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Author Topic: Power-hungry V2?  (Read 10625 times)

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Offline Sloan Simpson

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Power-hungry V2?
« on: January 13, 2012, 04:36:30 PM »
My 6-volt Lunatec V2 shut down after only about 3 hours of use last night. I assumed the battery had just died prematurely, so I switched over to a spare I had in my bag. Setting the battery to 6 volts, it would only stay on for a few seconds before the "low battery" light on the preamp would come on, and then it would shut down again. In desperation (I was missing the show!), I set the battery at 8 volts and it worked fine for the rest of the show.

Any ideas on what the problem is? Calibration on the V2? I checked the first battery when I got home, and it was showing half-full still. Am I subject to damage the V2 by feeding it 8 volts?

Thanks for any advice
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Offline audBall

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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2012, 04:39:49 PM »
Is it a Tekkeon battery?

The same thing happened to me so I switched the voltage setting to 7.5v and never had a problem after that.

Offline Sloan Simpson

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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2012, 04:43:07 PM »
Is it a Tekkeon battery?

The same thing happened to me so I switched the voltage setting to 7.5v and never had a problem after that.
Yes, both batteries are Tekkeons (although different models). I was leaning toward it being a preamp issue, just because neither battery would run it at 6 volts.
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Offline Brian Skalinder

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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2012, 04:48:14 PM »
Vaguely recalling past discussions about running 6v V2s on 9.6v and 12v, including commentary from someone at Grace, I'm pretty sure you won't hurt your 6v-configured V2 running at 7.5v -- it will just generate a bit more heat.

I would guess the issue is due to possible voltage regulation imprecision by the Tekkeon.  The Tekkeon's voltage under load -- even when there's plenty of capacity left -- probably just drops below the threshold for which the V2 is configured to turn on the low battery light and to auto-shutoff.  Setting the Tekkeon to output higher voltage (e.g. 7.5v) will prevent the V2's low battery light from coming on and from shutting down automatically.  However, your V2 low battery light won't be a reliable indicator of remaining battery life (which it isn't now, anyway, so shouldn't really have an impact).
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Offline Sloan Simpson

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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2012, 05:06:35 PM »
Vaguely recalling past discussions about running 6v V2s on 9.6v and 12v, including commentary from someone at Grace, I'm pretty sure you won't hurt your 6v-configured V2 running at 7.5v -- it will just generate a bit more heat.

I would guess the issue is due to possible voltage regulation imprecision by the Tekkeon.  The Tekkeon's voltage under load -- even when there's plenty of capacity left -- probably just drops below the threshold for which the V2 is configured to turn on the low battery light and to auto-shutoff.  Setting the Tekkeon to output higher voltage (e.g. 7.5v) will prevent the V2's low battery light from coming on and from shutting down automatically.  However, your V2 low battery light won't be a reliable indicator of remaining battery life (which it isn't now, anyway, so shouldn't really have an impact).

Sounds good, thanks.
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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2012, 09:09:22 PM »
Vaguely recalling past discussions about running 6v V2s on 9.6v and 12v, including commentary from someone at Grace, I'm pretty sure you won't hurt your 6v-configured V2 running at 7.5v -- it will just generate a bit more heat.

I would guess the issue is due to possible voltage regulation imprecision by the Tekkeon.  The Tekkeon's voltage under load -- even when there's plenty of capacity left -- probably just drops below the threshold for which the V2 is configured to turn on the low battery light and to auto-shutoff.  Setting the Tekkeon to output higher voltage (e.g. 7.5v) will prevent the V2's low battery light from coming on and from shutting down automatically.  However, your V2 low battery light won't be a reliable indicator of remaining battery life (which it isn't now, anyway, so shouldn't really have an impact).

I agree.

I've used a handful of tekkeons with my 722 which has a voltage meter on it and while not all units, many do drop under load. I've seen as much as almost a full volt and as little as 0.1 or 0.2 volts. Of the 4 units I've tried, 1 maintained the selected voltage, the rest drooped a bit to varying degrees under differing loads. If you have a sensitive unit (the 722 switches over at something obscure like 9.75v), then a given battery may sag too much.
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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2012, 12:17:24 AM »
Yes, 7.5v is fine. I used 7.2v rc batts when I had my v2/v3 and they worked just fine :)
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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2012, 02:50:15 AM »
Tonight it shut down again while I was running it at 9v  >:( I turned it up to 12v and it ran for the rest of the show  ???
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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2012, 07:50:57 AM »
I run my 6v V2 for 4 day festivals solid with Tekkeons at 7.5v

