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  • Fusion Brain Issues

    Sorry to be so dramatic but I am at my last ounce of patience with this product, the documentation and the support.

    I own a fusion brain, fusion brain relays, and three voltage divider boards.

    The brain is too unstable (relays clicking on and off randomly) to use in any critical circuit. toaster replies that it's us. I had to order another product from MP3 to handle my critical loads.

    The documentation sucks. I have another post here that is unanswered. The proper jumper setting for 12 volts is still not clarified but I know that I'm not reading anywhere near the advertised accuracy on my 12 volt battery when comparing it to a DVM.

    The QC is the worst I've seen in a long time. Out of the three voltage dividers, one appears OK, one has the resistors it's not supposed to and one is missing the frickin' input pins altogether! Who is building these parts?

    I am tired of wasting my time doing searches to figure out this crap. MP3 should not sell any parts from vendors who don't ship with adequate instructions.

    I almost forgot - the updater software that boots with the pc is essentially a virus. It spits out launching errors and won't launch half the time. Don't even get me started on the ubber piece of crap software. Thank goodness for plugin writers here or he wouldn't sell any of these turds.

    Guys, I am not some kid. I am 52 years old and a licensed electrician.

    does NOT apply to this vendor!

    Off my rant now - what a wasted Saturday
    Last edited by TahoeTim; 03-21-2011, 06:26 PM.

  • #2
    Have 2 FBs 3 voltage dividers and all kinds of sensors and i've only ever had a problem with one photosensor. Perhaps some bad luck?
    mp3Car.com Senior Tech Blogger (Want a product reviewed? Contact me.)
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    • #3
      Sorry it sucks for you.

      When using the supplied 12v source, and the relays we provide, no clicking happens. Even on the couple returns I have tested, it never happens. This is tested with a $10,000 scope measuring the relay and set to persistently trigger on anything abnormal. I trust my scope, I believe it to be an issue in how it is hooked up. Especially since the 3 I have that supposedly do this, dont do this on my bench.

      Did you post your question in the FB section? I get an email every night for new posts. If I dont respond the same day, I didn't see it. PM me. This goes for everyone. You can always email too: [email protected]

      The resistors are for the 3.3v divisor from the 12v on the divider. If you dont want to use 3.3v signals, then clip them off. That is why they are so big and leaded and not small surface mounts like they could be if they werent meant to be altered by users. As for missing input pins altogether, that definitely sounds like a bad on our part. Happily replace that.

      Updater software is not a virus. And it works on XP, Vista, and Win7. I suggest you close the updater before you uninstall that way all resources are released. Some systems try to protect running processes, and then the chicken and egg uninstallation doesnt work so well.

      Sorry you don't like it, not much I can do about that.
      Fusion Brain Version 6 Released!
      1.9in x 2.9in -- 47mm x 73mm
      30 Digital Outputs -- Directly drive a relay
      15 Analogue Inputs -- Read sensors like temperature, light, distance, acceleration, and more
      Buy now in the MP3Car.com Store

      Comment


      • #4
        Yep, I have an open post in another thread that is unanswered.

        I was hoping for more than "sorry you don't like it, not much I can do about that".

        How about:

        "I'll send you three more voltage dividers so you don't have to go through the return process" (which is broken in the store BTW).

        Instead of touting your expensive equipment, why not start believing what me and others are saying? we aren't attaching these to power supplies and $10,000 scopes. These are installed in cars with battery power and lots of ignition noise, etc.

        If v4 boards are so good why are you changing the voltage regulator in v6? Sounds like v4 was flawed as far as analog inputs go - why not a recall?

        You advertised .0049v accuracy on v4 so I bought them. Now you state temp and load dependencies. This is not funny to me. I am using the board to measure lithium batteries to two digits in an electric car. I can't afford to fry a VERY expensive battery pack. V6 sounds like what I need. But can I return the v4 stuff and get a refund? After all, it doesn't work as advertised unless it is in a temp controlled lab environment. BTW - I am using Centrafuse plugins to control the board.

