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Please help me! hardware cant locate unit 01


Brett H.
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First time I have ever encountered this. May have been answered somewhere already but cant find it. I have 2 units. my unit 02 works fine if I bypass unit 01. Unit 01 is blinking red and the light-o-rama hardware tells me to check connections and power that it cant locate unit 01.

 Any ideas what the problem could be? Everything worked fine last year. Getting very frustrated please help me!

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I know its not the cat 5 because I plugged it directly into unit 2 and everything works fine. no matter what I try I still get a red blinking light and my computer telling me to check power and connections. I am guessing if it is the female plug on control box I am S.O.L. There is nothing I can do at this point. There is no way to fix it by tonight. Sucks but guess I am canceling the show this year unless someone has another explanation that I am over looking.

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You have 3 jacks on the controller. It might only be the jack that has the cable from the Computer. You could get a telephone cable from the PC to the controller. Then use the Cat 5 from the controller to the #2 controller. I think that this will work, never done it myself, but believe I have heard enough over the past 6 yrs and think I have heard of this configuration. Worse case, move #1 to where #2 is and pass through #2 to #1. Your going to have to  change the ID of each controller. But only have one hooked up to the computer. Change number and then disconnect it and only connect the other and change its number.

 

Ye of such little faith.

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Are you sure power is getting to both sides of the controller, you may want to check the fuses, had one do this because the fuse had come loose in the holder,  Unplugged, checked fuses, pushed back into place, and everything started working.  But it could also be a bad fuse or even a bad neutral or hot coming from the power supply cords connected to the controller. 

 

May want to make sure the power cord connections are tight, not loose or wiggle about on the PCB side of it.  Had to resolder several of my neutral tabs on one of my controllers, which also caused the issue you're having.

 

So check fuses and check the power connections, if they're good and the cat5 is good and controller can't be found, may have some other issue that will require a help desk/support ticket and a trip back to LOR for repairs.

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I disconnected unit 1 and am running off unit 2. No spiral tree til we fix whatever the problem is. a pain to go through and change each song to run off controller unit 2 but at least it is running... well minus the spiral tree but better than nothing right?

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Try pulling the receiver chip, clean the pins and then put it back in.  Make sure you get it in the right way. 

 

If you are getting pass thru to the next controller it is not your RJ45 jacks.

If you are getting the flashing red LED it is not the power to your controller..

 

It sounds like the receiver chip is either corroded or bad..

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I disconnected unit 1 and am running off unit 2. No spiral tree til we fix whatever the problem is. a pain to go through and change each song to run off controller unit 2 but at least it is running... well minus the spiral tree but better than nothing right?

 

There's some excellent advice above. You might want to look a little further.

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Did you try both jacks on the controller?

Yes I have tried both jacks. same result. but will retry now that's it is in the house trying to figure out.

Instead of changing all the sequences, you could simply change unit 2 to unit 1 in the HU.

That's all I did for now and saved them as  different sequence so IF I get this unit fixed I can just run the original sequence.

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Try pulling the receiver chip, clean the pins and then put it back in.  Make sure you get it in the right way. 

 

If you are getting pass thru to the next controller it is not your RJ45 jacks.

If you are getting the flashing red LED it is not the power to your controller..

 

It sounds like the receiver chip is either corroded or bad..

I will definitely give that a try. Because yes it will not pass through to next controller and I know there is power to unit cause of red flashing light.

I appreciate everyones advice. I am going to try them all in hoping I can get it back up and running very soon. Thanks again everyone. And keep the suggestions coming I will report back what the issue was as soon as I get it going.

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I will definitely give that a try. Because yes it will not pass through to next controller and I know there is power to unit cause of red flashing light.

I appreciate everyones advice. I am going to try them all in hoping I can get it back up and running very soon. Thanks again everyone. And keep the suggestions coming I will report back what the issue was as soon as I get it going.

I must have misread the OP.. so before you "try them all" there are some logical steps.  If you are not passing data you have one of three things most likely happening.

  1.  If you unplug the incoming cable and plug it directly into your other controller does it work?  If so that would rule out the incoming cable (mostly).  Another way to do that would be to use a female to female RJ45 coupler and connect the incoming and outgoing cables together. This would bypass this controller and verify your cables are both good at the same time.
  2. If you cables are good and the controller will not pass data, you are either not connecting thru, and most likely not connecting into your controller.  If you reverse jacks which you go into and out of and your 01 controller now works but doesn't pass data, you have a bad jack.  (The one that you originally had the incoming plugged into).  If that yields no results you could have another problem
  3. Your receiver chip may be shorted and causing the network to load down. This would not allow either controller to work since it would kill the data right there.  Remove that chip (with power off) and see if data now passes thru the controller.  If it does, your chip  needs replacing.  If it still does not, you may have a bad jack (or two) and a bad chip. 

All this assumes you did things like make sure there is not foreign crap on the board either front or back causing problems. 

 

Elimination is the key to troubleshooting. 

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I must have misread the OP.. so before you "try them all" there are some logical steps.  If you are not passing data you have one of three things most likely happening.

