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About this guide

This guide contains the following information about Pulsars:

Pulsar status light

In addition to the infrared active marker LEDs that are visible in Vicon cameras, which are used for tracking, Vicon Pulsars have a status light, to enable you to recognize their current battery status and pairing/connection status. The status light comprises three visible LEDs (green, red, blue). The following table describes the LED states.

LED statusDescription
Green onPulsar battery is charging*
Green off (with USB charger connected)Pulsar battery is fully charged
Green off (with USB charger disconnected)Pulsar battery has charge (>20%)
Red onPulsar battery low (<=20%)
Red offPulsar battery has charge (>20%)
Blue offPulsar cannot configure the radio 
Blue onPulsar connected to Beacon
Blue on-off (slow pulsing)Pulsar paired to a Beacon but not connected
Blue on-off (fast pulsing)Pulsar not paired with a Beacon
Red on-off → Blue on-off → Green on-offBoot sequence
All on-off (fast pulsing)Pulsar selected in software
All offPulsar powered down, or status lights disabled in software
Red on-off (sequence repeating)Invalid MAC address, pairing or connection critical failure

* To ensure the charge indication light is visible, the cluster automatically switches on when plugged into the charger. This also disables power down via software, and the infrared marker LEDs are switched off.

Pulsar operation

You can use the power button on a Pulsar to perform the following functions.

ToDo this
Turn on a PulsarOn a Pulsar that is turned off, give the button a single short press.
Select the Pulsar in EvokeOn a Pulsar that is connected, give the button a single short press.
Turn off a PulsarOn a Pulsar that is turned on, press the button for 2 seconds.*
Reboot a Pulsar (retains settings)On a Pulsar that is turned on, press the button for 10 seconds.
Un-pair a Pulsar from BeaconDuring the 10-second period after booting only, double-press the button.*

* Can be disabled in software to prevent accidental use.

Pulsar status icons in Evoke

On the System tab, in the Clusters part of the System tree, Pulsars that are paired with a connected Beacon are displayed. Adjacent icons indicate the status of the Pulsars:  

The following table describes each of the Pulsar status icons that are displayed on the System tab in Evoke.

IconMeaning
Cyan Connected but not assigned a marker pattern
Yellow Connected but disabled 

Gray

Automatically disabled as not linked to a Smart Object
Green Enabled and assigned a valid marker pattern
Red Disconnected
Yellow battery Battery has low charge (less than 20%)
Red battery Battery has very low charge (less than 10%)
Lightning bolt Plugged in for recharging
Update Evoke has queued or sent new settings to the Pulsar but has not yet received a response
No iconLoaded from a previous Evoke session but not yet connected to this instance of Evoke

Note that the overall system charge is determined by the device with the lowest charge (unless recharging – see the following note), which is shown at the top of the Clusters section on the System tab.

The number of devices on charge is also displayed here.

Note
The information displayed by the Lowest Battery Charge indicator depends on the number of devices that are currently charging:
  • If some connected devices are currently charging, they are ignored, as they aren't at risk of running out of charge.
  • If all of the connected devices are recharging (indicated by a lightning bolt icon on the charge bar), they are included, so that you know when they are ready for use.


In the following image, the red battery icons to the right of the Pulsar names indicate that the batteries of the relevant Pulsars are low. The Lowest Battery Charge indicator shows that the Pulsar with the lowest charge is almost at 0%, ie, almost fully discharged (a Pulsar whose battery is fully discharged can no longer communicate with Evoke and disconnects, and the Lowest Battery Charge indicator then displays the Pulsar with the next lowest battery).

In the following image, the yellow lightning icons to the right of the Pulsar names indicate that the batteries of the relevant Pulsars are charging (and the yellow battery icons indicate that the charge is still low). The Lowest Battery Charge indicator shows that the Pulsar with the lowest charge is now at 13%.

Pulsar patterns

Important
Under normal circumstances, the patterns for Pulsar active markers are automatically generated when you create Smart Objects and you don't need to change them. The following information is provided for troubleshooting purposes only.

When a Pulsar is first connected, it is displayed in Evoke with a default pattern of 0,  which turns all active markers off. This prevents the Pulsar from interfering with the tracking of any paired Pulsars that already have patterns set.

If there are no Smart Objects, the Pulsar is Enabled and you can edit the Marker Pattern property. (The Marker Pattern property is an Advanced property as usually, patterns are automatically set when you create Smart Objects.) If any Smart Objects are present, the Marker Pattern property is read-only and controlled by the associated Smart Object. If Smart Objects are present, but a Pulsar has no associated Smart Object, you cannot change the pattern or Enabled property for the Pulsar.

The Smart Cluster Marker Pattern property represents the enabled active markers as a bit mask. The number value is converted to binary and a set bit represents an enabled active marker. For example, the value 255 is 1111 1111 in binary, so all eight markers would be enabled. The least significant bit (the one on the right) represents the 0 marker in the Pulsar LED circuit order, so the pattern value 64 (or 0100 0000 in binary) represents marker 6 and would result in the single marker below the status lights being enabled.

The following Pulsar LED circuit order diagram shows which LED corresponds to which bit position index.

Tip
To help generate patterns, you can use the Microsoft Windows 10 Calculator app in Programmer mode to convert from binary to decimal.