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My Humax HDR-Fox T2 packed in

Trev

The Dumb One
I've not actually read about the PSU caps really failing on a T2.
But I have heard peeps say "change them" and when they are changed it makes no difference, several times. So it wasn't the caps after all then!
 

Matthew

Member
I've not actually read about the PSU caps really failing on a T2.
Yes its not 'currently' a common issue for the T2, but these machines are getting on and capacitors have a limited lifetime especially in power supplies (due to the high temps) so they will fail in time.

Leaky/failed caps in any machine commonly cause symptoms like: box turns on then goes back off repeatedly, which is what is described, so that's where I would look 1st.
 
OP
jim_p

jim_p

New Member
What you describe sounds like a simple power supply fault to me, one or more voltages not reaching correct level or unstable, the most common cause for that is 'leaky capacitors' you can easily identify such as they either distort or actually leak their dielectric. Look for any capacitors that have any sort of bulge (they should have perfectly flat tops) or the circuit board appears discoloured around them.
They look ok to my (admittedly untrained) eye - I'm trying to attach a photo but "file too large" is there a maximum size? And now "I can't post external links" so removing the link from your quote!
 
OP
jim_p

jim_p

New Member
They look ok to my (admittedly untrained) eye - I'm trying to attach a photo but "file too large" is there a maximum size? And now "I can't post external links" so removing the link from your quote!
It's accepting a truncated photo:
 

Attachments

Matthew

Member
It's accepting a truncated photo:
Yes they look OK as far as I can see.

Which firmware is installed? If its the CF have you tried reverting to the standard?

I had a foxsat that would'nt boot with CF installed but did without, though it turned out the cause was a failing hard drive.
 
OP
jim_p

jim_p

New Member
I'm sure i updated to the CF at one point (via USB) but I can't remember when or why exactly. I guess I'll have to try this in freeview-box mode (with HDD disconnected) otherwise it won't boot up. I'll try it tomorrow.
 
OP
jim_p

jim_p

New Member
I've tried the following: OF 1.3.12 and CF 1.3.12 mod 3.13, both with HDD and without HDD.
In both cases the box will boot up with HDD disconnected (in Freeview Mode), but refuse to boot up with the HDD connected.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
Right, well, if you've eliminate the HDD, you're left with a faulty SATA interface or a PSU incapable of running a HDD.
 

Sidewinder

New Member
I've got the exact same problem with my Fox t2, thought it was HDD failure (500gb seagate pipeline) but a new (1tb seagate pipeline) drive did exactly the same thing. Am using standard firmware 1.03.12.
Here's what i've found:
(* as in box off-off or in standby for long enough for internals to drop to room temp)
1. Cold* start with either of the above drives causes it to cycle round having a blue circle and "system startup" a tiny click and then blue goes off and comes back and around again it goes - you get the Humax splash screen on the TV but no further as the HDD doesn't spin up.
2. If you let the above cycle go round and round long enough the components warm up and that seems to allow the above drives to suddenly spin up and function entirely normally. This is not consistent however, sometimes taking ages other times it happens quite quick.
3 Tried an old 2.5" 250gb HDD I had kicking about and that starts 'Cold' or 'Hot' every time, can be formatted and used as normal. I think this is because the 2.5 only needs the 5v to drive it while the 3.5 needs both 12v & 5v.
4. PSU and main board all look visibly ok.
5. Outputs from the PSU plug to Main board look normal approx 12, 6v and gnd as expected.
6. With drive(s) (eventually) spinning ok we get 12.5v and 5v rock steady from the square white four pin HDD power plug. When the drives were not spinning and the box stuck in it's startup cycle the values were all over the place and the meter couldn't give a proper reading.
7. With no HDD connected the box starts as a receiver only - as expected.
I've 'proved' the cold start theory by leaving the box overnight on standby twice and both times the HDD did not spin up the next morning (this is how the problem first started too), also tested it on the bench by letting it go 'cold' and doing multiple starts (gets stuck) and repeating same while 'hot' (starts no problem).
So for now I have put the box back as it was (with new 1tb drive though) and have switched off the timed power off mode so that it will not go into standby overnight. Will see what happens.
 

