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Very slow charging when the screen is on

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mxrider97

Senior Member
Sep 20, 2015
136
29
Słupsk
So it is EVERY 5x users' problem? When the screen is off, it charges at 2500mA, but as soon as I turn the screen on, it drops to 210-400mA, so it almost doesn't charge at all. I know - heat and that kind of things, but come on, it should be that bad!

Actually, I don't think that it's directly connected to heat, because it doesn't matter what value I set in thermal throttling, it still drops charging rate as soon as I turn the screen on.
 
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EeZeEpEe

Senior Member
Aug 13, 2010
4,309
1,194
Tampa, FL
www.twitter.com
So it is EVERY 5x users' problem? When the screen is off, it charges at 2500mA, but as soon as I turn the screen on, it drops to 210-400mA, so it almost doesn't charge at all. I know - heat and that kind of things, but come on, it should be that bad!

Actually, I don't think that it's directly connected to heat, because it doesn't matter what value I set in thermal throttling, it still drops charging rate as soon as I turn the screen on.
Yeah it's a partial factor. Sometimes with my AC vents pointed at it, it's still a 0 charge and other times it's going up at a reasonable speed.

Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk
 

sfhub

Senior Member
Oct 23, 2008
5,342
7,220
Same issue here for me still. This ain't due to temperature as mine is cool enough (sub 30 celsius) to not be considered "hot". But, I don't believe every model has this as this thread hasn't "exploded" enough for it to be considered a general malfunction for every n5x. Perhaps we can find a batch with some serial numbers which has the issues while others don't?
Has the slow charging with screen on always been the case even with the original MDA89E release?

It is a possibility they adjusted the charging rate (with screen on) to address the funky touchscreen behavior when connected to defective (noisy) charger units that were shipped out. They made some touchscreen firmware changes to address the same issue. The touchscreen firmware changes happened in MHC19J.
 

roofrider

Senior Member
Jul 24, 2011
7,044
905
Bangalore, IN
So I did some investigation and basically there is a file in /etc/system/thermal-engine-8992.conf that controls the various thermal properties of the phone. From what I can see in the file, If the battery temperature goes above 36 degrees C, the kernel is going to throttle the battery charge rate. If it goes above 39 degrees C, the battery will not get charged.

So there doesn't seem to be anything wrong with the phone or the charger, thats just how google has configured it.

My guess is, rapid charging increases the battery temperature so much that google wants your screen to be off to charge it at that rate.

Code:
[battery_monitor]
algo_type        monitor
sensor           xo_batt
sampling         10000
thresholds       36000                  39000
thresholds_clr   34000                  38000
actions          battery                battery
action_info      0                      3
So do these thresholds apply only when the screen is on? Does someone know how and when exactly these limits come into play? Does thresholds_clr mean when the temps drop to 38, the charging speed will again pick up?
I can't see a direct connection between these and the charging rate (if the screen is off). When charging with the screen off, the temperature almost always stays above 36°C (unless the battery is > 85 or 90%) and even touches 46°C. The instant the screen turns on it seems to drop to 400/500 mA. I don't understand how increasing the threshold is going to degrade the battery much since it already crosses 45°C with the screen off. Yeah, maintaining it at 45°C is going to have adverse effects, but at least if the temperature were to stay below 40°C with screen on, the device should charge at a reasonable rate. Right now the negotiation seems to be like: OMG!! The screen on ! I don't care what the current temperature is, let stop charging the phone or it'll explode!!
That said, I'm currently doing a little test with Ampere open. I'll post my observations soon.

Has the slow charging with screen on always been the case even with the original MDA89E release?

It is a possibility they adjusted the charging rate (with screen on) to address the funky touchscreen behavior when connected to defective (noisy) charger units that were shipped out. They made some touchscreen firmware changes to address the same issue. The touchscreen firmware changes happened in MHC19J.

Yeah I think it has been a problem since before that update.
 
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roofrider

Senior Member
Jul 24, 2011
7,044
905
Bangalore, IN
Update
Couldn't arrive at anything conclusive. Only have a bunch of screenshots lol.
Charged the phone from 3:55 pm to 5:35 pm. So in 1 hr and 40 mins of charging with screen on, it went from 4% to 84%. However, during this period I only had Ampere open so there wasn't anything CPU-intensive going on. The intention was to find out the charging rate at different temperatures.
According to my thermal-engine-8992.conf and my understanding of it (or lack thereof), the threshold temps are 36°C and 39°C, and thresholds_clr are 34°C and 38°C. Now I'm not entirely sure at which temperature the throttling starts, but from my observations I'd say it is at 39°C.