        92% efficient Switched Mode Power Supply Design, < 1% accuracy: The current Fusion Brain, all Fusion Brain's before it, and all competitors use a linear regulator for power. It is cheap and easy, but the output varies with temperature and load, and will skew sensor readings depending on just how hot or how much stuff you have being powered. Not to mention that they are about 11% efficient on a good day, and get really hot. The new FBv6 uses a SMPS where the output will stay constant and accurate to less than 1% of nominal no matter the temperature or load. This will make all sensor readings more accurate, draw less power from the system, and it wont get nearly as hot.

        15 Analogue Inputs: Each input is now a 3.3v 10bit sensor port. Giving accuracy of 0.0032v accuracy versus the current 0.0049v accuracy.

        Comment


        • #5
          As for updater, why does it have to load in the tray and run resident? That acts like a sneaky virus to me. Can I run your software without the updater running? Every time I reboot the car pc, it loads again.

          Just like Centrafuse and every other software package I run, under the help button, I can usually check for updates at my leisure.

          Comment


          • #6
            probably not a good idea to use a $50 hobbyist grade device on your expensive custom equipment.

            Originally posted by TahoeTim View Post
            Yep, I have an open post in another thread that is unanswered.

            I was hoping for more than "sorry you don't like it, not much I can do about that".

            How about:

            "I'll send you three more voltage dividers so you don't have to go through the return process" (which is broken in the store BTW).

            Instead of touting your expensive equipment, why not start believing what me and others are saying? we aren't attaching these to power supplies and $10,000 scopes. These are installed in cars with battery power and lots of ignition noise, etc.

            If v4 boards are so good why are you changing the voltage regulator in v6? Sounds like v4 was flawed as far as analog inputs go - why not a recall?

            You advertised .0049v accuracy on v4 so I bought them. Now you state temp and load dependencies. This is not funny to me. I am using the board to measure lithium batteries to two digits in an electric car. I can't afford to fry a VERY expensive battery pack. V6 sounds like what I need. But can I return the v4 stuff and get a refund? After all, it doesn't work as advertised unless it is in a temp controlled lab environment. BTW - I am using Centrafuse plugins to control the board.

            92% efficient Switched Mode Power Supply Design, < 1% accuracy: The current Fusion Brain, all Fusion Brain's before it, and all competitors use a linear regulator for power. It is cheap and easy, but the output varies with temperature and load, and will skew sensor readings depending on just how hot or how much stuff you have being powered. Not to mention that they are about 11% efficient on a good day, and get really hot. The new FBv6 uses a SMPS where the output will stay constant and accurate to less than 1% of nominal no matter the temperature or load. This will make all sensor readings more accurate, draw less power from the system, and it wont get nearly as hot.

            15 Analogue Inputs: Each input is now a 3.3v 10bit sensor port. Giving accuracy of 0.0032v accuracy versus the current 0.0049v accuracy.
            mp3Car.com Senior Tech Blogger (Want a product reviewed? Contact me.)
            Follow Me on Twitter or Facebook
            Live mp3Car Facebook Chat

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by TahoeTim View Post
              Yep, I have an open post in another thread that is unanswered.

              I was hoping for more than "sorry you don't like it, not much I can do about that".

              How about:

              "I'll send you three more voltage dividers so you don't have to go through the return process" (which is broken in the store BTW).
              I thought you had solved your problem and moved on. If you are still wanting to switch out the isolators then I will. Your choice, let me know what you want to do.

              Originally posted by TahoeTim View Post
              Instead of touting your expensive equipment, why not start believing what me and others are saying? we aren't attaching these to power supplies and $10,000 scopes. These are installed in cars with battery power and lots of ignition noise, etc.
              I have not hooked the scope up to a car and had it run for a day, but I have hooked it up to a power supply that has noise algorithm in it. I have even hooked it up to a power supply where I ran a script that swung the input voltage from 8v to 18v at varying frequencies and it ran just fine.

              My point with the scope, is that using everything we recommend to use, it works. If using a cheap scope, you can miss triggers. So it might happen, but the measurement equipment might not pick it up. So by using a relatively good scope (for home users anyways) and not seeing anything, it comes to reason that the scope did not miss anything, just nothing happened.

              Originally posted by TahoeTim View Post
              If v4 boards are so good why are you changing the voltage regulator in v6? Sounds like v4 was flawed as far as analog inputs go - why not a recall?

