Jump to content

Controller not turning on


Recommended Posts

I'm having the same issue with my vive controller.  Controller became unresponsive during gameplay.  No lights turn on when connected to power or PC.  Tried to do reset trick and connect to computer.  I hear USB sound but does not appear in Windows devices. 


My other working controller shows up in Windows when connected to PC.


Update: Contacted customer support for repairs

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 months later...
  • Replies 22
  • Created
  • Last Reply


I was able to fix the Vive controller with a small circuit which supplies the battery power to sensors. Here's the story.

Controller went completely dead during gameplay. No LED light even when charger connected.
After several on/off tries & charger plug-in's the LED came back and at some point the PC regocnized the controller. However, tracking was not working. There was also some strange behavior with the power on/off. Controller had to be reset several times (with button combination).

Eventually everything else seemed to work ok, but the tracking was missing.

Controller was disassembled according to iFixit instructions (once again they saved my day). I removed the on/off switch from the top cover and attached it onto battery holder plastics. By doing  this it was easier to turn on/off the power & continue troubleshooting.


After several random measurements, it was found out that the supply voltage of sensors is pretty low. Measured voltage was about 1,8V and it dropped even lower when sensor were connected. I had to open & measure the other controller to check correct sensor supply voltage level. I found out that the 3,3V sensor supply was applied once the power button is pressed.


Since none of the components was heating up, I figured that circuit supplying sensor power must be somehow in open state (component breakdown or bad contact). First I checked if there was some other place where 3,3V could be shared to sensors, but after couple tries it was obvious that other 3,3V sources were not able to supply the sensors (controller did not work at all).

The fix:
After finding out that we need 3,3V and enough current for the sensors, I decided to build a circuit which connects the battery voltage to sensor supply. Circuit needs to drop the battery voltage from 3.7...4,1V to about 3,3V and switch on/off according to power button.


After couple modifications, I ended up to a circuit shown in attached picture. However, first I made a mistake by removing two chokes connecting the 3,3V to sensor supply capacitors (close to sensor flex cable connectors). I connected the output of my circuit to these capacitors and left out the original sensor supply circuit (due to missing chokes). I was disapointed to see that the tracking was still not working.

Since I was out of ideas, I reconnected the original sensor supply trace to previously mentioned capacitors and tested once more. I was surprised to see that the tracking was now working!
This must mean that there were also some other circuitry which needed the newly created 3,3V supply.
In other words, I should have left the chokes in their place and just connect the new 3,3V supply to sensor capacitors.

This note is just to help to understand the new sensor supply connection better since the photo is not so clear.

About the circuit:
Once the power button is pressed, pwr_on signal (taken from bottom side of the board) goes to 3,3V causing Q1 to pull down the gate of Q2. This turns the FET on and 3,3V is outputted to sensor_pwr. Original idea of zener diode D1 was to cut off the possible overvoltage, but this is not quite working due to over 100mA current needed by the sensors.

Resistors R4..R6 and D2 & D3 drop down the battery voltage so that sensor_pwr is close to 3,3V in normal condition. However, when the controller is connected to a charger, output of the circuit jumps up to 3,6V (should not be critical).

Components were selected based on "what I have in hand", so similar ones should work as well.

So far the fixed controller has worked perfectly and there's no difference in power consumption nor tracking accuracy compared to other controller :)




Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 months later...


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...