The Pyra Puzzle

Discussion in 'Pyra News' started by EvilDragon, Dec 14, 2014.

  1. EvilDragon

    EvilDragon Administrator Staff Member

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    Whew, I can't understand so much time has passed again already since I did any newspost - time sure flies when you got a lot of work to do!

    So, anyways, here's today's update... I hope I don't forget anything, as there's plenty to tell you.

    1. The Nubs

    Well, as mentioned last time:

    We'll order a bit more than 10,000 of the current Nubs so we got enough for the first 5000 Pyras.

    After that, we can either use the smaller ones, have high enough order quantities that the current nubs are being produced again or find someone else to produce them (as mentioned, it's basically just a magnet that moves around - no electronics inside).

    If the first 5000 Pyras sell fast, we can easily order high enough quantities of the nubs to continue their production.

    If they sell slower, we've got plenty of time to find a replacement

    So either way, we'll find a solution after that.

    One good thing: The smaller nub would fit out of the box - the height form of the pin is EXACTLY the same - so the case wouldn't need to be modified if we'd use that.

    (You can see that in the following pictures):

    Nubs1.JPG Nubs2.JPG

    I'll test the small one myself on Tuesday, but I don't think we'd want that - the travel distance really is too small.

    2. A puzzling experience

    The PCB layout was actually more work than Nikolaus expected.

    A LOT more work. Keeping the PCB down to four layers and fitting everything into the small space of the PCB is a complex puzzle.

    Nevertheless, each day, less issues are left. And he's still positive that we can get finished, unpopulated PCB just before christmas.

    This means though that we won't get a populated one before christmas (unless GC wants to work on December 24th, but I doubt that), but shortly after christmas.

    Still a huge step - and still the most complicated thing in the whole Pyra-Creation process.

    After that, it's time to layout the CPU PCB - but that's easy compared to the mainboard, as there's more space (and layers), so that should work out a lot faster.

    Want an example of the puzzles Nikolaus has to work on each day?

    Here you go:

    pcb.jpg

    Inside of that picture are at least 3 major and 8 small rule infringements. If we keep it like that, the PCB could not be produced reliably, would get shortcircuits or similar issues.

    Moving traces around could lead to other rule infringements - so this is quite a puzzle (high-level Sokoban, eh?)

    Each issue needs about 5 - 30 minutes to solve, so it's possible, just takes a loooot of time.

    And the more you solve, the more complicated it gets for the remaining ones... fun.

    Someone should create a puzzle game on the Pandora based on that :D

    3. The case

    According to the case designer, I should receive the case design files with all requested changes tomorrow.

    I won't believe it until I get it (as it usually ALWAYS takes longer than expected), but it shouldn't take much longer.

    The battery we'll use will probably be a bit wider than the Pandora one, so the case needs a bit of a change here.

    The Stylus will probably get a tiny bit thinner and all four screws will be hidden inside the battery compartment (which is nice).

    With a small adapter you can also use a Pandora battery, which is great as well.

    I should get two different versions of the case with different shoulder button designs.

    I'll let you know and show you renderings once I get the design files, that's for sure :)

    4. AC Adaptor and LCD Cables

    Fatih is looking for various AC Adaptors. Basically, it's a normal USB plug (with 2A) with replaceable plug, similar to the Pandora (so it works with EU, UK, US and AU plugs).

    There are various manufacturers for that and we'll get different samples for testing.

    The LCD Cable design has been finished as well and Fatih is getting a quotation for it.

    Each trace is wider than on Pandora's cable, the traces are redundant and there's a bit more space to the edge. Also, all edges are rounded - which prevents tears directly at the edges (which was an issue with a lot of broken Pandora cables as well).

    The cable also doesn't have any electronics on, so it will be a LOT cheaper (Pandora's cable was 10 EUR production cost each).

    These enhancements should reduce the risk of breaking LCD cables to a minimum (of course, you can never reduce that to 0 - everything can break in the world).

    5. Software

    We now added key signing to our repository, tweaked the scripts a bit more and are now able to create working rootfs to our likings.

    If anyone got an OMAP5 devboard: I'll post a link and instructions on how to install it soon, so anyone with a devboard can try it out and help us improving the default setup and tools.

    I THINK that's all for now - but as mentioned, so much happened, so I might've forgotten something - but feel free to ask me if you have any other questions.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 14, 2014
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  2. slimeycat

    slimeycat Member

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    Wonderful update.  Hopefully we'll get the first production runs by Easter!!
     
  3. TrashyMG

    TrashyMG Sarcasm Dispenser Staff Member

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    Hey I'm an anyone that has an OMAP5 devboard!
     
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  4. Hồng Thất Công

    Hồng Thất Công Đả Cẩu Bổng Pháp

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    What's so special about Christmas?  Make it New Year's!

    Also Ziz can create that PCB puzzle game for the Pandora :D
     
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  5. slaeshjag

    slaeshjag ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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    Why not just port KiCad and work on some real project? There's a puzzle! :p
     
  6. ssokolow

    ssokolow Member

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    Have you considered a PSP-style "transformer in the middle of the cable with the replaceable AC side attached using an IEC 60320 connector" design instead of the Pandora's wall wart design? (To quote the AVGN, "Have these, not these!")


