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[FAQ] When do I select a PD controller or CC controller for USB Type-C applications?

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I am transitioning my system from an older USB connector to the USB Type-C connector. However I do not know whether I need a one of TI's Power Delivery (PD) controller or a CC controllers. When should I chose a PD controller or CC controller and what are some advantages to using one over the other?

  • Implementing USB Type-C can help to increase the USB ports functionally and create a more friendly experience for the end user. To implement USB Type-C one of two devices is generally always required, either a PD controller or CC controller. PD (Power Delivery) controllers allow all features of USB Type-C to be implemented. PD controllers can be used in all applications using USB Type-C and can come with a power switch integrated into the package. CC controllers allow for the main features of USB Type-C to be implemented but leave out features that require PD messages over the USB Type-C connector. CC controllers are generally used in application that require a small solution size, low power consumption and simple bring up. The table below shows a list of commonly used USB Type-C features and whether a PD controller or CC controller can be used to implement them. 

    USB Type-C Feature

    PD Controller

    CC Controller

    Comments

    Supports DFP, UFP, DRP Port Configurations

    x

    x

    •Support both configuration and detection of USB-C ports, includes Try.SNK and Try.SRC DRP ports

    Supports Up To 100W Charging Advertisement

    x

    •Achieved by raising Vbus voltage and current maximum

    Supports Up To 15W Charging Advertisement

    x

    x

    •Achieved by raising Vbus current maximum to 3A

    Supports Video Alternate Modes

    x

    •DP and HDMI Video Alternate modes supported

    Supports Debug Alternate Modes And Audio Accessories

    x

    x

    •Allows for custom Debug mode configuration and detection

    Vconn Support

    x

    x

    •Used to power USB-C plug devices and active cables

    Power Role Swap

    x

    •Used to swap power provider and power consumer roles over Power Delivery messages

    Data Role Swap

    x

    •Used to swap USB Host (DFP) and USB device (UFP) roles

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