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Author Topic: x-10 Direct connect option  (Read 22251 times)

whulljr

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x-10 Direct connect option
« on: July 01, 2009, 10:43:48 PM »

Hello, I have tried all my options with x-10 throught the wires of the house with no success.  I wish there was a direct connect solution.  For example  The cable from the controller directly connecting to modules with outlets.  Or connecting to a power strip and controlling all outlets on it.  Or even the option for expansion.  If there is such a item please let me know.  Thanks again!
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Brian H

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2009, 06:48:57 AM »

Not for X10. It is a power line protocol.
There are Automation Systems that use things like CAT5 networking cables for such things. I believe they are quite pricey.  :'
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Kramer Chins

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2009, 06:52:00 AM »

Give us a little insight on what X10 modules you are trying to use.

Maybe then you might be able to get some help.....
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whulljr

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #3 on: July 02, 2009, 08:44:48 AM »

I am using the x-10 powerline pro.   The controller is a aquanode controller.  It is used around alot of electronic ballast and pumps.  So there is alot of noise.  I have used noise filters on every item.  The ballast are 400w each and there is 9 of them.  I tried to use the modules on them however they are not reliable since some will not turn on and some that do will turn off on there own and then turn back on.  Which is not good for MH bulbs nor the ballast.  Can I use something like a RS-485?
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Dan Lawrence

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #4 on: July 02, 2009, 03:09:34 PM »

What is a x-10 powerline pro? A Google search results in NOTHING plus a search on the X10Pro site reveals nothing either.
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dave w

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2009, 04:22:23 PM »

I am using the x-10 powerline pro.  The controller is a aquanode controller.  It is used around alot of electronic ballast and pumps.  So there is alot of noise.  I have used noise filters on every item.  The ballast are 400w each and there is 9 of them.  I tried to use the modules on them however they are not reliable since some will not turn on and some that do will turn off on there own and then turn back on.  Which is not good for MH bulbs nor the ballast.  Can I use something like a RS-485?
If you mean can you convert wireless PLC protocol X10 modules to wired RS-485 protocol...in practical sense, no. You would be trying to re-invent the wheel.

Dan is right, "X10 Powerline Pro" tells us nothing.

What kind of X10 Powerline Pro modules are you using? (I'm going to assume Appliance modules PAM01 or 02 for each light?)
What kind of noise filters are you using? Are they X10? What is the part number?
Metal Halide lights are notoriously noisy.
What is the X10 interface between the Aquanode and the powerline (i.e. PSC04, PSC05, CM11A, CM15A)?
Do you have a X10 repeater to boost the X10 signal? If not, you would probably benefit from one such as the XTB IIR.
When you say your lights turn off and come right back ON, you are probably seeing the X10 modules "local control" circuit turn the light back on when the starter circuit in your MH light resets. Try putting a 7 watt night light on the same module as the troublesome lights. Search this forum for "local control" for information.
or go here:  http://jvde.us/x10_troubleshooting.htm
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whulljr

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2009, 08:32:58 PM »

Ok, I am sorry I didn't clarify.  I am using the x10 pro two way power line interface (Model Number PSC05) with appliance modules due being able to handle the wattage and the three prong design (Model Number AM466), yes on every light.  I have tried Disabling the local control.  It didn't work.  I use noise filters (module XPPF)  Let me know if I can supply any more info.  Thanks again!
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dave w

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2009, 09:44:01 PM »

Seems like you have done everything right. Other than trying the night light trick on the MH lights that are quickly cycling back on, and the XTB IIR repeater to try and blast through the noise, I for one am idealess unless you want to start rewiring stuff and use the RCS board in the Aquanode to drive relays you would have to install in each MH light. Unfortunately, big work.

If all your lights and the PSC05 are on the same phase, you could try a single phase booster like the XTB or Smarthome.com's "Boosterlink". The XTB booster or the XTB IIR repeater have a higher output than the X10 XPCR and the Boosterlink.

