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Author Topic: Future of the XTB/XTBR  (Read 4930 times)

JeffVolp

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Future of the XTB/XTBR
« on: May 30, 2013, 04:07:53 PM »

Polycase has discontinued the case used for the XTB and XTBR as a standard product.  It is still available by special order, but that would represent several years of supply at my present volume.

Since some folks still want a simple plug-in repeater, I am considering offering one in the case used for the XTB-232 and XTB-523.  The smaller power transformer prevents 3-phase operation, and the X10 Boost input would be eliminated.  But the price of the unit itself and the cost of shipping could be reduced.

The other option would be to offer an XTB-I, which would be an enhanced repeater version of the XTB-523 without the direct X10 Boost capability.

Thoughts?

Jeff
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kenrad

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Re: Future of the XTB/XTBR
« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2013, 12:49:10 PM »

Jeff,

I would hate to see teh XTBR go.  I really like the x10 boost freature.  before installing it I had intermittent signal problems but after it fires the signal through with no problems.
 

 >!  Ken
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Noam

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Re: Future of the XTB/XTBR
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2013, 05:42:13 PM »

Jeff -
Any other sources to get a similar case?
I wonder if one can be 3-D printed (I have no idea what the electrical codes say about that).
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JeffVolp

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Re: Future of the XTB/XTBR
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2013, 12:40:33 AM »


The issue is that the XTBR sale volume is not sufficient to justify anything other than a standard case.  Neither does it justify the effort to revise the layout for a different case.

While some may take advantage of the X10 Boost input to directly boost the output of a transmitter, I think most folks buy the XTBR for a simple high-power plug-in repeater.

Rather than drop it entirely like I did with the original XTB, I'm looking at still providing a plug-in repeater by piggybacking on an existing product in a smaller case without the AC receptacle on the cover.

I have the options to either enhance the XTB-523 to function more like a single-phase XTB-IIR (without the X10 Boost input), or strip it down to provide just the repeater function.  Since that eliminates the custom machining and digital port, the price could be reduced accordingly.  Since the weight goes down, it can be shipped by First Class Mail to save on shipping costs too.

Jeff
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Noam

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Re: Future of the XTB/XTBR
« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2013, 01:08:04 PM »

I wonder how many X10 enthusiasts out there have access to 3D printers (I don't have one, but I'm guessing *someone* out there must). If someone wanted to print their own case for the XTB-IIR, and/or possibly make them for others at a reasonable price, that could allow the XTB-IIR to live on.

Does Polycase (or someone else) make a case that is close enough that it could work with only minor modifications (drill a few holes, etc)? If one *really* wanted an XTB-IIR, are there other "stock" enclosures that could be used, even if they are more expensive, and might need some "tweaking"?

Just a dream, I guess. I'm glad I got mine when I did.

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JeffVolp

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Re: Future of the XTB/XTBR
« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2013, 03:09:07 PM »

If someone wanted to print their own case for the XTB-IIR, and/or possibly make them for others at a reasonable price, that could allow the XTB-IIR to live on.

Ah, I see some misunderstanding here...

There is no intent to drop the XTB-IIR.  That outsells the XTBR by a factor of 10, and the next batch of 100 custom-machined XTB-IIR cases are scheduled to be shipped next week.

I'm talking about the simple plug-in XTBR in the off-white case.  That is an enhanced version of the original XTB that added a repeater function.  Polycase still makes that case on special order, but I can't justify purchasing another 4-year supply of them.  I plan to provide the same repeater function with a modified XTB-523.  The only things that will be lost are the X10 Boost receptacle on the cover, and the ability to generate all three signal bursts used in a 3-phase system.

What I asked here was would people prefer a cheaper "repeater-only" unit, or an enhanced XTB-523 that incorporates a repeater with most of the mode options available in the XTBR and XTB-IIR

The XTB-IIR will continue to be available for the foreseeable future.

Jeff
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Noam

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Re: Future of the XTB/XTBR
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2013, 12:15:30 PM »

Ah, I see some misunderstanding here...
...There is no intent to drop the XTB-IIR. ...
... I'm talking about the simple plug-in XTBR in the off-white case. ...
...The XTB-IIR will continue to be available for the foreseeable future....

Thanks for clearing that up. My apologies for not reading the original post properly.

--Noam
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JeffVolp

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Re: Future of the XTB/XTBR
« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2013, 09:09:53 PM »

I wanted to give an update on the XTBR status.

It is interesting that there have been more requests for the XTBR kit since it was discontinued than were sold in the last several months.

I'm working on a new version of the XTBR that will use the same case as the XTB-232/523.  It has no receptacle on the cover, but it will still provide direct X10 Boost for strong X10 signals.  So if an X10 transmitter is plugged into a nearby outlet, its output will be boosted bit-by-bit like when plugged directly into the present unit.

The "new" XTBR will share the same PCB as the XTB-232, but the circuitry for the computer interface will not be populated.

Jeff
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