Midifighter PCB Fail FAQ
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  1. #1
    DJTT Moderator flashflooder's Avatar
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    Arrow Midifighter PCB Fail FAQ

    We have experienced and heard accounts of a few Midi Fighter PCB's (circuit boards) failing from both the MF MK1 and MF MK1.2 production runs.

    Often when it fails, the MF is no longer recognized as a USB device by the computer and generally odd LED behavior results upon startup (usually all LEDs are on or none at all but it doesn't go through the LED snaking intro).

    This thread is meant to offer a few options to try to fix your Midi Fighter yourself if you experience issues and also to gather information to help us solve these issues for the future.

    Things to try if you think your MF may have died:


    If nothing seems to work and you are convinced that your Midi Fighter is dead then please call us or send an email to orders@djtechtools.com and we will take care of you.
    Last edited by flashflooder; 09-14-2010 at 12:55 PM.

  2. #2
    Tech Guru tyfurious's Avatar
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    Happened to me, but you guys are replacing it. Even though it is a failure it's getting replaced and fixed for free, so that's good! ^.^
    Traktor/Itch: Xone Dx - MidiFighter x1
    Ableton: Livid Code - iPad - KP3
    Tech: Macbook Pro 17", intel i7, 8gb RAM, 500gb HD 7200RPM

  3. #3
    DJTT Moderator flashflooder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flashflooder View Post
    If you are unable to enter boot mode (by holding four corner buttons before plugging in USB) and you are trying to re-flash your PCB, you may need to enter boot mode manually. For more info, see http://www.djtechtools.com/forum/showthread.php?t=15654
    We have found that many (thought to be) "defective" pcb's can be saved by manually going into boot mode (i.e., putting a wire in the 2 leftmost Boot pins, then plugging in the usb plug, and then opening the usb connection in the Atmel Flip flashing program) and then re-flashing the pcb.

    We have been able to fix a number of returned midi fighter pcb's in this manner so please try this out to see if your midi fighter can be saved before returning it!

  4. #4
    DJTT Moderator flashflooder's Avatar
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    If you can't get into Boot mode with the method listed above (the last method in the list), please try one last method to manually get your Midi Fighter pcb into boot mode and re-flash. We have found that this saves the majority of all "faulty" Midi Fighter pcb's.

    http://www.djtechtools.com/forum/showthread.php?t=17824

  5. #5
    Tech Convert
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    Quote Originally Posted by flashflooder View Post
    If you can't get into Boot mode with the method listed above (the last method in the list), please try one last method to manually get your Midi Fighter pcb into boot mode and re-flash. We have found that this saves the majority of all "faulty" Midi Fighter pcb's.

    http://www.djtechtools.com/forum/showthread.php?t=17824
    This happened to me tonight, and this last step using the 2 jumpers followed by a reflash is the only thing that worked (I tried boot mode and single jumper both repeatedly with no success).

    For me I would plug in the MF, get only the top left blue LED, and on occasion a BRIEF dim flash of some in the bottom row... and nothing else.

    I am very glad that this worked, but I am also a bit concerned hearing this happening with more and more MFs. I am hoping this "dead MF" issue is something that can be addressed via firmware, and not an actual hardware/chip issue going on. Otherwise I can see that this is really going to suck for someone who gets to their destination and finds out its not working, hoping they can find staples, and have the computer already set up for flashing, and have the time to do so, and that it works (80% success rate you say?). I'm glad I was just at home and wanted to show someone a new routine with my MF and VCI-100. All it ended up as was a disappointed me, disappointed friend, and a half hour of twiddling to bring it back to life. It could have been a far worse scenario. It made me think about my upcoming trip to Florida that I was planning on bringing my MF along. Thats a good 6 hour plane ride from home.

    Given the questionable nature of what is going on to cause this, I am thankful for the connection holes on the pcb that seem to allow such a reset. Even if they are a bit of a pain to work with, I'll take the effort for an 80% chance over a dead unit given the scenario. If it keeps happening, perhaps a couple soldered momentary switches would help cut down recovery time in an emergency (that is, if i actually trusted my soldering on such an amazing precious device).

    I know you guys are eager to get to the bottom of this so that they can all hopefully be fixed of this issue. If there is anything we can do out here in the field to help isolate it, please do let us know! We are, after all, pretty loyal DJTT fans, and you guys are... well... just that awesome!

    Oh, and I forgot to mention, i flashed it on my macbook pro.. i think it probably took less time to set that up than scavenging for a windows computer and setting that up to do it. I might have missed somewhere though if it mentioned renaming the downloaded midifighter-xxxxxxxxxx.hex file to midifighter.hex, but after the first failure I figured it out and was good to go shortly after. Great recovery instructions!
    Last edited by elf; 09-16-2010 at 03:37 AM.

  6. #6
    Tech Wizard
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    Default Last method worked!!!

    Thank you so much for posting the detailed method to get into bootloader mode using jumpers. I had given up hope, and tried that as a last ditch effort. It worked like a charm.

    I have restored my faith in DJTT.

  7. #7
    Tech Guru Fatlimey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anbuzan View Post
    Thank you so much for posting the detailed method to get into bootloader mode using jumpers.
    Yay! Good to hear.

  8. #8
    Mudo
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    ...

    As advice (I told Ean in some emails) it will be interesting go for open platform like Arduino. It will help in 3 ways:

    Developing firmware.
    Descentralized Service Reparation.
    Affordable Kits which make users more self suffienct.

    ...

  9. #9
    Tech Guru Fatlimey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mudo View Post
    As advice (I told Ean in some emails) it will be interesting go for open platform like Arduino.
    Starting with an Arduino sets the basic cost to $35 before any of the additional parts are added. Our current setup is a lot better value - most of the cost of a Midifighter is in the switches and PCB, both of which you have to have regardless.

    The other problem is that the Arduino doesn't have direct USB connection, it just uses the USB as a serial port. The new versions of the Arduino One have replaced the old FTDI USB chips with essentially the same chip we use as the brains of our Midifighter!

    So you'd be paying a lot of money for additional stuff we don't use and end up with less functionality at the end.

  10. #10
    DJTT Super Moderator midifidler's Avatar
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    Ardruino + midifighter = shudder.

    As Limey pointed out this would simply add to the production cost.

    It would not add anything at all to the openess of the hardware, obviously the physical form of the design required means that none of the adruino hardware shields would work.

    If an arduino platform was important to some one they could make the equivalent of the midifighter easily.

    Also while I agree the huge pool of knowledge and advice in the Adruino community would have some benefit for this kind of device the fact remains that only a small handful of the 850 customers so far have expressed any interest in even looking at the code suggests that this advantage would only benefit a minority.

    Even with our effort to make this device extremely easy for the user to add their own custom controls (requiring only the most basic soldering skills) very few users have actually done this.

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