BCD536HP: Problem with USB mini jack.

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an39511

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I just received back two radios with the repaired headphone jacks. That problem is fixed but I have discovered a possible problem with the USB jack on both radios.

I did not notice this on the radios that I original returned for repair however they may have exhibited the problem but I just didn't notice it.

Here is what I have done to test this;
Using Windows 7 open up the device manager.
I am specifically interested watching the Ports (COM & LPT) devices.

When I plug the USB cable into the radio I receive the standard prompt to select Serial or Mass Storage. I select Serial and watch for the device manager to show the COM port. Sometimes it shows and sometimes it doesn't. If I jiggle the USB connector at the radio head the device manager will intermittently show the COM port as being there and a moment later it is gone. If I wiggle the plug just right the COM port shows up and stays connected.

I have tried both cables supplied from Uniden and two other USB cables known to be working properly. All four cables exhibit this problem on both radios.

At this point it does not seem to affect USB Mass storage, only the serial connection.

Here is a link to a video that clearly demonstrates the problem;

UnidenBCD536HP Serial Port Problem - YouTube

I just noticed this thread may be better off in Uniden Owner Tech Support. If you want to move it that is OK by me.
 
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MORSEMAN

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BCD536HP USB Connector

Read about your problem and watched your video. I compared the mini usb jack on my 536 to other devices that use the same connector including 2 PSR 800s and happened to notice that the 536 usb is slightly recessed while all the others are flush mounted. Makes me wonder if the recess is preventing it from seating all the way.
 

whsbuss

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Oh my. This may be the next recall. If any slight movement can cause a serial disconnect like that it sure is a major problem. Makes my decision to return mine easier to swallow. Hope UPMan see that video.
 

MORSEMAN

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You could try a little experiment and use an xacto knife to carefully shave off a small amount of the black connector plastic on a cable to see if it helps it to seat deeper.
 

an39511

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You could try a little experiment and use an xacto knife to carefully shave off a small amount of the black connector plastic on a cable to see if it helps it to seat deeper.
Okay, I cut off a little over a millimeter off the plastic cover, enough that I can see the outer metal covering when it is fully inserted into the jack. Results: Still having the same problem.

Good idea though. I wish it would be that simple.
 
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davenlr

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Just curious...if that is actually the problem, why does the same problem not occur on the 436HP? Are they not the same jack on both?
 

an39511

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Just curious...if that is actually the problem, why does the same problem not occur on the 436HP? Are they not the same jack on both?
I do not own a 436 so there is no way I can answer that question. I don't know if they used the same part number for the USB jack on both radios. I am not sure how many people are actually trying to use the serial connection other than those of use doing live feeds with alpha tags,
 

whsbuss

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Has me wondering...... it only fails while in serial mode? Is it sensitive while in mass storage mode as well? Just trying to see if its truly a hardware (jack) issue.
 

an39511

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Has me wondering...... it only fails while in serial mode? Is it sensitive while in mass storage mode as well? Just trying to see if its truly a hardware (jack) issue.
Does not seem to affect USB mass storage but with multiple connections in the wiring perhaps it is only one wire that is causing problems. I have heard quite a few people talking about corrupted SD cards so if there are problems with other wires that connect the Mass storage then it may be an explanation.

For my situation it is clearly a hardware issue either in the cables and/or the jack itself.
 

andybutler

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I bought a second unit from scanmaster (which i had to send back as they sent one in the recall another story). I noticed the usb jack was looser than than the one i sent back to uniden for the hiss repair. The scanner i sent back to uniden i had the usb cable in and out quite often and would of noticed
 

an39511

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I bought a second unit from scanmaster (which i had to send back as they sent one in the recall another story). I noticed the usb jack was looser than than the one i sent back to uniden for the hiss repair. The scanner i sent back to uniden i had the usb cable in and out quite often and would of noticed
Your observation is correct, the connection is sloppy which may be causing the problem. I have checked the jack in the radio and it is firmly mounted. The center part (male) is also firmly held. It looks like the center part of the USB jack may be slightly undersize (out of tolerance) which accounts for the cable wobbling around. Unfortunately there is no way to fix it without replacing the jack.
 

