in real life. Here, Christian Blomert (a developer behind touchAble and Modstep) demonstrates that you can now plug a single dongle into the iPad’s Lightning port, and get:

1. USB for bus-powered accessories.
2. Power (via a second Lightning port) for your iPad.

Where wonders never cease.

Some USB gadgets will need more power, and of course if you want more than one USB accessory, you’ll want a hub. But in the past, even that wasn’t a solution, because the Lightning-to-USB connection blocked the use of that same port for power.

Also good: Apple says the accessory is compatible with any iPad with a Lightning connection. (30-pin adapters should work, too, but then I’ve seen third-party accessories already that do what this does for 30-pin.)

Now, let commenters say I’m hyping this up. They’re right, of course. (Next time on CDM, watch me plug a hairdryer into a wall!)

US$39.

But that’s okay, I’ve got some instant ramen here and now look forward to some extended production time. Go:

Lightning to USB 3 Camera Adapter [Apple.com Shop]

  • Armando

    “(Next time on CDM, watch me plug a hairdryer into a wall!)”

    I literally spit my coffee out on my desk. Good work hahaha.

    • Michael L

      … and then watch you use the hairdryer?

  • Trumpetto

    And the iPhone?
    Could this cable with my iPhone 5s and some powerbank be my portable synth?

  • Gábor

    Yes, it works with the iPhone (i tested with my iPhone 5).

  • quote “Some USB gadgets will need more power, and of course if you want more than one USB accessory, you’ll want a hub.”

    does this mean one can connect a USB hub to the new camera kit and power more than one gadget? (being small controllers? more?)

    • Adam Jay

      Probably. I’ve used a powered hub with the original Lightning CCK for multiple MIDI devices. Of course, the iPad wasn’t being charged in these instances, but using a hub worked with the old CCK. I don’t see why it wouldn’t with the new one.

  • wondering if iPads/iPhones will accept audiorecorders like my Sony D-50

    • Freeks

      At least Zoom H5 should work.

      • Have you tried it?

        • Steve Conrad

          i have – they work – but the issue is the Zoom H4N,H5, H6 , G3 when in USB Audio Class Compliant mode run at 16 bit only.

          FWIW – I’ll be testing the new KMI KMIX with this adapter later today

          • HLee

            How did the KMIX work out?

  • vaikl

    It worked with the Focusrite iTrack Dock since two years now, why shouldn’t it work with other “double feature” devices??

  • Polite Society

    Will it let me connect to two devices? Like for example, could i connect to the iconnectaudio4+ but then also a midi controller? (bad example, as i could just connect the midi controller to the 4+, but you get what i mean.

    • Steve Conrad

      When uesed with a separate USB Hub – yes

  • Freeks

    Apple in need of cash? Usually they sell $1 adapters for $29 but now they charge $10 more.

  • Steve Conrad

    I tested the new Lightning USB3 Camera Adapter as well. – it does require IOS9 minimum, so i updated iPhone 6 Plus, iPad AIR2 to latest IOS 9.3, and all work. I use a PowerAdd Pilot Pro 32,000mAh USB Battery pack and run with no AC power.

    So far these all work

    Fender Slide (Audio)
    Fender FTP Strat (Audio) and FTP Dongle (MIDI)
    Roland US-22 Duo Capture EX (Audio and MIDI)
    Roland UM One MK2 (MIDI)

    Sadly the Focusrite Scarlet 2i4 still requires the special USB Power Y cord and additional power supply.

    • Gábor

      I can use it on my iPhone 5 with iOS 9.2 as well.

      • Steve Conrad

        also worked on iPad AIR2 with IOS 9.1
        the important element is the IOS version must be IOS 9 (or newer)- It did not work on my IOS devices with IOS 8.4.5

        and it does work on my 2014 iPhone 6 Plus

    • Masa

      What is “the special USB Power Y cord”? I’m trying to make it work with my 2i4 and iPad using USB 3 camera kit. Please tell me what to do.
      Thanks.

  • ob

    kinda weird question:
    i have apogee one for mac&ios.
    would it be possible to plug apogee one to the usb port of the adapter and plug a battery pack to the lightning port of the adapter so that the battery pack both powers the ipad and the apogee one?

    • flufftronix

      As of now, can the One ordinarily be powered by the iPad or does it need to be plugged in separately? I have a Duet and don’t remember the situation offhand.. guessing it needs external power though.

      Assuming this is right: there are cables with AC adapter plugs on one end and USB on the other. Use have a battery that can output via 2 USB plugs simultaneously, and this could plausibly work for wall-plugless setup.

  • Tormod Vold Mikkelsen

    Can I use the power connector to connect the iPad to my mac? (for more than just power)

    • Steve Conrad

      NO

  • lala

    I like the sound of hairdryers, such a warm sound ^^

  • Claudio Branno

    Hi Peter,

    important question (at least for me, or any elektron user). I do see an Elektron USB cable used there…does this mean there was an elektron device connected there or just used the cable? If the first option is the case, which use was done there? Pretty interesting if it was sending midi notes, even more if overbridge AU was involved. Cam you share some details?

  • Nigel Sloppy

    iOS 9 is required. When I tested it with my iOS 7 and iOS8 iPads, a message came up saying that this accessory wasn’t supported. This is a bummer for me as a developer since I like to keep a number of devices with different iOS versions for testing, plus as a user I find iOS 9 more sluggish than 8. c’est la vie.

  • Apple

    Apple: We’ve conveniently solved the problem we created, and it’ll only cost you $39!

  • Fabrizio Benedetti

    Anybody knows something more about “third-party accessories already that do what this does for 30-pin”? I couldn’t find one!

  • Seby

    I would like to know where I find the accessory 30-pin (for ipad 2) that allows you to use USB devices and simultaneously charging.

    P.S. I already have the original CCK for Apple iPad 2 but the latter does not charge the iPad when connected to a USB hub.

    Thank you

    • Dubby Labby

      It doesn’t exist. For 30 pins connector devices there were only hacked docks or expensive buggy solutions as iconnectivity gear. It was going to be released a new griffin studioconnect that never go on production (due mfi restrictions it seems). If you still need some solution or want to discuss it I will try to help you but my best advice is avoid old idevices or go for docks.

      • Seby

        Thanks!
        Solution is new iPad with Lightning and new adapter with USB and recharger.

        • Dubby Labby

          Yes, that was most of us did. 😉

  • DannyM

    In the header image what ipad app is that you’re controlling with the Xone K2? I have a K2, but didn’t realise it could be used with an ipad. Oh the possibilities!

    • Albert Gérard

      Does the soundcard from the Xone K2 work in this configuration? Can anyone verify this?

  • Albert Gérard

    This is the only image reference of the the excellent Xone K2 controller running on an IOS device I’ve found. In this configuration, does the K2 receive enough power to output from it’s headphone port? How about it’s RCA sound card?