Pegasus Astro Pocket PowerBox Advance Startup Issues

While bench testing the new SpaceCat build, I discovered an issue with the Pegasus Astro Pocket PowerBox Advance: the Power Outlet options, Quad 12V (PowerHub) and Adjustable, are turned ON during startup despite having specified under the Startup Configuration that they should remain OFF. 

The significance of this issue is that with the main camera connected to the Adjustable power output, the camera will always be powered ON when the PPBAdvance boots up, or when it's rebooted. Which means that for a camera with a thermoelectric cooler, the TEC system will always be enabled at startup. Ideally you would have more control over how and when the TEC system is enabled in order to minimize wear and tear, and the risk of damage to the camera due to rapid cooling. This is one major benefit of using the Adjustable power output for powering the main camera: it supports power switching independently of the Quad 12V PowerHub.

Note that this issue manifests itself in slightly different ways depending on the combination of ON/OFF states. See the following test cases for details.

Pegasus Astro Unity Platform showing the PPBAdvance tab


The following test cases were evaluated using a Pegasus Astro Pocket PowerBox Advance Gen2 running firmware version 2.10.3 Rev C (latest), Pegasus Astro Unity Platform version 1.13.2116.117 (latest), and ASCOM Platform version (latest).

System setup consists of an ASUS ZenBook UX31A (Intel Core i7-3517U CPU, 4 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD) running Windows 10 Pro 64bit version 22H2 including all the latest security updates. The PPBAdvance is connected directly to the computer via USB 3.0 using a short USB 3.0 cable. The PPBAdvance is powered using a Pegasus Astro 12V10A power supply with DC 5521 connector.


The following test cases were performed to evaluate Startup Configuration options in each combination of ON/OFF states.

Test Case 1 (ON, ON): PASS

Both Startup Configuration options (PowerHub and Adjustable) are set to ON.

Result: Both Power Output options (Quad 12V and Adjustable) turn ON at startup.

Test Case 2 (OFF, OFF): FAIL

Both Startup Configuration options (PowerHub and Adjustable) are set to OFF.

Result: Power Output option Quad 12V remains OFF at startup, but Adjustable turns ON. 

Expected Result: Adjustable is expected to remain OFF at startup.

Test Case 3 (ON, OFF): FAIL

Startup Configuration option PowerHub is set to ON, while Adjustable is set to OFF.

Result: Both Power Output options (Quad 12V and Adjustable) turn ON at startup.

Expected Result: Adjustable is expected to remain OFF at startup.

Test Case 4 (OFF, ON): FAIL

Startup Configuration option PowerHub is set to OFF, while Adjustable is set to ON.

Result: Both Power Output options (Quad 12V and Adjustable) turn ON at startup.

Expected Result: Quad 12V is expected to remain OFF at startup.


Reviewing the logs, client trace logs indicate that Startup Configuration settings are being successfully stored to the device. Which points to this likely being a firmware related issue.

Client logs filtered by messages containing "Boot"

Additional troubleshooting steps include uninstalling and reinstalling the Unity Platform using the latest installer, and reinstalling the PPBAdvance firmware (twice). Unfortunately, the issue still persists.

Submitted a support request to Pegasus Astro. Now just awaiting their response.

Update 2024-01-03

Pegasus Astro was quick to respond to my request for support. They were able to confirm the issue, and released a new firmware update today to address it (firmware version 2.11.3 Rev C).

Release notes for firmware v2.11.3 Rev C

Unfortunately the same issue still persists. Except now there's an additional point of failure: the Startup Configuration option PowerHub turns back ON after startup when the Startup Configuration option Adjustable is set to ON. 

This new point of failure presented the need for more granular testing, and a better way of communicating the results. So I wrote up a small test suite that outlines the points of failure for the current release.

Page 1 of the PPBAdvance Test Suite

Further testing revealed there to be additional points of failure, and the need for more test parameters. The test suite has been updated accordingly with additional test cases.

Results have been oddly inconsistent between test runs, though. When repeating a test case, there is a tendency for the result to differ from the initial attempt. However, subsequent attempts will tend to have the same result. Also seeing a difference in results when repeating test cases out of sequence.

Pegasus Astro Support suspects the issue may be a cache bug in the Unity Platform, leading to false readings, and are working to provide a fix as soon as possible.

Update 2024-01-10

Loaded up the Pegasus Astro Unity Platform this morning to find a new update available! 

Updated the Unity Platform from version 1.13.2116.117 to version 1.14.2159.124 (latest), and reinstalled PPBAdvance firmware version 2.11.3 Rev C (latest).

Release notes for Unity Platform v1.14.2159.124

Initial smoke tests show these issues are as of yet still unresolved.