Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

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spa1fwg
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Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by spa1fwg » Tue Nov 08, 2016 3:35 pm

OpenTx folk annuncement a big problem with last Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

http://www.open-tx.org/2016/10/29/hk-9x-announcement

This problem occurs with the 9xtreme also?

P.D.
Pardon for my bad English.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by MikeB » Tue Nov 08, 2016 3:51 pm

I don't think it is known whether these recent 9X processors work with a 9Xtreme or not. We do not have any data on the processor.
If you are looking to purchase a Tx, consider the 9XR-PRO. This uses an Atmel ARM processor.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by spa1fwg » Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:06 pm

OpenTx said us that the last Turnigy 9x transmiters use a clone of genuine Atmel ATmega64 or ATmega128 microcontroller like all previous 9X radios, but rather rely on an m128 clone identified as “Green ED040501-H16D”.

These new microprocessor have problems with OpenTx.

The same problems occurs also in 9xtream boards??

P.D.:

Pardon for my bad English!!!

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Kilrah
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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by Kilrah » Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:22 pm

Someone contacted us and reported that some switches were working intermittently, both with OpenTX and er9x. Some WDT reboots as well, at least on OpenTX.

Since the low level code for OpenTX, er9x and the firmware that runs on the mainboard when using a 9Xtreme is similar, it would be logical to expect similar problems with the 9Xtreme.

This processor certainly does "something" differently to a genuine Atmel, and since no documentation is available there is no way to investigate or correct it with any certainty about the safety of using it.

So... stay away from these things.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by spa1fwg » Tue Nov 08, 2016 5:02 pm

Kilrah wrote:Someone contacted us and reported that some switches were working intermittently, both with OpenTX and er9x. Some WDT reboots as well, at least on OpenTX.

Since the low level code for OpenTX, er9x and the firmware that runs on the mainboard when using a 9Xtreme is similar, it would be logical to expect similar problems with the 9Xtreme.

This processor certainly does "something" differently to a genuine Atmel, and since no documentation is available there is no way to investigate or correct it with any certainty about the safety of using it.

So... stay away from these things.
It is a big problem for "open source" firmwares as ER9X, OpenTx or ERSKY9X using 9xtreme boards!!!

Many peoples can buy a new Turnigy 9x transmiters and these people can not update the firmware to new "open source firmwares".

In any case, the "smartieparts' boards have a problem with this new transmiters.

If the new transmiters not is possible update to "Open source firmware" .... It not possible buy any smartie parts board, because the people will have a problem with this new transmiter.

No people buy any smartiepsrts boards!!!.

P.S.

Pardon for my bad English!!!


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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by s_mack » Tue Nov 08, 2016 5:32 pm

From everything I've read... at best we have circumstantial evidence. Every single report is unsubstantiated. There have been DOZENS of "intermittent switches" and reboots and etc etc on genuine Atmel chips too. Because some people have bad switches, bad power, or (usually) bad logic and attribute a problem incorrectly.

Baseless assumptions do us no good. It is perfectly possible - from what's been reported so far anyway - that these are perfect copies of the Atmel chip with 100% compatibility and its just other things going on. I'm not saying that's likely... but possible. I don't think anyone has yet investigated full enough to know otherwise.

Or is there somewhere that I missed that shows someone consistently tripping a WDT on a "clone" while not on a genuine? And in that case did they swap the main boards to rule out there being a problem with other components? Is there somewhere that someone can show consistent switch problems and again they swapped it out with another system to show the mainboard is the issue?

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by Kilrah » Tue Nov 08, 2016 6:25 pm

Mike did find the datasheet for another of the same company's clones, and that showed significant differences to a genuine Atmel chip. It is thus normal to expect something similar with this one.

In my opinion for the sake of precaution that is enough to consider the use of existing firmware on these clones unsafe since without documentation we're unable to even know what may or may not work, fail, or potentially cause random issues at any time.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by s_mack » Tue Nov 08, 2016 8:22 pm

I disagree with that logic entirely. I'm not saying your conclusion is wrong (and certainly "precaution" is absolutely valid)... just the entire logic it is based on.

Look at what you said:

- Mike found documentation for *some other* clone for *some other* Atmel device that showed differences. That does not in any way conclude the same is the case for this one.
- A lack of documentation necessarily means... what? No more than the presence of documentation would. Even if it were documented, that doesn't guarantee anything. It would still need to be tested and verified.

Documentation certainly helps when we KNOW something is wrong, if we want to fix it... but the lack of documentation doesn't support the EXTREMELY weak arguments thus far that there is, in fact, anything wrong at all.

There have been a few sparse - tenuous at best - reports of issues. Far more people have not reported.

