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Flirc non-responsive after idle for a couple hours...


redec
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Well, with the transmitter about a foot away from the flirc it's maybe a *little* better....maybe?  I only waited ~3 hours so even with it taped right on the receiver it wouldn't get too bad in just 3 hours.  This time it responded in maybe 3 or 4 seconds, but then continued to miss key presses for the next 20 secs or so.....attached the log...

irdebug3.log

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12 hours ago, redec said:

Well, with the transmitter about a foot away from the flirc it's maybe a *little* better....maybe?  I only waited ~3 hours so even with it taped right on the receiver it wouldn't get too bad in just 3 hours.  This time it responded in maybe 3 or 4 seconds, but then continued to miss key presses for the next 20 secs or so.....attached the log...

irdebug3.log

I'd say keep moving. Honestly, if you put it in some obscure location in the cabinet, it should be fine.

But it's clear that the transmitter is 'leaky'. It's leaving the IR light on when it's not supposed to at a low strength. 

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ok, I'll play with that a bit more and see if I can find a setup that works better.  Would anything be showing up in the debug log for the leaked light?  I don't see anything when I'm not pressing buttons....I guess is there any way I can "check" if the flirc is seeing this leaked light?  (is there anything specific in the debug output that indicates that?).  Having a 3-4 hour testing cycle is a little painful :)  

At any rate, thanks so much for your help on this, your feedback and advice (and ability to release new software versions so responsively) has been quite awesome and unexpected :).  Thanks!

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Here is how the log works:

0,12,123,2532

These are pulses, starting at t=0us we have a high pulse for 12us. Then it goes low for 123us, then high again for 2532us

The markers 

::e:23

Means an elapsed time of 23ms has passed since the last edge

Your log is being flooded with noise, it's not showing the timing of the edges because it's less than 4 pulses, which isn't a valid IR signal. So it's essentially showing you a bunch of time in ms between the noise. It's seeing hundreds of those.

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Thanks for the debug log info, that is hugely useful.  

As best I can figure out, I think my repeater must have some sort of dynamic sensitivity where it'll adjust its sensitivity based on the strength of the incoming light it detects.  Unfortunately this seems to mean that it just sends more and more noise the longer it sits idle - it looks like it's picking up trace amounts of IR light from the windows and amplifying that and blasting it to the devices.  It doesn't matter where I put the transmitter in relation to the flirc as it seems the noise is being amplified just as any proper signal would be, so if the flirc can see a proper signal, then it is also receiving the noise...and the flirc simply does not appear to be as good at handling the noise as all the other devices.  Once I start sending actual IR commands my repeater takes a little bit to tune its 'dynamic sensitivity' back down to a sane level, which stops the noise and then the flirc starts to respond properly.  This is my current theory...I'm not sure where this leaves me, assuming it's correct I guess I have a few options:

  1. See if my repeater's sensitivity can be manually adjusted/controlled in some way
  2. Run the flirc on a big long USB extension and mount it beside my repeater's receiver
  3. Replace the repeater
  4. Replace the flirc
  5. Hope/pray for a firmware update that handles noise a little better :)

Not super crazy about any of them.  I wonder if putting something like this (https://www.amazon.com/LightDims-Original-Strength-Electronics-Appliances/dp/B009WSJNCW) over the repeater's receiver would eliminate enough of the noise that the flirc could cope, without actually hindering my ability to control the system...might be worth a try

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Hmmm well....upon further testing the noise actually does not stop after it "warms up" - the flirc just seems to get better at handling it...and even more confusing I've determined that the noise itself is coming from the TV, not the windows...so when it's sitting idle it's not even seeing noise (the tv is off) so I have no idea why it would get worse the longer it sits.  My repeater does not appear to have any adjustable sensitivity, however putting masking tape over the receiver does seem to help a lot - kills the noise and real commands still get through

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2 hours ago, redec said:

Hmmm well....upon further testing the noise actually does not stop after it "warms up" - the flirc just seems to get better at handling it...and even more confusing I've determined that the noise itself is coming from the TV, not the windows...so when it's sitting idle it's not even seeing noise (the tv is off) so I have no idea why it would get worse the longer it sits.  My repeater does not appear to have any adjustable sensitivity, however putting masking tape over the receiver does seem to help a lot - kills the noise and real commands still get through

I have an extra repeater I bought, was going to sell it. You want it? Maybe it'll give you better results. Brand new.

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19 hours ago, jason said:

I have an extra repeater I bought, was going to sell it. You want it? Maybe it'll give you better results. Brand new.

No thanks, it's not the repeater it's the TV....apparently it's not an uncommon problem for LCD TVs to spit a bunch of IR interference when they're first turned on....just googling for it spits a ton of hits of people having the exact same problem as me with specific components that don't handle IR noise well.  In fact it seems I might be lucky in that mine stops after a minute or so, many people say theirs lasts for 30 or 45 minutes after turning their TV on.  I'd expect any repeater will likely have the same behavior.  I'm playing with mechanisms to dull the noise from the TV (lenses, masking tape, etc) so that the flirc can cope, but I dunno it's not looking super promising.  I'm starting to think my only realistic options are to get a different TV or replace the flirc, and the latter is much cheaper than the former....which sucks cuz I really do like the flirc, it's an awesome little gadget.  Do you think there's any chance in the future that the flirc could be made to handle IR noise a little better?  Is that a firmware thing or a hardware thing?

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9 hours ago, redec said:

No thanks, it's not the repeater it's the TV....apparently it's not an uncommon problem for LCD TVs to spit a bunch of IR interference when they're first turned on....just googling for it spits a ton of hits of people having the exact same problem as me with specific components that don't handle IR noise well.  In fact it seems I might be lucky in that mine stops after a minute or so, many people say theirs lasts for 30 or 45 minutes after turning their TV on.  I'd expect any repeater will likely have the same behavior.  I'm playing with mechanisms to dull the noise from the TV (lenses, masking tape, etc) so that the flirc can cope, but I dunno it's not looking super promising.  I'm starting to think my only realistic options are to get a different TV or replace the flirc, and the latter is much cheaper than the former....which sucks cuz I really do like the flirc, it's an awesome little gadget.  Do you think there's any chance in the future that the flirc could be made to handle IR noise a little better?  Is that a firmware thing or a hardware thing?

flirc has a bunch of noise rejection. But the fact that it's inhibiting flirc from working means that it's non stop actively spitting it out. Nothing I can do about that as it's inserting itself in the middle of real remote signals. Try putting your sensor behind the TV.

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