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Maestro won't power up.... anyone seen this issue before?

Richard G7EIX
Richard G7EIX Richard - EnglishmaninNCMember ✭✭
edited June 2020 in Maestro
So....

I just took my Maestro off the shelf, where it has been for about 6 months without use in my shack. I have tried it on several batteries and the supplied PSU with the same result.

The Maestro will not power on - no flash on the screen, no boot - nothing. But if I leave it to sit for 2-3 mins the buttons will flicker and illuminate a few times. I've tried long press, short press, 2 min press (why? I don't know) - and nothing.

 The Maestro has had little use and was working perfectly the last time I used it before I put it on the shelf - climate controlled room, no moisture - no reason to believe this is environmental.

I've opened a ticket, and appreciate its the weekend (and a long one to boot!) so I am not expecting a response until Tuesday, but was posting here to see if this is something anyone else has experienced - and was a quick fix possible.

Have a great memorial weekend.
«13

Answers

  • James Madden
    James Madden Member
    edited May 2018
    Just had this same issue. It required that I plug in the ac adapter. It then powered on and after one day it worked without the ac adapter. There is an internal battery that must be kept charged. Jim
  • Mark Erbaugh
    Mark Erbaugh Member
    edited February 2020
    Try leaving the Maestro plugged into an external supply for a few hours. There is an internal battery in addition to any plugin batteries. Maybe that has discharged.
  • Richard G7EIX
    Richard G7EIX Richard - EnglishmaninNC Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Ah, ok.  I'll leave it plugged in for a while.   It won't power up even with the PSU at the moment, so i'll let it charge a while and try again.

    Thx for the info.
  • James Madden
    James Madden Member
    edited June 2020
    It's odd that it won't power up with the PSu. I wonder if you are holding the on/off switch down long enough. Jim
  • Richard G7EIX
    Richard G7EIX Richard - EnglishmaninNC Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Yes.   I've used the Maestro many times before I sat it on the shelf a while ago - ive tried the 5 seconds, 10 seconds, 15 seconds.... got the wife to hold it for 2 mins and 5 mins :-)

    It's been plugged in now for a couple of hours and still the same.

    It's probably going to have a ride back to Austin.
  • NT8B
    NT8B Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    I had the same problem after leaving my Maestro unplugged for several months.  The problem apparently derives from the fact that there is an internal battery that runs down if the Maestro isn't periodically a/o left plugged in when not in use.  I was advised to first try attaching the power supply to the dead Maestro for several hours.  That did not revive my Maestro so it needed to take a ride to Austin for repair. 
  • Richard G7EIX
    Richard G7EIX Richard - EnglishmaninNC Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    It's been plugged in for a good 8 hours now. Still won't power up. I'll leave it overnight but I suspect it will be getting a ride to Austin on Tuesday.
  • Jay -- N0FB
    Jay -- N0FB Member ✭✭
    edited December 2019
    I'm in the same boat.  I have to send my Maestro to Austin to have it repaired.  :-(
  • K1DLM
    K1DLM Member ✭✭
    edited September 2017
    Same thing here.  My internal battery was completely flat, so I had to send the Maestro back to Austin to have it charged.  Apparently, if the internal battery s completely discharged, there is no way to power-on the Maestro.  I asked if this was being addressed in rev. 2 of the Maestro hardware due in August but never received a  response.  This is a major design flaw that should be addressed.
  • Tom Warren
    Tom Warren Member
    edited June 2020
    Isn't there a way to replace the battery in the field, but I suppose FRS would have already mentioned that.........just saying. 
  • James Madden
    James Madden Member
    edited May 2018
    Flex, is this issue being addressed in a revision release of the hardware?
  • Richard G7EIX
    Richard G7EIX Richard - EnglishmaninNC Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    24 hours later - nada.  Looks like it will be heading to Austin on Tuesday.  Shame really as I was looking forward to spending some time in the garden playing a little radio this memorial weekend.

