Espritmodel.com Telemetry Radio
Reply
Thread Tools
Old Feb 13, 2010, 08:11 PM
More oxygen, please.
Central Texas
Joined May 2002
29 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by flarssen View Post
Strange that the charger delivers correct measurements to logview while displaying the wrong ones.
Couldn't agree more, Fred. Now if we can get Natty to constantly repeat his tests while continuing to downgrade the firmware each time! (cough, cough, hint, hint)
sircj is offline Find More Posts by sircj
Reply With Quote
Sign up now
to remove ads between posts
Old Feb 14, 2010, 12:09 AM
Asks too many questions
natterjak's Avatar
Berkshire, UK
Joined Nov 2005
474 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by flarssen View Post
Strange that the charger delivers correct measurements to logview while displaying the wrong ones.
It doesn't. The measurements the charger reports to logview are the same as those displayed on the charger's LCD screen, ie. 4.20V, however the true output voltage is higher and rises over time as the current blips are applied.

When those current blips occur, they are reflected in the LCD display (for current at least), ie. you briefly see the amps rise to 0.14 or 0.17, etc, but somehow the voltmeter part of the display is now paralysed at 4.20V and does not notice the cell voltage rising. Most odd behaviour.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sircj View Post
Couldn't agree more, Fred. Now if we can get Natty to constantly repeat his tests while continuing to downgrade the firmware each time! (cough, cough, hint, hint)
Actually if it gives me chargers I feel safe using, I'd be happy to load an earlier firmware. Are there any gotchas to watch out for when downgrading firmware, or is it as uncomplicated as upgrading firmware? Looking on this PC I seem to have 3.10, 3.11, 3.12, 3.12a and 3.12b saved as .bin files. I wonder which version is most likely to be reliable?
natterjak is offline Find More Posts by natterjak
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 03:07 AM
Registered User
galaxy1's Avatar
Italy
Joined Oct 2005
226 Posts
I hope this can help:

I only battery life.
with the program life = no problem of overcharge, but i have problem only activating "trikkle charge" + "balance mode"

My Firmware: 3.12b
galaxy1 is offline Find More Posts by galaxy1
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 03:14 AM
Asks too many questions
natterjak's Avatar
Berkshire, UK
Joined Nov 2005
474 Posts
Hi Galaxy, thanks for trying to help. Are you saying that changing the "balance trickle" setting to ON will prevent overcharging?
natterjak is offline Find More Posts by natterjak
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 03:38 AM
Asks too many questions
natterjak's Avatar
Berkshire, UK
Joined Nov 2005
474 Posts
Does anyone have firmware v3.09 for the 208B charger which they can send me? I've realised that 3.10 (the earliest I have saved) was the one which killed my 208B in Oct with a connection breakdown error, resulting in my having to post it back to Hobbyking.com. I'm not taking that chance again.
natterjak is offline Find More Posts by natterjak
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 03:44 AM
Asks too many questions
natterjak's Avatar
Berkshire, UK
Joined Nov 2005
474 Posts
I've just tested Galaxy's idea (what I think he means) by turning on balance trickle and running a balance charge (instead of normal charge). This worked fine, the charger terminated the charge once the current was down to around 0.02A but.... with balance trickle turned on, at the end of the charge the charger supplies a trickle current of between 0.04 and 0.05A. Probably not a problem with a bigger lipo but with the 1S 110mAh lipo I'm testing with the effect is the same as the "bug" we are seeking to understand, ie. the cell voltage carries on rising. At least you get the beeps to alert you of the end of the charge though.

I'm just about to try a balance charge with trickle turned off.
natterjak is offline Find More Posts by natterjak
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 03:46 AM
Proud to eat Kraut ;-)
Julez's Avatar
Germany
Joined Dec 2003
5,203 Posts
Hi!

Thanks for your tests. V3.09a is the earliest I have for the 208B.
Julez is offline Find More Posts by Julez
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 04:11 AM
Asks too many questions
natterjak's Avatar
Berkshire, UK
Joined Nov 2005
474 Posts
Thanks Julez. I've just run a balance charge with my 3.12b firmware 208B and with balance trickle OFF. The charge proceeded normally and terminated once the current fell to 0.02A. The logview trace is below. I left the lipo connected for 5 mins afterwards to see if the charger might still be supplying current but not telling me, but the independantly metered voltage of the lipo straight afterwards was 4.17V, so no overcharging.

