Sun, 26 Aug 2018

RampingIOS V2 Manual

RampingIOS V2 UI diagram

The Emisar D4, D1, and D1S flashlights all use a firmware named RampingIOS V2. (The earliest D4s were released with V1, but there aren't many of those around. The Emisar D4S uses RampingIOS V3.) There's not really a manual; the only thing we get is the diagram on the right. It's pretty comprehensive, but I thought a textual manual would be nice, so I decided to write one.

The Emisar lights only work when the head and tailcap are tightened fully. You can physically lock out the lights--prevent them from turning on accidentally--by simply loosening the tailcap a small amount. A quarter turn will do it.

The lights use a ramping interface. Rather than have a small number of distinct brightness levels, they can vary their brightness anywhere between their lowest and highest levels, like a light on a dimmer.

The drivers for the lights have two different chipsets. At low brightness levels, a fairly-efficient but low-power chipset (called a 7135) is used. These lowest brightness levels are called the "regulated levels". Each regulated level will always be the same brightness regardless of how much charge the battery has. Above a particular brightness level, the light switches over to a less-efficient but high-power chipset (called a FET). These levels are called "direct-drive". The brightness of the direct-drive levels is directly related to the battery's charge level; the more charged the battery, the brighter the levels. The lights are at their most efficient, in terms of power used for every lumen generated, at the brightest regulated level. When the light is first powered by tightening the tailcap, it will default to this level.

At higher brightness levels, the lights' LEDs generate a lot of heat. If a light exceeds its configured maximum temperature, it will begin dimming itself automatically until the temperature drops below the allowed maximum.

Basic Usage

While the light is off, press and release the button (1 click) to turn it on. It will turn on at the last-used brightness level. (This is called "mode memory".) Immediately after loosening and tightening the tailcap (or after changing the battery), the default level will be the light's max regulated level.

When the light is on, 1 click will turn it off. The current brightness level will be memorized for future use.

When the light is on, holding the button down with gradually brighten the light ("ramping up"). If you release the button and immediately hold it again, the ramping direction will switch, so if it had been ramping up it'll be dimming ("ramping down") afterward.

While the light is ramping, it'll briefly blink off and on again at three different brightness levels: the minimum brightness, the maximum brightness, and the maximum regulated level.

While the light is either on or off, double-pressing the button (2 clicks) will immediately jump to the maximum brightness level. Another two clicks will go back to the previous brightness level. If the light was off before the the initial two clicks, the second two clicks will go to the memorized brightness level.

While the light is off, if you hold the button the light will turn on at its lowest level. If you continue holding the button, the light will begin ramping up.

Other Modes

The other modes largely involve multiple clicks from off. They're not generally needed for everyday use, but they supplement the light's basic operations.

BattCheck/TempCheck Modes

From off, 3 clicks will enter "BattCheck" mode, which gives the battery level. It blinks out the current battery voltage. First it blinks the number of volts, then it pauses, then it blinks out the tenths of volts. Thus, if the battery were at 3.5 volts, the light would blink three times, pause, then five times. For zeroes, it gives a very short blink.

A fully-charged lithium-ion battery is 4.2 volts. The light considers 2.8 volts to be an empty battery and won't turn on if the battery is at or below 2.8 volts.

The voltage sequence will continue blinking until you turn off the light with a single click.

While the light is in BattCheck mode, 2 clicks will enter TempCheck mode. Instead of blinking out the battery voltage, the light will start blinking out its current temperature in degrees Celsius, first the tens digit then the units digit. Like BattCheck mode, the light will continue blinking out the temperature until you turn it off with a single click.

Tactical Mode

From off, 4 clicks will enter "tactical" or "momentary" mode. The light will flash four times to show that it's entered the mode. In tactical mode, the light will turn on at maximum brightness for as long as the button is being held down. It will turn off as soon as the button is released.

Another 4 clicks will exit tactical mode. The light will flash twice to show that it's left the mode.

Lockout Mode

From off, 6 clicks will enter lockout mode. The light will flash four times to show that it's entered the mode. In lockout mode, the light will not turn on, no matter how the button is pressed.

Another 6 clicks will exit lockout mode. The light will flash twice to show that it's left the mode.

Remember that loosening the tailcap a quarter turn will also lock out the light. Using the 6 clicks is called "electronic lockout", while turning the tailcap is "physical lockout".

Beacon Mode

From off, 8 clicks will enter beacon mode. In beacon mode, the light will blink on and off every two and a half seconds.

1 click will exit beacon mode.

Thermal Configuration Mode

From off, 10 or more clicks followed by holding down the button will enter thermal configuration mode.

In thermal config mode, the light will first blink out the current maximum temperature. As with TempCheck mode, it blinks the tens digit followed by the units digit. If you release the button at this point, the light will turn off and no changes to the configuration will be made.

If you continue to hold the button, the light will then flicker for a second or so. After that, it will turn on at its maximum brightness. It won't turn off until you release the button, which you should do when you feel like the light has gotten too hot. The temperature at that point will be the new maximum temperature. The light will blink out that new maximum temperature and then turn off.

The default temperature threshold is 45°C.

Phil! Gold