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JeffVolp

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2009, 10:50:11 PM »

If it really is a very high noise level due to the electronic ballasts for the MH bulbs, a stronger signal will not help unless the receiving modules include some form of AGC to raise their detection threshold above the noise level.

What is especially interesting is that you have 9 of these lights.  I have a similar situation in my lab where I have 4 CFL noisemakers.  Their outputs beat together to produce noise that can almost mimic a X10 command.  With 9 devices all generating noise, the problem will be even worse.

The XPPF is a low-pass filter, which generally works very well to attenuate noise.  However, a very strong signal can get through one.  You might try to cascade two filters in series to each light.  That will double the attenuation, and hopefully reduce the noise to a negligible level.

Jeff
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whulljr

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #9 on: July 02, 2009, 11:12:07 PM »



I have the same problem with the lights turning on and turning off like it senses a signal to turn on but really didn't have one.  I guess I can double the filters don't' know if that would work.  Yeah I have allot of MH lights due to the fact I have allot of tanks.  That is not including the fluorescent bulbs and pumps.  Yes the PSC05 are all on the same phase.  Do you think that the XTB or Boosterlink would work for me? Thanks again

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JeffVolp

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #10 on: July 03, 2009, 01:05:54 AM »

X10 commands are sent as a series of signal bursts coupled to the powerline.  Presence of a burst signifies a logic "1", and absence a logic "0".  Noise near the X10 carrier frequency can fill in those blank frames, making it impossible for a receiving module to decode the command unless it includes some form of AGC to raise its detection threshold above the background noise level.

So, while the XTB can certainly solve the more common problem of weak signal levels, I don't think that is the answer here.

I should have mentioned in that earlier message that noise sources are additive.  A second noise source doubles the amount of noise reaching the powerline.  With nine noise sources, you can have up to nine times the amount of noise reaching the powerline compared with a single noise source.

While a single XPPF filter should reduce the noise level by at least a factor of ten, the effectiveness of the filters is compromised by the sheer number of noise sources.  In your case, you will have to attenuate the noise to a much lower level for the filtering to be effective.

Your last post mentions even more potential noise sources.  If you want effective X10 control, they will all have to be isolated from the powerline.

Here I have seen my multi-CFL noise generator mimic X10 commands.  With at least nine noise sources, it is certainly possible for that to create unintended X10 commands.

(Typos corrected - it was late when I first wrote that.)

Jeff
« Last Edit: July 03, 2009, 11:02:15 AM by JeffVolp »
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Brian H

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #11 on: July 03, 2009, 06:21:30 AM »

I have a strange set of events that sometimes turns on my A2 outside lights.
My Insteon signals that trigger an Error LED on rare occasions. Catch my ACT CR134 repeater just right and the phase the lights are on receive an A2 AOn set of commands. My TesterLinc shows no commands on the controllers phase. Just Bad Start Codes and Bad CRC Codes.  rofl
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whulljr

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2009, 10:17:30 PM »

So Jeff or anyone, what are you suggesting for me to do? Double the filters, like suggested by someone...  All the lights are on a single Phase all on the same breaker.  If XTB is not the solution then what?  I will try anything at this point.  Thanks again.

Wes
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JeffVolp

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #13 on: July 03, 2009, 11:03:20 PM »

Since you already have some filters, I suggest a quick test:

1) Confirm X10 control works with the lights disconnected.
2) Connect half the lights without filters and confirm that causes X10 control to fail.
3) Install a single filter each on that half of the lights (others still disconnected) & check X10 operation.
4) Add a second filter in series on that half of the lights, and again check X10 operation.

If the second filter solves the problem, than that is your answer.  If not, I'm afraid that you may have to go to some sort of hardwired system using actual relays.

Jeff
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dave w

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Re: x-10 Direct connect option
« Reply #14 on: July 04, 2009, 04:20:36 PM »

All the lights are on a single Phase all on the same breaker. 
Wes
Silly question, but, are you sure all lights are on the same breaker?
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