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Firmware Revision History - Phoenix Edge, Talon, Phoenix Ice, Phoenix, and Phoenix HV
Release Notes
Version Number Type Release Date Release Notes
4.20 Beta 07/28/14
  • Ice, Ice-HV, Edge, Edge-HV, Talon 90: Adjusted software to improve performance under heavy load on low Kv, high pole count, and high inductance motors
4.19 Beta 10/23/13
  • Improved brake levels higher than 30%
  • Ice, Ice-HV, Edge, Edge-HV, Talon 90: Adjusted software to improve performance on high pole count and high inductance motors
  • Bug Fix: Corrected the Voltage Cutoff type options in stick programming
  • Bug Fix: Talon 15, Talon 25, Multi-Rotor 25: Corrected a Field Link compatibility issue
4.14 Beta 08/20/13
  • Bug Fix: Made controller connections to Castle Link more stable
4.12 Beta 07/23/13
  • Adjusted the handling of Spool Up Speed to allow slower startups for scale heli's
  • Made improvements to motor tracking
  • Edge and Edge HV: Added BEC Voltage data logging support
  • Phoenix 35,60,80,140: Bug fix: Fixed issues with voltage, current, and temperature cutoffs
  • Phoenix 35,60,80,140: Bug fix: Fixed issues causing some controllers to not reach full power
4.05 Beta 05/28/13
  • Phoenix 35, 60, 80, and 140: Improved ability to run high inductance outrunners at high power.
4.02 Beta 09/12/12
  • Functional Improvement: Added "External Governor Mode". This throttle mode is intended to be used with V-Bar units that have a built in governor. Click on blue question mark next to Vehicle Type in the Throttle section of CastleLink for full details.
4.01 Beta 03/30/12
  • NOTE: It is HIGHLY recommended that all users discontinue use of firmware V4.00 due to a known bug that can cause unusual ESC behavior. Users may either upgrade to V4.01 or downgrade to a previous version.
  • Functional Improvement: Increased maximum throttle change rate on Multi-Rotor setting. A throttle change of 50% can now be accomplished in .08s.
  • Bug fix: Occasional errors were being recorded in the data log. Fixed
  • Bug fix: Unusual motor shutdowns, and other controller anomolies including ESC failure. Fixed
4.00 Beta 02/22/12
  • All: Full 'CastleLink Live' support. This is a special mode that will allow the ESC to share telemetry data through the receiver wire in real-time to external devices that support 'Castle Link Live'.
  • All: Voltage cutoff option: RPM Reduction Cutoff: In governor mode this option will reduce your headspeed by 25%. In airplane mode, it will reduce your full throttle position by 25%.
  • All: Voltage cutoff option: Pulse Cutoff: In governor mode this option will slowly pulse the headspeed causing a slight tail twitch. In airplane mode, it will chop throttle momentarily making an audible change in prop RPM.
  • All: Increased power handling before loss of commutation on high inductance motors
  • All: Reduction of the power jump from 99% throttle to 100% throttle.
  • All: ESC now supports, and USES, high frequency receiver pulses (100+ hz). In previous versions of firmware, receiver input was processed at 50hz.
  • All: Firmware further optimized to spread the CPU load. This should result in better timing at high electrical RPM's.
  • All: Throttle is increased quicker when motor is not starting well. This reduces the time some motors take to start under load.
  • All: New motor running technique reduces controller heat and optimizes heatsink efficiency.
  • Phoenix HV/Phoenix ICE HV: Reduced maximum power level used when trying to start a stalled motor. This makes ESC damage less likely.
  • Phoenix 10/Thunderbird: Significant improvement of starting performance with outrunner type motors.
  • Heli: New governor mode with increased RPM holding precision. This should improve governing, especially on high electrical RPM setups.
  • Heli: New initial spool-up behavior. It should reduce the RPM overshoot during your initial (from a stop) spool-up.
  • Heli: When running governor mode and a fixed PWM rate (say 12 Khz), increase in output power during full throttle situations.
  • MultiRotor: New Multi-rotor vehicle type changes throttle response to allow for faster throttle response. Throttle processing has been completely rewritten to prevent aliasing of the throttle while limiting motor output throttle change rate.
  • Bug Fix: A bug was fixed that caused inappropriate power reduction on motors running right around 120,000 electrical RPM.
3.28 Beta 07/01/11
  • Fixed bug that caused inappropriate over-current shutdowns at 99% throttle. Affected Phoenix 10,25,35,45,60,80,125,HV.
  • Classified as a production release
3.27 Beta 05/18/11
  • Fixed an issue that could cause excessive current draw in governor mode, when governing at lower throttle amounts
  • Changed default Cutoff Voltage per Cell changed to 3.2V
  • Changed default switching frequency changed to 12Khz (Phoenix Ice only)
  • Changed default logging frequency changed to 1hz (Phoenix Ice only)
3.26 Beta 12/22/10
  • Bug fix: In governor mode, the controller could unexpectedly lock during initial spool-up. This resulted in an undesirable rapid motor acceleration.
3.25 Beta 12/21/10
  • Default settings are no longer present in controller. If settings are lost, unit will beep continuously. Please call tech support if this happens.
  • Governor mode will lock if the user's setup causes the controller to go to full throttle for an extended period of time. This ensures that the auto-rotate feature will not cause helicopter damage on these setups.
  • Improved stability of Castle Link connection
  • Added additional error checking to prevent flash corruption during firmware updates
3.24 Beta 08/12/10
  • Update: Added further protection against uncommanded settings erasure on Phoenix Ice series
3.22 Beta 07/19/10
  • Improvement: Governor mode will follow headspeed change rate during headspeed reductions as well as headspeed increases
  • Improvement: Reduced overshoot when approaching set rpm in governor mode
  • Improvement: Added additional per-cell cutoff values up to 4 volts
  • Addition: Added support for Phoenix ICE 150 and Phoenix ICE HV 120
  • Bug Fix: Rarely with certain motors and certain voltages cutoff voltage could fail to cut motor when running at 99% throttle, full throttle and lower partial throttles were not an issue.
  • Bug Fix: Setting brake to disabled via stick programming would cause Castle Link to report an invalid setting value (Setting worked when programmed via stick programming as well as Castle Link).
  • Bug Fix: Stick programming of motor timing would set timing higher than intended.
  • Bug Fix: Default value for Governor Gain was not set correctly.
3.21 Beta 01/08/10
  • Phoenix Ice 100 only: Fixed logging bug. Unit would not download logged data.
3.20 Beta 01/05/10
  • Bug fix: Timing would become overly advanced at certain RPM ranges. This was often reported as a noise somewhere in the throttle range. It also resulted in excessive heat when running in those RPM ranges.
3.11 Beta 12/29/09

