Incorrect date causing 'regularly format memory card for data integrity' error

Whippersnapper02

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Thanks for the info. I have the same issue with my F770 and have ordered the battery.
 

qmantran

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I had this problem happen to my F750. I opened it up and found the battery. Ordered a new battery and attempted to solder it myself. I only have a butane soldering gun and was able to desolder the old battery. When I attempted to solder in the new battery to the circuit board, I had trouble due to the tight tolerance between the two terminals. The solder actually melted on both of the battery terminals. I gave up and decided to just buy a new camera. How on earth do you guys solder the battery onto the circuit board with success? Seems pretty difficult without the proper soldering gun.
 
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SirCozak

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With a steady hand. I actually just melted the existing solder and left it in place, once the old battery was removed I just soldered the new one back onto the original solder.

Needs a fine nib on the soldering iron though, but buying a decent soldering iron is still a lot cheaper than a new camera.
 

egonvdv

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some sweating and a lot of swearing was involved, but it's done.

it was difficult to use the existing solder to "glue" the new battery in place, so i had to use a bit of new solder.

was afraid i would solder the plus & minus together, but that didn't happen (sheer luck though !)

the soldering looks very amateurish, but the camera & gps are working again as intended.

Still, it was a BIG gamble as i usually f*ck these things up.

would not really recommend it to anyone who's not handy...

thanks for all the input!
 
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CZroe

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My brother just got a car with an F750 installed (tied into the car's systems) and we already had an incident where this product completely failed to do what it was intended to do as a direct result of this problem.

He picked it up last week and it was repeatedly telling him to "Format memory card for data integrity," even right after formatting it. His iPhone XS Max couldn't connect to the camera's WiFi but my Galaxy Note9 and his 6th gen iPod Touch could (security certificate issue due to the incorrect date?).

He formatted it after a couple days of this and it didn't solve anything. Next he tried updating the camera's firmware. That just made things worse with dates like Jan 1970, Aug 2087, and Feb 2106.

After updating it he struggled with misleading tutorials about setting the date. Eventually he gave up and went to sleep that night only to wake up at 5AM because his roommate spotted two people at the street looking into his (the roommate's) car, one with his shirt taken off and being used to cover his head. Obviously, these guys were up to no good. By the time he got out there to confront them they were in the yard checking out the other three vehicles. They made some BS excuse about why they were there (claimed to have come from a trail that exited in the back yard) then disappeared so we made a suspicious activity report to the police.

Later that morning we checked the local PD's "Daily Bulletin" and saw that someone had reported a vehicle break in nearby. This town is of the size that the only reported vehicle break-in happening that night/morning happening so close and within that time frame is almost certainly related, so we tried to get footage of them for the police only to find that the DVR was so confused about the date that incidents were writing over each other and it could not be retrieved even just hours after it had happened.

What a spectacular failure. Worthless piece of junk. The F750 was introduced only three years before the first reported problem I see with that model in this thread, which is laughable considering the expense that the previous owner of this car went through to have it permanently installed. Who knows how long the previous owner was dealing with this "Regularly format memory card for data integrity" garbage.

There's simply no excuse for it from an engineering perspective. The thing gets its time and date from GPS and yet the battery charge level continues to throw a wrench into things even when power hasn't cycled and the RTC is not replying on the battery. For this installation it would normally stay powered even with the car turned off so it's even more ridiculous that a non-replaceable and unneeded battery on the inside causes it to suicide in three years.

At least arcade game boards with non-rechargeable "suicide batteries" do it intentionally to prevent retrieving encryption keys from memory (Capcom CPS2, for example). Obviously, they had a setup for servicing these things and reviving dead game boards, where Thinkware only has a misleading YouTube video or online tutorial about how to set your time and date... even when you can't (you can only set the time zone). This is all my brother found before giving up and going to sleep that night. SHAMEFUL! There is no reason not to acknowledge the issue and tell people what they can do to fix it, even if that means sending it in and paying a fee.

I can tell you that I will never be buying these and will vocally advocate against their brand or any rebranding they attempt unless they do a complete 180° turn-around on this issue even though I'm the type who can easily and affordably fix this. It's just unconscionable that they haven't at least done what they could obviously do to mitigate it with firmware.