Thus far, we simply do not know. Declaring the 9X dead (as some are being quick to do) is awfully premature in my opinion.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by jhsa » Tue Nov 08, 2016 10:18 pm

Steven, I think you need to get one of those radios asap.. That is the only way to find out for sure, and I don't think you can rely on others for testing, unless he/she/they is/are someone that will probably fix it if there is a problem

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by s_mack » Tue Nov 08, 2016 10:46 pm

I already ordered 3. One from HK USA-W warehouse a couple of weeks ago. It had Atmel. Another from HK International warehouse. Same... Atmel. But that was in August. I ordered another from the International warehouse on the 30th. I tried asking them to send me one with the new chip but HK staff had no idea what I was talking about. FlySky - as always - completely ignores emails.

With equally weak logic... I suspect it *is* compatible. Why? Because I sell dozens of programmers a week and I've yet to hear a complaint from anyone relating to this chip. No confirmations either, mind you. But unless the chip is very rare... wouldn't I have people yelling at me by now?

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by jhsa » Tue Nov 08, 2016 10:50 pm

well, you got a point there. Maybe it was only a small amount of radios that had that chip. Maybe flysky started using the Atmel chips again, maybe, maybe, maybe...!!! :(
Let's hope that was the case..

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by dreed75 » Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:01 pm

I got one from hobbyking with the clone (Green ED040501-H16D). I'm willing to run tests on it. Just let me know what you want me to do. I'm an electrical engineer and I can also solder stuff this small. If someone wants, they can send me a real chip (or show me where I can buy one) so I can do some basic troubleshooting.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by s_mack » Sun Nov 13, 2016 4:10 pm

Great! Can you send me a message through this link?

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by dreed75 » Sun Nov 13, 2016 7:54 pm

As far as my plan, I have a programmer soldered in already and according to opentx's website, there is no firmware for restoring the cloned chip. I'd like to get a copy of the firmware to the appropriate people and then I'd like to run tests with the guidance of people who know more about the issue. I have not installed opentx yet, so I don't know the exact issues people are supposedly having. Then I'd like to run a real chip to see if I have those same issues just in case it's other hardware (switches, buttons, etc) that is the culprit. I'm brand new to this transmitter and community but not new to embedded programming.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by dreed75 » Sun Nov 13, 2016 8:00 pm

I'd also like to compare the stock cloned firmware with the stock atmel firmware. It's likely that it's the same and there are other flaws in the chip that cause the issues. Btw, does anyone know the exact issues? I'd like to see if they are present with the stock firmware.

Sent from my Nexus 5 using Tapatalk

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by s_mack » Sun Nov 13, 2016 8:43 pm

The original chip was Atmega64A-AU. At some point last year they started mixing in Atmega128A-AU - probably going with whatever was available since they weren't utilizing the extra benefits the 128 offers.

I'm sure I have extras of both chips in my office, but I've not been able to find them (what a mess). They aren't where I *should* have put them in any case. I'll look again during lunch. Failing that, you can get them at DigiKey, Mouser, Newark or Arrow, to name the main US sources. Ebay, of course, will show you lots of cheap options from China.

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Re: RE: Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by dreed75 » Sun Nov 13, 2016 9:00 pm

s_mack wrote:The original chip was Atmega64A-AU. At some point last year they started mixing in Atmega128A-AU - probably going with whatever was available since they weren't utilizing the extra benefits the 128 offers.

I'm sure I have extras of both chips in my office, but I've not been able to find them (what a mess). They aren't where I *should* have put them in any case. I'll look again during lunch. Failing that, you can get them at DigiKey, Mouser, Newark or Arrow, to name the main US sources. Ebay, of course, will show you lots of cheap options from China.
Copy. So I can just get one of these chips, solder it in, and flash it with opentx? I may just send my clone chip with stock firmware to you since you know the ins and outs of the hardware. My schedule may not permit me to get answers as fast as you all deserve :).

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by dreed75 » Sun Nov 13, 2016 9:18 pm

I ordered one from mouser. Email me back if you want me to send you the clone chip. I downloaded the firmware that is currently on there. Do you want me to post it on here somewhere? I'm sure some people might want to get their original back in case they didn't do a backup.
Last edited by dreed75 on Sun Nov 13, 2016 9:18 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by MikeB » Sun Nov 13, 2016 9:27 pm

I would suggest put the downloaded firmware into a .zip file and post it here. Several of us are interested in looking at it (assuming the firmware isn't locked and the file contains something other than FF or 00 everywhere!).

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by dreed75 » Sun Nov 13, 2016 9:33 pm

Here it is. I modified a few "models" but the last ones are untouched.
Attachments
original_Green_ED040501-H16D_firmware.zip
original clone firmware. A few models have been customized but the last ones named "Turnigy" are untouched.
(96.47 KiB) Downloaded 119 times

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by MikeB » Sun Nov 13, 2016 10:52 pm

Could you please read the signature from the device. A quick look at the hex file shows two blocks of 64K that are the same as each other, as though it is a 64K chip, and you have read 128K, so the 64K has been read twice.