    I've been having trouble finding a suitably cheap source for the little half-foot-long "fit multiple wall warts into a power bar" breakout cables which ships to Canada. (The "right-angle adapter for a wall outlet behind furniture" version would also work, but they're at least equally hard to find at a good price)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 14, 2014
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  7. fusion_power

    fusion_power Advanced Member

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    I thought the big (and more simple) Main PCB was already finished. Well, if the "Simple" one needs so much time, the CPU-PCB could be the real issue, of ocurse I hope not. ^^"

    I'm a little bit confused because you say that the smaller (but more dense and coplex) CPU PCB is actualy simpler, even with more layers than the larger Mainboard?

    Hm, took longer than expected, indeed. Especialy if you remember that they use an existing case as template, they not even started from 0. Let's hope they know what they are doing.

    I was sure you wanted to use a simple round cable in combination with an separate decoder chip in the lid, so no flat ribbon would be needed at all.
     
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  8. comradekingu

    comradekingu Glowing ember

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    Eight bridges of Königsberg !

                                    Pandora nub            GCW-zero nub              3DS nub           Old hall effect                 New hall effect/replacement

    Travel                              ±1.3mm                      ±2.0mm              ±2.5mm                 ±2.0mm                       ±1.0mm

    Comparably the smaller (new) hall effect is closer to the original pandora nub, which when it works, is the best.

    I dont consider more travel to be a bonus, but it remains to be tested thoroughly if too little can be an issue. I dont think so since the IBM nubs worked fine.

    My favourite is the smaller nub for its structural rigidity, my thoughts on it here

    a potential downside is that it doesnt have legs underneath it to go through-hole on.  But it has the same 4 solder-down smd points.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 8, 2016
  9. Mr_Loon

    Mr_Loon Can't Remember

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    It might be worth considering selling the official charger as an extra, I've already got 3 USB plugs that could be used to charge the Pyra, so don't really need another one, bet I'm not the only one in this boat.
     
  10. slaeshjag

    slaeshjag ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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    Keep in mind that normal phone chargers usually can't provide 2 A, so it'll be slower if it can charge at all :p
     
  11. Linux-SWAT

    Linux-SWAT Hardcore Member

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    Nice news !
     
  12. matzesu

    matzesu Hardcore Member

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    Galaxy Note user heare (thats way i ditnt have a Problem whit the Pyra Sice as Phone..)


    I can remember its USB Charger have lot more Curent as a normal USB Charger..


    I hope the Pyra to use a Cable simular to curent used in our smartphones so i can use the long cable i use for my note 2..


    And i also ditnt understand the Part whit the CPU Layoat...


    Global Components will Cut and Print the CPU Board bevore Chrismass, and when the Chrissmass Vacations are over, they would put the Elektronics on the Board..


    Then whe have a Main Board and the CPU Board, which is simular to the Defboard..


    Thats all i understand, but whats whit the rest: layoating the board which is easer than on the Big Board??


    Or was this Part the thing where they put the Chips on the Board..
     
  13. Natsu

    Natsu Advanced Member

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    How does those new super fast chargers work? Maybe the Pyra can get that.
     
  14. Glyph Reader

    Glyph Reader Member

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    The main board is two layers, while the CPU PCB is several layers (can't remember off the top of my head).  Less layers is cheaper and faster to print, but does not has as much room to work with, hence the "puzzles" that ED mentions.  

    The CPU PCB has less on it, as well as more layers to work with.  As a result, it will take little time when compared to the main PCB. 

    -Glyph Reader
     
  15. EvilDragon

    EvilDragon Administrator Staff Member

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    Some things that should not be confused:

    1. The main PCB is simpler in production (almost no SMD parts, less layers, etc.) but that doesn't mean it's simpler to be designed :)

    2. The SCHEMATICS were finished in my last post, the layout was ALMOST. But the last few % always need the most work.

     
    Well, they were waiting for physical dummys to continue working on the case as well as the last measurements for LCD PCB, Battery Sample, etc.

    They didn't want to work for a few hours and then have to wait until we send the next details, the wanted to finish everything in one go once we got everything (which is totally understandable).

    It also doesn't make sense changing the case and then changing it again after we decided to use different components, etc.

    That's why it was in pause mode until we had all our specs set.

     Yes, if possible. But it isn't at that resolution, only at lower ones - or with a delay for encoding / decoding as well as higher power usage.

    We only have half of the traces we need for the Pandora already with an improved cable.

    That should easily work.
     
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  16. Silent-Hunter

    Silent-Hunter Hardcore Member

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    Any news on the pricing and the price difference between the WiFi only and 4G versions?
     
  17. EvilDragon

    EvilDragon Administrator Staff Member

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    Nope, won't happen before we finish the PCB layouting and request the quote from GC, which won't happen before the prototyping.
     
  18. dflatline

    dflatline Member

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    He is saying that the planning/decisions of where the chips will be on the CPU board will be easier and quicker than it was for the mainboard.
     
  19. Silent-Hunter

    Silent-Hunter Hardcore Member

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    OK. I look forward to finding out, because I've got ~$700.
     
  20. Ziggurat

    Ziggurat Still Fresh

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    Is the 4G chip going on a daughter board that is user installable?
     

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