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uSDC problems in my NSX (with pix and video)

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  • uSDC problems in my NSX (with pix and video)

    I'm having issues using the uSDC in my car. Here's the situation...



    Battery +12v goes straight into the uSDC with 10 gauge wire on the right. Accy +12 comes in to the uSDC with 18 gauge wire, and provides voltage when key is in ON or ACCY mode (no voltage during crank). Ground goes from uSDC to the inverter's GND connector, then into a ground point of the vehicle, all 10 gauge. VOut of the uSDC goes to the +12 of the inverter with 10 Gauge wire - the other 10 gauge going from the positive pole of the inverter is fed to a Xenarc 700TSV LCD touchscreen. Nothing is connected to the pin header of the uSDC.

    When I turn on the car, with the inverter off, the uSDC appears to behave normally - that is, it provides power for the screen, and when the car is turned off, delays for a while before cutting power. Voltage at VOut is a solid at ~12.4 Volts.



    However, when I power on the inverter, voltage at VOut drops to 11.8V, and the Shuttle XPC conencted to the inverter attempts to boot, but reboots every 30 or so seconds. The relay constantly clicks at about 1HZ. When the car is turned off, instead of delaying before power-off, the uSDC cuts power almost immediately. The LED on the uSDC is on solid, but will flash a few times when I power up the inverter..



    Here's a video of the failure mode described - i turn on the car, voltage looks good, manually power on the inverter, voltage drops, power on pc, turn off car, uSDC shuts down too quick.
    http://logarhythm.net/usdc/usdc.mp4

    I had the same wiring setup in the cabin last week, with what I think would be a way better ground, and had the same failure mode. Is this indicative of a bad ground or other connection? Prior to the shuttle i was using a Mocha PC, which died immediately after the install of the uSDC. Dunno if that's related, but I do know that it worked fine when the inverter was connected directly to the battery without the uSDC. Now its a worthless brick, but i've moved past a proprietary form facter and have resolved to install the PC in the trunk instead of the glovebox. Please help me finish my project, I'm going on a trip this weekend and would love to have this working!

    -Josh

  • #2
    This is great info!

    I am still a little confused about the clicking. The uSDC is clicking? But the inverter is still on as it is clicking?
    MPEGBOX - Plexiglass Computer
    www.mpegbox.com

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    • #3
      Yep, the uSDC's relay clicks pretty regularly, but the inverter appears to be 'on' and providing power. You can hear it in the video if you listen carefully.. the other sound you can hear that is similar to an airplane is the inverter's fan, but the click is perceptible over that. In case you aren't hearing audio on that video I linked to, try using Quicktime - it'll play the video and audio, while when I use VLC to play it I only get video..

      The LED is on solid almost all the time, but it did do the flashy thing, i think when i first turned on the inverter, and also i think when I turn off the car..

      -Josh

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      • #4
        Hi,

        Inverters are a pain in the ***. I think one thing that would solve your problem would be to use a 7AH Gel Cell battery right next to the uSDC. I was able to re-create a similar problem where the unit trys to come on but the inrush current is so high that it just trips the low voltage cutoff in the inverter.

        I just went to GI Joes and got a 400 watt inverter. They didn't have the coleman like you had. I got a xantrex.

        Another thing to try is to make sure the uSDC connectors are soldered on good to the circuit board. I recieved one for warrenty work that had its connectors unsoldered so they would wiggle back and forth.


        I'll draw a paint of what you can do to help it..

        -Jeff
        MPEGBOX - Plexiglass Computer
        www.mpegbox.com

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        • #5
          www.mpegbox.com/microsdc/inverter.gif
          MPEGBOX - Plexiglass Computer
          www.mpegbox.com

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          • #6
            I'm having the exact same problem.

            Originally posted by zootjeff
            Inverters are a pain in the ***.
            Evidently only for the uSDC. My system wouldn't survive a crank with the uSDC, but without it's been working fine.

            Originally posted by zootjeff
            I think one thing that would solve your problem would be to use a 7AH Gel Cell battery right next to the uSDC. I was able to re-create a similar problem where the unit trys to come on but the inrush current is so high that it just trips the low voltage cutoff in the inverter.

            I'll draw a paint of what you can do to help it..
            The problem with this is that unless you turn it into a tank circuit with a diode, you're not going to accomplish much of anything. Contact me offline Jeff, I want to talk to you about this.
            '01 Chevy Xtreme Stepside (pics)

            FIC K7MNF-64 / Athlon 3200 | 256 DDR | 120 GB 7.2k WD
            WinXP Pro | MediaEngine | 12.1 VGA TFT Touch|Creative CIMR-100
            350w Vector | 320w mATX PS | Hellroaring BIC95150 | ButterflySDC

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            • #7
              hmmm another one with relay clicking probs. Maybe together we can come up for a reason that the relay would click more than once when the constant ACC is applied. For the life of me i cant understand why everything works, power is crisp and steady, but the relay switches teh computer on and off several times. Gonna go do some more testing with mine now
              mp3Car.com Senior Tech Blogger (Want a product reviewed? Contact me.)
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              • #8
                Ok results.... my computer just doesnt like it when the car is running . It works fine when the key is turned to ACC... but when i turn the ignition the problems begin. Power after cranking stays right at 13.8, no spikes or anything. I've tried with B jumpered and it does the same thing. I even connected the ACC to a constant power wire to test if maybe it was the connection behind the radio and its giving me the same problem. What could possibly cause this issue? If this is a new SDC you sent the POT 2 should still be at 11v, the power never drops below 12v.
                mp3Car.com Senior Tech Blogger (Want a product reviewed? Contact me.)
                Follow Me on Twitter or Facebook
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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Sonicxtacy02
                  Ok results.... my computer just doesnt like it when the car is running . It works fine when the key is turned to ACC... but when i turn the ignition the problems begin. Power after cranking stays right at 13.8, no spikes or anything. I've tried with B jumpered and it does the same thing. I even connected the ACC to a constant power wire to test if maybe it was the connection behind the radio and its giving me the same problem. What could possibly cause this issue? If this is a new SDC you sent the POT 2 should still be at 11v, the power never drops below 12v.