It would also be a good idea to read the EEPROM (where the models are stored).

I have a hex file of the original Flysky firmware from May-2011 that is different, although maybe there was an update I need to find.
Just looked and found an updated file from 2012. This matches the first 64K you have read exactly.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by ReSt » Sun Nov 13, 2016 11:33 pm

I flashed my TGY9x (M64 replaced with M128) with the code and the original Eeprom code of my Tx and it works so far.

Reinhard

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by dreed75 » Sun Nov 13, 2016 11:51 pm

MikeB wrote:Could you please read the signature from the device. A quick look at the hex file shows two blocks of 64K that are the same as each other, as though it is a 64K chip, and you have read 128K, so the 64K has been read twice.

It would also be a good idea to read the EEPROM (where the models are stored).

I have a hex file of the original Flysky firmware from May-2011 that is different, although maybe there was an update I need to find.
Just looked and found an updated file from 2012. This matches the first 64K you have read exactly.

Mike.

Signature is 0x1e9702. It is a 128 chip. I attached a pic.

Edit: The EEPROM is also attached.
Attachments
EEPROM.zip
(1.09 KiB) Downloaded 86 times
IMG_20161113_184116-2.jpg

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by dreed75 » Mon Nov 14, 2016 1:01 am

Based on the firmware being exactly the same as your 2012 version and that it works in ReSt's 9X, is it safe to say that we have the original firmware and can ignore the warning from OpenTX about not being able to "restore them to factory condition"? I'd like to attempt flashing it with opentx and see what works/doesn't work. Does anyone know what "switches" are supposedly intermittent?

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by Kilrah » Mon Nov 14, 2016 4:13 am

MikeB wrote:Could you please read the signature from the device. A quick look at the hex file shows two blocks of 64K that are the same as each other, as though it is a 64K chip, and you have read 128K, so the 64K has been read twice.
dreed75 wrote:Signature is 0x1e9702. It is a 128 chip. I attached a pic.
It reports itself as a 128 chip, but that could be wrong and as Mike suggests the memory just actually wraps around.
Next step would be to flash a known > 64k binary and read it back, then see if they match.

Given that it reports an m128 signature people have been flashing 128 firmware so far, which exceeds 64k. If there's something fishy with the memory it could totally explain problems by some part of the firmware being missing or corrupted. Unfortunately all contacts I had previously had already flashed without backing up.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by MikeB » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:26 am

The EEPROM has read as 4K, the last 2K contains all 0xFF.

What are you using to read the flash (programmer and software)? I believe some versions of AvrDude don't read/write more than 64K properly.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by dreed75 » Mon Nov 14, 2016 12:05 pm

MikeB wrote:The EEPROM has read as 4K, the last 2K contains all 0xFF.

What are you using to read the flash (programmer and software)? I believe some versions of AvrDude don't read/write more than 64K properly.

Mike.


For software, I'm using OpenTX companion which is using avrdude ver 5.11-Patch#7610. Is there a better software for what we are trying to do? For hardware, I am using an ATtiny44 USBTinyISP Programmer. When I get home, I can do some more tests. I'd like to make sure that it is not a software/hardware issue with reading the supposed m128 before I flash it with something >64K and wipe everything out.

FYI, I get a warning on OpenTX Companion when reading the EEPROM. It says something about it being 2K but it is "supposed to be 4K".

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by dreed75 » Tue Nov 15, 2016 12:02 am

Well, this is the command I'm running to get the firmware:
avrdude.exe -c usbtiny -p m128 -P usb -U flash:r:firmware-filename.hex:r
and for the eeprom:
avrdude.exe -c usbtiny -p m128 -P usb -U eeprom:r:eeprom-filename.hex:i

If anyone has any ideas on what else to try, let me know. The error I get from OpenTX Companion is:

"Invalid EEPROM file....." "Possible causes: eeprom size is invalid, eeprom file system is invalid; Warning: Your radio probably uses a wrong firmware, eeprom size is 4096 but only the first 2048 are used."

I'm guessing this error is mainly because OpenTX is expecting an eeprom formatted in the OpenTX format. The warning might be a clue though.

I do have a bus pirate if someone wants me to use that to read the chip. I'd like to avoid that if there is no chance of a different result though.

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by dreed75 » Tue Nov 15, 2016 10:40 pm

Does anyone have any ideas on what to try next? Should I flash it with something or keep it "stock" for more forensics?

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Re: Problem with last new Hobbyking Turnigy 9X transmiters.

Post by MikeB » Tue Nov 15, 2016 10:56 pm

I would think you can replace the stock firmware and EEPROM OK, so probably worth flashing something.
Perhaps try standard er9x first as this is less than 64K, you can find it here: http://www.er9x.com/.

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