Phoenix Ice/Phoenix Ice HV

  • Increased data logging duration by about 75%. Logged data is now compressed such that more data can fit in the confined logging space on the controller. As a result, maximum data logging duration is now approximate. Sitting in idle or other situations where the logged parameters are not quickly changing will significantly increase your data logging duration.
  • Changed the helicopter auto-rotation feature to make programming easier. (Setups that were working will sill work exactly as before) See below for details
  • Fixed issue where governor mode would lock in too early creating a large power pulse during spool-up

Phoenix HV

  • Made further improvements running out-runner style motors
  • Changed the helicopter auto-rotation feature to make programming easier. (Setups that were working will sill work exactly as before) See below for details
  • Fixed issue where governor mode would lock in too early creating a large power pulse during spool-up

Phoenix

  • Changed the helicopter auto-rotation feature to make programming easier. (Setups that were working will sill work exactly as before) See below for details
  • Fixed issue where governor mode would lock in too early creating a large power pulse during spool-up

NOTE: Auto-Rotation Setup Changes
In the new release the helicopter auto-rotation feature has been improved, however setups that were working before will still work in the same manner. The lower range or the -0- throttle has become more defined and with this you may have to recalibrate your throttle settings if your ESC will not arm. The auto-rotation feature has also been improved and the setup range has been expanded. With the new release the ESC will not arm if it is in a condition that could HARD START or start in the Auto-Recovery mode ( in prior releases the ESC could slow start the first time and hard start after the initial spool up). You will have to satisfy a -0- condition before the ESC will arm. The ESC must see -0- throttle to get to a soft start condition. The auto-rotation recovery mode is not in a range that can arm the ESC now.

