PinePhone replacement board won't stop vibrating
#1
As the title suggests, I got the new replacement boards that were on sale for ubports/braveheart users. I installed it, and now it vibrates when it turns on and continues to vibrate indefinitely. As it happens, I can actually boot mobian just fine off of the sd card. It just vibrates, regardless of what it is or isn't booting.

To confirm whether this was an installation mistake or not, I pulled out and put the board back in several times, making sure I got all the connectors. As far as I'm aware, the proximity sensor is installed correctly, as there is no red light. I went back and re-installed the old board just to be sure, and it works fine (although the touch screen wasn't working, but that might be because of some other factors; I dunno). 

To some, I suppose that could be a feature, but it's just kind of strange. I do have a tendency to be a little to ginger with my electronics, so, maybe, I pushed one of the pins in while sticking the board in the chassis? Maybe something's short. I've screwed in the frame but that didn't make a difference.
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#2
This old thread should show what bit of the hardware is involved. It’s usually been about a wire getting pinched, but may not be in your case.
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#3
(02-25-2021, 11:55 AM)desca Wrote: This old thread should show what bit of the hardware is involved. It’s usually been about a wire getting pinched, but may not be in your case.

No, I don't think so. The wires from the haptic feedback thingy are nicely recessed, and the solder joints look fine. Plus, I would imagine that the issue would occur for both boards if this were the case.

As it happens, in my previous post, I mentioned that I could boot Mobian off of the sd perfectly fine. I thought that was the case, because I could see the Mobian logo in the bootloader, but, for the new board, it never gets into Phosh. With the older board, I can get into Phosh, but the touch screen no longer works for some reason. I've yet to experiment with other distributions.

Edit: Okay, I just built pmOS, and it boots perfectly fine. Better than fine, actually. In my older board, the wifi/bluetooth didn't work, but this one can connect to my local network just fine. It still won't stop vibrating, though.
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#4
(02-25-2021, 03:09 PM)acohl Wrote:
(02-25-2021, 11:55 AM)desca Wrote: This old thread should show what bit of the hardware is involved. It’s usually been about a wire getting pinched, but may not be in your case.

No, I don't think so. The wires from the haptic feedback thingy are nicely recessed, and the solder joints look fine. Plus, I would imagine that the issue would occur for both boards if this were the case.

As it happens, in my previous post, I mentioned that I could boot Mobian off of the sd perfectly fine. I thought that was the case, because I could see the Mobian logo in the bootloader, but, for the new board, it never gets into Phosh. With the older board, I can get into Phosh, but the touch screen no longer works for some reason. I've yet to experiment with other distributions.

Edit: Okay, I just built pmOS, and it boots perfectly fine. Better than fine, actually. In my older board, the wifi/bluetooth didn't work, but this one can connect to my local network just fine. It still won't stop vibrating, though.
If it starts vibrating immediately at power up, then it is a hardware problem.
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#5
Okay, I really have to do something, because I've sunk in more money than I anticipated on this thing, and I can't even use it. Could I possibly just cut of the vibration motor from the sideboard and have it work? Could buying a new sideboard possibly help? What does this mean for energy consumption?

I haven't been able to use my Pinphone since 2020, and it's disappointing knowing that, probably, my only solution is to just buy another one when the next batch comes out.
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#6
It's worth trying to get an answer from support if you haven't already.
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#7
(02-28-2021, 09:47 AM)acohl Wrote: Okay, I really have to do something, because I've sunk in more money than I anticipated on this thing, and I can't even use it. Could I possibly just cut of the vibration motor from the sideboard and have it work? Could buying a new sideboard possibly help? What does this mean for energy consumption?

I haven't been able to use my Pinphone since 2020, and it's disappointing knowing that, probably, my only solution is to just buy another one when the next batch comes out.

The Pinephone will work OK without the vibration motor hooked up. I damaged mine (accidentally pried it open and damaged the wires) while replacing the screen I'd accidentally cracked early on, though later I installed a replacement USB side board and vibrator since they're cheap.

The problem though is cutting leads to the vibrator just fixes the symptom. I have no idea if the underlying problem will have other bad side effects, but since the phone is currently not usable you really have nothing to lose by trying. Disabling the vibrator should cut energy consumption.
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#8
(02-28-2021, 01:42 PM)Zebulon Walton Wrote:
(02-28-2021, 09:47 AM)acohl Wrote: Okay, I really have to do something, because I've sunk in more money than I anticipated on this thing, and I can't even use it. Could I possibly just cut of the vibration motor from the sideboard and have it work? Could buying a new sideboard possibly help? What does this mean for energy consumption?

I haven't been able to use my Pinphone since 2020, and it's disappointing knowing that, probably, my only solution is to just buy another one when the next batch comes out.

The Pinephone will work OK without the vibration motor hooked up. I damaged mine (accidentally pried it open and damaged the wires) while replacing the screen I'd accidentally cracked early on, though later I installed a replacement USB side board and vibrator since they're cheap.

The problem though is cutting leads to the vibrator just fixes the symptom. I have no idea if the underlying problem will have other bad side effects, but since the phone is currently not usable you really have nothing to lose by trying. Disabling the vibrator should cut energy consumption.

Excellent. That's just the advice I was looking for. I cut the vibrator off from the pads, and the phone was able to boot up. I'll mark the thread as solved, even though, as you pointed out, since the phone isn't cured but merely asymptomatic.

I do want to ask, though, when you did this tweak on your own PinePhone, did you encounter the same error code/lights as I did? Before this, I believe the PinePhone started up as usually. I would hit the power button, the led on the right would shine a solid red for one second, and then the phone would boot up as usual. Now that I've removed the vibrator, the phone shines red for a second, then yellow, and then white, and it does this twice before it boots up.

I don't see any info on the lights in the wiki, so I don't know how to interpret this. I mean, causality would tell me that it probably means something consistent with, "somebody cut off the vibration motor", but it help to know if this is applicable to you, so as to ensure this behavior has some relationship with my actions and isn't something separate.

It would also be appreciated if someone could chime in and tell me whether the pre-modded startup (with the single red light) is consistent with how the PinePhone is supposed to behave by default.

Anyways, thanks for the help, everyone. I will probably buy the sideboard in the future and replace the current one so that I can figure out if that may contribute to the issue, but, I suppose that will be further off than what I once dreaded it might be.
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#9
In another thread I found out that the lights and vibration (if any) when turning the phone on are handled by the boot loader.

Initially when my Pinephone was delivered it displayed a green LED and did a quick vibration when turning on the phone. After having it a few days I dropped the phone and cracked the screen, and as described broke the vibration motor when installing the replacement screen. Coincidentally some updates came through in which there was no longer any LED or vibration indicator on startup. (Initially I thought I'd managed to damage the replacement vibration motor and maybe the LED.) Then after some more updates the green LED started lighting again at boot time but still no vibration. However the vibration does work during other functions now, like when receiving a call, so the replacement vibrator is OK.

So, to make a long story short, what kind of lights (if any) you get when turning the phone on seems to be dependent on which operating system you are running and its patch level. It's certainly possible some hardware conditions may also turn on LEDs.
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