Using CR230 repeater with home automation program

Using CR230 repeater with home automation program

Post by Edward Cheun » Sat, 05 Jul 2003 18:47:00



I am considering installing the CR230 repeater from ACT and wonder how
it will interact with my home automation program.

For example, if I send an A-ON on Phase A of my house using a plug-in
controller, will the CR230 repeat that command on Phase A?  Thus my home
automation program will see two A-ON commands?

Also, if the A-ON triggers my program to transmit a B-ON, will the B-ON
and the CR230's A-ON collide?

I already have a CP303 whole house coupler from ACT, will I have to
disconnect that?

Thanks for the responses in advance.

Ed Cheung
http://www.edcheung.com

 
 
 

Using CR230 repeater with home automation program

Post by Dave Houst » Sat, 05 Jul 2003 20:01:55


Phil Kingery's articles on X-10 explain how a coupler/repeater works. See...

http://www.hometoys.com/articles.htm#X-10%20Technical%20Series%20by%2...
     http://www.hometoys.com/htinews/jun97/articles/kingery/kingery3.htm
     http://www.hometoys.com/htinews/aug97/articles/kingery/kingery4.htm
     http://www.hometoys.com/htinews/oct97/articles/kingery/kingery5.htm

From Part 3:

<quote>
Okay so how does a coupler repeater work? Figure 12 is another one of my
silly analogies. The original transmitter sends out its signal, in this case
"A1 A1 A-On A-On". Unfortunately the original signal is not strong enough to
get to the receiver. A coupler/repeater, however, is installed midway
between the two. It receives the first frame of data (the first "A1) from
the transmitter and then retransmits it at the exact same time as the second
frame of data (the second "A1") from the transmitter. The repeater then
receives the next frame of data (the first "A-On") and, as before,
retransmits it at the exact same time as the next frame of data (the second
"A-On") from the transmitter. The receiver "hears" (receives) the "A1" and
then the "A-On" from the repeater.
</quote>

In general, I think it's advisable to remove the passive coupler when you
add a coupler/repeater.


>I am considering installing the CR230 repeater from ACT and wonder how
>it will interact with my home automation program.

>For example, if I send an A-ON on Phase A of my house using a plug-in
>controller, will the CR230 repeat that command on Phase A?  Thus my home
>automation program will see two A-ON commands?

>Also, if the A-ON triggers my program to transmit a B-ON, will the B-ON
>and the CR230's A-ON collide?

>I already have a CP303 whole house coupler from ACT, will I have to
>disconnect that?

>Thanks for the responses in advance.

>Ed Cheung
>http://www.edcheung.com

---
http://www.laser.com/dhouston/

 
 
 

Using CR230 repeater with home automation program

Post by MFH.. » Sat, 05 Jul 2003 22:24:53




Quote:>I am considering installing the CR230 repeater from ACT and wonder how
>it will interact with my home automation program.

>For example, if I send an A-ON on Phase A of my house using a plug-in
>controller, will the CR230 repeat that command on Phase A?  Thus my home
>automation program will see two A-ON commands?

As I understand it, the CR230 will detect the first instance of the A-ON sent
by the plug-in controller and repeat the second instance of the A-ON that the
plug-in controller sends at exactly the same time as the plug-in controller.
So a distant receiver will receive the same two A-ON signals with or without
the ACT repeater, but when using a CR230, the second A-ON will be received at
a higher signal (voltage) level than the first.

Quote:

>Also, if the A-ON triggers my program to transmit a B-ON, will the B-ON
>and the CR230's A-ON collide?

Not if you only have one "plug-in controller".

I just received an CR230 from Worthington that is to replace the Leviton
4823 that failed in service probably owing to lighting -- which in turn
replaced a Leviton 6201 which failed in service for unknown reasons not
related to lightning.)

So I have some q's too.

The documentation of the CR230 states that the unit "supports all Standard
Code Commands except Preset Dim" . What X-10 switches use "Preset Dim" ?
Which HA control software uses "Preset Dim"? (The now-unavailable *House
software I use makes "Preset Dim" optional for each dimmer.)

... Marc

www.econtrol.org

 
 
 

Using CR230 repeater with home automation program

Post by Edward Cheun » Sun, 06 Jul 2003 00:45:30


From the TW523 manual, it states that a valid X-10 transmission must consist
of two of the 'instances' that you mention.  Thus only one of them gets amplified

in your scenario.  I wonder if the CR230 then sends it second instance on its
own.  Thus the second instance of the original transmitter and the first instance

of the CR230 overlap.

Gotta go read the URLs that Dave posted....




> >I am considering installing the CR230 repeater from ACT and wonder how
> >it will interact with my home automation program.

> >For example, if I send an A-ON on Phase A of my house using a plug-in
> >controller, will the CR230 repeat that command on Phase A?  Thus my home
> >automation program will see two A-ON commands?

> As I understand it, the CR230 will detect the first instance of the A-ON sent
> by the plug-in controller and repeat the second instance of the A-ON that the
> plug-in controller sends at exactly the same time as the plug-in controller.
> So a distant receiver will receive the same two A-ON signals with or without
> the ACT repeater, but when using a CR230, the second A-ON will be received at
> a higher signal (voltage) level than the first.

> >Also, if the A-ON triggers my program to transmit a B-ON, will the B-ON
> >and the CR230's A-ON collide?

> Not if you only have one "plug-in controller".

> I just received an CR230 from Worthington that is to replace the Leviton
> 4823 that failed in service probably owing to lighting -- which in turn
> replaced a Leviton 6201 which failed in service for unknown reasons not
> related to lightning.)

> So I have some q's too.