3.0 Final 11/12/09

Phoenix Ice/Phoenix Ice HV

  • Significant improvements in running high inductance outrunners, smoother response
  • Added new feature to Phoenix ICE controllers allowing user to clear the data log via the throttle stick (See instructions below)
  • Better timing accuracy, higher RPM operation possible
  • Smoother transition to and from outrunner mode, some had reported this as a small dead spot in the throttle range especially noticeable during slow spool-up's
  • Bug fix. Going from full throttle to partial throttle in outrunner mode would make an audible tick
  • Big fix. Data logging frequency would vary slightly at certain RPMs

Phoenix/Phoenix HV

  • Significant improvements in running high inductance outrunners, smoother response
  • Better timing accuracy, higher RPM operation possible
  • Smoother transition to and from outrunner mode, some had reported this as a small dead spot in the throttle range especially noticeable during slow spool-up's
  • Bug fix. Going from full throttle to partial throttle in outrunner mode would make an audible tick

NOTE: Clearing Phoenix Ice & Ice HV data log
Power your controller up with your TX & RX on and set to full throttle. The controller will chime the normal power up chimes. Leave your TX at full throttle for 6 seconds after power up. The controller will emit a short tone after 1 second and then a long tone 5 seconds later. The controller will then erase the data log. You must then move the throttle stick to lowest power to arm the controller.

2.18 Beta 10/08/09
  • Auto-Rotate mode now works in 'Heli-Fixed' (not governor) mode
  • Auto-Rotate engage is now a quicker and more linear ramp
  • ICE Controllers could (incorrectly) quickly ramp to full throttle if in governor mode
  • Occasional motor 'tick' while running has been removed
  • Improved ability to run some outrunner-style motors, especially very high-inductance motors
2.161 Beta 08/05/09
  • CastleLink V3.16 would fail to properly update a specific version of the Phoenix HV controller line. If your controller was affected by this bug, please install CastleLink V3.161. Then, link your controller, go to the 'Software Tab', and click on 'Update Firmware'. You will not be alerted that there is a new version of firmware available, however after your controller's firmware is updated with CastleLink V3.161 it will function normally. Please contact technical support if you continue to have issues.
2.16 Beta 08/03/09
  • First public release of Phoenix ICE controllers
  • Added 'Outrunner Mode' PWM Rate to Phoenix 35 and higher controllers
  • Improved the performance of motor startup
  • Changed governor mode behavior - the governor will no longer lock at low throttle outputs
2.11 Beta 05/07/09
  • Complete rewrite of governor mode algorithms *
    • Provides less 'pulsing' behavior, even at high gains
    • Facilitates easier gain setup
    • Lower gains are now available
    • Governor mode has faster response
    • *Note: Your governor gain value will likely need to be changed from your current setting.
  • Added ability to change the 'Auto-Lipo' cutoff voltages to values other than 3.0 volts per cell. Use this setting to change the Auto Lipo cutoff voltage to the value recommended by your battery manufacturer/vendor. Settings now include 3.0, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4, & 3.5 volts per cell. Controller will initiate Low Voltage Cutoff behavior once the controller detects voltage dropping below this value times the number of cells detected in the power up sequence. User is always responsible for ensuring that packs are properly & fully charged prior to connection to Castle ESC and for ensuring that ESC has detected the proper number of cells. Failure to fully charge cells or to ensure that controller has detected the proper number of cells may result in discharge below the pre set limit. This may damage any and all components in your system.
  • Added ability to turn off the power-on reminder beep.
  • Added outrunner PWM rate option to improve efficiency and reduce harmonics when running fast commutation outrunners. Unfortunately this mode is only available on Phoenix ICE and Phoenix HV controllers manufactured after May 2007.
  • Improved motor run routine for better performance on fast commutating outrunners
  • Added Phoenix ICE features and support

Bug fix: Setting throttle response to 0 would not allow motor to run to full RPM

Bug fix: Setting voltage cutoff to 4V on Phoenix HV would cause error message

Bug fix: Stick programming when governor mode was selected could change start power

2.0 Beta 06/27/08 For a complete explanation of the new features included in this version, click here to read the BETA SOFTWARE RELEASE NOTES page.
  • Improved startup for some out-runner style motors
  • Added audible error codes to help trouble-shoot in flight problems

    After you land, simply go to zero-throttle and wait for the controller to beep out the error code.