              You advertised .0049v accuracy on v4 so I bought them. Now you state temp and load dependencies. This is not funny to me. I am using the board to measure lithium batteries to two digits in an electric car. I can't afford to fry a VERY expensive battery pack. V6 sounds like what I need. But can I return the v4 stuff and get a refund? After all, it doesn't work as advertised unless it is in a temp controlled lab environment. BTW - I am using Centrafuse plugins to control the board.

              92% efficient Switched Mode Power Supply Design, < 1% accuracy: The current Fusion Brain, all Fusion Brain's before it, and all competitors use a linear regulator for power. It is cheap and easy, but the output varies with temperature and load, and will skew sensor readings depending on just how hot or how much stuff you have being powered. Not to mention that they are about 11% efficient on a good day, and get really hot. The new FBv6 uses a SMPS where the output will stay constant and accurate to less than 1% of nominal no matter the temperature or load. This will make all sensor readings more accurate, draw less power from the system, and it wont get nearly as hot.

              15 Analogue Inputs: Each input is now a 3.3v 10bit sensor port. Giving accuracy of 0.0032v accuracy versus the current 0.0049v accuracy.
              Changing it because it is better and as a designer I have a better understanding of them. It will help the overall system accuracy.

              The accuracy of any ADC is temperature dependent. It is also dependent on the reference voltage (what it compares the reading against) which is where the accuracy from the linear regulator comes into effect.

              If you look up the regulation of the 7805 over temperature will note that it is predictable and there is even a graph. Once it heats up, it stays outputting a little less than 5v. The way a SMPS works is very different and very efficient.

              The accuracy of the ADC is correct. The error introduced from the power stage or even sensor variation is not the ADC's problem. That's what calibration is for.

              We have these boards used in many EV's monitoring SLA, NiMH, and Li/LiFePO4 batteries just fine. It is not a flaw. When a new product is improved it is not because the last one didnt work, it is just because the new one will work better... Should the car companies give you a new car every model year?

              Having said that, I will gladly replace your Version 4 with a brand spankin' new Version 6 if you want me to. This is just because I want to try and make you happy. I am not some large shady corporation. I am just some guy on the forums who made a board and am helping the community. If you want a V6, then let me know. If you want those new isolator boards, then let me know.

              I don't really know what else you expect me to do.
              Fusion Brain Version 6 Released!
              1.9in x 2.9in -- 47mm x 73mm
              30 Digital Outputs -- Directly drive a relay
              15 Analogue Inputs -- Read sensors like temperature, light, distance, acceleration, and more
              Buy now in the MP3Car.com Store

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by TahoeTim View Post
                As for updater, why does it have to load in the tray and run resident? That acts like a sneaky virus to me. Can I run your software without the updater running? Every time I reboot the car pc, it loads again.

                Just like Centrafuse and every other software package I run, under the help button, I can usually check for updates at my leisure.
                Easiest solution:

                Delete the folder with the *.exe.

                Default installation is in the Program Files directory (x86 version if on x64 OS), then Fusion Control Centre. One of the subdirectories is for the updater, just delete the folder. Make sure to exit it first (right click, close), then delete the folder.

                If you want to check for updates manually, and just not have it load then change the Run registry key. It is what all programs and services use to load on startup. I can provide instructions for that if you want. However the updates are only for MDX, so if you do not use MDX, then there really isnt a reason for you to use the updater...
                Fusion Brain Version 6 Released!
                1.9in x 2.9in -- 47mm x 73mm
                30 Digital Outputs -- Directly drive a relay
                15 Analogue Inputs -- Read sensors like temperature, light, distance, acceleration, and more
                Buy now in the MP3Car.com Store

                Comment


                • #9
                  I actually expected that response. I understand the hobby grade for the voltmeter but it was advertised with awesome accuracy. Will the specs change in the store?

                  Maybe my relay issue is caused by the fact that it's cold here. Again, it's a car application, not a cozy lab.

                  I don't mean to be bashing but the response by the manufacturer is not acceptable. It's a flawed device. I want to push the issue to raise the standards here. I sell a device based on the 3914 chip and would happily replace any defective devices for my customers that use it on racing motorcycles and beat it, get it wet, cover it in mud, and hose it off at the car wash. No failures yet - knock on wood.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by TahoeTim View Post
                    I actually expected that response. I understand the hobby grade for the voltmeter but it was advertised with awesome accuracy. Will the specs change in the store?