Tonight it shut down again while I was running it at 9v  >:( I turned it up to 12v and it ran for the rest of the show  ???
Having two Tekkeons failing is a stretch...but...The only other thing to do is try a friends Tekkeon at 7.5v...or it sounds like a call/trip to Grace may be in order...
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Offline Brian Skalinder

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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2012, 01:35:19 PM »
Again?  Ugh.  How long were you running at 9v before it shut down?  I wouldn't send the V2 off to Grace just yet, as in my mind we haven't determined the V2 is definitively the culprit.  While it's unlikely both Tekkeons failed at the same time in the same way (I've seen stranger things happen), we still need to attempt isolate each component in the chain with testing (as best we can) to find out where the problem lies.)  I would go about it in roughly this order:
  • Are you using a single V2 power cable with both Tekkeons?  If so, check your power cable (between the V2 and Tekkeon(s)) for shorts / continuity.  (You'll need an inexpensive multimeter for testing, a tool all tapers should own, IMO.)  If there are any shorts, you've likely found the problem.  If you don't know how to do this testing, let us know and someone can help describe the process.  FWIW, I've seen shorts in cables before that aren't severe enough to shut everything down on the spot and flame out, but instead cause unpredictable behavior over time.
  • If you have access to another power cable, test with the other power cable.  If the other cable works fine, then it's likely your original cable is the problem.
  • Do you have a separate AC cable for the V2?  If so, try it -- see if it runs for a long stretch from AC or if it suffers from the same shutdown.  The AC wallwart converts AC to DC and provides a regulated DC voltage to the V2.  If this works fine, it suggests the V2 is not the culprit.  If the V2 still shuts off, it indicates the problem lies with the V2 itself.  If you don't have a wallwart, consider buying a generic one (they're fairly cheap) or borrowing one.
  • Do you have access to another Tekkeon?  If so, try a friend's known-good Tekkeon to see if the problem repeats.  If the problem does not repeat, the Tekkeons are the likely culprit.  If the problem does repeat, the problem likely lies elsewhere.
  • Do the Tekkeon's work fine powering other gear?  Try powering other gear to validate whether or not the Tekkeon's are okay (preferably, another V2).  If the Tekkeon's work okay with other gear (ideally with similar power draw, or for a sufficiently long period of time given the other gear's power draw), this suggests the problem lies elsewhere.  If the Tekkeon's have trouble powering other gear, they're likely the culprit.
  • Consider testing the Tekkeons' voltage at intervals, under load, over a period of time -- say at 0min, 15min, 30min, 45min, etc.  This may provide insight into what is happening (e.g. is the voltage dropping off a cliff at a certain stage), which may help inform further testing.
  • As a final consideration before sending the V2 off to Grace (which I wouldn't do until you validate the problem definitively lies with the V2), you might also try opening up the V2 and verifying the status of the 6v / 12v jumper(s).  Additionally, you could try turning the low battery / auto-shutoff calibration all the way down, so it takes the lowest voltage possible before the lighting up / auto-shutting off.  (Maybe a previous owners messed with them?)  Note:  this would render the low battery light and auto-shutoff unuseable in the field, but I don't know anyone who still uses these features with newer batteries, since they typically need to be re-calibrated for non-6v / non-SLA power sources.  There's a jumper diagram in the manual and instructions on voltage calibration on the Grace Design website.  (Though I have to say, it seems unlikely the voltage calibration is the culprit, but it's probably worth checking, even if not changing.)
FWIW, my money's on the cable.  Good luck and let us know what you find out, so we can help identify next steps.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2012, 01:36:53 PM by Brian Skalinder »
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Offline Sloan Simpson