  1.  If you unplug the incoming cable and plug it directly into your other controller does it work?  If so that would rule out the incoming cable (mostly).  Another way to do that would be to use a female to female RJ45 coupler and connect the incoming and outgoing cables together. This would bypass this controller and verify your cables are both good at the same time.
  2. If you cables are good and the controller will not pass data, you are either not connecting thru, and most likely not connecting into your controller.  If you reverse jacks which you go into and out of and your 01 controller now works but doesn't pass data, you have a bad jack.  (The one that you originally had the incoming plugged into).  If that yields no results you could have another problem
  3. Your receiver chip may be shorted and causing the network to load down. This would not allow either controller to work since it would kill the data right there.  Remove that chip (with power off) and see if data now passes thru the controller.  If it does, your chip  needs replacing.  If it still does not, you may have a bad jack (or two) and a bad chip. 

All this assumes you did things like make sure there is not foreign crap on the board either front or back causing problems. 

 

Elimination is the key to troubleshooting. 

I forgot to add that if the pins on the receiver chip are corroded or dirty, that won't cause data to not be passed thru.  The chip would have to be shorted or something on the PC board shorting the signal out. 

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I must have misread the OP.. so before you "try them all" there are some logical steps.  If you are not passing data you have one of three things most likely happening.

  1.  If you unplug the incoming cable and plug it directly into your other controller does it work?  If so that would rule out the incoming cable (mostly).  Another way to do that would be to use a female to female RJ45 coupler and connect the incoming and outgoing cables together. This would bypass this controller and verify your cables are both good at the same time.
  2. If you cables are good and the controller will not pass data, you are either not connecting thru, and most likely not connecting into your controller.  If you reverse jacks which you go into and out of and your 01 controller now works but doesn't pass data, you have a bad jack.  (The one that you originally had the incoming plugged into).  If that yields no results you could have another problem
  3. Your receiver chip may be shorted and causing the network to load down. This would not allow either controller to work since it would kill the data right there.  Remove that chip (with power off) and see if data now passes thru the controller.  If it does, your chip  needs replacing.  If it still does not, you may have a bad jack (or two) and a bad chip. 

All this assumes you did things like make sure there is not foreign crap on the board either front or back causing problems. 

 

Elimination is the key to troubleshooting. 

I am going to take it back out and try to remove chip and see if it passes through to second control box as I have eliminated the possibility of bad cat 5 cable as I went directly to unit 02 and it receives signal just fine but if piggy backed neither unit receives signal. and I did try both jacks on unit 01 and go nothing. I am assuming I can order a chip from wowlights or light-o-rama and hope it gets here before the end of season. Again I thank everyone for their advice and keep suggestions coming til I figure this out.  

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The telephone jack works just like Max said above if you run it back to the 485 adapter. My first cable out was able to see controllers but missing a few on the line . I changed that cable and now I see all of the controllers.

 

Jeff

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I am going to take it back out and try to remove chip and see if it passes through to second control box as I have eliminated the possibility of bad cat 5 cable as I went directly to unit 02 and it receives signal just fine but if piggy backed neither unit receives signal. and I did try both jacks on unit 01 and go nothing. I am assuming I can order a chip from wowlights or light-o-rama and hope it gets here before the end of season. Again I thank everyone for their advice and keep suggestions coming til I figure this out.  

Try Mouser or Digikey.. they should have them in stock.. it is a common part I believe.

 

I had one that wasn't passing data and found a bad solder joint from the factory on the RJ jack.. reflowed it and everything worked fine...   One more thing.. Take a physical look at the RJ jacks and see if for some reason one or two pins in either is not out of place.  Could be that someone you got a connector that displaced them on both jacks as you were trying things.. Not a big probability, but worth a second look.

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I am going to take it back out and try to remove chip and see if it passes through to second control box as I have eliminated the possibility of bad cat 5 cable as I went directly to unit 02 and it receives signal just fine but if piggy backed neither unit receives signal. and I did try both jacks on unit 01 and go nothing. I am assuming I can order a chip from wowlights or light-o-rama and hope it gets here before the end of season. Again I thank everyone for their advice and keep suggestions coming til I figure this out.  

 

The telephone jack works just like Max said above if you run it back to the 485 adapter. My first cable out was able to see controllers but missing a few on the line . I changed that cable and now I see all of the controllers.

 

Jeff

It isn't an issue with the cat 5 cable and I did take receiver chip out and try and let it pass thru to second receiver but that didn't work. I think the chip needs to be in there to make connection. but I do think it is fried or several chips are fried. thanks for the advice though.

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Actually you don't need that chip on there to pass data.  There is a physical connection on the PCB from jack to jack.  The chip only interfaces with the board it is on. 

 

If you have blown chips other then the receiver chip your best bet is to order a replacement board from Wow or LOR and quick ship it in.  Sending the other board out for repair could take a long time.  I ordered a spare board a week or so ago and received it from LOR on the east coast in about a week. 

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I have emailed light o rama since no where on their site or wowlights do they show the replacement board I need.  Hopefully I can get one soon as I know it would take months to get this one fixed if I sent it out. I am ready take a baseball bat at it....lol

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So they are thinking it is the board as well not a chip, not a connection. So choices are send it in to get fixed or buy a new board...  So at $177 including shipping I am ordering  new board. Since I know labor rates for repairs are typically$50 per hour plus shipping back and forth and it taking @ 3 hours labor not including parts I am better off ordering a new board. Sucks but I have no choice.

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Going to work on it one last time as wowlights has now jumped in and gave me another suggestion but with show running I cant work on it. I would like to thanks all of you for your help. Though we haven't found the problem or the solution yet it has given I and maybe others some great suggestions on what to look for in future should those issues arise.

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