New Proffie Saber - Board and SD Card Don't Show On Windows PC

I just purchased a Proffie saber from Padawan Outpost last week with OS 6.5 installed. I own 2 other Proffie sabers, and both of those have OS 5.9 on them. I have programmed and added to both of the 5.9 sabers through both the EasyProffie and Arduino methods using a micro-USB data cable and PC with Windows 10 with no problems. That being said, I’m still very much a newbie with this, so please talk to me like I’m a 5-year-old!! The 6.5 saber has a smaller opening in the chassis, requiring me to purchase a 90-degree data cable (I purchased 2 from different sources). I plugged in the saber and got the “chime” on my computer heard when a new device is added, and then a quick message popped up stating that Proffie was detected and being installed. On my 5.9 sabers, I would always get a folder opening with all of the contents of the SD card, but that didn’t happen with the new one. Checked File Explorer and it didn’t show the SD card or Proffie Board. Clicked on the “Safely Remove Hardware” button on the taskbar, and neither the SD card nor the Proffie board were showing there either. Unplugged and another chime. Tried a few more times, including after re-booting my computer, and still nothing. I then tried the 2nd data cord, and the computer chimed when i plugged it in and then a quick pop-up showed for the SD card, but that went away and same issues - nothing in File Explorer or in the “Safely Remove Hardware” section. I posted on the Open Source Sabers page on FaceBook and while waiting for a reply, I saw a post that mentioned someone had similar issues and contacted Padawan Outpost, who told him there was a small black chip just above the micro USB plug-in port that is preventing the board from being read and they allegedly told this poster to pop it off and they would still honor the warranty. He claimed to have done it and it worked. I e-mailed PO yesterday and am still waiting on their reply. In the interim, I received a reply back from OSS with this link from your page:

I watched the video twice, and the second time through I checked my settings versus what were shown in the video without making any changes to my computer. With the exception of mine listed as COM 5 and the video showing COM 3, everything else matched, including the fact that the Proffie was showing in the Devices & Printers section. I posted this back on the OSS site and they recommended that I post here for suggestions on how to fix this.

Thanks much for any help you can give me!!!

BTW, I apologize if I should have posted this under ProffieOS section instead of this one…just figured since the hardware is not even showing on my computer, this would be the best place.

The SD card will only mount to the PC if you have uploaded with Mass Storage as part of the selection under Arduino menu Tools>USB Type.
Otherwise, just the board itself will connect, which you wouldn’t see in an Explorer window, and there’s nothing to Eject.
The board can connect as different devices, depending on what mode you’re in:

  • booted into standard ProffieOS, board shows up as Proffieboard and should be in the Arduino Tools>Port menu.
  • booted into bootloader, the board shows up as STM32BOOTLOADER, which will NOT show under the Port menu, adn is meant to be uploaded to.

I suggest manually putting the board into bootloader by holding the onboard BOOT button, press and release the RESET button, then release BOOT. Then, hit upload in Arduino (Port will not show the board at this point, just hit upload anyway).

Padawan Outpost telling people to pop off U40 is just ridiculous IMO.

Some of their boards had a problem with U40, which made USB communication impossible. When that happens, there won’t be a port, and it won’t show up in printers & devices.

Correct, of course. But would you condone the retailer suggesting to remove the chip as a viable workaround as opposed to replacing the board for the customer?

I wouldn’t recommend it.
The board works without the chip, it’s just a little more susceptible to esd damage.
Some customers might prefer that solution, so maybe it’s ok to offer that solution as an alternative to a warranty replacement. Not sure what terms they offer though, so it’s hard to say if it’s a good or a bad thing.

It’s acceptable as long as it doesn’t void the warranty with the vendor.

I am attaching a cut-and-paste of a new post from David Flintham on Open Source Sabers this morning, who I’m assuming is the owner of PO. Based on this, it appears they are acknowledging that the chip/core is defective and will replace them. Hope this is true…I e-mailed them earlier this week and received no reply, and their site is down today. I responded to his post on OSS with my order number and request for replacement, so we’ll see how it goes. One of the reasons I purchased from PO (along with their great prices) is that the guy on Absolute Sabers swears by them and their customer service…I guess this will be a good test of that.

Dave Flintham

Hi Guys, unfortunately unbeknown to me, we had some issues with some proffie boards not connecting correctly. Whilst I was away, my Wife was clearly given some ridiculous advice on how to fix the problem. My wife is not technical, and obviously assumed that this advice from the manufacturer was the right thing to do. To be clear, she told 3 different people about this fix, all 3 have been messaged and we will of course send out 3 replacements for these faulty cores. We are extremely embarrassed that we gave out information for our customers to do that so recklessly, and want to make it clear that we do not want anyone touching their soundboards in any way other than to program. We will put a post up ensuring this doesn’t happen again and to warn others that may have been given the same advise. Our sincere apologies.

Dave (Padawan Outpost)

Yeah, he’s also known as Saber Dave and as far as I remember, the wife is Khal from KR Sabers’ sister.

There seem to be a lot of Daves runing companies in this hobby!

UPDATE: I received an e-mail from Padawan Outpost late yesterday afternoon, in a reply from the first contact attempt I made to them earlier in the week. They instructed me to NOT remove the U40 chip and said that they will send me a return-shipping label on Monday for me to send the core back for replacement with a new one.

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Update and Additional Questions: As noted earlier, Padawan Outpost e-mailed me a return shipping label and I sent the defective core back to them to be replaced. They advised me that it would take approximately 2 weeks before they received a new batch of cores. About 2 weeks later they e-mailed me and confirmed they received the defective core and were shipping out the replacement. 2 days later, I received the replacement core (2 days from the UK to the US??? Outstanding!!). When i opened up the box, I found a “standard” core that would not work in my Obi Wan Kenobi saber. Because of the long, thin neck, the original core had the top removed with wires and a clip that came out and ran up the neck, and the emitter attachment that contacts the neopixel blade has wires and a clip that runs down the neck and connects to the clip coming from the handle portion. In addition, the USB-C plug-in for charging the battery was originally by the speaker, and the new one placed the charging port up above the power button, which would then place it inside the hilt. In order to charge the battery, i would have to disassemble over 1/2 of the hilt with the new core. I notified PO this weekend and requested a swap of sabers, given the patience I have shown despite 2 defective/incorrect shipments and a question about if the same fonts and blade styles from the original core would be included in the replacement. PO dodged the question about the fonts/styles and said they would not swap out the sabers and told me my 2 choices are to either accept ANOTHER core from them, or for me to ship this “new” core back to them with my hilt and let them install it, which will take even longer to get back (which they acknowledged). This is my third saber, plus I have ordered a core previously (from a different company) to replace one that I damaged, and all 4 cores had different fonts and styles. Looking at the box PO just sent me, there is no indication that it is for any particular saber. I really liked the fonts and styles that were on the original core…I’m concerned that the replacement I get back AGAIN will not have them. Is this valid, or are these “certified sellers” able to match up the correct boards, and I just happened to get the wrong one? These sabers aren’t cheap, and I want what I paid for, so if there’s no way to guarantee getting the same fonts/styles that come with every other OWK saber they sell, I’m thinking of just returning it and re-purchasing. Thoughts?

Obviously, your experience is less than ideal.

certified by whom?
If they are certifed by someone, maybe you should get in touch with them to complain?