AA6IO

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I really dislike these front USB ports, not specifically, on the 536HP, but on the previous 996XT as well.
Have only had the 536HP back 1 day, so have not played around with the serial port yet. I wish that they would make the back RS-232 port available for serial other than just GPS. I had so much problem with 996XT front USB port, that I finally just bought a couple of null modem cables from Amazon, a serial port card for Dell computer, and never had any problems again. I try and use Butel virtual control/logging or ProScan all the time on my scanners for logging.
When I heard that only the front USB port was available for serial on 536HP, kind of cringed, but figured, maybe it would be better. Now you're reporting this behavior. If it is going to be a problem, hope that Uniden can do something about using RS-232 port as well for serial, like 996XT, just set serial to front or rear port.
I realize a lot of folks prefer USB because of lack of serial ports on computers these days. But for some of us who like to use the serial data for software other than GPS, I found putting a serial card in PC and using RS-232 was a lot more stable for 996XT. Sounds like that may be the case for the 536HP as well.
Butel is just really getting the software going. When this and other software comes out (hopefully ProScan), the serial issue will become more important. Let's see what others report. I'll be using mine in next few days. That is one thing I like about GRE/RS units, they use a headphone like plug for serial/CC data. Its a lot more stable.

Steve AA6IO
 

AA6IO

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I meant to say not used the USB serial function all that much yet. When did, it was not very reliable with Butel beta software. Gommert kept trying to tweak things with the ARC536. Now I am beginning to wonder if the real culprit is poor/intermittent function of the front USB port in serial mode.
Steve AA6IO
 

whsbuss

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I meant to say not used the USB serial function all that much yet. When did, it was not very reliable with Butel beta software. Gommert kept trying to tweak things with the ARC536. Now I am beginning to wonder if the real culprit is poor/intermittent function of the front USB port in serial mode.
Steve AA6IO
I sure would think so. Hard for software to work correctly if the serial port keeps disconnecting.
 

andybutler

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Re: Problem with BCD536HP USB mini jack.

Strange the usb on the back cant be used either way

Sent from my Motorola Electrify using Tapatalk 2
 

thundermedic

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Its interesting that the computer notices the disconnect but not the scanner. The same issue could be present in USB mode but unless there is data transmitting you wouldn't notice.

The Jack on the 436 and the 536 are different enough because of they way the radio is constructed. I was having issues with the corruption/formatting of the Scanners but i'm starting to think it might have more to do with me using a Virtual Machine on my Mac than anything else. (Haven't had any issues since I started only connecting using bootcamp)

I wonder if the same issue is there on un-repaired 536's?
 

an39511

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I wonder if the same issue is there on un-repaired 536's?
I suspect the that it is. I don't think Uniden would have changed the jack as part of their repair, but who knows?. Plus there are scores of people over in the ARC536 forum that are plagued with connectivity issues while in serial mode.

I think the mini USB jack is poorly made as it has a loose/sloppy fit when the cable is inserted. The two radios I sent in where that way but the ones I got back seem to be worse.
 

tumegpc

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Poor placement of USB port

I feel that these problems will continue to grow due to the placement of the USB port. Its almost impossible not to apply downward pressure on the USB cable while pressing the E-YES key.
 

AA6IO

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I wonder whether the serial port in back can be used if so desired with some type of firmware update. Or is use of that as an alternative, like on the 996XT, a hardware thing. I really don't know. Wonder if someonce can comment.

Steve AA6IO
 

andybutler

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I had the same thought but you need a male to male usb cable and it not something you have lying around to test with. Amazon basics dont even sell that type of cable you have use another vendor
 
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