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Battery packs not lasting as long

15 Sep 2016

If the battery packs do not seem to be lasting as long, some likely causes and solutions are as follows.

Even if you have the latest battery firmware installed, sometimes it still helps to reload it. This is particularly true if a battery is no longer being recognized in one slot, or swapping battery packs between slots seems to help. Reloading the battery firmware has shown increases in the battery capacity that is being recognized by the operating system (such as increasing run-time by 1-2 hours). The latest battery firmware and instructions for reloading it are provided at the following web page.

Battery firmware update 2

If the display backlight brightness is currently at 100 percent, this can significantly effect run-time. It may be tempting to increase the brightness to make it comparable to newer product models, though the default 75 percent brightness can add 1-2 hours run-time (if not more). Even just one level below fully bright can potentially provide a noticeable increase in run-time.

Many customers are now using the device in different ways than they were previously. An example is it was being used with a total station and now is being used for RTK GPS work. Such a switch can significantly effect run-time, like having Wifi turned on and connected continuously (such as for VRS corrections) can drain the batteries much quicker. Without having to go completely back to the previous way, using an integrated cellular modem or a Bluetooth DUN (Dial-Up Network) connection instead should not drain the batteries as quickly. If the way you are now using the device works well other than run-time, you may just want to purchase a travel charger and spare battery packs to swap in whenever necessary.

If a particular battery pack is no longer charging or being recognized in either battery slot, even after reloading the battery firmware, then you may just need to purchase a replacement battery.

If no battery is being recognized or will charge in one or both of the battery slots, even using a different or new wall charger, then a repair order may need to be submitted to replace the BQ or gas gauge chips on the main system board.

A bug was found in OS release 1.0.8 and earlier with the processor idle mode causing the system to freeze occasionally (mainly when the unit is sitting without suspending for a long time). To alleviate this issue, in OS release 1.1.5 and later we turned off processor idle mode to prevent such freezes from ever occurring. Though this did reduce overall run-time a bit (again mainly when the unit is sitting doing nothing without suspending for a long time). OS release 1.0.8 or earlier mainly requires the home screen update be installed to prevent such system freezing, but does not provide other updates as listed in release notes.