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  1. #1
    *Flashaholic* McGizmo's Avatar
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    Default HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Hi guys,
    This thread is intended for Rush (Martin) to introduce the HIVE McG converter and its parameters and options. Please wait for Rush to start the dialogue here. I am remaining ignorant on the means and method of programming this converter beyond "stock" for as long as I can and have no intention of becoming proficient to the point of offering a customized converter in addition to the stock offering.
    Build Prices .... some mods and builds (not 4 sale) "Nature can be cruel- but we don't have to be."~ Temple Grandin

  2. #2
    Flashaholic rush's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Hi folks,
    This thread is going to be the place for all discussion about the new driver / converter, called HiveLD. Thank you Don for the introduction!


    As Don has pointed out, he is providing and supporting the driver in its stock configuration, anything going beyond this should be directed to this thread (for now). I will be actively moderating this thread to answer questions.

    For all of you that want to make use of the ability to configure the driver, this will be the discussion ground!



    The HiveLD Firmware
    I am just going to give a quick summary of the possibilities that the setup mode of the driver is providing. For the complete documentation please see the web page that i have set up.

    >> HiveLD Firmware Web page<<

    This is obviously work in progress, i want to keep this web page as a central location for all information regarding the driver and update it regularly.


    Basic concept of the setup mode
    The setup mode works by visually signaling the settings and their value. You change the settings by turning off the light during certain time frames that are indicated visually as well. So there is no tools needed and you can load different settings on the go if you want.


    The configuration settings include
    • Number of brightness levels
    • Each brightness level can configured individually
    • Use brightness level memory or not
    • Output current all brightness levels scale to (Default 1400 mA, hardware maximum 2200 mA for the HiveLD-P in the Aqua lights)
    • Threshold levels for the high temperature and low voltage output reduction
    • Three memory presets to store and recall a set of the above individual settings

    Last edited by rush; 10-16-2013 at 11:46 AM.

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* BenChiew's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    On the initial power up (first contact), does it start from High, Low or memory?

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* London Lad's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    .....
    Last edited by London Lad; 10-16-2013 at 10:28 AM.


  5. #5
    Flashaholic* BenChiew's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Rush. Will the converter handle an Unprotected IMR18650 battery?

  6. #6
    *Flashaholic* PoliceScannerMan's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Hearing this was the last push to submit my order. Being able to customize the driver is awesome. Low lows, good long running mediums, and bright hghs.

    Speaking of which, what is the MAX current allowed to be programmed??
    In no order: HDS/Malkoff/OVEREADY/McGizmo/Sky Lumen -PSM

  7. #7
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    archimedes's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Very much looking forward to the details of this new driver, and particularly its programmability ...

    Voltage range? Drive current? Overdischarge protection?
    Last edited by archimedes; 10-16-2013 at 08:32 AM.
    ... is the archimedes peak

  8. #8
    *Flashaholic* gunga's Avatar
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    Default HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    If I'm reading correctly, there are 21 levels at 100mA each, but what is the lowest low?

    Also,what is the diameter of the driver?
    Last edited by gunga; 10-17-2013 at 03:33 PM.

  9. #9
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Wow ! Great Driver ! Congrats ! Is it PWM or Constant Current ? Thanks for any info..
    Last edited by hjdca; 10-20-2013 at 10:35 PM.

  10. #10
    Flashaholic rush's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Gunga,
    The driver diameter is 19 mm.

    The LED current is dictated by two variables:
    1. The maximum or 100% output current that the driver is calibrated to (see setting 16 of the setup). This value can be set in 100 mA increments. In the stock configuration this is set to about 1400 mA.
    2. The actual brightness level (1 through 21). These brightness levels are setting the output current relative to the above maximum output current. If you look at the graph on page 8 of the manual you can see the current in % of the maximum output current that each of the 21 brightness levels will produce. The 21 brightness levels are scaled logarithmically, that means in visual intensity the step from one level to the next is about the same. For the current this means increasing step sizes the higher the output goes.

    What this means for your question: Brightness level 1 is about 0.3% of the maximum output current. In case of the stock 1400 mA maximum output this is about 7 mA. This is however close to the absolute minimum output current that can be achieved with the driver, so the lowest brightness level will not be much lower even if the maximum output current was calibrated to only a few 100 mA.


