RapidRoad (ClockPort version) stopped to work

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Don't Panic. Please wash hands.
  • Hello,


    it seems that my RapidRoad (ClockPort version) stopped to work yesterday after I have connected USB stick into USB port. I pluged in the stick and whole computer froze. After restart it didn't want to boot anymore (Blizzard screen has been shown but in never starts to access HDD or FDD). So I switch it off and later have opened the case and try again to power it on just to see that LED on RR is off and Amiga still does not want to boot. After disconnecting RR from CP everything come back to normal (except that I obviosly have fried RR). One thing I noticed, RR became pretty warm for that short period of time when I was inspecting what is wrong, but I'm not sure how warm it usually gets when it has worked since I didn't inspect that ever. Since it was bought in September (07.09.2020.) I will of course send it back for repair or replacement but I just want to discuss here of potential reason why this happened and how to avoid it in the future. I really like to have USB on my Amiga for transfering files since I had so far no luck with any other method to do so. But if it will potentially break again just by inserting USB stick, that will be a big obstacle.


    My configuration (will state all that I have, maybe it help to diagnose the problem better):

    Amiga 1200 rev 1D.4 (recapped)

    CA-PSU

    Blizzard 1230 IV + FPU + 16MB RAM (jumper set to 60ns for memory access)

    RapidRoad ClockPort version

    Indivision AGA Mk3

    SD2IDE Adapter with 16GB SanDisk SD card in it

    KA60 Dual port IDE adapter (because it holds SD2IDE adapter nicelly on the left and fixes problem wiht IDE LED)

    Original FDD as DF0: (not recapped, it works normally, not sure this needs to be recapped)


    At the moment when RR has stopped to work I have following attached and running:

    Amiga mouse with laser upgrade from AmigaStore on mouse port

    RetroRadions ArcadeR joystick on game port

    Samsung TV (from 2009) connected to Indivision over HDMI cable

    Yamaha AV receiver connected through AUX port to Amiga audio ports


    RapidRoad was connected according to the instructions (yellow wire to the FDD screw). And everything worked perfectly until yesterday. I have transfered plenty of stuff between my PC and Amiga during last two months.


    I believe that have I put every detail here, regardless if it is important or not.


    Question, when sending unit back for repair, do I need to attach also the cables or is it enough just to return unit itself?

  • RapidRoad was connected according to the instructions (yellow wire to the FDD screw).

    If it was really the FDD screw and not the "bottom right" screw of the main board, then that's perfect. Many people use that "bottom right" screw near the CPU card connector, because it's easier to get to. However, it is not connected to GND if the upper shield is not in place.


    So at this point, your description confirms that there's nothing you did wrong. We will measure the "resistors of shame" of course; these burn rather quickly, giving us an easy way to tell if the unit was connected the right way round at all times.


    What we're doing since a few weeks is to add a protection circuit to every RapidRoad that leaves here - repaired or new - and continue to look at the statistics. Cases like this have dropped dramatically since the CA-PSU is on the market, so the general assumption "it's PSU related" is already confirmed. The next goal is to get such cases down to "zero", which we hope to achieve with the added protection circuit.


    Question, when sending unit back for repair, do I need to attach also the cables or is it enough just to return unit itself?

    AFAIR,this article tells you to include all cables, which will make it easier for us to exchange the whole unit. However, it's a RapidRoad, which we will repair "no matter what" to analyze the defect and have something to feed statistics with, so it's OK if you just send the unit itself.

  • If it was really the FDD screw and not the "bottom right" screw of the main board, then that's perfect. Many people use that "bottom right" screw near the CPU card connector, because it's easier to get to. However, it is not connected to GND if the upper shield is not in place.

    Yeah, I know. It was a FDD screw that I have connected it to. It wasn't super easy to connect it there but also it wasn't that hard.


    We will measure the "resistors of shame" of course; these burn rather quickly, giving us an easy way to tell if the unit was connected the right way round at all times.

    That's fine with me. It was connected as it should be from first (and only) install, red to the right on motherboard and red to the red mark on RR. And everyting worked fine until this last time.


    The next goal is to get such cases down to "zero", which we hope to achieve with the added protection circuit.

    That's cool to hear. Since I regurarly use USB stick as tranferring method for the file, I will be a good tester for this fixed and improved version. :)



    AFAIR,this article tells you to include all cables, which will make it easier for us to exchange the whole unit. However, it's a RapidRoad, which we will repair "no matter what" to analyze the defect and have something to feed statistics with, so it's OK if you just send the unit itself.

    OK, I will send it then without cables. I mean, it is not a problem for me to put cables in the box and sent everything. And I don't mind to get a new cables in that case, but since I already fold clockport cable to suit the location where I put RR inside my A1200, I don't see that some other user would appreciate if you sent him my used CP cable (it can be straighten but folds will be visible) and for me it is perfectly OK to just connect again this one that I have.


    I will pack RR and send it back next week between Monday and Wednesday and will provide you with tracking number. And thanks for the reply.

  • I have finally sent it back for repair. Didn't had time before this week to go to post office and do it. But OK, it's on the way to you. I have sent you tracking number in mail.

  • Just to post a comment as a conclusion. I received back repaired and patched RR device yesterday. It has been put back to my A1200 and works fine. So far, everything is good. I hope that patch will prevent any further problem. Thank you!

  • It's a different 3.3V regulator with extremely low drop (0.3V if I remember right), accounting for bad PSUs that don't regulate with cable and filter losses in mind (aka "no cable drop compensation"). Solid polymer caps are added to both the 5V and the 3.3V rails, further reducing the probability of the regulator to go into oscillation. The top plexi cover is drilled in two places, so the caps have the required room.


    So it's not all that complicated, but does require some soldering and mechanical skills.

  • would be interested in this too for both my rapid roads, perhaps you could sell a mod kit or offer an modification service. Hopefully you manage to navigate the brexit minefield. I've been trying to understand how we now purchase goods from our European neighbours and I was totally baffled by our government advice.

  • Hi, I have the same problem. Installed rappidroad clockport a1200. Added USB mouse worked fine. Inserted USB stick and computer freezes. After reboot rapid road is dead. How can I return product for repair? Thanks in advance.

  • Please describe *exactly*: what your setup looks like: Power supply, other expansions, exact spots where everything is connected. Please add pictures if you can (downsize is a good idea..).


    thanks!

  • Thanks for the quick reply. A1200, indivision mk3, vampire V2, new powersupply from amigastore. Tried without vampire no difference. Should there be burning a led light on the rapidroad? Because there is no light when I power up now. See picture. One side is with powerdown other with powerup. It worked with usb mouse for about 10 minutes and stopped when I inserted usb stick.

  • new powersupply from amigastore.

    Sigh. Yet another victim of false advertising. Amigastore is selling bad power supplies, and they have known it for years. Yet, they still continue to sell them. Read all about proper power supplies in our FAQ.


    Please fix that power supply problem before attempting any more expansion on that machine. You should send the PSU back for a refund, as it's plain not suitable for an Amiga.

  • What to do with the broken rapidroad?

    We're not making them any more, as there have been too many cases like this, but also cases of wrong grounding, too-long cables, clock port expanders and the like.


    If the unit is younger than 6 months, we have to repair it by law. If it's older than 6 months, we can opt not to do service on them - which I would very much prefer, as there are way too many factors out of my control, and testing/preparing a clock port device for compatibility with all the contraptions that are out there is plain impossible.