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Thread: Computer Inteface CM12

  1. #1
    Automated Home Jr Member
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    Default Computer Inteface CM12

    I've now had two of these devices in two years amd both have stopped working with a nice burnt out component smell.

    Is the anything else I can use to interface with my pc as the relaibility of the CM12 is not impressive.

    I use X10 devices to control curtains and lights and use the dusk feature of active home.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Computer Inteface CM12

    The CM12U is notoriously bad. I've had problems too.

    I'm not sure if there's a better made alternative. Perhaps one of the retailers might know?

    What software are you using with it?

    Thanks

    M.

  3. #3
    Automated Home Sr Member jon00's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer Inteface CM12

    There is the new USB version out now: http://www.simplyautomate.co.uk/prod...sp?prodId=5690

  4. #4

    Default Re: Computer Inteface CM12

    Jon

    Far as I know it looks like same serial unit with some sort of USB adaptor cable?

    Thanks

    M.

  5. #5
    Automated Home Jr Member
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    Default Re: Computer Inteface CM12

    The software I'm using is activehome 1.42 with with windows 2003 server. It works fine and does everything I need. I tend to download the timers to the CM12 but it makes the dusk times rather course with the number of events i have set.

    I could control the lot from my pc as its always on. I love the the x10 system but I'm now on my third CM12 and wish there was something more reliable I could use.

  6. #6
    Automated Home Jr Member
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    Default

    In our experience, the CM12U has a tendency to overheat and cause the internal transformer to fail under certain firmware conditions although the main European distributor disputes this.

    We have been working on a replacement PIC processor and firmware to duplicate the original microcontroller functionalities but correct the overheating problem. The prototype replacement microcontroller is fully working apart from a persistent bug on X-10 receive when it locks up the serial port. Unfortunately, due to higher priority work, the project has been suspended until more programming resources are available to continue working on it.
    Kwong Li
    Laser Business Systems Ltd.
    http://www.laser.com
    http://www.cbus-shop.com

  7. #7
    Automated Home Lurker
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    Default Re: Computer Inteface CM12

    I had similar problems with a couple of CM12's too. The first ones went pop big tyle and triggered the RCD on my fuseboard - thereby switching off the fridge and freezer.

    Do not use the spare mains socket it gives you - I stopped using this after the second failure and this third one has been 100% for about 3 years now...touch wood.

  8. #8
    Automated Home Sr Member jon00's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer Inteface CM12

    Quote Originally Posted by Otto-Mate
    Jon

    Far as I know it looks like same serial unit with some sort of USB adaptor cable?

    Thanks

    M.
    That's what I thought - It's Just what Ben posted in their forums: http://www.simplyautomate.co.uk/foru...PagePosition=1

  9. #9
    Automated Home Jr Member
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by CBusShop
    In our experience, the CM12U has a tendency to overheat and cause the internal transformer to fail under certain firmware conditions although the main European distributor disputes this.

    We have been working on a replacement PIC processor and firmware to duplicate the original microcontroller functionalities but correct the overheating problem. The prototype replacement microcontroller is fully working apart from a persistent bug on X-10 receive when it locks up the serial port. Unfortunately, due to higher priority work, the project has been suspended until more programming resources are available to continue working on it.
    Thank you for this infomation. I for one hope you find the resources to finish this project.

  10. #10
    Automated Home Sr Member MrFluffy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Computer Inteface CM12

    Re the hardware upgrade, so do I, I have 5 in a box in the loft all knackered with a faint burning smell. Will you be offering a repair/upgrade service if you ever get it finished?
    It could go a long way to restoring some of the lost reputation caused by the cm12, and maybe some of the trust. I have over 3k in x10 gear and my wife is now making noises about having it all removed and going back to only "normal" electrical control that "just works" and has already put her foot down about some of my more interesting home automation projects due to reliability...
    And I can confirm 100% that the usb version if you buy it in europe is just another unreliable CM12 with a serial->usb dongle, because one of the 5 in the bin was ordered when I naievely expected that a usb version might have fixed the problems. I wasnt shocked when it managed two months then gave up.
    For the record, I havent used the passthrough on a cm11 since number 2 (even though the instructioncs explicitly tell you to plug the computer in through it) as all my pc gear is on a ups.

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