    Based on the comments it certainly does seem like this is a design fault.    The Maestro does not get the daily use the radio does in this household - with V2.0 and WAN access it would have got a lot more - but it was destined to be sitting on the shelf a lot of the time until weekends such as this presented some extended radio time.

    Ah well.   I am sure the wife has a list of chores for me to do!
  • Steve K9ZW
    Steve K9ZW Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017
    I have two Maestro, and one needed to get FRS attention, yet the other had been flawless. Wondering if this had to do with the battery pack FRS sourced for the internal backup? LiPo packs seem to be so variable even within the same make model. Internalizing one perhaps could be updated with a user replaceable pack? 73 Steve K9ZW
  • Lasse Moell
    Lasse Moell Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Not sure if this is a Flex design problem. Maestro is using a Dell Venue 8 Pro tablet. Could there be a way to get the tablet to start, a hidden boot switch maybe??
  • K1DLM
    K1DLM Member ✭✭
    edited September 2017
    Hmm.  I wonder if the internal battery they refer to is actually part of the Dell Tablet?  If so, the Dell tablet itself probably has a integrated charger.  Perhaps the stop-gap solution is just extending this charge port (USB?) externally?  
  • VK7WH Winston
    VK7WH Winston Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Just for what it is worth, I haven't used my Maestro for several months and it fired up straight away when I turned it on yesterday. Perhaps it may be just a faulty battery in your Maestro. 73 Winston.
  • Richard G7EIX
    Richard G7EIX Richard - EnglishmaninNC Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    RMA was issued, so it's getting boxed up tonight and heading back to Austin.
  • David Decoons, wo2x
    David Decoons, wo2x Member, Super Elmer Moderator
    edited May 2017
    My friend just had the same issue. If the Maestro is left too long and the internal battery completely discharges the power brick will not charge it.

    If it is under warranty it will require a trip back to Austin, contact support.
  • Richard G7EIX
    Richard G7EIX Richard - EnglishmaninNC Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    So I just packed up the Maestro. - found the original invoice in the box!   May 31st 2016!   Wow!   That was close!


  • Tim - W4TME
    Tim - W4TME Administrator, FlexRadio Employee admin
    edited May 2017
    There isn't a way to replace the display battery in the field by the user.
  • Jay -- N0FB
    Jay -- N0FB Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Thanks Tim for the direct confirmation of this. As this is a design flaw that I'm sure none of you anticipated, a warranty extension for those of us who put down a thousand bucks on a control console before Maestro was even shipping is not unreasonable. This extended warranty period (for this problem only) should continue until engineering provides a lasting solution and upgrade path (even if it is for pay). I would love to hear Gerald's thought on this.
  • Richard G7EIX
    Richard G7EIX Richard - EnglishmaninNC Member ✭✭
    edited June 2017
    I have to agree on this.   This scenario will likely rear its head for many a Maestro early adopter that bought, like me, on the basis of using it for WAN use with the then not imminent 2.0.      This is the reason my Maestro was sat on the shelf for so long.
  • Paul Christensen, W9AC
    Paul Christensen, W9AC Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    If there is indeed a hardware update path forthcoming, I would like to plead with FRS to utilize an internal DSP-generated CW sidetone instead of the quasi-square-wave sidetone of the WinKey chip.  Listening to the current CW sidetone is flat-out painful. 

    Paul, W9AC 
  • Paul, WB5AGF
    Paul, WB5AGF Member
    edited June 2020
    When my Maestro would not boot-up earlier this afternoon I phoned Austin and spoke with Dudley.

    Following Dudley's direction :

    - I plugged-in the external power supply (confirming that the green LED on the 'brick' was glowing) and then held-down the Maestro's Power Button for 60 seconds (Dudley had said "30 or 40 seconds" but I figured that 'a little more can't hurt')

    - leaving the Maestro plugged into the external power supply I set it aside (as Dudley had said to then leave it alone for 24 hours with the external PS connected)

    - about 5 minutes later, out of the corner of my eye (since I'd set the Maestro to the side), I caught a flicker (I thought at first it was either my imagination or a reflection off something)

    - I looked at the Maestro unit and its screen had come on showing the WiFi Network search screen (no EtherNet cable was plugged in).