One other thing, in both the last tests, ie balance charge with and without balance trickle on, the voltage display on the charger appears to stay "live" at the end of the charge. You see the voltage slowly change from 4.20 to 4.19, maybe back to 4.20 briefly (when it's at 4.195) before it fixes on 4.19, then down, etc as the lipo gradually settles. No repeat of the fixed, unchanging 4.20V that is displayed during the latter part of the non-balance charge cycle (while current spikes occur).

I'm just going to repeat this test (balance charge, balance trickle off) on my 3.12a firmware 208B.

PS. I'm not running full charge cycles as you can see. I don't see the point as it's the end of the charge we are interested in. I'm just discharging about 15mAh out of the lipo between charges, which in practice is about 15% of its capacity as it doesn't deliver the full 110mAh rated capacity.
natterjak is offline Find More Posts by natterjak
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 04:20 AM
Asks too many questions
natterjak's Avatar
Berkshire, UK
Joined Nov 2005
474 Posts
Does anyone know how to prevent logview defaulting to display of all those parameters? I can't find a way to make it only display cell 1 voltage and current each time. Every time I open it I have to untick every checkbox against temperature, energy, etc... it's doing my head in!
natterjak is offline Find More Posts by natterjak
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 05:03 AM
Asks too many questions
natterjak's Avatar
Berkshire, UK
Joined Nov 2005
474 Posts
I ran the same test on the 3.12a firmware and the result is the same, in balance charge mode the charge seems to complete without overcharging. It is only in normal lipo charge mode (even if the balance connector is connected) that the strange overcharging behaviour is observed at the end of the charge. Note, this also applies to lithium cycle mode, as this appears to use the "charge" programme, not the "balance charge" settings.

I've now loaded 3.09a and am running a few checks to compare.
natterjak is offline Find More Posts by natterjak
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 06:30 AM
Asks too many questions
natterjak's Avatar
Berkshire, UK
Joined Nov 2005
474 Posts
Ok, on firmware 3.09 I can't replicate the overcharging behaviour at all. In charge mode, cycle mode and balance charge mode the charge terminates reliably without going into the "no-man's land" area at the end of the charge where the charger sits there displaying 4.20V and intermittently fires some more charging pulses into the battery.

I don't know about you guys, but I'm sticking with firmware 3.09. I've now loaded it into both my 208Bs and until I'm sure the newer firmware is reliable, I don't think I'll upgrade again. It's a shame as I have to make do without the IR measurement bug fix which was in 3.10 and the nice cell count auto-sensing feature that Charles suggested.

Not wishing to pick on Charles's suggested feature (because I liked using it), but as a general comment it seems to me that it is since this was incorporated that the firmware has become troublesome. 3.10 led to lots of "connection breakdown" errors, 3.11 was undercharging lipos and 3.12 overcharges batteries.

It may be that incorporating auto-sensing of cell counts necessitated such an extensive re-write of the code that the time required to fully test and debug the new firmware was too much of a commitment given the other product development work Junsi's firm probably has ongoing. If that's the case, I wish the answer when it was first suggested was "Thank you, we will look at incorporating this in future but at the present time the amount of work involved cannot be undertaken". That would have saved a lot of users' time and avoided the damage to the reputation of the iCharger product line. It would also have prevented me ruining my lipo which got to 4.50V before I realised what was happening.

I am disappointed that since Julez first reported overcharging on 24th Jan no fixed firmware has been released for what is a dangerous bug. With the Chinese new year ongoing I doubt we will see anything in the next week and at the very least I would have expected Junsi to be recommending reverting to an earlier firmware as a safety priority. Staying silent on this issue for 3 weeks and leaving the users to figure it out is not good product support.
natterjak is offline Find More Posts by natterjak
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 06:51 AM
Southern Pride
everydayflyer's Avatar
Haralson County GA. USA
Joined Oct 2004
34,546 Posts
Quote:
It may be that incorporating auto-sensing of cell counts necessitated such an extensive re-write of the code that the time required to fully test and debug the new firmware was too much of a commitment
The firmware was allready doing the cell count. Think about it. It has(had) to measure the voltage of each cell how else does it display the, display what it thinks is the correct number of cells connected and wait for a Start Press. Detecting the number of cell attached by way of the balabcing leads is as about as simple as it gets.