Screenshot 1: Time: 3:58 pm. In 3 minutes of charging, it went from 4% to 7%. But as soon as the temp crossed 39°C, the amps dropped from 2670 mA to ~500 mA. Temp: 39.2°C
Screenshot 2: Time: 4:02 pm. It went from 7% to 10% in 4 minutes. Amps: ~500 mA. Temp: 39.2°C
Screenshot 3: Time: 4:17 pm. It went from 10% to 21% in 15 minutes. Amps: momentarily at ~2640 mA before dropping. Temp: 38.2°C
Screenshot 4: Time: 4:20 pm. It went from 21% to 23% in 3 minutes. Amps: dropped to ~500 mA. Temp: 40°C
Screenshot 5: Same stats as above. Time: 4:20. Level: 23%. Amps: momentary jump to ~2670 mA. Temp: 40°C
-At this point I reduced my interaction with the device in hopes that the temperature will drop below the 38°C threshold, and it did-​
Screenshot 6: Time: 4:26 pm. It went from 23% to 28% in 6 minutes. Amps: ~2660 mA. Temp: 37.5°C
Screenshot 7: Time: 4:36 pm. It went from 28% to 33% in 10 minutes. Amps: ~2670 mA before dropping. Temp: 39.5°C
-Now I wanted to get the temperature well below the threshold, so I grabbed a bunch of stuff from the freezer and buried the 5X. Things started to get a bit interesting here. Regardless of how low the temperature was, the phone never drew more than 1840 mA-​
Screenshot 8: Time: 4:48 pm. It went from 33% to 44% in 12 minutes. Amps: ~1840 mA. Temp: 33.7°C
Screenshot 9: Time: 4:55 pm. It went from 44% to 54% in 7 minutes. Amps: 1840 mA. Temp: 29.7°C
-I wanted to get the temperature back up to the threshold, so I fired up YouTube and removed the icepack-​
Screenshot 10: Time: 5:07 pm. It went from 54% to 68% in 12 minutes. Amps: eventually dropped to ~520 mA from 1840 mA. Temp: 37.2°C
-Brought the icepack back on to check if temperature reduction would increased the charging rate. However, the draw was limited to ~1000 mA this time regardless of the low temperature-​
Screenshots 11: Time: 5:21 pm. It went from 68% to 75% in 14 minutes. Amps: ~970 mA. Temp: 33°C
Screenshots 12: Time: 5:24 pm. It went from 75% to 77% in 3 minutes. Amps: ~1090 mA. Temp: 33°C
Time: 5:35 pm. It went from 77% to 84% in 10 minutes. Amps: ~1090 mA. Temp: 33°C
Screenshots 13 & 14: Gsam graphs

Observations: (This is in no way definitive and I do not claim it to be accurate as there can be inconsistensies due to various factors.)
-At over 39°C, charging slows down to ~500 mA
-Once below 38°C, at around 37.5°C, the charging picks up. ~2600 mA
-At the mid-way point when the battery is between 33% and 60%, the 5X seems to draw ~1800 mA even at low temperatures
-From about 65% to 85%, the draw is ~1000 mA with the temperatures well below the threshold
-Charging speed does not depend on the temperature alone. Even if the temperatures are low, actually using the device brings the charging rate to a crawl.

I'll do more low-temp tests when I have some free time, and also with a MXPE 25W charger to see if it'll perform better than USB C with the screen on.
 

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Razorless

Senior Member
Aug 10, 2008
447
327
I also measured the amperage the phone draws while charging. When the screen is off, it charges with around 2-3A. With screen on and idling (sitting on the desktop and doing nothing) it also charges fast. As soon as I do anything, even just scrolling the homescreens, it drops to around 1A.

Then I increased the [battery_monitor] temps by 4°C each (form 36/34 ; 39/38 to 40/36 ; 43/42) and it actually made a difference. The phone charged at more than 2A even when in use. However, under heavy load it still dropped to around 1A. Afer cooling down a bit, it jumped between 1A-2A while in use.

