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Thread: DCDC-USB Mini Box PSU - UPS mode success?

  1. #11
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    13
    Below are all the settings extracted from the configuration software at http://mini-box.com/DCDC-USB.

    The description of the "UPS Mode" settings, and also "Min. VIN voltage while running", suggest that the PSU should shutdown when Vin drops below the given thresholds. In reality these settings seem to have no effect in any mode.

    (Incidentally, I've contacted mini-box, no reply; pity - the hardware seems very well designed and well made, just thwarted by the firmware which would seem to be the easiest part to fix - wish we had access to the code...)

    Rgds,
    Ben

    Code:
    Voltage 0     Set Output Voltage 0. Changes will take effect after a power cycle.
    Voltage 1     Set Output Voltage 1. Changes will take effect after a power cycle.
    Voltage 2     Set Output Voltage 2. Changes will take effect after a power cycle.
    Voltage 3     Set Output Voltage 3. Changes will take effect after a power cycle.
    Voltage 4     Set Output Voltage 4. Changes will take effect after a power cycle.
    Voltage 5     Set Output Voltage 5. Changes will take effect after a power cycle.
    Voltage 6     Set Output Voltage 6. Changes will take effect after a power cycle.
    Voltage 7     Set Output Voltage 7. Changes will take effect after a power cycle.
    
    Ignition HIGH limit         Above this voltage IGN is considered ON
    Ignition LOW limit          Below this voltage IGN is considered OFF
    Ignition Debounce           Ignition filter de-bouncing
                  
    Automotive Mode: Ignition Cancel Time   After DCDC-USB "boots" in AUTOMOTIVE mode IGN is cancelled for this time
    Automotive Mode: Thump timeout            THUMP timeout, switching off the audio amplifier during motherboard startup/shutdown
                  
    Delay before PSU startup    Initial startup delay to avoid re-cranking problems
    Min. VIN voltage at startup Input voltage STARTUP ZONE treshold 
    Min. VIN voltage while running            Input voltage RUNNING ZONE treshold 
    Max. allowed VIN voltage    Input voltage, HIGH SHUTDOWN treshold [35V]
    Max. limit for Voltage      MAX voltage treshold
    Min. limit for Voltage      MIN voltage treshold
    Delay before output V       Delay
    PSW "push-down" time        How long the PSW button is pressed down
    
    Emergency timeout           Delay
    Config flags                Config flags
    
                  
    Off-delay TIME 0            Time between IGN OFF to PSW OFF impulse in Time Configuration 0 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Hard-off TIME 0             Time Between PSW OFF to Output OFF,Hardware OFF in Time Configuration 0 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Off-delay TIME 1            Time between IGN OFF to PSW OFF impulse in Time Configuration 1 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Hard-off TIME 1             Time Between PSW OFF to Output OFF,Hardware OFF in Time Configuration 1 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Off-delay TIME 2            Time between IGN OFF to PSW OFF impulse in Time Configuration 2 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Hard-off TIME 2             Time Between PSW OFF to Output OFF,Hardware OFF in Time Configuration 2 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Off-delay TIME 3            Time between IGN OFF to PSW OFF impulse in Time Configuration 3 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Hard-off TIME 3             Time Between PSW OFF to Output OFF,Hardware OFF in Time Configuration 3 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Off-delay TIME 4            Time between IGN OFF to PSW OFF impulse in Time Configuration 4 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Hard-off TIME 4             Time Between PSW OFF to Output OFF,Hardware OFF in Time Configuration 4 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Off-delay TIME 5            Time between IGN OFF to PSW OFF impulse in Time Configuration 5 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Hard-off TIME 5             Time Between PSW OFF to Output OFF,Hardware OFF in Time Configuration 5 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Off-delay TIME 6            Time between IGN OFF to PSW OFF impulse in Time Configuration 6 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Hard-off TIME 6             Time Between PSW OFF to Output OFF,Hardware OFF in Time Configuration 6 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Off-delay TIME 7            Time between IGN OFF to PSW OFF impulse in Time Configuration 7 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    Hard-off TIME 7             Time Between PSW OFF to Output OFF,Hardware OFF in Time Configuration 7 (max. 17:59:59 or Never)
    
