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  1. #1
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    Return-To-Home Malfunctions With Latest Firmware

    First, I have to say the Aton is not my first Quadcopter. For example, I have a lot of experience with the Alias. Second, I had flown the Aton for twenty plus flights in Film and Fast Modes without incident using the original Firmware. I do not have a camera installed. Then I decided to update the Firmware (3.3.2.7) and install a Micro SD card. That's when everything went South.

    Today the flying conditions were near perfect so I took the Aton to my favorite field. I took her up in Fast Mode and was flying around. Everything seemed ok. I decided to check The RTH function. When I hit the button it starting flying away from me, not towards me. When I realized it was not going to turn around I hit the Air Brake to disengage the RTH. Luckily that worked and I safely brought it back. I turned it off and started over with a new battery. BTW, both Traxxas batteries were fully charged. Once again I was flying around in Fast Mode. I was performing twisters using the Rudder and Aileron when it started behaving strange like it had a mind of it's own so I hit the RTH button. The Aton went straight down and crashed landing upside down. She hit the show and bent one blade so I consider myself lucky. That was enough flying for the day. At this point I have no confidence in the new Firmware and plan to re-install the original Firmware ASAP.

    Finally, I did have a Micro SD Card installed.
    Last edited by 06redssr; 02-02-2016 at 02:37 PM. Reason: error

  2. #2
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    Wow this is really a shame. I'm disappointed that Traxxas is not responding to these threads much at all. I keep reading these which seem to pop everyday and I get more and more nervous to fly mine. I know Traxxas has been really helpful repairing the broken parts but we need to get some solid answers on what could be causing this. I mean a simple "we know what's going on and we are working on it" would go a long way.

  3. #3
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    Hello,

    Sorry you have that problem. I hope you will contact Traxxas and send the logs in.

    Larry

  4. #4
    Traxxas Employee TireSlinger's Avatar
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    06 - I just sent you a PM.
    Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt.

  5. #5
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    I have also a crash with the new firmware, the log files had been sent on Friday to Traxxas, unfortunately not yet received any message. No confirmation that the mail has arrived ...
    my tread was closed ....
    I am very unhappy with the service ...

  6. #6
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    The Logs were sent to Tire Slinger. I hope they help.

  7. #7
    RC Qualifier Canuckvoip's Avatar
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    Me too. I'm not one to pull the fire alarm bell, but I sure hope they can find the issue for all our sake.

  8. #8
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    Canuckvoip, I just removed the latest Firmware and installed the original Firmware that came with the Aton. I plan to fly later this week (rain and winds forecast for Wednesday and Thursday). I'll post how it performs.

  9. #9
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    following this one too

  10. #10
    RC Qualifier Canuckvoip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 06redssr View Post
    Canuckvoip, I just removed the latest Firmware and installed the original Firmware that came with the Aton. I plan to fly later this week (rain and winds forecast for Wednesday and Thursday). I'll post how it performs.
    I can't remember for sure, but I do think that there was a report about malfunction on original firmware. That was early though... not too many had been sold yet.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canuckvoip View Post
    I can't remember for sure, but I do think that there was a report about malfunction on original firmware. That was early though... not too many had been sold yet.
    I think you are correct sir

  12. #12
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    IMPORTANT UPDATE: Return-To-Home Malfunctions With Latest Firmware

    My original Return-To-Home Malfunctions post created on 2-2-2016 discusses problems with the Aton when I upgraded the Firmware to version 3.3.2.7. I concluded by saying I was going back to the original Firmware and check it out. So I loaded version 3.3.rc7.34 and went flying today. I flew in both Film and Fast modes performing all types of maneuvers with no issues. Everything seemed good. Then I decided to check the RTH feature. The results were not good. On two separate occasions the RTH malfunctioned. However the malfunction was different than before. When I hit the RTH button the Aton started coming back to me. Everything looked good. Then things went South. When it was approximately two hundred feet away it started to accelerate and climb in altitude. When it got directly overhead the Aton stopped and then took off at a fast pace in a Northerly direction. When I realized it wasn't coming back I hit the Airbrake to disarm the RTH. Thankfully it worked and I was able to bring her safely back home. I remember the Xmitter was beeping quickly when the Aton malfunctioned and stopped when I hit the Airbrake. Since RTH puts the Aton into Film mode I believe the beeping indicated it was climbing. I don't know if any lights were blinking since I was concentrating on getting the Aton out of trouble. I did have a microSD installed so there are some Test Logs that can be reviewed.

