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Sony HVC-3000P Trinicon Camera Teardown

Camera Left
Camera Left

Following on from the viewfinder teardown, here’s the rest of the camera. This unit dates back to 1980, and is made almost exclusively of cast aluminium. Very little plastic has been used here & only for the bits that the user comes into contact with. This camera is based around the Sony Trinicon camera tube system, technology dating back before CCDs. There aren’t many controls on this side of the camera, only the record button, which is hidden behind the camera handgrip.

Camera Right
Camera Right

The other side of the camera has most of the controls for the picture.

Image Controls
Image Controls

The image controls inclue auto / manual iris, white balance & colour balance.

Rear Panel
Rear Panel

Sharpness & fader controls are on the back of the camera, along with the umbilical cable which would have connected to a Betamax recorder.

Main Lens
Main Lens

The lens on this camera is massive, at least a kilo of optical glass. Focus control is manual, with both auto & manual zoom control.

Lens Zoom Control
Lens Zoom Control

The Zoom controls are on top of the grip, with a button to the rear of the control which I have no idea about. The internal belts are a bit rotted with age so the zoom function doesn’t work great.

Trinicon Control Board
Trinicon Control Board

After removing the side covers, the two large PCBs become visible. These units are absolutely packed with electronics. On this side is the Trinicon tube control board, generating all the high voltages for electron beam acceleration, focus & electrostatic deflection of the beam. There’s around 500 volts knocking around on this board, with some rather specialised hybrid modules doing all the high voltage magic.

Video Process Board
Video Process Board

The other side of the camera has the video process board, which performs all the colour separation of the video signal from the tube, processes the resulting signals into a composite video signal, and finally sends it down the umbilical.

Bare Controls
Bare Controls

Removing some of the remaining covers exposes the bare video controls, and a small PCB just underneath covered in trimpots to set factory levels.

White Balance Filter Arm
White Balance Filter Arm

The white balance is partially electronic & partially mechanical. This lever actuates a filter inside the lens assrembly.

Remote Connector
Remote Connector

A DIN connector offers remote control ability. The large loom of wires disappearing off to the right is dealing with the zoom mechanism & the onboard microphone amplifier. Just under the DIN connector hides the system power supply, inside a soldered can. The can under the white tape is the head end amplifier for the Trinicon video tube.

Trinicon Mount
Trinicon Mount

Hiding in the centre of the camera inside the casting is the Trinicon tube assembly itself. The label can just be seen here.

Camera Internals 1
Camera Internals 1

As is typical of 1980’s electronic design, the main boards swing down & are designed to slot into the base casting folded out for repairs. Internally the unit is a rat’s nest of wiring loom. There’s also another shielding can in here nestled between the boards – this is the video sync generator circuit.

Camera Internals 2
Camera Internals 2

The other side gives a better view of the video sync generator can. I’ll dive into the individual modules later on.

Lens Zoom Assembly
Lens Zoom Assembly

Under the remaining side cover is the zoom assembly & microphone amplifier board. More massive wiring loom hides within.

Video Sync Generator
Video Sync Generator

The video sync generator is pretty sparse inside, just a large Sony CX773 Sync Generator IC, with a pair of crystals. There are a couple of adjustments in here for video sync frequencies.

Head End Amplifier
Head End Amplifier

Removed from it’s shielding can, here is the head end amplifier for the Trinicon tube. This very sensitive JFET input amplifier feeds into the main video process board.

Input Transformer
Input Transformer

The Trinicon tube target connects to this input transformer on the front of the amplifier board.

Internal Video Adjustments
Internal Video Adjustments

The internal white balance controls are on this small PCB, mounted under the user-accessible controls.

Vidicon Control Board
Vidicon Control Board

Here’s the main control board responsible for the Trinicon tube & exposure control. Down near the front is the auto-iris circuit, nearer the centre is timing control & at the top is the high voltage power supply & deflection generator ICs.

High Voltage Section
High Voltage Section

Here’s the high voltage section, the main transformer at right generating the voltages required to drive the video tube. The large orange hybrids here are a pair of BX369 high-voltage sawtooth generators that create the deflection waveforms for the tube. The other large hybrid is a BX382 Fader Control.

Video Process Board
Video Process Board

The other large board contains all the video process circuitry, all analogue of course. There are a lot of manual adjustment pots on this board.

Lens Barrel
Lens Barrel

After removing the lens assembly, the tube assembly is visible inside the barrel casting. Not much to see yet, just the IR filter assembly.

Trinicon Tube Assembly
Trinicon Tube Assembly

Here’s the unit removed from the camera. Unfortunately this tube is dead – it shows a lot of target burn on the resulting image, and very bad ghosting on what poor image there is. The Trinicon tube itself is encased in the focus coil assembly, the windings of which are hidden under the shielding.

