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        Mini-HowTo Flashing Turnigy Plush(SiLabs) success, now with tutorial!

#1 sirbow2 Jul 06, 2012 09:01 PM

Flashing Turnigy Plush(SiLabs) success, now with tutorial!
 
here is the new and improved tutorial written by me: http://oddcopter.com/2012/07/18/flas...heli-firmware/
it goes through the entire process of flashing popular silabs based ESCs (not just plush) using two methods.


--------------------------------------------original post-------------------------------------------
I didnt see any threads on this besides very few mentions in the ESC flashing thread, so i decided id post some info here.

I found this thread on helifreak that talks about the BLHeli ESC firmware for SiLab based ESCs. it only shows a Turnigy plush 6A as compatible but the plush series has the same hardware except for the FETs so all plush should work. and as of the latest firmware version, it now has a Multirotor setting, yay!
it also requires you to buy a 25$ programmer. but since im cheap, i found this max232 IC based programmer to tryout.

i bought my plush 25A late 2011 an they are SiLbas based, so im gonna try this.

what do ya guys think of this?!

EDIT:
here is some more programmer info(the expensive one): http://www.hacksmods.com/2012/05/sil...heli-flashing/
and some openpilot discussion: http://forums.openpilot.org/topic/10...abs-based-esc/
and a parallel port programmer(yikes!): http://silabs.org.ua/sp_en.htm

#2 sirbow2 Jul 08, 2012 05:27 PM

1 Attachment(s)
this is what im going to try:
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showa...1&d=1341786277
VDD/V33 from the scheme can be either from the internal vreg, or an external PSU. that is a Turnigy plush 6A, but my plush 25A looks the exact same except the pads are in the center of the board because the PCB is bigger, so any plush should be good. Also, any ESC with a SIL should work as long as you find where VDD/GND/C2CK/C2D are.

#3 echo9alpha Jul 08, 2012 07:52 PM

fingers crossed!

#4 SGsoar Jul 08, 2012 08:51 PM

are they flashed through the servo lead?

#5 sirbow2 Jul 08, 2012 11:03 PM

yeah, so this didnt work out very well. these "DIY" programmers dont work and those pads on the ESC are a @#$@#% to solder onto because they are so small and squeezed between the silabs and a vreg?
http://wiki.openpilot.org/download/t...=1327437482000

anybody know of a way to connect with the pads without soldering? like a clamp type thing? id recommend to just spend the 25$ and get the usb programmer ;)

#6 sirbow2 Jul 08, 2012 11:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SGsoar (Post 22110954)
are they flashed through the servo lead?

I wish! look at my post a few above. it as an image of an ESC without the shrink wrap and black/green/red/white outlined soldering pads that you must solder onto with wires to connect a special 25$ programmer.

#7 sg1anubis Jul 08, 2012 11:07 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sirbow2 (Post 22111999)
yeah, so this didnt work out very well. these "DIY" programmers dont work and those pads on the ESC are a @#$@#% to solder onto because they are so small and squeezed between the silabs and a vreg?
http://wiki.openpilot.org/download/t...=1327437482000

anybody know of a way to connect with the pads without soldering? like a clamp type thing? id recommend to just spend the 25$ and get the usb programmer ;)

I usually take a set of standard 0.1" header pins and bend them in to align with the pads. Instead of soldering I'll just hold it on, assuming that the pins are all in a row. It may be possible to power the esc through the servo leads and not have to connect VDD or GND, that would greatly simplify the wiring.

What advantages would their be for flashing a SILabs based esc, isn't the refresh rate already 490Hz?

#8 SGsoar Jul 09, 2012 02:54 PM

if powering the esc through servo lead is possible do you still need to remove the capacitor?

#9 sirbow2 Jul 09, 2012 04:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sg1anubis (Post 22112042)
I usually take a set of standard 0.1" header pins and bend them in to align with the pads. Instead of soldering I'll just hold it on, assuming that the pins are all in a row. It may be possible to power the esc through the servo leads and not have to connect VDD or GND, that would greatly simplify the wiring.

What advantages would their be for flashing a SILabs based esc, isn't the refresh rate already 490Hz?

i read some where that flashing the ESCs with simonk or BLHeli will pretty much stabalize the multirotor on default PIDs(that how bad some ESCs are). and will be better overall. refresh rate isnt the only important thing.

i dunno about the servo connector, but i didnt because the Silabs chip is 3.3v(5v tolerant pins) and the servo lead is 5v

#10 charbot Jul 09, 2012 05:40 PM

This guy used an arduino to flash a SIlab chip:

http://www.helifreak.com/showthread.php?t=432282

#11 charbot Jul 09, 2012 05:48 PM

sirbow2, was your problem with the diy programmer or was it that you were unable to solder the connections?

#12 sirbow2 Jul 09, 2012 06:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by charbot (Post 22118849)
This guy used an arduino to flash a SIlab chip:

http://www.helifreak.com/showthread.php?t=432282

THANK YOU i was looking for this but couldnt find any arduino programmers.

Quote:

Originally Posted by charbot (Post 22118912)
sirbow2, was your problem with the diy programmer or was it that you were unable to solder the connections?

the diy programmer was the issue; i tired the max232 based one and the parallel port one. i got the wires soldered on much easier with magnet wire. i think they didnt work because they weren't supported or something maybe. i kept on getting no connection errors. hopefully the arduino one works better.

#13 charbot Jul 09, 2012 06:56 PM

i was going to suggest magnet wire and a very fine tipped iron. The arduino programmer looks a little complex- there is a windows GUI...? guess Im just used to AVR.

Id be interested in a solution that works on a Mac, but Im sure Im in the minority here

#14 Erknie Jul 09, 2012 07:15 PM

Are you sure the BLHeli ESC firmware is appropriate for a multi-copter?

#15 sirbow2 Jul 09, 2012 07:29 PM

yes, it has a MULTI option that is new in v 5.0 :) you can see the hex files here: https://github.com/bitdump/BLHeli/tr...bs/Hex%20files but that AVR program only supports the MAIN version right now, but it shouldnt be too long until MULTI is supported with the AVR programmer.


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