    This leads me to hjdca's question:
    Generally the output is true current regulated, there is no PWM in the output with one EXCEPTION: For LED currents smaller than 20 mA the driver does resort to PWM. Otherwise the output would not be visually stable. This PWM uses a frequency of 400 Hz, which you should not see as long no quick movements happen. This was a necessary compromise due to the limits of the hardware, one that hopefully is not going to be a problem for most. Again, this only applies to the lowest output levels below 20 mA.

    Thank you for the feedback, i will update the HiveLD web page soon with some of the questions that came up so far.

  11. #11
    *Flashaholic* gunga's Avatar
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    Default HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Wow. Very inpressve. Need this driver for use in other lights too. Amazing.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Thanks for the info ! Again, Very impressive driver !

    After purchasing an Aqua Light, how difficult would it be to mod the driver to dramatically increase the "maximum output" ? Thanks for any info..
    Last edited by hjdca; 10-19-2013 at 11:58 AM.

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    Flashaholic rush's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Thank you for the cheers guys!

    Obviously the learning curve will be different for everybody in regards to the setup mode. But i think that if you follow the examples in the manual closely you will not take too long to master the procedure of getting to the specific setting that you want to change and altering its value. For increasing the calibrated maximum output, it is just that one setting that has to be changed.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    I have a question- Given the 2.5v minimum voltage and 1400ma max in stock form, will this behave and run properly on a single primary 123 cell and a dummy cell in a pinch? Runtime obviously takes a hit, but both v and ma seem doable on a single 123 cell...

  15. #15
    Flashaholic rush's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Looking at that hardware minimum input voltage of 2.5 V it would seem as if the driver could be run from a single primary lithium cell.

    However with the over discharge protection for Li-Ion rechargeables the driver uses, the output would be reduced to the absolute minimum if you connect a lithium primary with a cell voltage of around 3.0 V. Even if you were to reduce the low voltage threshold setting to minimal (setting 13 of the setup) you would still only get a lower output most probably.
    But there is another problem in reality. I have done a test with an oldish Surefire CR123 (open cell voltage 3.1 V). Due to the inrush current when connecting cell and driver, the input voltage drops below 2.5 V which results in just a low flicker of the LED. I don’t know if a fresh cell would actually hold the voltage level enough for the driver to start up properly, but i wouldn’t count on it.

    The bottom line is that do need a Li-ion rechargeable (ICR or IMR) for the HiveLD-P driver in the Aqua lights. You could however resort to a 16350 and an adapter if you really had to.

  16. #16
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    Default

    Thanks calflash, that's good info
    I need to pick up one of those pens, they seem the neatest way to connect the bridge in the absence of fine soldering skills.
    Cheers, Matt

    Sent from my SM-N9005 using Tapatalk

  17. #17

    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Mattp- the pen was super easy - a little high priced in my opinion but super easy.

    Ok. It's dark. I'm having fun. Bridging the gap is worth it.

    It's not that helpful but all I really have to compare it to is a makai 6v xm-l and a zebralight sc600 mII. The Makai still out-throws the Aqua Ram on 2200mA but the beam on the Aqua is so much larger that it makes it more useful and the throw advantage of the Makai is not as extreme as I thought it might be for distance. The Aqua Ram has more throw than the sc600 but covers almost as much flood area. The Aqua just doesn't have as smooth or wide of a flood beam as the sc600. So the Aqua beam at 2200 is a nice balance between the two lights I can compare it to... for what that's worth.

    Boosting the max current to 2200 has another plus. Brightness level three seems to be about as bright as brightness level 4 was on the stock setup. So it's almost like I have a three speed converter with an additional mode - TURBO! If only I could put a turbo on my Makai and Haiku!

  18. #18

    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    I can't put it down now. This driver is fantastic. Don't like mode memory? Do you want your light to always start on high? No problem. Do you want your light to always start on low? No problem.

    Want a five level bank? Want a camping/hiking/diving etc. bank? Want a single mode bank that only comes on in the low mode for waking up in the middle of the night? Or a single mode for some other specific task at work? No problem. The presets are a really cool feature.

    I've never yet owned a Spy - I hope to someday. Until then, this might be the most versatile light I've ever used when it comes to its output.


    sorry for thinking out loud - enthusiasm is bubbling over right now.

  19. #19
    *Flashaholic* PoliceScannerMan's Avatar
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    Default HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    That is awesome!! How low is the lowest low??