IR Filter
IR Filter

The IR filter is locked into the front of the tube, on a bayonet fitting. The twin target wires are running off to the left, where they would connect to the head end amplifier.

Bare Tube
Bare Tube

After removing the IR filter glass, the Trinicon tube itself is removed from the focus coil assembly. There’s an electron gun at the rear of the tube, like all CRTs, although this one works in reverse – sensing an image projected on the front instead of generating one.

Deflection Plates
Deflection Plates

It’s a little difficult to see, but the electrostatic deflection electrodes in this tube are created from the aluminium flashing on the inside of the glass, in a zig-zag pattern. The interleaving electrodes are connected to base pins by spring contacts at the electron gun end of the tube.

Electron Gun
Electron Gun

The electron gun is mostly hidden by the getter flash & the deflection electrodes, but the cathode can is visible through the glass, along with the spring contacts that make a connection to the deflection electrodes. This is also a very short gun – it doesn’t extend more than about 5mm into the deflection zone. The rest of the tube up to the target is empty space.

Target
Target

Finally, here’s the target end of the tube. I’m not sure how the wires are attached to the terminals – it certainly isn’t solder, maybe conductive adhesive?
It uses a vertically striped RGB colour filter over the faceplate of an otherwise standard Vidicon imaging tube to segment the scan into corresponding red, green and blue segments. It is used mostly in low-end consumer cameras, though Sony also used it in some moderate cost professional cameras in the 1980s.
Although the idea of using colour stripe filters over the target was not new, the Trinicon was the only tube to use the primary RGB colours. This necessitated an additional electrode buried in the target to detect where the scanning electron beam was relative to the stripe filter. Previous colour stripe systems had used colours where the colour circuitry was able to separate the colours purely from the relative amplitudes of the signals. As a result, the Trinicon featured a larger dynamic range of operation.

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eBay Reverse Parking Sensors Teardown

Parking Sensors Kit
Parking Sensors Kit

This is a cheap kit from eBay, to retrofit an older car with ultrasonic parking sensors. 4 sensors are included in the kit, along with a hole saw to fit them to the bumper. There’s a small controller module, and a display module that fits onto the dash of the car.

Controller Module
Controller Module

Here’s the controller module, with it’s row of connectors along the front. The unit gets it’s power from the reversing light circuit, via the red connector.

Main Controller PCB
Main Controller PCB

Removing a couple of screws allows the PCB to be removed. There’s quite a bit on this board, including 4 tunable inductors for the ultrasonic transducers. There’s a linear voltage regulator on the left which supplies power to the electronics, and a completely unmarked microcontroller.

Electronics Closeup
Electronics Closeup

A closer look at the analogue end of the board shows a JRC4558D dual Op-Amp, and an NXP HEF4052B analogue multiplexer. As the microcontroller is unmarked I have no data for that one.

Dash Display
Dash Display

The dash display is housed in another small plastic box, with bargraphs for each side of the car & an overall distance meter.

Display Module
Display Module

Clearly this is a custom module, with the tapered bargraph LEDs on each side & the 7-segment display in the centre. There’s a beeper which works like every factory-fitted unit does, increasing in rate as the distance closes.

Display PCB
Display PCB

The back of the display module has the driver PCB, with yet another unmarked microcontroller, and a TI 74HC164 serial shift register as a display driver. There’s only 3 wires in the loom from the controller, so some sort of 1-wire protocol must be being used, while I²C is the most likely protocol to be talking to the display driver circuit. There’s also a small switch for muting the beeper.

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Wireless Energy Management SmartSensor

Cover Removed
Cover Removed

Here’s another random bit of RF tech, I’m told this is a wireless energy management sensor, however I wasn’t able to find anything similar on the interwebs. It’s powered by a standard 9v PP3 battery.

Microcontroller
Microcontroller

System control is handled by this Microchip PIC18F2520 Enhanced Flash microcontroller, this has an onboard 10-bit ADC & nanoWatt technology according to their datasheet. There’s a 4MHz crystal providing the clock, with a small SOT-23 voltage regulator in the bottom corner. There’s a screw terminal header & a plug header, but I’ve no idea what these would be used for. Maybe connecting an external voltage/current sensor & a programming header? The tactile button I imagine is for pairing the unit with it’s controller.

PCB Bottom
PCB Bottom

The bottom of the PCB is almost entirely taken up by a Radiocrafts RC1240 433MHz RF transceiver. Underneath there’s a large 10kΩ resistor, maybe a current transformer load resistor, and a TCLT1600 optocoupler. Just from the opto it’s clear this unit is intended to interface in some way to the mains grid. The antenna is connected at top right, in a footprint for a SMA connector, but this isn’t fitted.