> The documentation of the CR230 states that the unit "supports all Standard
> Code Commands except Preset Dim" . What X-10 switches use "Preset Dim" ?
> Which HA control software uses "Preset Dim"? (The now-unavailable *House
> software I use makes "Preset Dim" optional for each dimmer.)

> ... Marc

> www.econtrol.org

 
 
 

Using CR230 repeater with home automation program

Post by Dave Houst » Sun, 06 Jul 2003 01:10:04


There are more readable versions on the ACT website at...

     http://www.veryComputer.com/

I think most, if not all, X10 receivers will respond to a single copy of the
code. The repeater does not send a second copy.

I'm not sure that Phil updated earlier articles to reflect changes so you
should probably read his latest articles on extended codes as I think they
contradict some earlier statements about preset dim codes.

PCS, Switchlinc, LampLinc and RCS thermostats use old-style preset dims.
Irave was also using them but I haven't heard from them in months - I think
they may be out of business. X10 & Leviton use extended dims. I believe ACT
has accommodated preset dims and extended dims in its latest offerings.

You can email Phil with any specific questions.


>From the TW523 manual, it states that a valid X-10 transmission must consist
>of two of the 'instances' that you mention.  Thus only one of them gets amplified

>in your scenario.  I wonder if the CR230 then sends it second instance on its
>own.  Thus the second instance of the original transmitter and the first instance

>of the CR230 overlap.

>Gotta go read the URLs that Dave posted....




>> >I am considering installing the CR230 repeater from ACT and wonder how
>> >it will interact with my home automation program.

>> >For example, if I send an A-ON on Phase A of my house using a plug-in
>> >controller, will the CR230 repeat that command on Phase A?  Thus my home
>> >automation program will see two A-ON commands?

>> As I understand it, the CR230 will detect the first instance of the A-ON sent
>> by the plug-in controller and repeat the second instance of the A-ON that the
>> plug-in controller sends at exactly the same time as the plug-in controller.
>> So a distant receiver will receive the same two A-ON signals with or without
>> the ACT repeater, but when using a CR230, the second A-ON will be received at
>> a higher signal (voltage) level than the first.

>> >Also, if the A-ON triggers my program to transmit a B-ON, will the B-ON
>> >and the CR230's A-ON collide?

>> Not if you only have one "plug-in controller".

>> I just received an CR230 from Worthington that is to replace the Leviton
>> 4823 that failed in service probably owing to lighting -- which in turn
>> replaced a Leviton 6201 which failed in service for unknown reasons not
>> related to lightning.)

>> So I have some q's too.

>> The documentation of the CR230 states that the unit "supports all Standard
>> Code Commands except Preset Dim" . What X-10 switches use "Preset Dim" ?
>> Which HA control software uses "Preset Dim"? (The now-unavailable *House
>> software I use makes "Preset Dim" optional for each dimmer.)

>> ... Marc

>> www.econtrol.org

---
http://www.veryComputer.com/
 
 
 

Using CR230 repeater with home automation program

Post by Dan Lancia » Sun, 06 Jul 2003 05:06:26


| I am considering installing the CR230 repeater from ACT and wonder how
| it will interact with my home automation program.

If you are using a CM11a with firmware version 7 it will slightly change the
way you see (some) of your own commands echoed.  Take a look at the #ifdef
REPEATER in my CM11a x10 daemon if you really care.

It will prevent you from using microdims since an unpaired DIM will be turned
into DIMDIM for any device that can hear both the original transmitter and the
repeater.

Because it tries to get DIM/BRI "right" even for devices that can hear only
the repeater it introduces some off-by-one problems that make accurate dim
state tracking and control harder.  IMHO the problem was already difficult
enough that this is just noise.

| For example, if I send an A-ON on Phase A of my house using a plug-in
| controller, will the CR230 repeat that command on Phase A?

Yes, it drives both phases with anything it sends.

| Thus my home
| automation program will see two A-ON commands?

No, because the repeater sends its copy immediately after the original with
no gap.  In the case of a typical X10 transmitter that sends everything twice
with no gaps this copy will be concurrent with the second instance of the
original.  The theory is that any given unit is either close enough to the
original transmitter to have seen the first copy or far enough from the
original transmitter that the original transmitter's second copy will not
interfere with the repeated copy.

Single, spaced copies of most commands are sufficient except for DIM/BRI codes
which require back-to-back reception (else they turn into microdims).  ACT tries
to make DIM/BRI work right by continuing to transmit in every slot (instead of
every other slot) as long as they think the original transmitter is still
sending.  The exact method they use to decide whether the original is still
transmitting has not been described, though we have speculated about it here.
If you think about it you will see that it is impossible to make this solution
work perfectly.  In fact, I think it is impossible to make any DIM/BRI solution
work perfectly since the repeater cannot know whether the target heard the
initial DIM/BRI that the repeater heard.  Hence the off-by-one problems.

| Also, if the A-ON triggers my program to transmit a B-ON, will the B-ON
| and the CR230's A-ON collide?

No more so than it would with the second copy of the A-ON that was there
anyway from the original transmitter.

| I already have a CP303 whole house coupler from ACT, will I have to
| disconnect that?

In theory the coupler can be a problem since it could introduce a phase-shifted
path for the two leg outputs of the repeater to interfere with each other.  In
practice I have one installation with a blocker/coupler and repeater where the
best performance is obtained with both on.

                                Dan Lanciani

 
 
 

1. Repeater Quandary: Leviton 6201 vs CR230?

I am about to invest in a repeater. Of course, I have heard all the
horror stories about the HCA02, and so will avoid that.

I know the CR230 is highly regarded, but the Leviton 6201 is now
available for about $70. Using Google groups to search the archive of
this group, I don't see any problems reported with the 6201. Is there
any reason for me NOT to go with the 6201?

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- Mark.

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