    1 Beep - Start Failure (The motor was jammed or locked)

    2 Beeps - Low Voltage Cutoff (Your batteries are likely discharged. Check that batteries are fully charged and that your Phoenix detects the proper number of cells at power-up)

    3 Beeps - Over Current (Current draw exceeded the safe capacity of the controller)

    4 Beeps - Prop Strike Detected (Your motor stopped spinning freely. Check for proper operation of motor)

    5 Beeps - Poor Radio Signal (Signal from your receiver is corrupt or non-existent, check transmitter and receiver)
  • Added 'Powered Up' beep to warn the ESC is armed and powered
  • Added an 8KHz pwm mode
  • Added support for control-line governor mode WITH braking enabled. All standard brake options apply.
  • Added new setting 'Head Speed Change Rate' to control how quickly the governor modes change between set points
  • Added new setting 'Auto-Rotate Enabled' to allow faster exits from auto-rotations maneuvers
  • Added two new governor modes, 'Simple Mode' and 'Set RPM Mode'
    Simple Mode
    Allows a normal startup, 75% throttle equals 75% max power.

    Once the throttle input is constant for 1.5s governor mode will LOCK on that speed
    Further changed to the throttle input (after lock) will result in corresponding head-speed changes.

    Set RPM Mode
    Allows three distinct head-speeds to be entered into Castle-Link and will govern at those head speeds.

    Requires input for motor kv, motor magnetic poles, gearing, and battery

    Head Speed 1 is chosen by throttle inputs less than 50%

    Head Speed 2 is chosen by throttle inputs between 50% and 99%

    Head Speed 3 is chosen by throttle inputs greater than 99%
  • Changed 'Spool Up' to have a more linear speed
  • Changed gain settings to be consistent at different RPMs. Also changed the range of gain setting to be 1 to 32.
1.56 Beta 05/26/07
  • Changed error codes to match documentation
    + 1 Flash - Start Failure (The motor was jammed or locked)

    + 2 Flashes - Low Voltage Cutoff (Your batteries are likely discharged. Check that batteries are fully charged and that your Phoenix detects the proper number of cells at power-up)

    + 3 Flashes - Over Current (Current draw exceeded the safe capacity of the controller)

    + 4 Flashes - Prop Strike Detected (Your motor stopped spinning freely. Check for proper operation of motor)

    + 5 Flashes - Poor Radio Signal (Signal from your receiver is corrupt or non-existent, check transmitter and receiver)

  • Fixed bug: should reduce oscillations in governor mode with some setups
1.55 Final 01/19/07
  • Released to production
1.54 Beta 09/27/06
  • Fixed bug: controller would not turn motor off when transmitter signal was lost
1.53 Beta 09/22/06
  • Fixed bug in downline braking software, controller would not allow user to throttle up until motor had fully stopped
  • Improved motor run code for better performance while running outrunner style motors
  • Improved reciever signal processing to handle high frequency input
  • Improved arming routine safety. Unit will not arm in noisy environments
1.52 Beta 07/07/06
  • Improved motor start routine for outrunner style motors
  • Improved motor run routine to handle variances in outrunner style motors
1.51b Beta 05/04/06

HELICOPTER SPECIFIC:

  • Added heli fixed throttle mode
  • Added motor start power adjustment so that very high torque setups can be started smoothly (no kick)
  • Added governor gain to achieve better RPM hold accuracy on varying helicopter sizes/weights
  • Revamped governor modes that increase RPM hold accuracy and flexibility
  • 2-4 second delay with loss of transmitter signal before motor is stopped in helicopter throttle settings

