Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Why are my electronic clocks slow?
Old 01-13-2007, 10:49 AM   #1
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 417
Why are my electronic clocks slow?

I have a 6-yr old 31" GE regular TV with remote and the internal clock on it loses 2-3 minutes a month. My year old combo DVD/recorder/player/VCR has an internal clock that just started losing 3-4 minutes a month. My 7-yr old refubished computer has an internal clock that loses 1-2 minutes a month. This is not due to power outages and the units are on basically 24/7. I understand a wind up clock getting tired springs/etc. and going slow, but why and how do these electronic controlled clocks lose time?
__________________

__________________
Payin-the-Toll is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?
Old 01-13-2007, 10:52 AM   #2
Full time employment: Posting here.
DRiP Guy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 546
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?


My best guess is if you may be 'missing cycles' (i.e. your AC is supposed to be 60HZ in US) -- do you know what your type of power generation is?
__________________

__________________
DRiP Guy is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?
Old 01-13-2007, 11:04 AM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
cute fuzzy bunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Losing my whump
Posts: 22,697
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?

Clock drift
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clock_drift

Every electronic clock is "off" by a little bit. Many get worse over time.

There are a bazoodle of add on software products that will set your computers time to an online atomic clock. XP has this functionality built in.

By the way, the clock drift on a PC is so predictable that someone who records a series of Internet Protocol transactions over time can identify from the time stamps on the packets both the offset and frequency of the drift on the sending PC. If the sending PC is then obtained, these can be matched up like fingerprints to demonstrate that the particular computer is the one that sent the IP packets.

Interesting stuff...
__________________
Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
cute fuzzy bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?
Old 01-13-2007, 12:03 PM   #4
Moderator Emeritus
Nords's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Oahu
Posts: 26,617
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute 'n Fuzzy Bunny
By the way, the clock drift on a PC is so predictable that someone who records a series of Internet Protocol transactions over time can identify from the time stamps on the packets both the offset and frequency of the drift on the sending PC. If the sending PC is then obtained, these can be matched up like fingerprints to demonstrate that the particular computer is the one that sent the IP packets.
So now do you not only have to use proxy servers, you have to access them by randomly switching among household PCs, and reset their clocks every day!
__________________
*
*

The book written on E-R.org, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
Nords is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?
Old 01-13-2007, 03:54 PM   #5
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
cute fuzzy bunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Losing my whump
Posts: 22,697
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?

Actually its not the time setting, but the measurable drift, so you cant fake it out.

http://www.caida.org/publications/pa...erprinting.pdf

In a nutshell, by analyzing two sets of packet traces you can determine with some reasonable certainty whether they came from the same machine or not, providing the traces were taken within a reasonable time of each other as the clock drift changes over time.

You have to really love measurable and predictable wrongness.
__________________
Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
cute fuzzy bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?
Old 01-13-2007, 06:05 PM   #6
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 944
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?

ALL of my clocks, electronic, quartz and wind up need to be adjusted - the only clock I trust is an "atomic" clock that came w/ my wireless weather system. It is updated from the "heavens" daily - also keeps track of moon cycles, date etc.---since retiring I often need help remembering the day and date - also if we are going to have a get together, I like to have it around a full moon(esp. summer) and this thing makes it easy.
__________________
Freed at 49. You only live once - live it
Donzo is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?
Old 01-13-2007, 06:49 PM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Telly's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,448
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Payin-the-Toll
I have a 6-yr old 31" GE regular TV with remote and the internal clock on it loses 2-3 minutes a month. My year old combo DVD/recorder/player/VCR has an internal clock that just started losing 3-4 minutes a month. My 7-yr old refubished computer has an internal clock that loses 1-2 minutes a month. This is not due to power outages and the units are on basically 24/7. I understand a wind up clock getting tired springs/etc. and going slow, but why and how do these electronic controlled clocks lose time?
All of those devices use a consumer-grade crystal oscillator in them for the timebase. The crystals used are dirt cheap. The cutting and lapping of crystals create stresses in the lattice. Much more expensive Industrial-grade crystals are baked to help relieve these stresses before the final manufacturing operations. You get what you (don't) pay for.

In addition, any change in series or parallel capacitance in the oscillator circuitry will pull the crystal frequency. This is both bad and good. Good, in that a small trimmer capacitor could be adjusted by the user (a Fast - Slow screwdriver adjustment) to correct a slightly off-frequency crystal. And bad, in that any aging of cheap components in the circuit could have the same effect.

For your VCR, check the instructions. Most VCR's have an automatic clock set mode, which will use a time signal sent by a TV station to synchronize the internal VCR clock. Your VCR probably has a learn mode that will scan through all available channels, and mark one that it see's a time signal on. It will then use that for the synch reference. In my case, it was a PBS TV station that had it. When your VCR is "off"it will continue to run on your internal VCR clock. When the VCR is back on, it will look at the time signal and resynch the internal clock.
__________________
-- Telly, the D-I-Y guy --
Two fools dancing on the hands of time
Telly is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?
Old 01-13-2007, 08:43 PM   #8
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Northern IL
Posts: 18,282
Re: Why are my electronic clocks slow?

Yep, Telly has it right.

Another way to look at it, is just how accurate 4 minutes in a month really is (glass half full).

4 minutes divided by the minutes in a month (60min * 24 hrs * 30 days) = 93 millionths.

Or 93 ppm accuracy.

Or 99.9907% accurate.

Or .0093% inaccuracy.

Amazing just how good a dirt-cheap device is. Try to buy a torque wrench, or a tire pressure gauge, or a meat thermometer, or a bathroom scale that is 99.9907% accurate! That would weigh a 175 pound person to within about 1/4 of an ounce!

They could design in a better part, but it would still be off a minute every month or two. So, if you care, you would still be adjusting it. To get much better, you really need to get to some pretty fancy and somewhat costly circuits; temperature and voltage compensation, maybe a little computer chip to track all the non-linearities. It just isn't worth it for most products, esp when most people change the time twice a year anyhow. And, as stated above, there are options if you really want/need the accuracy.

I'd rather see them spend (and charge) a few more bucks to make sure the clock does not lose it's settings on every little power glitch. That is infuriating to me, yet, you can rarely find out from the product literature if it has that feature or not.

-ERD50
__________________

__________________
ERD50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
This site has become very slow! haha Forum Admin 27 03-20-2007 08:24 PM
The Space Shuttle has bad clocks? retire@40 Other topics 9 12-10-2006 04:43 PM
THC May Slow Down Alzheimer's REWahoo Other topics 14 10-06-2006 08:36 PM
Electronic investment reports that dont work cute fuzzy bunny Other topics 1 12-24-2003 03:36 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:13 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.