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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #10 on: January 14, 2012, 01:50:46 PM »
Again?  Ugh.  How long were you running at 9v before it shut down? Just a little over an hour this time. I wouldn't send the V2 off to Grace just yet, as in my mind we haven't determined the V2 is definitively the culprit.  While it's unlikely both Tekkeons failed at the same time in the same way (I've seen stranger things happen), we still need to attempt isolate each component in the chain with testing (as best we can) to find out where the problem lies.)  I would go about it in roughly this order:
  • Are you using a single V2 power cable with both Tekkeons? Yes If so, check your power cable (between the V2 and Tekkeon(s)) for shorts / continuity.  (You'll need an inexpensive multimeter for testing, a tool all tapers should own, IMO.)  If there are any shorts, you've likely found the problem.  If you don't know how to do this testing, let us know and someone can help describe the process.  FWIW, I've seen shorts in cables before that aren't severe enough to shut everything down on the spot and flame out, but instead cause unpredictable behavior over time.
  • If you have access to another power cable, test with the other power cable. A friend might, I'll need to check If the other cable works fine, then it's likely your original cable is the problem.
  • Do you have a separate AC cable for the V2? No If so, try it -- see if it runs for a long stretch from AC or if it suffers from the same shutdown.  The AC wallwart converts AC to DC and provides a regulated DC voltage to the V2.  If this works fine, it suggests the V2 is not the culprit.  If the V2 still shuts off, it indicates the problem lies with the V2 itself.  If you don't have a wallwart, consider buying a generic one (they're fairly cheap) or borrowing one.
  • Do you have access to another Tekkeon?  Maybe, will check. If so, try a friend's known-good Tekkeon to see if the problem repeats.  If the problem does not repeat, the Tekkeons are the likely culprit.  If the problem does repeat, the problem likely lies elsewhere.
  • Do the Tekkeon's work fine powering other gear? Only other gear I have to try is my M10, they work fine with it. Try powering other gear to validate whether or not the Tekkeon's are okay (preferably, another V2).  If the Tekkeon's work okay with other gear (ideally with similar power draw, or for a sufficiently long period of time given the other gear's power draw), this suggests the problem lies elsewhere.  If the Tekkeon's have trouble powering other gear, they're likely the culprit.
  • Consider testing the Tekkeons' voltage at intervals, under load, over a period of time -- say at 0min, 15min, 30min, 45min, etc.  This may provide insight into what is happening (e.g. is the voltage dropping off a cliff at a certain stage), which may help inform further testing. Will do
  • As a final consideration before sending the V2 off to Grace (which I wouldn't do until you validate the problem definitively lies with the V2), you might also try opening up the V2 and verifying the status of the 6v / 12v jumper(s).  Additionally, you could try turning the low battery / auto-shutoff calibration all the way down, so it takes the lowest voltage possible before the lighting up / auto-shutting off.  (Maybe a previous owners messed with them?)  Note:  this would render the low battery light and auto-shutoff unuseable in the field, but I don't know anyone who still uses these features with newer batteries, since they typically need to be re-calibrated for non-6v / non-SLA power sources.  There's a jumper diagram in the manual and instructions on voltage calibration on the Grace Design website.  (Though I have to say, it seems unlikely the voltage calibration is the culprit, but it's probably worth checking, even if not changing.)
FWIW, my money's on the cable.  Good luck and let us know what you find out, so we can help identify next steps.

The cable seems like it makes sense, as it gets jumbled around in my gear bag and could've gotten damaged that way. I've been using the V2 for 10 years, the last 2 with the Tekkeons.  Thanks for your post, I've a cable-making friend I'll be looking at it with in the next few days. I've got another show tonight, gonna just set it on 12v at the start and hope for the best.
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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2012, 01:06:18 AM »
The cable seems like it makes sense, as it gets jumbled around in my gear bag and could've gotten damaged that way. I've been using the V2 for 10 years, the last 2 with the Tekkeons.  Thanks for your post, I've a cable-making friend I'll be looking at it with in the next few days. I've got another show tonight, gonna just set it on 12v at the start and hope for the best.

There are certain angles on my 722 cable that will cause the voltage reading to drop about 0.3v-0.5v or so on the read out.
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Offline Sloan Simpson

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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #12 on: January 15, 2012, 09:56:20 PM »
Battery A turned out to only be putting out .24 amps, while the V2 needs .48.  Battery B tests out fine, as does the cable, so I'm going to use Battery B going forward and see what happens.

Battery A is only one month out of warranty  ::)
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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #13 on: January 15, 2012, 10:08:32 PM »

Battery A is only one month out of warranty  ::)

Gotta love that when it happens :P :(
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Offline Brian Skalinder

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Re: Power-hungry V2?
« Reply #14 on: January 15, 2012, 11:42:01 PM »
Thanks for the update, SS.

While it sucks battery A is only one month out of warranty, at least you've removed it as a cause (or one of the causes) of your issues.  You might try calling in the warranty, anyway.  Some retailers / manufacturers are more generous than others when the warranty has only just expired.  If you do call it in, tell them you used it with a portable DVD player or some such.  They simply won't understand your usage and they may wrongfully assume you've misused the battery and then may not offer the 1-month extension of the warranty service (assuming they would have done so in the first place).

Please keep us informed on how your testing and usage goes with battery B.
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