    I didn't know it had different banks for user modes. Sweet!

    Gonna try to sneak out of here today to get my pen.
    In no order: HDS/Malkoff/OVEREADY/McGizmo/Sky Lumen -PSM

  20. #20
    Flashaholic* ShineOnYouCrazyDiamond's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    I am curious about the PWM in the low levels. The frequency is pretty low and I am concerned with some flicker. What do you guys think so far?

  21. #21
    *Flashaholic* PoliceScannerMan's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Quote Originally Posted by ShineOnYouCrazyDiamond View Post
    I am curious about the PWM in the low levels. The frequency is pretty low and I am concerned with some flicker. What do you guys think so far?
    Sean, I am picking up my pen today, so hopefully I will figure out the programming tonight after my kids go to bed. I will post here with what I find. If calflash doesn't beat me to it.
    In no order: HDS/Malkoff/OVEREADY/McGizmo/Sky Lumen -PSM

  22. #22

    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    The banks are called presets and it looks like program modes 2,3 and 6-15 can be stored on one of the three presets. The presets are the first mode once in programming. Momentary options, the number of levels, the power of the levels, thermal settings voltage settings and other options can all be customized for each preset.


    The lowest low is lower than my haiku 119V. I'd guess it at the 1-2 lumen range??? I am curious to find an easier way to determine the drive level from rush. Brightness level 1 of 21 is "x" percent of max current setting. What's "x"?


    As far as pwm, I am not too good at detecting it. I tried last night but couldn't see it very well by sweeping it across the wall. Maybe PSM can answer that a little better.

  23. #23
    *Flashaholic* kaichu dento's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Quote Originally Posted by calflash View Post
    As far as pwm, I am not too good at detecting it. I tried last night but couldn't see it very well by sweeping it across the wall. Maybe PSM can answer that a little better.
    The best ways to look for PWM is to wave your outstretched fingers in front of the light, or shine it on some trickling water. If what you're seeing looks like smooth blurring then there's no concern, but if it freezes the drops then PWM rate is too low.
    Marduke - Solitaire...I've seen matches which are brighter AND have a longer runtime. 光陰矢の如し

  24. #24
    Flashaholic* London Lad's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    I tried running a protected battery till the Mule switched off and I didn't notice any flicker even when it dropped to the lowest output prior to doing dead.

    I have to admit I wasn't specifically looking for it, just wanted to see the step down and warnings.


  25. #25
    *Flashaholic* PoliceScannerMan's Avatar
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    Default HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Jumper has been filled.



    Going to try and program later.
    In no order: HDS/Malkoff/OVEREADY/McGizmo/Sky Lumen -PSM

  26. #26
    *Flashaholic* PoliceScannerMan's Avatar
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    Default HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Ok I am doing something wrong. For the life of me I can't get into program mode.
    In no order: HDS/Malkoff/OVEREADY/McGizmo/Sky Lumen -PSM

  27. #27
    Flashaholic* London Lad's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Quote Originally Posted by PoliceScannerMan View Post
    Ok I am doing something wrong. For the life of me I can't get into program mode.
    I couldn't get a pen to work so I soldered the link and got in straight away.


  28. #28
    *Flashaholic* PoliceScannerMan's Avatar
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    Default HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Quote Originally Posted by London Lad View Post
    I couldn't get a pen to work so I soldered the link and got in straight away.
    Thank you. So it isn't me.

    Calflash, did you use the Caig pen from RadioShack? That's the one I'm using. It's blue and white.
    In no order: HDS/Malkoff/OVEREADY/McGizmo/Sky Lumen -PSM

  29. #29

    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    Yep - Caig labs circuit writer precision conductive ink dispenser.

    mine looks a little more silver than yours though. Dumb question but did you shake your pen enough? It took a lot of shaking for the ball in my pen to move and mix up the ink. I practiced with the pen a little before touching the converter, made a puddle on a piece of paper, and dabbed the solder gap after dipping the pen tip in the puddle. It looks like a very thin layer of solder/ silver ink.
    Last edited by calflash; 10-26-2013 at 12:54 PM.

  30. #30
    *Flashaholic* PoliceScannerMan's Avatar
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    Default Re: HIVE McG converter used in the Aqua line of lights.

    I will take it off then retry, thanks!
    In no order: HDS/Malkoff/OVEREADY/McGizmo/Sky Lumen -PSM

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