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Electronic Theatre Controls Inc

Obsession Console Responds Slowly to Key Hits


Obsession console responds slowly to key hits.
Obsession is running very slowly.
Obsession is very sluggish.


There are a couple of things that may cause an Obsession or Obsession II console to respond slowly to key hits. 

Here are a couple of things to check.

  1. Is there an RFU or Alphanumeric keyboard plugged into the system?  If so, disconnect to see if the problem goes away.  Check the Last Command box in the Diagnostic screen, if you see a command repeating this will identify the key and the device number.
  2. If an RFU or keyboard has a stuck key, or accidentally has a book set on it, the processor will start to buffer the key hits.  This in turn will cause the system to slow down.  Disconnecting the device will stop filling the buffer.  It may take a minute or two to clear the buffer, before the processor returns to normal speed.  In some cases, you may need to reboot the system.
  3. Can you hear a faint 'ticking' sound from the processor as you enter in commands?  If so, Event Logging (logs keystrokes) is enabled.
  4. Event logging enables the user to log every key hit and fader move into the message log.  This causes the Obsession processor to be constantly writing information to the hard drive.  The 'ticking' that you hear is the hard drive at work.  Caution, the message log can fill up quickly and become very large.  Instruct the end user to Purge the log, so that file doesn't become unmanageable.
  5. Check to see if the problem is localized to specific device.  There might actually be a problem with the keyboard PCB.  Is the problem localized to a row of keys on the keyboard?  If so, there is a potential problem with the key scanning matrix.  At this point, it is best to have the problem device examined in repair.
  6. Check diagnostic screens for any network errors.  If there is an excessive amount of network errors, the system will slow down.  Network errors can be caused by cabling problems or by hardware on the Obsession.  You will need to check the network cabling for the problem segment.
  7. Check diagnostic screens or message logs for "Request refresh" errors.  If a network device is failing, it can send our request for refreshes.  This will cause network traffic problems.  The failing network device most likely has a hardware problem, which will need repair.
  8. If you have a dual processor system, check diagnostic screens and verify that both processor are still tracking.  If both processors believe that they are the master, this will cause network traffic problems.  You will need to reboot both processors and monitor the system to determine why they dropped out of tracking.
  9. Were you running complex macros or were the macros interrupted recently?  If so, check status on the system.  Interrupting macros can cause system to drop out of tracking, which could cause number 6.
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