    At this point I don't know what the heck is going on but it's very frustrating. I know a lot of guys don't have any issues but there are a number of guys who have experienced problems. Can we trust the Aton to perform correctly all the time? Remember, it can be a dangerous weapon. With all the problems you wonder if Traxxas did enough Beta testing before they released it for the Xmas season. Just saying.

  13. #13
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    Thank you very much for the heads up brother! Offcourse I hope you get it sorted, and I'm glad you were able to safe the quad..

    Hmm I now feel reluctant to upgrade to 3.3.2.7.. (I run it on 3.3.2.5 at the moment)

    @Traxxas: In my opinion a (firmware) update should come with release notes....

  14. #14
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    I still haven't see any clear pattern with regard to any firmware version being less reliable than other, but it might be so.

    The R2H issues I've had so far are all about altitude gain. I haven't had it go in the wrong direction yet.

    So far, when mine misbehaves on R2H, it has done it from the moment I pressed the button.

    Which mode were you in when you pressed R2H? Do you know?

    Thx,

    Larry

  15. #15
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    This isn't exactly confirmed. The FC in the Aton is is a lot of quads and Multirotors.

  16. #16
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    What's not confirmed?

  17. #17
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    Larry, both times it happened I was in Fast Mode.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by 06redssr View Post
    Larry, both times it happened I was in Fast Mode.
    Me too. So far. I didn't get to get out today, but soon I'm going to spend a battery just testing various R2H scenarios.

    Larry

  19. #19
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    Interesting. Did Traxxas get back to you on the original logs? What did they say? I'll be glad to analyze your logs from today if you can host them somewhere like dropbox. Just PM the location to me.

    @DutchRC, there are release notes for the updates.

  20. #20
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    Wolf, Traxxas is still looking at the Flight Logs I supplied using the latest Firmware (3.3.2.7). However they did mention I may want to Recalibrate My Compass and record more Flight Logs for them to review. I decided to check out the old Firmware first. I'm not sure Traxxas would want me to email the Flights Logs to anyone other than Traxxas Support. If someone on the Forum knows otherwise let me know.

  21. #21
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    Starting to wonder if the gps coordinates logged as a starting point when you fire it up somehow gets changed during flight.

  22. #22
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    Based on what you described, compass drift could cause the problem you are seeing. Are you flying in extreme latitudes or very cold temps?

  23. #23
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    What are extreme latitudes?

  24. #24
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    Wolf, I live in New Jersey and have been told by out-of-state people that everything is extreme here!! LOL. The temperature was 40-50F.

  25. #25
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    Did you get this figured out? I would like to know thanks in advance

  26. #26
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    VisaliaHobbies, see New Post (IMPORTANT UPDATE: Return-To-Home Malfunctions With Latest Firmware) for more info. But to summarize, No Solution Yet! I'm currently trying Firmware 3.3.2.5 with some success. More testing needed.

  27. #27
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    visaliahobbies, just for balance, the RTH features, including the geofence and lost TX fail safes, has worked flawlessly for me, and many others. This seems to be a problems a few owners have experienced but doesn't appear to be a general widespread problem with the Aton or the latest firmware (or any firmware release) as the title of his thread might imply.

  28. #28
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    PRGeno, your certainly entitled to your opinion but consider this. The reason there have been so many Firmware releases (3.3.rc7.34, 3.3.2.2, 3.3.2.4, 3.3.2.5, 3.3.2.7) in a relatively short period of time is primarily to fix Bugs, or in other words Performance Problems. There have been numerous problems reported on this Forum to back that up. And you have no idea how many Aton owners who are experiencing problems are not part of this Forum. Take a look at the X-Maxx Forum and see how many problems have been reported. A lot of guys are very upset. Both products were released for the Xmas season. Looks like more Beta testing should have been done on each product before release but that would have affected 2015 sales.

  29. #29
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    sometimes, bugs aren't caught until there are thousands of people using a product.. look at Apple and Microsoft, they both release software updates constantly. most of them are bug related..

    the more software dependent a product becomes, the more software bugs there will be. I have 2014 Jeep GC and the radio and modules constantly have software updates, some of them are very important, some are not.
    Traxxas please sell kits!

  30. #30
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    06redssr,

    I didn't state my opinion, I stated my experience. While I have no doubt the people reporting problems are in fact having problems, I want folks to know that not everyone is having those problems.

