EV3 Phi. Introduction to EV3 Controller - the LEGO Mindstorms EV3 brick Pro Preview

Let's review the LEGO Mindstorms EV3 Intelligent Brick

The EV3 brick is the main computer of your LEGO robot and it has a display, a few buttons and various ports.

  • #350
  • 23 Jan 2017
  • 3:18

The openings are called Ports. There are a few types of ports - USB ports, SD port, cable ports.

Mindstorms cable ports

Cable ports are two types.
On top with letters A, B, C and D are the *output* ports - with these the brick sends commands to the motors.
Below are the input ports with numbers 1, 2, 3 and 4. With these the brick receives information about the world around it. Usually sensors provide that information.

USB ports

There are two USB ports on the brick.
Next to the output ports, there is micro USB port that is used for connection with a computer. You are going to download programs from your computer to the Brick via that port.
The other standard size USB port is used for the so-called "Daisy-chain" mode, where you connect two EV3 Bricks. This mode will be covered later in an advanced EV3 course.

SD card

If you happen to need extra memory, you can add an SD card to your EV3 brick. Usually that is not needed.

The rechargeable battery

This is the battery and you should leave it alone most of the time. If you happen to open it, here is how you close it back. Keep the spring on position.
The brick is running a simplified linux OS and this is why it starts for about 30 seconds.

Starting the Brick

Press the central dark gray button to turn on the brick. It boots an Linux OS and starting and stopping the brick will take some 30 seconds.


Let's first stop at the main part of the robot. Its brain called 'the brick'.

I'll just remove the brick from the other parts from the motor, so that we can focus on the brick. And this here is the brick. First, it looks like a brick, but it is also interesting that the full name for this part is 'the intelligent brick'. Because as you know in the Lego sets you have small bricks and with these bricks you can build different constructions. And this is an intelligent brick. So, with this brick, you can control the other bricks. It's pretty interesting. Now, for the brick. It has a display. It has a few buttons here. It also has ports and you can see four ports right here - A, B, C and D. And these are the output ports. With these ports you can control different motors. So, with the ports you control the motors. And here you connect the different motors using cables like this. Also, you have a number of input ports. These are the ports from 1, 2, 3 and 4. And on these ports you connect the sensors. And these are input ports because the brick receives information from the world using these ports. And with the output ports the brick sends information to the world. So, input ports, output ports. We also have a PC port. And on this port we connect the USB cable from the computer. We also have one more USB port here. And we have a SD port here. We can add a SD card for an external memory. Also, with the brick we have the battery. And this here is the Lego EV3 Mindstorms battery but when we open it you can see that you can use the bricks with standart AA batteries. We need like six of those. And if you incidentally open the brick and you have the battery detached from the brick, you can return the battery to the brick but when doing so you must be careful for the springs right here. Because if you break them it will be very difficult to repair them and you'll have a malfunctioning brick. You won't be able to start it. Now I'll just return it. And how do you turn on the brick? You press on the button for turning on. And you can see this red light here and it will take something like 30 seconds for the brick to start.