So it seems charging rate depends on CPU load and battery temperature. For a 2+A charge with medium to heavy use, the temp would need to be raised even further, and that I would NOT recommend. In the end I would say it's best to leave the [battery_monitor] in the thermal-engine alone. Even a 4°C increase didn't make a big enough difference, and batteries are much more sensitive to heat than the rest of the components.
 

kareemgonna

Senior Member
Jun 4, 2012
155
21
Alexandria
No. Just means as the title of the thread says, slow to charge while the screen is on.

Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk

I get that but is there any damage to the battery because of using it while charging? I recently fried a LG Flex 2 battery because of running intensive games while charging which lead to overheating of the Snapdragon 810 and ultimately killing my battery.
 

roofrider

Senior Member
Jul 24, 2011
7,044
905
Bangalore, IN
If only the battery thresholds can be changed on the go. If the phone can reach 45/46°C while charging with screen off, there can't be much harm if the thresholds are 45 with the screen on. It can be up to the user to keep tabs on the temp. For light usage like browsing and texting, battery temp can be maintained at 44/45°C which will give a reasonable charging rate. But if the ambient temp is high or navigating, the thresholds will have to be low to avoid getting it too hot. I haven't actually done tests by increasing the threshold and using the phone normally, but then the charging rate also depends on how hard the CPU is working and not just the temperature I believe.

..
Then I notice it stops at 19 percent. Uh-oh. Looked at Ampere, charging down to 240mAh and temperatures to 39°C. That was probably when I noticed the battery percentage again. IT WAS ACTUALLY GOING DOWN. RIGHT IN FRONT OF MY EYES.
........
Are you sure it went down? Brief negative readings in Ampere doesn't actually mean the phone is discharging. I don't think It will do that so easily unless you are really stressing the CPU/GPU and its hot (like gaming and navigating).
 

roofrider

Senior Member
Jul 24, 2011
7,044
905
Bangalore, IN
One quick update. No charging for the last 4 hours, just started using my phone to update guys on XDA Labs, and this is my battery temperature.

What the f**k google. I don't even have a bloody case on, just a Dbrand skin.
Something seems off there. It says 'discharging' which won't be the case if it's plugged in. I've never noticed that happen with EXKM.

That said, I've increased the second set of thresholds from 39/38 to 42/41 and I'm happy with the results.

---------- Post added at 06:26 AM ---------- Previous post was at 06:17 AM ----------

I've seen my battery go up to 43�°C when I play heavy games, and EX Kernel Manager warns me with either a red or yellow indicator. .
How to enable that in EXKM? Does it warn if the battery temp goes high or the CPU temp?
 
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roofrider

Senior Member
Jul 24, 2011
7,044
905
Bangalore, IN
I haven't plugged it in at all, hence 'discharging'. Sorry about the confusion. It gets hot even without a suitable load.

And no, there isn't an enabling feature, it just turns red or yellow on the dashboard.

Mind sharing how you raised the thresholds? And what values to put in?

You can change the values in /etc/thermal-engine-8992.conf with root explorer or a similar app. I increased the threshold by 3 degrees. From 39 (thresholds) and 38 (thresholds_clr) to 42 and 41 respectively. Since I couldn't find any documentation on how this works I don't know how the first set of thresholds (36 & 34) affect the charging. Thought I'd figure it out by trial and error. Oh yeah, you need to reboot once you edit and save the file.

Code:
[battery_monitor]
algo_type        monitor
sensor           xo_batt
sampling         10000
thresholds       36000                  [COLOR="red"]39000[/COLOR]
thresholds_clr   34000                  [COLOR="Red"]38000[/COLOR]
actions          battery                battery
action_info      0                      3

A few screenshots attached. The temperature didn't touch 45 and the only time it came close was when the screen was off for a short while. Usage involved browsing, texting, and a bit of light gaming (Alto). Before I changed the thresholds, the rate of change was 0 while gaming and that is when the battery discharged. This didn't happen after the thermal-engine edit. The point is, with a moderate increase in thresholds the phone will actually charge without burning down the house (at 500 600 mA to 1 1.5 A consistently) while using it, instead of doing nothing (@ 0 to 50/100 mA) otherwise.

Untitled-1.jpg
 

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andyrtr

Senior Member
Aug 24, 2011
118
14
Magdeburg
The first value pair in the conf file is when it starts to throttle the charging, second value pair the charging full cutoff.