                  I bought a 400 watt inverter and a 140 watt inverter. When I use my 400 watt inverter inside with my 25 amp AC-DC 12 volt power supply, the inverter surge current causes my bench supply to trip and shutdown. the 140 watt inverter doesn't seem to have this problem. My 400 watt inverter has a 40 amp fuse, the USDC20D only has a 20 amp fuse..

                  Do you know how much power your system is drawing?
                  MPEGBOX - Plexiglass Computer
                  www.mpegbox.com

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Sonicxtacy02
                    Ok results.... my computer just doesnt like it when the car is running . It works fine when the key is turned to ACC... but when i turn the ignition the problems begin. Power after cranking stays right at 13.8, no spikes or anything. I've tried with B jumpered and it does the same thing. I even connected the ACC to a constant power wire to test if maybe it was the connection behind the radio and its giving me the same problem. What could possibly cause this issue? If this is a new SDC you sent the POT 2 should still be at 11v, the power never drops below 12v.
                    I wish you lived in Oregon.. :-(

                    I tested it with my bench supply and a 12 volt battery. Having the battery helped when using the 400 watt inverter. It worked just fine with the 140 watt inverter.
                    MPEGBOX - Plexiglass Computer
                    www.mpegbox.com

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                    • #11
                      Zootjeff,

                      Count me in as another user with the relay clicking problem. Finally had some time to hook my system up only to find I have the same problem. I am running with a 300W inverter and everything works fine bypassing the uSDC. My Dodge has a dual battery setup already.

                      I have a question about the power on sense. I read in one area of your manual to connect it to 12V but in the chart that shows the min/max it lists 5.5V for max for a high on that signal. Which voltage should it be on and is a regular 1N4148 diode ok to use?
                      Rick S.

                      XP Pro SP2, Soyo P4RC350 MB, Nvidia FX5200, 320W PS, Inverter & uSDC20D, 2.4GHz CeleronD320, 512MB DDR, 30GB 3.5", Pioneer 106s Slot DVD, Linksys WMP54G WiFi, Lilliput 7" & 4" TFT LCD, Zippy EL610 Keyboard, Touchpad, Garmin GPS V

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                      • #12
                        bad ground? ive got the same inverter and it works fine even survives crank!

                        can someone explane to me what a uSDC is?

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                        • #13
                          Hey Jeff...
                          I don't think this is an inverter specific problem...
                          I have upgraded my wiring, made sure all contacts are clean. Right now I am using a simple relay to turn on my laptop DC-DC power supply when ACC is applied.Only thing is that I have to press is the power button to fire it up and to hibernate, which is not a big deal.

                          BUt here is what I found out...
                          Turn on the car, uSDC starts clicking away, power on the uSDC stays on but lightly dims whenever it clicks. The connection to the power button to my laptop also seems to trip and keeps trying to turn it on and off. Sometimes, after maybe 2 minutes or so after clicking...it stops. But power is not applied to my PSU... I can tell cuz it doesn't charge my laptop batteries =(
                          My PSU draws about 5-6A @ 12V when its charging.

                          During the clicking, if I pull the PSU connected to the uSDC, then the clicking goes away. When i plug it back in sometimes it commences clicking again, sometimes it doesn't. It probably has to do with the initial current being applied to the uSDC in the begging that causes that.

                          What do you want me to do? send it to you so you can check it out?
                          04 Acura TL w/ core2duo 2ghz laptop w/ 1gb RAM on a docking station.

                          Fast car, fast PC. ;)

                          http://www.arcdesigns.net/carpc/

                          My TL CarPC ver2

                          FSR Flash Skin w/ moving weather maps

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                          • #14
                            uSDC = Micro ShutDown Controller.
                            Rick S.

                            XP Pro SP2, Soyo P4RC350 MB, Nvidia FX5200, 320W PS, Inverter & uSDC20D, 2.4GHz CeleronD320, 512MB DDR, 30GB 3.5", Pioneer 106s Slot DVD, Linksys WMP54G WiFi, Lilliput 7" & 4" TFT LCD, Zippy EL610 Keyboard, Touchpad, Garmin GPS V

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                            • #15
                              Jeff,

                              I tried taking the load of the inverter off of the uSDC by using the V OUT to power an external 30A relay and run the inverter off of that relay. Still getting the clicking of the 25A relay on the uSDC and continuous rebooting of the computer. It's getting too late for me to try anything else tonight.

                              Maybe I'll try this tomorrow: How about leaving the inverter connected to the battery (always on) to leave the input caps in the inverter charged and use an external relay, with the coil powered by V OUT, to replace the inverters on/off switch?
                              Attached Files
                              Rick S.

                              XP Pro SP2, Soyo P4RC350 MB, Nvidia FX5200, 320W PS, Inverter & uSDC20D, 2.4GHz CeleronD320, 512MB DDR, 30GB 3.5", Pioneer 106s Slot DVD, Linksys WMP54G WiFi, Lilliput 7" & 4" TFT LCD, Zippy EL610 Keyboard, Touchpad, Garmin GPS V

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