                    Maybe my relay issue is caused by the fact that it's cold here. Again, it's a car application, not a cozy lab.

                    I don't mean to be bashing but the response by the manufacturer is not acceptable. It's a flawed device. I want to push the issue to raise the standards here. I sell a device based on the 3914 chip and would happily replace any defective devices for my customers that use it on racing motorcycles and beat it, get it wet, cover it in mud, and hose it off at the car wash. No failures yet - knock on wood.
                    Temperature shouldn't effect relays, but I am up to trying the experiment. I have access to a thermal control lab where I can swing it from -50C to +300C with 0.1C accuracy. I can throw some relays and an FB in there and see what happens. FYI, I have used them in a car in the Rockies where it will go down to -30 or -20 with no issues. When you say cold, how cold do you mean?

                    Again it is not a flawed device. It works fine for most to almost all of the people with the specs advertised. It won't match the performance or accuracy of a multithousand dollar DVM, but that is not what it is meant to do.
                    Fusion Brain Version 6 Released!
                    1.9in x 2.9in -- 47mm x 73mm
                    30 Digital Outputs -- Directly drive a relay
                    15 Analogue Inputs -- Read sensors like temperature, light, distance, acceleration, and more
                    Buy now in the MP3Car.com Store

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by TahoeTim View Post
                      I actually think it's a noise issue. Mine worked fine in the living room on my laptop. Once I installed it in my car on battery power it started the clicking. Some days it does it and some days it doesn't. Sometimes when I power up the car pc it does it and then when I restart the pc it's fine.
                      Was the brain controlled by the laptop in both instances (living room & car battery)?

                      Perhaps somehow noise gets to the PIC and affects the USB initial communication process?
                      The v4 board has power select jumper(s) right? Does the Brain outputs (disconnected) still flutter when powered via USB?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by TahoeTim View Post
                        I am using the board to measure lithium batteries to two digits in an electric car. I can't afford to fry a VERY expensive battery pack.
                        Originally posted by Sonicxtacy02 View Post
                        probably not a good idea to use a $50 hobbyist grade device on your expensive custom equipment.
                        This. This, this, this and this.

                        So you spent big on a VERY expensive battery pack for your EV, and you are going to monitor it with a 50-60 buck part?

                        Next week, im going to go and buy an Airbus A380, then rip out everything and run it from a 286 that I found in my neighbours chicken coop. Yeh. Yeh.....

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Toaster, I appreciate your offer to replace the boards. I know you understand where I am coming from with frustration after hours of installing the system, programming the CF software and third party plugins and then seeing issues. Hanging out under my dash and seeing defective boards was a real let down.

                          I am very interested in learning more about what other EV's used to interface to the fusion brain. Let's take this private since others are jumping in to spit on the discussion and offer little else to resolve the problem I am having.

                          I apologize for implying that you products were shoddy in any way. Thank you for stepping up to help.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by TahoeTim View Post
                            I am very interested in learning more about what other EV's used to interface to the fusion brain. Let's take this private since others are jumping in to spit on the discussion and offer little else to resolve the problem I am having.
                            This is what happens when you lash out at a long time, good standing forum member. Rather than going private, why not start a new thread so others can benefit from your discussion too (pertaining to EV's and FB usage)?
                            Tidder

                            Try RevFE
                            The best resurrected frontend I've ever used, period.


                            I Wish I could ban people

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Us mods can trim the discussion if it becomes silly. This thread will be here and available on the googly-webs forever. It seems sensible to me to keep the resolution equally public. I never received private communication prior to this, via either email account or even a PM on the forum. I don't think it is right or fair to me to have a public bashing and then hide the good parts so noone can see what happened later. Like diamonds and plastic bags, the internet is forever.

                              As for the other EV's I can't really say much as there is a NDA involved. I think it is safe to say that the basic hardware implementation is similar to what you have pieced together except it was done on a very customized and pre-calibrated board. This custom system is used in many hundreds of vehicles and has been shown across the country by one of our major customers.
                              Fusion Brain Version 6 Released!
                              1.9in x 2.9in -- 47mm x 73mm
                              30 Digital Outputs -- Directly drive a relay
                              15 Analogue Inputs -- Read sensors like temperature, light, distance, acceleration, and more
                              Buy now in the MP3Car.com Store

                              Comment

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