Gesendet von meinem Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact Wifi mit Tapatalk
 

roofrider

Senior Member
Jul 24, 2011
7,044
905
Bangalore, IN
The first value pair in the conf file is when it starts to throttle the charging, second value pair the charging full cutoff.

Gesendet von meinem Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact Wifi mit Tapatalk

Any idea at what rate? Or how it goes about throttling it? Because, even if the temp is over 36 but below the cutoff value, the phone draws 2.6A if the battery level is below say 50%. I fail to see the throttling here. Even if it crosses the cutoff value, the charging doesn't always shut off, it just drops to something like 500 mA or less.
 
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Razorless

Senior Member
Aug 10, 2008
447
327
Any idea at what rate? Or how it goes about throttling it? Because, even if the temp is over 36 but below the cutoff value, the phone draws 2.6A if the battery level is below say 50%. I fail to see the throttling here. Even if it crosses the cutoff value, the charging doesn't always shut off, it just drops to something like 500 mA or less.

I do believe the battery temp is not the only variable determining the charging rate. Like I said earlier, with stock [battery_monitor] temps the phone charged at full speed with screen on (cold battery), but as soon as I did something (even scolling home scrren) the charge rate dropped.

The [battery_monitor] temp has a sampling rate of "10.000" (most likely milliseconds, so it would be every 10sec). This sampling rate could not be responsible for the sudden drops and raises of the current. It also doesn't explain why the phone can charge at full speed even with a hot battery while the screen is off.
 

andyrtr

Senior Member
Aug 24, 2011
118
14
Magdeburg
Is Google aware of this issue? I guess they know the details of the hardware and how to improve the user experience.

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Shaolin007

Senior Member
Jun 16, 2014
1,244
580
Guys what is the idle time nexus 5x shud charge mine takes from 0 to 100% it takes 1hr 49mins and google claims it shud be done in 1hr 40mins.
After coming to 88% what i noticed i strted charging once again at 7:54 and den i noticed my charging at 8:05 thats 11mins it just went from 88 to 95% that only 7% in 11mins seriously i am too afraid why charging becomes too slow at this point after crossing 90%.
Need your help guys.......!!!!!!!!!!?
Plus i reside in india so i m using european charger (brought frm amazon.com frm USA) with INDIAN adapter with 10amps support connected to mains.
So does this affect the charging cycles

Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk
 

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  • 8

    I usually drive when I'm driving.
    7
    So ran phone down to 48%(2 hr 15 min SoT) and plugged in charger and started up Order and Chaos 2 and played for 10 mins and then quit and checked battery level.....47% so looks like at least with hard gaming it won't charge while using. Going to try Netflix and will check back. So far a negative aspect, need to see how it performs more to decide if I can live with or swap out for 6p.

    So, 10 mins of Netflix(LTE) and it charged 2%.

    So I did some investigation and basically there is a file in /etc/system/thermal-engine-8992.conf that controls the various thermal properties of the phone. From what I can see in the file, If the battery temperature goes above 36 degrees C, the kernel is going to throttle the battery charge rate. If it goes above 39 degrees C, the battery will not get charged.

    So there doesn't seem to be anything wrong with the phone or the charger, thats just how google has configured it.

    My guess is, rapid charging increases the battery temperature so much that google wants your screen to be off to charge it at that rate.

    Code:
    [battery_monitor]
    algo_type        monitor
    sensor           xo_batt
    sampling         10000
    thresholds       36000                  39000
    thresholds_clr   34000                  38000
    actions          battery                battery
    action_info      0                      3
    4
    could you share your thermal-engine-8992.conf? or the exact ones you changed please :)

    Unzip the file and replace with the original one.
    Ive also increased throttling temperature for the cpu. This is currently my setup. Phone gets hot fast though.

    Edit : battery is likely to drain a bit more because cpu is not throttled early and will stay at higher clock for a longer duration.
    3
    Has anybody noticed that if you have the screen on, the battery charges extremely slowly.

    I've noticed that w the screen on using gsam, the battery is only being charged at 500mah whereas if the screen is off, it is being charged at 2200mah.

    I get it that the phone will charge slower w the screen on, but it shouldn't be this bad.

    Here's a screenshot, you can see that I started charging a little before 4pm and after 50 min it only charged aroudn 10%.