    As far as the firmware updates are concerned, there isn't a piece of software ever written, or is going to be written, that doesn't have the need for bug fixes, feature enhancements, and could do well with an update. It's great to see Traxxas is committed to updating their firmware & software on a timely basis.

    There always is and always will be marketing pressure to deliver products into the marketplace. There is no way to test every aspect of a product in all potential situations. Some things simply don't show up in testing until the real world presents itself.

    Now here is a statement of my opinion: the Aton is a very good product that will only get better.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by 06redssr View Post
    PRGeno, your certainly entitled to your opinion but consider this. The reason there have been so many Firmware releases (3.3.rc7.34, 3.3.2.2, 3.3.2.4, 3.3.2.5, 3.3.2.7) in a relatively short period of time is primarily to fix Bugs, or in other words Performance Problems. There have been numerous problems reported on this Forum to back that up. And you have no idea how many Aton owners who are experiencing problems are not part of this Forum. Take a look at the X-Maxx Forum and see how many problems have been reported. A lot of guys are very upset. Both products were released for the Xmas season. Looks like more Beta testing should have been done on each product before release but that would have affected 2015 sales.
    FYI, Traxxas released 2 updates not 5. Also, Aton was not released for the Christmas season. I got my email the week of Christmas and it was not in stores then. Most stores didn't start selling until well after Jan 1.

    There are lots of Atons in the air with a relatively small number of issues reported. I understand your frustration but I'm sure Traxxas will help you thru the issue. Did the compass calibration not help?

  32. #32
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    Wolf, I have not tried the Compass Calibration yet because I had success with version 3.3.2.5 and want to test more as soon as the weather allows it. I don't want to combine changes.

    PS: Even though Traxxas officially released 3 (initial and two more) to the user they did indeed have others in between.

  33. #33
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    I'd like to offer a little information and advice. I hold 2 degrees in computer science and though I'm not terribly experienced with quads I have flown fixed wing rc aircraft for quite a while and I'm a private pilot. I also worked on jets in the Marine Corps for many years.

    Software issues will always crop up. Updates aren't always about bugs or flaws. Sometimes it is discovered that there is a better way to accomplish a task. Other times features are added or modified. Firmware in particular can be challenging because you're setting registers in a chip or chip set by writing directly to them. And any time you see an "rc" in a software version number, be aware that it stands for "release candidate". It's not the finished product, but rather a final beta intended for testing.

    As for the concerns about combining changes and calibration, after any serious malfunction or firmware update every component that can be calibrated should be calibrated. You're not combining changes, you're establishing the baseline of proper function of the component calibrated. If your compass doesn't know which way North is, it won't go North. This applies to full sized aircraft as well. If a system fails calibration the aircraft should not be flown. Bottom line: Calibrate after any major hardware or software modification or malfunction. Then re-calibrate on a regular basis (at least once a month for something as easy as this). It doesn't cost anything, doesn't take very long and is too easy to do to not do it. And it may reveal a problem before you damage your bird.

  34. #34
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    06, I read your other post too and added some comments. I'm kind of repeating here, but I think the information is something that would benefit you greatly. First, don't ever install software or firmware that has "rc" in the version number. That "rc" stands for "release candidate". It's intended for testing in the final stages of beta and is not ready for prime time. The other thing that you mentioned in the other thread is that you didn't calibrate your compass. By all means calibrate everything that can be calibrated any time you make any major hardware or software (firmware) changes or experience serious malfunction. And then re-calibrate on a regular basis. You REALLY want to see those components pass a calibration before you fly after any of the conditions I just mentioned. Any component that fails to pass calibration should be an automatic no go until it is resolved.

  35. #35
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    CuttinEJ, good feedback! Thanks!

  36. #36
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    CuttinEJ, good Feedback! Thanks!

  37. #37
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    So we should calibrate everything after every firmware update is what you're saying right?

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slono View Post
    So we should calibrate everything after every firmware update is what you're saying right?
    Guess it couldn't hurt. Makes sense to me.

  39. #39
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    What gets me guys is why doesn't Traxxas mention that in the Firmware Update Instruction???

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by 06redssr View Post
    What gets me guys is why doesn't Traxxas mention that in the Firmware Update Instruction???
    It could be because that's not actually the problem. It very well MAY be part of the problem but at this point many of us can only speculate.

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