    UPS Mode: Shutdown Time     After OFF impulse is sent wait "UPS Mode: Shutdown Time" till Output OFF,Hardware OFF
    UPS Mode: Ignition OFF time If IGN is OFF for "UPS Mode: Ignition OFF time" time the PSU will send OFF impulse
    
    UPS Mode: Ignition ON       PSU will be ON if IGN>"UPS Mode: Ignition ON" (and VIN>"UPS Mode: VIn Good")
    UPS Mode: Ignition OFF      PSU will be OFF if IGN<"UPS Mode: Ignition OFF" for "UPS Mode: Ignition OFF time" seconds
    UPS Mode: VIn Good          PSU will be ON if VIN>"UPS Mode: VIn Good" (and IGN>"UPS Mode: Ignition ON")

  2. #12
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    9
    Please write down also your parameter values to see how you configured it.

    mini-box.com is not responding to any mails, but I might get connection with the father of this product and this way we can solve most of the problems.

  3. #13
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    13
    Please write down also your parameter values to see how you configured it.
    I'm using the "factory default parameters", reset via the config software.

    Using the default settings, I expected the following:

    PSU will be ON if IGN>11.7V and VIN>12.9V
    PSU will be OFF if IGN<11.2V for 60 seconds

    (note that OFF means: pulse PSW, then wait another 60s and power off)

    so if I keep IGN above 11.7V, say 15V, the PSU should power off if Vin drops below 12.9V. I have observed it does not power off even if Vin drops down to 4.8V, below the "Min. VIN voltage while running" setting (5.45).

    As it is, if you have this unit in your car, you might find yourself with a flat battery, or indeed a damaged battery through over-discharge.

    I got a response from mini-box, and have replied with more detailed test observations, am awaiting their reply.

    Rgds,
    Ben

  4. #14
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    9
    My opinion is that you misunderstood parameters.


    PSU will be ON if IGN>11.7V and VIN>12.9V - means that this conditions must be confirmed in order that device will start working (not that it will be ON as long as this conditions are confirmed).

    PSU will be OFF if IGN<11.2V for 60 seconds - means that PSU will send power button signal when this condition is confirmed and wait for 60 seconds before PSU will completely remove output voltage. (if you have battery application I would expect that Vin and Vign is connected to the same battery).

    You said:
    so if I keep IGN above 11.7V, say 15V, the PSU should power off if Vin drops below 12.9V. I have observed it does not power off even if Vin drops down to 4.8V, below the "Min. VIN voltage while running" setting (5.45).

    Better try to have Vin above 12.9V and drop IGN below your 11.7V and PSU should first send Power button signal and after 60 seconds it will remove Vout.
    And I think that this logic is the right one, because in this case your computer can still shut down properly, otherwise (with your logic) computer would always end with brutal shut down.

    Let me know if my thinking was right


    BR,
    Vladimir

  5. #15
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    13
    You got it, Vladimir.

    My opinion is that you misunderstood parameters.
    Laci from minibox got back to me with more or less the same comment, that "PSU will be ON" means "the PSU will be turned ON", not "the PSU will be in the ON state".

    I was expecting to use the IGN signal as a separate "shutdown now" signal, independent of battery state (my application, an embedded Linux machine, can handle being "brutally" powered off :-). As you've noted, it would appear that in UPS Mode the IGN signal is intended to be connected to the battery to be monitored, indeed it's more of a "battery sense" rather than Ignition state sense.

    I retested, with the IGN signal connected to the simulated battery / variable PSU, alongside Vin. The DCDC-USB did indeed shutdown (PSW after 60s, power OFF after another 60s) when the "battery" dropped below ~11.2V. Power was turned back on when the "battery" voltage was raised back up above ~13V.

    So after all that, it was a simple documentation issue - one word ("turned") probably would've sorted me out :-)

    (I'm still puzzled as to how, if at all, the low-voltage cutout is meant to work in Automotive mode, and also what "Min. VIN voltage while running" is meant to do, but the above is fine for my immediate purposes...)


    Thanks for the input!

    Rgds,
    Ben

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