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Author Topic: modified through-hole cm15a  (Read 31682 times)

dhouston

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modified through-hole cm15a
« on: January 04, 2016, 09:23:57 AM »

Just saw the new WS469 push button relay type wall switch on the X10 web site.
http://www.x10.com/x10-home-automation/ws469.html

And, while browsing their site, I noticed that the pictured CM15A has a telescoping metal antenna like those long used on the TM751 & RR501. It should be a modest improvement over the previous antenna as long as they kept the wired connection.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2016, 09:23:36 PM by dhouston »
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toasterking

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New cm15a?
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2016, 12:04:18 PM »

I noticed that the pictured CM15A has a telescoping metal antenna like those long used on the TM751 & RR501.
And yet they're still calling it a CM15A.  Not CM15B; not CM15A-2; no sub-model number mentioned.  I had hoped that they would put a stop to that silliness.

Nice to finally see some antenna improvement, though.  I wonder if it employs the traditional capacitive antenna coupling using the plastic case and a sticky strip of foil.
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Brian H

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New cm15a?
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2016, 02:26:19 PM »

The capacitive coupling may not be needed.
Unlike the TM751 and RR501 with a power line derived power supply. It has a power transformer type power supply.
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Tuicemen

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New cm15a?
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2016, 03:30:16 PM »

I just confirmed the new antenna.
This was due to the plastic one breaking off in shipment.
I'm told
Quote
The unit did not get an overhaul
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toasterking

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New cm15a?
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2016, 05:43:34 PM »

This was due to the plastic one breaking off in shipment.
So they claim that the main reason for the antenna change was due to shipping mishaps and not due to poor range?
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Tuicemen

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New cm15a?
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2016, 07:49:30 PM »

I guess the only way to know for sure is for someone to get one of these and look inside.
The offical stance is the unit didn't get a overhaul.
We all know a simple antenna mod improved performance time will tell if this does the trick.
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toasterking

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New cm15a?
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2016, 11:11:00 PM »

I only ask out of pure curiosity. I have an old, nonworking CM15A that I can't bring myself to throw away but will probably never have a reason to replace.

...unless Dave Houston finishes his "ZBasic Arduino on crack" mod; then it's going back on the bench!  :)
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dhouston

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New cm15a?
« Reply #7 on: January 05, 2016, 07:52:51 AM »

I only ask out of pure curiosity. I have an old, nonworking CM15A that I can't bring myself to throw away but will probably never have a reason to replace.

...unless Dave Houston finishes his "ZBasic Arduino on crack" mod; then it's going back on the bench!  :)

My mod replaces the Cypress MCU, the RF receiver, RF transmitter and adds USB-SER & RTC chips (all on a daughterboard). It keeps the power supply, PLC & ZC interfaces, 120kHz oscillator and AGC circuitry. You will need to replace the antenna with a 50-ohm BNC connector, replace the EEPROM with a bigger one, replace the MCU with a DIP-18 socket and plug in my daughterboard. The RTC only needs 3V so the easiest thing to do is use 2 dummy AAA batteries (rather pricey but they do last forever). I'll design a kit with all necessary parts. You can use a telescoping antenna with a BNC base or an eggbeater antenna (minimal assembly required) available in kits (both non-amplified and amplified, w/5V via the coax, supplied by the daughterboard through a resettable fuse).

There's an optional ESP8266 based external unit (powered by a 5V power supply with microUSB plug) that provides a WiFi link and NTP time.
There are drivers for Windows, OSX & Linux which provide a virtual COM port and I'll document the communication protocol. Anyone who prefers Arduino code can reflash the ATmega328 with the Arduino bootloader and write their own code. The ESP8266 can also be Arduino-ized. I'll document the timing for the AGC Window & AGC Reset signals for those prefer the Arduino world.

I'll try to update some Windows, OSX & Linux applications I created earlier for some other X10 related hardware. I'll likely leave mobile apps for others as I find tablets and smart phones difficult with one hand paralyzed.

For those with and without soldering skills, this is highly recommended...
http://www.amazon.com/Velleman-VTDESOL3U-Vacuum-Desoldering-Heater/dp/B00B88FRME

You'll need basic soldering skills and a 25-35W soldering iron for the EEPROM & DIP-18 socket.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2016, 04:53:54 PM by dhouston »
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Tuicemen

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New cm15a?
« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2016, 10:28:20 AM »

Quote
The RTC only needs 3V so the easiest thing to do is use 2 dummy AAA batteries (rather pricey but they do last forever).
Couldn't you could make some with a piece of wooden doweling and rewire the compartment to only use the two with real batteries?
Much cheeper and I suspect it would last as long.
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dhouston

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New cm15a?
« Reply #9 on: January 05, 2016, 11:51:29 AM »

Couldn't you could make some with a piece of wooden doweling and rewire the compartment to only use the two with real batteries?
Much cheeper and I suspect it would last as long.
Rewiring the battery compartment is certainly an option (and no dowels necessary) but I think most people will opt for the quick, simple dummies.
There might even be a Dummies for Dummies book in it.  rofl
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JeffVolp

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New cm15a?
« Reply #10 on: January 05, 2016, 12:11:34 PM »

Perhaps this thread should be split as most has nothing to do with the new switch.

Jeff
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dhouston

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New cm15a?
« Reply #11 on: January 05, 2016, 12:31:57 PM »

Perhaps this thread should be split as most has nothing to do with the new switch.

I agree. I should read Posting for Dummies.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2016, 12:37:52 PM by dhouston »
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Tuicemen

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Re: New cm15a?
« Reply #12 on: January 05, 2016, 12:43:19 PM »

Perhaps this thread should be split as most has nothing to do with the new switch.

I agree. I should read Posting for Dummies.
I should have done this
Oh well better late then never
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toasterking

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Re: New cm15a?
« Reply #13 on: January 05, 2016, 01:03:42 PM »

I agree. I should read Posting for Dummies.
I'll take the blame for getting us further off track and changing the subject again.

Jeff and Tuicemen, thanks for keeping things organized.  :)

Dave, I'm really looking forward to your product!
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Noam

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Re: New cm15a?
« Reply #14 on: January 05, 2016, 02:24:37 PM »

I guess the only way to know for sure is for someone to get one of these and look inside.
The offical stance is the unit didn't get a overhaul.
We all know a simple antenna mod improved performance time will tell if this does the trick.

We could get one of the new ones, and then take one of the old ones, and use a force gauge to compare how hard it is to break the antenna off each one! ;)
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