/df

Active Member
...
1. Cold* start with either of the above drives causes it to cycle round having a blue circle and "system startup" a tiny click and then blue goes off and comes back and around again it goes - you get the Humax splash screen on the TV but no further as the HDD doesn't spin up.
2. If you let the above cycle go round and round long enough the components warm up and that seems to allow the above drives to suddenly spin up and function entirely normally. This is not consistent however, sometimes taking ages other times it happens quite quick.
3 Tried an old 2.5" 250gb HDD I had kicking about and that starts 'Cold' or 'Hot' every time, can be formatted and used as normal. I think this is because the 2.5 only needs the 5v to drive it while the 3.5 needs both 12v & 5v.
4. PSU and main board all look visibly ok.
5. Outputs from the PSU plug to Main board look normal approx 12, 6v and gnd as expected.
6. With drive(s) (eventually) spinning ok we get 12.5v and 5v rock steady from the square white four pin HDD power plug. When the drives were not spinning and the box stuck in its startup cycle the values were all over the place and the meter couldn't give a proper reading.
...
In #6, is the 5V steady when the 12V is bad, as implied by #3?

As you probably realise, your observations are consistent with a dry joint or cracked track on the main board, or a bad connection to the board, or possibly a broken component, where in each case thermal expansion bridges the bad connection. In your #4 you would need a magnifying glass to inspect the main board, especially the underside.

An obvious suspect is the SATA power connector on the PCB: is it properly seated, is it securely soldered to the PCB, is there a cracked track leading to it?

Otherwise, you could try poking various parts of the board with a non-conductive probe (at your own risk, having regard to mains voltages exposed on the PSU input side and possibly elsewhere under fault conditions, don't forget to complete a H+S assessment ...) while testing the SATA 12V pin as in yr #6.
 

Sidewinder

New Member
When the problem is on both 5v & 12v waver and go steady once the drive starts.

I've looked at both boards and see no obvious damage to board or components, as the former is multi layered the problem could be hidden.

SATA socket Seems firm, nothing obvious amiss, also see below.

Latest: after a bit of playing around i've discovered that if you leave the HD power lead unplugged the unit starts (as we all know) up as just a freeview box with no play or record facility via the HD (obviously). If however, as soon as you get a picture and/or the display shows a channel, you plug in the HD power lead, the drive starts up with no problem and the box then acts as normal as a freeview plus PVR. This therefore 'bypasses' my no cold start problem as described in previous post. It also makes me think that the box is not supplying sufficient current on cold startup to spin up the HD - maybe due to it trying to power everything else all at the same time? (why when the box is 'hot' is this sometimes alleviated i don't know).
Cold start solution/workaround: have the HD power up after the initial power up of the unit itself. Done via using a time delay relay spliced into the HD power lead so that the HD is only powered a few seconds after the box is.

Aside from this i've had to replace the (above) Fox with a HDR 2000t 500gb as it has also started to become unreliable in terms of not recording stuff and the drive making clicky sounds and refusing to play - probably related to the cold starup and is also a power(?) issue. What I could do with is a known good PSU board and/or a main board to swap in and see if it makes a difference.

IMG_2383.JPG
IMG_2385.JPG

Couple of pics showing the relay and how it's set and it in position so the lid fits.

Maybe a solution/workaround to both issues (assuming they are related) is to get a 2.5" drive which needs less oomf to start/run etc.
 
Last edited:

prpr

Well-Known Member
Latest: after a bit of playing around i've discovered that if you leave the HD power lead unplugged the unit starts (as we all know) up as just a freeview box with no play or record facility via the HD (obviously). If however, as soon as you get a picture and/or the display shows a channel, you plug in the HD power lead, the drive starts up with no problem and the box then acts as normal as a freeview plus PVR.
I've had exactly this with my unreliable box.
Once it's running it stays running, but if I have to power it off (e.g. if crashed) then it's a right pain to get started again. It needs leaving off for at least a few minutes for the PSU voltages to decay, otherwise it won't start at all.
It's all a bit weird because the HD is spun up under software control several seconds after power on. Presumably the 12V is used for the motor and the 5V is used for the data side of the disk, so maybe it's just a problem with the 5V rail.
I haven't been sufficiently interested/annoyed by it yet to investigate further.
 
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