Not even joking: Someone should lose their job over this... probably multiple people. The facts are that their products are sold for peace of mind and security and a stupid engineering mistake is completely undermining that. The very first thing an engineer putting a rechargeable battery (or any battery, for that matter) on the board should ask is "what happens when the battery fails?" and then consider the ramifications/impact. As it is, their "rechargeable" battery for the Real Time Clock didn't even last remotely as long as the non-rechargeable RTC battery in a Pokemon game. For something as mission-critical as a security and documentation product, this is shameful and ridiculous.

I plan to make a DIY repair video, not because it's so difficult but because people will find it alongside Thinkware's useless and misleading video... and I'll be able to give a piece of my mind about the company to anyone experiencing the problem.

Thank you very much for this thread!

I had this problem happen to my F750. I opened it up and found the battery. Ordered a new battery and attempted to solder it myself. I only have a butane soldering gun and was able to desolder the old battery. When I attempted to solder in the new battery to the circuit board, I had trouble due to the tight tolerance between the two terminals. The solder actually melted on both of the battery terminals. I gave up and decided to just buy a new camera. How on earth do you guys solder the battery onto the circuit board with success? Seems pretty difficult without the proper soldering gun.
I wouldn't suggest doing THT or SMD electronic component soldering with a butane torch. I have one on my workbench for heating up whole ground planes with shielded or heat-sinked components I need to desolder but I still typically use my hot air station or a hot air gun (paint stripper) instead. Come to think of it, I didn't use it the last time I removed an RF Modulator and power box from a Nintendo NES-001 (very recently) and I'm pretty sure I can't recall ever actually using it as intended. :D

In recent memory, I've only used it for shrinking heat shrink tubing and my roommate used it to light the grill. ;) Point is: it's not what I'd use for replacing soldered-in batteries, which is something I do all the time for old video game cartridges with dead save batteries.

some sweating and a lot of swearing was involved, but it's done.

it was difficult to use the existing solder to "glue" the new battery in place, so i had to use a bit of new solder.

was afraid i would solder the plus & minus together, but that didn't happen (sheer luck though !)

the soldering looks very amateurish, but the camera & gps are working again as intended.

Still, it was a BIG gamble as i usually f*ck these things up.

would not really recommend it to anyone who's not handy...

thanks for all the input!
You did it the right way. Fresh solder contains flux which removes surface oxydation, promotes solder adhesion, and changes the surface tension of molten solder in a way that resists bridging. Flux typically burns off and is inactivated after a few seconds so they put it inside most solder to introduce fresh flux as you add it ("flux core solder"). Without doing this you will likely have a "cold solder joint," which can fail prematurely or cause other issues (no continuity, high resistance, cracking/joint failure, temperature sensitivity, intermittent failures, etc).
 

egonvdv

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so... after my F750, I started to have the same problem with my F770.

But, as i thought of myself as a pro (since I did such a wonderful job on my 750), i think I went in too fast & without thinking...;

i replaced the battery & put the camera back together. - Easy!

However, although the camera stil worked, it didn't resolve the time problem.

I then had a closer look at the old battery... which al of a sudden seemed to look more like a capacitor!

20190913_195204234_iOS.jpg

so 2 questions:

1st; where IS the actual battery as i did not see it?

2nd; is there anyway that i can solder back the capacitor, or alternatively where could i buy a new one?


FYI: I did sent several email to TW about the issue, (it's not normal that both cameras started to have problems after 2 year), but as per their wonderful policy they just don't reply...
 

Maddog1974

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I strongly suspect that's the microphone you have taken out! I think you will struggle to re-solder that back in. The battery looks like below:
20190916_090105.jpg

I had a run of replacing about 6 batteries in units approx a year ago (the cameras were around 3 years old) we then bought 100 batteries for stock and i haven't replaced one since!
 

egonvdv

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thanks, feel very very stupid.

I guess the battery is under the 2nd print plate, that I didn't take out (since I thought i'd already found the battery)
as i said, i went too fast, because i do know what the battery looks like, since i changed it in the f750...

already ordered a new one ebay (eur 1.80 from china... no idea how that is even possible...)

if it's indeed the microphone that i took out, it's not too bad as don't realy need sound.
plus i still have my 2nd (rear) camera that records sounds should i ever really need it.
 

egonvdv

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OEF!

I managed to un-solder the battery and solder it in the right place
Was pretty difficult to do, and to be honest i did not think it would work;
it seemed i had damaged the printplate and that the battery was not making contact, but....
Correct time & date are back :)

impossible to re-solder thge original mic though, so ordered a new one from amazon, which has 2 "legs"
so it's easier to solder it back on...
 

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