FMA's Balance Pro HD,Cell Pro 4 Multi Charge 4 and now Power Lab 8 work like this and it is simple and avoids setting the wrong cell count.It free up a lot of memory slots as you only need one for a given cell type / charge rate since 2-X cells are auto detecyed and charged.

I fully agree if there is an associate Bug then they should go back to 1.AA if it is Bug Free .I seem to remember some having connection Break problem with 3.9,who knows.

Charles
everydayflyer is offline Find More Posts by everydayflyer
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 07:59 AM
HOW HIGH DOES IT GO???
Ben-Rod's Avatar
Jacksonville, Florida
Joined Nov 2004
2,153 Posts
Is this firmware problem realited to the 106B+ or is it just with the 208B?


Ben
Ben-Rod is offline Find More Posts by Ben-Rod
Reply With Quote
Old Feb 14, 2010, 09:15 AM
Suspended Account
Joined Sep 2009
4,831 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by natterjak View Post
Ok, on firmware 3.09 I can't replicate the overcharging behaviour at all. In charge mode, cycle mode and balance charge mode the charge terminates reliably without going into the "no-man's land" area at the end of the charge where the charger sits there displaying 4.20V and intermittently fires some more charging pulses into the battery.

I don't know about you guys, but I'm sticking with firmware 3.09. I've now loaded it into both my 208Bs and until I'm sure the newer firmware is reliable, I don't think I'll upgrade again. It's a shame as I have to make do without the IR measurement bug fix which was in 3.10 and the nice cell count auto-sensing feature that Charles suggested.

Not wishing to pick on Charles's suggested feature (because I liked using it), but as a general comment it seems to me that it is since this was incorporated that the firmware has become troublesome. 3.10 led to lots of "connection breakdown" errors, 3.11 was undercharging lipos and 3.12 overcharges batteries.

It may be that incorporating auto-sensing of cell counts necessitated such an extensive re-write of the code that the time required to fully test and debug the new firmware was too much of a commitment given the other product development work Junsi's firm probably has ongoing. If that's the case, I wish the answer when it was first suggested was "Thank you, we will look at incorporating this in future but at the present time the amount of work involved cannot be undertaken". That would have saved a lot of users' time and avoided the damage to the reputation of the iCharger product line. It would also have prevented me ruining my lipo which got to 4.50V before I realised what was happening.

I am disappointed that since Julez first reported overcharging on 24th Jan no fixed firmware has been released for what is a dangerous bug. With the Chinese new year ongoing I doubt we will see anything in the next week and at the very least I would have expected Junsi to be recommending reverting to an earlier firmware as a safety priority. Staying silent on this issue for 3 weeks and leaving the users to figure it out is not good product support.
Jack, I'm lost in all this-can you, in lay terms, give me the best settings for a 208b, with 3.12b, to charge and balance 2s and 3s lipos without the overcharge issue?

Thanks!
angelfood is offline Find More Posts by angelfood
Reply With Quote  (Disabled)
Old Feb 14, 2010, 10:07 AM
Asks too many questions
natterjak's Avatar
Berkshire, UK
Joined Nov 2005
474 Posts
The best advice I can give you is to load the 3.09 firmware. I'm not sticking my neck on the block by speculating what settings might be safe as I don't trust that firmware.

However, in my testing I didn't find an instance when "balance charge" mode would overcharge a lipo as long as "balance trickle" was OFF.
natterjak is offline Find More Posts by natterjak
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Category Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Best charger/discharger $ can buy namancio Batteries and Chargers 30 Jan 31, 2010 02:52 PM
Power Pacer Battery charger/discharger ACE_McCOOL Batteries and Chargers 4 Oct 22, 2002 12:39 PM
NIB Hitec CG-325 Charger/Discharger/Cycler for 4-9 cells - $39! Jason M Aircraft - Electric - Airplanes (FS/W) 0 Oct 03, 2002 03:29 AM
WTB Good charger/discharger 10 + cells WickedFunRC Aircraft - Electric - Airplanes (FS/W) 0 Sep 05, 2002 08:55 PM