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6542 posts

Uber Geek
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Topic # 223445 29-Sep-2017 16:07
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The volume control on my cheap Fusion head unit has gone rogue on me. The unit is adequate for my purposes and I don’t want to have to replace it. I am wondering if there is any relatively simple and straightforward way to fix it.


Like all modern controls, this one operates everything that is adjustable, like balance, bass and so forth. Press to select, then turn the knob. The knob turns forever in either direction.


The problem is that the level has started jumping around in a random fashion when adjusting. If you turn it up, it doesn’t go 1-2-3-4-5. Instead it may go 1-5-2-19-3-etc. It is almost impossible to adjust the volume up or down in a controlled fashion. Sometimes it is impossible to get it to go down at all. It will just keep jumping back and forth between two or three higher levels.


In the old days, volume was controlled by carbon potentiometers. These could develop bad spots that would produce effects similar to what I am experiencing. Could anything like this be going on with my volume control? Could this be a mechanical contact issue, or is it something in the electronics?


My head unit has a removable front panel, which conveniently also contains the volume control. Could this be fixable without removing the unit, or is the problem likely to lie deeper? Any tips would be much appreciated.



I reject your reality and substitute my own. - Adam Savage

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519 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1874977 29-Sep-2017 22:58
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It's certainly worth pulling the  face apart. 


The actual controller (the turney thing) probably has no contacts in it but I would poke around for bad solder joints.


Also look for wear on the plug and socket between face and main unit.


If you're in the habit of removing the face frequently I would also poke around at the socket on the main unit.


For the cost of a new cd player these days, I wouldn't think it worth persevering too much.


One work around is to use an IR remote, if it has one.


Good luck.

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  Reply # 1875122 30-Sep-2017 15:16
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Thanks for the suggestions. I completely disassembled it and sprayed contact cleaner all through the potentiometer (if that's what it is). No obvious signs of bad solder joints though they are so small these days it is hard to tell. I was not prepared to attempt unsoldering the pot from the board. Unfortunately the cleaner made no difference at all. It is still as bad as ever. It seems silly to have to replace the whole unit just for something like this, though it wasn't a very expensive one. Does anyone else know how to fix this?



I reject your reality and substitute my own. - Adam Savage


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  Reply # 1875327 1-Oct-2017 01:04
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It will be using a rotary encoder. It only outputs which direction the knob is rotating and what speed. The headunit has to remember what the current volume level is so it knows how much to increase or decrease it by.


Also try cleaning the contacts that interface the front panel with the rest of the headunit. And check to see if any of them have lost their springiness in case that is causing an unreliable connection.

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  Reply # 1875354 1-Oct-2017 10:06
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OK will do. Thanks.



I reject your reality and substitute my own. - Adam Savage

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