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Thread: My HGI80 equivalent Domoticz setup without HGI80

  1. #31
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    I think there were 2 in stock when I placed my order, as I anguished over whether I should buy both. I settled for just getting just 1 until I'd tested it out. Rapid are showing a couple of months lead time now . Sodaq is a European vendor which has them in-stock. I did try Robotshop, as they sell both the RFBee and UartSBee, but they were on backorder too. Maybe I should consider a bulk-buy next time?

    Oh, I did take a look at whether the current version of the RFBee Evohome firmware has any power saving implemented and I was wrong, it hasn't. I was confusing it with the alternate firmware that the same person developed for the RFBee, which creates a remote temperature sensor that can be linked into Evohome/Domoticz. Exactly the type of application you were recommending is more suited to a battery powered set-up, Bruce.

    Dan

  2. #32
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    I think you'll struggle for battery life. Even just listening (not receiving an incoming signal) uses a fair bit of power. The HR92s avoid this by having a scheduled time when they wake up and listen for instructions from the controller. The rest of the time, their radios are completely idle. The fulltalgorythm firmware is what I based mine on. It doesn't have any power saving, and neither can it. The CC1101 has hardware packet handing features, but unfortunately, they're not powerful enough to handle the Evohome packet format. So the only real choice is to build a software UART running on the Atmel MCU. You can do this either synchronously (which the CC1101 helps with by providing a clock signal), or asynchronously (sampling the radio and trying to figure out the baud rate, etc.) The falltalgorythm firmware (and, hence, mine) works synchronously. So the CC1101 drives an interrupt on the MCU to wake it up 38,400 times a second during which time you clock in the data bit that's available (which may be noise, or may be genuine signal), match up the last few bits (I use 30) against the start-of-packet preamble, and then start processing the bit as part of the byte (or byte frame, e.g. start or stop bit). All of this with the 200 clock cycles or so that you get until the next interrupt. Even with the most parsimonious of MCU programming, you're going to be running the MCU at 25% just scanning the incoming noise to determine whether you're listening to a message from an Evohome device, or from aliens. Plus, you have the radio running permanently in receive mode (except for the brief periods where you switch it to transmit mode if you need to). HR92s get away with it by sleeping for something like 8 minutes at a time - and even then their batteries only last a year or so.

    TL;DR, I don't think battery is going to be viable.

  3. #33
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    @dty

    Thanks for all the information. Your simple description of the software UART is extremely helpful. From some initial testing, I'm finding a problem with sending data using the FullTalgoRythm and I think others have reported this too. I'll need to dig into the firmware to see if I can identify what's causing the problem. Message receipt processing seems to be functioning OK based upon a simple comparison of messages decoded in parallel by the HGI80.

    My idea of using the RFBee in a battery powered configuration is definitely sounding hopeless . I think I will still investigate a sleep cycle tied to the Evohome controller's 1F09 timing messages which are sent every 211496msec and see what message processing functionality might be possible within a brief wake-up window.

    Dan

  4. #34
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    My firmware (based on fulltalgorithm, remember) transmits OK. Could just be a clock right on the limit of the specification or something.

    Also remember that the 1F09 is used by the controller to tell an HR92 when to wake up and listen next. The HR92 could decide to transmit at any time (e.g. if someone adjusts the dial or presses the button). Also, mains-powered devices can transmit at any time. I don't think you'll be able to build anything useful if you're going to sleep.

  5. #35
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    UartSBee V4 (OK if you don't need Mesh Bee) : https://www.unmannedtechshop.co.uk/uartsbee-v4/ Shipping was 1.58

    RFBee V1.1 (confirmed) : http://skpang.co.uk/catalog/rfbee-v1...mhz-p-815.html Shipping is 3.50
    RFBee V1.2 (confirmed) : https://digitalmeans.co.uk/shop/rfbee-v11-seeedstudio Shipping is Free.
    Last edited by bruce_miranda; 13th February 2017 at 04:57 PM.

  6. #36
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    All,

    Just a quick update to let you know that I've finally had success sending and receiving with my RFBee!!! It turns out that the main problem was due to some variable type casting differences with my compiler/platform which caused a memory leak. Once these were fixed, I still had a little trouble with timing, but moving the baud rate in either direction seems to work OK (74880 or 250000). I need to complete a bit more testing and once completed, I'll add an updated version of the firmware to my github area.

    And just to celebrate, here's a pic of the finished device .

    RFBEE2.JPG

    Dan
    Last edited by DanD; 23rd February 2017 at 06:48 PM.

  7. #37
    Automated Home Legend paulockenden's Avatar
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    Tic Tac box? Nice!

  8. #38
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    Thanks. Yes, it's a standard size Tic Tac box. I'm very proud of my budget handiwork . I did think of sprinkling a few tic tacs around the pic, but that's a bit too fancy. I've got one of the larger packets waiting for my standalone RFBee + Xbee Carrier. I think it should fit, minus the battery.

    Dan

  9. #39
    Automated Home Legend paulockenden's Avatar
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    My new RFBee and UartSBee arrived from China today. No import duty - wa-hey! I ordered them on 14th Feb from Sparkykit on the Amazon Marketplace. Less that two weeks was pretty good, I thought.

    I have an old RFBee knocking around somewhere, but couldn't find it. I have so many RF modules here it's silly. My current favourite is the NodeMCU devkit - I'm nearly at the point of having something a bit like an Amazon Dash button that sets a heating over-ride for a few hours. All for less than a tenner.

  10. #40
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    Paul, Did you get the V1.1 or the V1.2? Also did you buy the V4 of the UartSBee or the V5? I couldn't get the store to confirm that it was the V1.2, which I wanted - so I had to look elsewhere.

    I already have an Amazon Dash button upstairs and downstairs for setting upstairs and downstairs heating on. I also have one in the Study, just for Study heating. Mine are basically free. Amazon refunds you the money of the Dash on your first purchase. So I buy a button for something I want, use Dash to buy it and then reset the Dash button. The Dash then is mine to do what I want with it. My house is full of Dash(es). I have two hanging in the bathroom to switch the Bluesound to either mine or my wife's preset radio stations.

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