    Since then my Maestro has 'played' like it should (and I'm going to leave it plugged-in for the next 24 hours to give the internal battery a chance to recharge).

    Dudley had explained that there needs to be a slight amount of charge remaining in the internal battery (not what a user can install inside the rear battery compartment but the internal battery which we can't access) for the Maestro to be able to boot-up. Dudley said that from what he's seen there is about a 50/50 chance that holding down the Power Button for an extended period of time, and then waiting 24 hours with the Maestro plugged into the external power source, will get the Maestro to power up (and then allow the internal battery to recharge). I was surprised (but pleased of cource) when my Maestro decided to 'wake-up' after only a few minutes.

    - Paul, WB5AGF
  • Mark Erbaugh
    Mark Erbaugh Member
    edited June 2017
    Paul, Thanks for the report. Hopefully, that may save other Maestro owners who end up in a similar situation. My Maestro had set unused and unpowered for several months until last week. Fortunately, it powered up without a hitch. That said, I think the power situation of the Maestro could be improved. In addition to the problem reported in this thread, I have noticed that if I leave the Maestro plugged into the shack 12v bus, the Maestro will power up whenever I turn on the supply, but not power down when I turn it off. Since I sometimes turn on the 12v supply to run radios other than the Flex, this is not a good solution for me. Currently, I leave the Maestro plugged into the power adapter that came with it, This is not a perfect solution either as the Maestro could power up on its own if there was a power interruption, but at least it should have power most of the time. I would really prefer to have a true power off state that would unaffected by external changes. Given the fragility of the internal battery, I wonder how long it will last when it is in constant charge mode. Does Flex have recommendations on proper battery maintenance for the Maestro?
  • David Decoons, wo2x
    David Decoons, wo2x Member, Super Elmer Moderator
    edited June 2017
    You should charge the Maestro every couple of months to insure the internal battery does not drop below the threshold where it will not power up. Dave wo2x
  • Richard G7EIX
    Richard G7EIX Richard - EnglishmaninNC Member ✭✭
    edited June 2017
    All this is great in an ideal world - plenty of space to leave items on DC power etc.  

    But my Maestro was sat on a shelf (with a bunch of other gear) waiting for a day when I had the time to play radio.   Sometimes that can be months.

    I should ideally be able to leave it on the shelf for 6 months and not worry about an internal battery.   Afterall, I invested in 4 battery packs for the thing that charge up overnight from dead.  But alas, I am scuppered by an internal battery belonging to a Dell tablet! 

    I know hams with gear that sits on shelves for years - they plug it in and off they go.     

    So, now I have to have a calendar reminder every couple of weeks.

    "Charge Maestro"

    Meh, it is what it is.   But my Maestro had less than 24 hours use on it and now it's in the shop!
  • K3SF
    K3SF Member ✭✭✭
    edited June 2017
    Does the Display unit of the 6400M/6600M has the same internal battery design/issue?  If it has similar internal battery arrangement will it be user replaceable?
  • Paul, WB5AGF
    Paul, WB5AGF Member
    edited June 2017
    When I spoke with Dudley yesterday (31 May 2017) I suggested that Flex consider bringing out wires from the internal battery to an externally accessible couple of tip jacks so that, if the internal  battery goes 'flat ', an external battery could be used to 'jump-start ' the Maestro and get it going (which would then allow the internal battery to recharge).

    Dudley didn't directly reply to my suggestion but I got the impression that Flex is considering ways to keep this situation from snowballing (I'm sure that Flex is not thrilled at the prospect of having a bunch of Maestros returning to Austin only to have their internal batteries charged so the units can be restarted).

    - Paul, WB5AGF
  • Jay -- N0FB
    Jay -- N0FB Member ✭✭
    edited June 2017
    I'm sure that Honda and other car companies didn't like having to recall millions of cars to replace airbags as they were defective.  Its called the cost of doing business.

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