ALL FLIGHT MODES

  • Added throttle response adjustment so that users can increase /decrease throttle change sensitivity
  • Added error codes for problem resolution
  • Greatly increased throttle resolution for smoother throttle response
1.23b Beta 01/12/06
  • Fixed bug, brake would become weak after a short period
  • Fixed possible false cutoff bug
1.22b Beta 10/13/05
  • Separated 'Brake Strength' and 'Brake Delay' from 'Brake Type' across all controller versions
  • Added ability to set 'Brake Delays to any 1/10 second between 0 and 1 second
  • Added ability to set 'Brake Strength' to any value between 0% and 100%, allows for fine tuning of down-line speeds using the prop as an air brake
  • Added 'Brake Ramp' which ramps the brake strength from 0 to the desired value in a specified amount of time, allows using high brake strengths without fear of damaging gears or firewalls
  • Added ability to force older Phoenix-25s to use the high PWM rate (most motors), the low PWM rate (high-turn outrunners), and the auto select feature
  • Fixed bug on new Phoenix-25s which caused units to fully re-arm after low voltage cutoff while running governor mode
  • Decreased required throttle to enter programming mode to fix problems with some low-end transmitters
  • Modified flash write routines to fix unobserved, but possible, loss of programming
1.161b Beta 07/01/05
  • Fixed bug in motor direction setting
1.16b Beta 06/30/05
  • Increased throttle ramp up speed for all controllers
  • Fixed bug on HV controllers (false cutoffs in "reverse" mode)
  • Modified startup on HV controllers to decrease battery ripple voltage and stress on controller
1.151b Beta 06/17/05
  • Release for Phoenix-10 ONLY
  • Fixes ‘first start after power-up fails’ bug on Phoenix-10
1.15b Beta 06/14/05
  • This release may help decrease controller heating on the Phoenix-10 and Phoenix-25 when running certain small, high turn count, outrunner/prop combinations
  • Available only with the newly debuted Castle Link application
1.14 Final 04/28/05
  • Decreased governor mode expected input range from (1ms to 2ms) to (1.125ms to 1.875ms) because some transmitters were unable to generate throttle signals as low as 1ms or as high as 2ms
1.13 Beta 04/28/05
  • Improved cutoff voltage accuracy
  • Fixed bug regarding Phoenix-25 LED
1.12 Final 04/21/05
  • Increased governor mode RPM selection range
  • Improved timing for higher motor efficiency
1.10 Final 12/07/04
  • All 1.081 improvements
  • Moved Reverse to Basics Tab
  • Adjusted cut off voltages to make them more accurate (1.081 cut offs were a little high)
1.08b Beta 10/21/04
  • Added ability to reverse motor run direction
  • Improved startup on most motors
  • Fixed Auto-Lipo detect on F221 based ESC's
  • Improved prop strike detection
  • Fixed first start different in governor mode
  • Improved governor mode startup power curve
  • Fixed high throttle bug in governor mode
1.021 Final 09/08/04
  • Improved Phoenix-25 start-up with HiMaxx motors
1.07b Beta 09/08/04
  • Improved helicopter governor mode start-up
1.06b Beta 09/01/04
  • Improved startup for multi-pole in-runners (Razor, Astro 010, etc.)
  • Added automatic Li-Po battery cutoff detection
1.05b Beta 08/10/04
  • Fixed over-current sensitivity issues on Phoenix-25/35/45
  • Improved start for MicroTex outrunner motor
  • Fixed intermittent failure to start at low RPM
  • Decreased gains on governor mode for small helicopters
1.041b Beta 08/02/04
  • Improved PWM switching rate on Phoenix-35/45 and Phoenix-60/80
  • Improved partial braking during coast down period
1.04b Beta 07/30/04
  • Improved startup operation
  • Improved low-voltage cutoff accuracy
  • Added ability to revert to v1.02 from 1.03b and 1.04b
1.03b Beta 06/08/04 N/A
1.02 Final 05/07/04
  • Corrects reset problem with throttle stick programming
  • Brings PHX-Link up to date with most recent production ESC software (eliminates "Internal Error" message)
1.01 Final 04/13/04
  • Corrects problem when Fast Start and Soft Cutoff are both activated
  • Corrected problem with V1.01b over current protection
1.01b Beta 03/31/04
  • Corrected Fast Start/Soft Cutoff problem, but introduced a problem with over current protection
1.0 Final 03/26/04
  • Initial release