    Once I turn the screen off it will start charging very fast. But it shouldn't be charging this slowly w the screen on.

    2268321cf05480c64ce4087d6d8f450a.jpg




    Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk
    3
    Update
    Couldn't arrive at anything conclusive. Only have a bunch of screenshots lol.
    Charged the phone from 3:55 pm to 5:35 pm. So in 1 hr and 40 mins of charging with screen on, it went from 4% to 84%. However, during this period I only had Ampere open so there wasn't anything CPU-intensive going on. The intention was to find out the charging rate at different temperatures.
    According to my thermal-engine-8992.conf and my understanding of it (or lack thereof), the threshold temps are 36°C and 39°C, and thresholds_clr are 34°C and 38°C. Now I'm not entirely sure at which temperature the throttling starts, but from my observations I'd say it is at 39°C.

    Screenshot 1: Time: 3:58 pm. In 3 minutes of charging, it went from 4% to 7%. But as soon as the temp crossed 39°C, the amps dropped from 2670 mA to ~500 mA. Temp: 39.2°C
    Screenshot 2: Time: 4:02 pm. It went from 7% to 10% in 4 minutes. Amps: ~500 mA. Temp: 39.2°C
    Screenshot 3: Time: 4:17 pm. It went from 10% to 21% in 15 minutes. Amps: momentarily at ~2640 mA before dropping. Temp: 38.2°C
    Screenshot 4: Time: 4:20 pm. It went from 21% to 23% in 3 minutes. Amps: dropped to ~500 mA. Temp: 40°C
    Screenshot 5: Same stats as above. Time: 4:20. Level: 23%. Amps: momentary jump to ~2670 mA. Temp: 40°C
    -At this point I reduced my interaction with the device in hopes that the temperature will drop below the 38°C threshold, and it did-​
    Screenshot 6: Time: 4:26 pm. It went from 23% to 28% in 6 minutes. Amps: ~2660 mA. Temp: 37.5°C
    Screenshot 7: Time: 4:36 pm. It went from 28% to 33% in 10 minutes. Amps: ~2670 mA before dropping. Temp: 39.5°C
    -Now I wanted to get the temperature well below the threshold, so I grabbed a bunch of stuff from the freezer and buried the 5X. Things started to get a bit interesting here. Regardless of how low the temperature was, the phone never drew more than 1840 mA-​
    Screenshot 8: Time: 4:48 pm. It went from 33% to 44% in 12 minutes. Amps: ~1840 mA. Temp: 33.7°C
    Screenshot 9: Time: 4:55 pm. It went from 44% to 54% in 7 minutes. Amps: 1840 mA. Temp: 29.7°C
    -I wanted to get the temperature back up to the threshold, so I fired up YouTube and removed the icepack-​
    Screenshot 10: Time: 5:07 pm. It went from 54% to 68% in 12 minutes. Amps: eventually dropped to ~520 mA from 1840 mA. Temp: 37.2°C
    -Brought the icepack back on to check if temperature reduction would increased the charging rate. However, the draw was limited to ~1000 mA this time regardless of the low temperature-​
    Screenshots 11: Time: 5:21 pm. It went from 68% to 75% in 14 minutes. Amps: ~970 mA. Temp: 33°C
    Screenshots 12: Time: 5:24 pm. It went from 75% to 77% in 3 minutes. Amps: ~1090 mA. Temp: 33°C
    Time: 5:35 pm. It went from 77% to 84% in 10 minutes. Amps: ~1090 mA. Temp: 33°C
    Screenshots 13 & 14: Gsam graphs

    Observations: (This is in no way definitive and I do not claim it to be accurate as there can be inconsistensies due to various factors.)
    -At over 39°C, charging slows down to ~500 mA
    -Once below 38°C, at around 37.5°C, the charging picks up. ~2600 mA
    -At the mid-way point when the battery is between 33% and 60%, the 5X seems to draw ~1800 mA even at low temperatures
    -From about 65% to 85%, the draw is ~1000 mA with the temperatures well below the threshold
    -Charging speed does not depend on the temperature alone. Even if the temperatures are low, actually using the device brings the charging rate to a crawl.

    I'll do more low-temp tests when I have some free time, and also with a MXPE 25W charger to see if it'll perform better than USB C with the screen on.