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Author Topic: Erratic behaviour?  (Read 1217 times)

Tuicemen

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Erratic behaviour?
« on: December 22, 2018, 08:10:25 AM »

The PiX10Hub is designed to replace AHP not complement it. Using the hub with AHP even if with another controler can and most likely will cause issues. The idea of this was to get away from AHPs issues why drag down a stable sytem with a unstable one?
« Last Edit: December 23, 2018, 07:04:23 AM by Tuicemen »
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Brian H

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #1 on: December 22, 2018, 09:01:06 AM »

The CM15A does not have a great RF range. As pointed out in so many posts here and the new X10 repeater was not in production yet.

How about a V572 connected to an XTB-IIR TW523 emulation connector?

Even with the Transceived House Codes set to NONE through AHP. I have found that the House Codes in the X10 Demonstration in HG get enabled in the CM15A and stay enabled even if I temporarily power up up standalone as a transceiver with the V572 Off.
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Tuicemen

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #2 on: December 22, 2018, 09:10:23 AM »

I believe it is possible to disable the RF on the CM15 using simular Linux drivers that HG is based off so it might be worth requesting that feature.
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petera

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2018, 12:51:45 PM »

I believe it is possible to disable the RF on the CM15 using simular Linux drivers that HG is based off so it might be worth requesting that feature.

If you are finding difficulties with rf range on your CM15 and really need full rf range I suggest you decommission it and purchase the inexpensive CM19 alternative now that the hub supports it.

Contrary to what some may post here, AHP and the PiX10 hub will not work in parallel satisfactorily.

Even if you do have another CM15 lying about with pre programmed macros and timers, it will cause you difficulties. You are advised to remove any other X10 controllers out of the loop on your power lines and ensure even if they are disconnected from your computer that they are not in a position to transceiver a signal.
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Tuicemen

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2018, 01:02:12 PM »

If you are finding difficulties with rf range on your CM15 and really need full rf range I suggest you decommission it and purchase the inexpensive CM19 alternative now that the hub supports it.
HomeGenie on the PiX10Hub doesn't directly send RF from the CM15 by default. However it is possible to send Raw RF
Quote from: HomeGenie
To send RF with CM15 you can use a Wizard Script or a C#, Javascript, Phyton.

You can also send by calling the API directly:

http://<homegenie_address>/api/HomeAutomation.X10/RF/Control.RfSend/20-40-BF-68-97

This would send C7-OFF, but the CM15 will not execute the command over PLC because the CM15 itself is the sender of the command. So there must be another receiver that will do something with this RF command (another transceiver).
I tested it with CM15Pro for sending and a CM19 for receiving and it worked.
A list of all X10 RF codes is available here:

https://github.com/trrroy/cm19a/blob/master/CM19aProtocol.ini
  A RF repeater should be helpful if the cm15 isn't seeing RF or you wish to extend the RF send from the CM15
« Last Edit: December 22, 2018, 01:04:39 PM by Tuicemen »
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Hollybrook

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2018, 01:14:06 PM »

How about a V572 connected to an XTB-IIR TW523 emulation connector?

I am currently using that setup and it seems to be working fine with the PiX10Hub.  I have the Pi external to the CM15A which is plugged into the XTB-IIR, and have started working on a UPS using a phone power bank and CHRON code in the Pi for a soft shutdown.  Unfortunately, I probably won't finish until sometime early next year as it is time to hang out with our family.
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JeffVolp

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2018, 01:38:25 PM »

I have the Pi external to the CM15A which is plugged into the XTB-IIR ...

It is not a good idea to plug the CM15A directly into the Boost input because the CM15A does not have AGC to ignore powerline noise.  I recommend plugging it into a nearby AC outlet, and use the XTB-IIR strictly as a repeater. 

The XTB-IIR Boost input is isolated from the powerline by a low-pass filter so it can differentiate between signals coming in there from those coming in over the powerline.  A return signal bandpass amplifier passes X10 signals from the powerline back to the Boost input so devices can monitor X10 powerline traffic.  Powerline noise near the X10 bandpass can also be amplified and look like X10 signals.  The CM15A is a "polite" transmitter, and will delay or inhibit transmissions when it believes there is already X10 traffic on the powerline.

Note that 1.20 and later firmware versions include a mode option to reduce the return signal amplifier gain.  That will reduce the amplified noise, but it also reduces the ability of the XTB-IIR to repeat weak incoming X10 signals.

Jeff
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bkenobi

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #7 on: December 22, 2018, 08:35:45 PM »

It is not a good idea to plug the CM15A directly into the Boost input because the CM15A does not have AGC to ignore powerline noise.  I recommend plugging it into a nearby AC outlet, and use the XTB-IIR strictly as a repeater. 

Isn't aware of this recommendation.  I've been using my CM15A plugged into the booster port for several years without any known issues.  I have had some issues that I haven't figured out, so I suppose those could be related (phantom commands coming from nowhere, missed HU commands so the wrong light turns on, etc.).  I assumed these were just periodic issues with the power line and never took the time to look into them.

JeffVolp

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2018, 10:20:34 PM »

I've been using my CM15A plugged into the booster port for several years without any known issues.  I have had some issues that I haven't figured out, so I suppose those could be related (phantom commands coming from nowhere, missed HU commands so the wrong light turns on, etc.)

The CM15A can work fine plugged into the Boost input when there is low powerline noise.  I pointed out the possible problem due to the title "Erratic behavior".  When there is a problem, commands will be delayed or not sent at all by the CM15A.  It won't result in phantom commands.

Jeff
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bkenobi

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #9 on: December 23, 2018, 02:15:01 AM »

Ahhh, ok.  Thanks for clarification.

Tuicemen

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #10 on: December 23, 2018, 06:58:03 AM »

The cool thing with the PiX10Hub is it will work with so many X10 controlers. The possibility for it to control even new ones that may come along means X10 can have a future with more powerful and reliable controlers.
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petera

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #11 on: December 23, 2018, 08:44:16 AM »

The cool thing with the PiX10Hub is it will work with so many X10 controlers. The possibility for it to control even new ones that may come along means X10 can have a future with more powerful and reliable controlers.

Just to clarify that HG currently supports the CM11/CM12 the CM15a/CM15Pro and the CM19. Potentially it could support any controller presented to it, both X10 and non X10 but that support would need to be written for it by the software's author GenieLabs.

I think the above mentioned X10 controllers more than cover most users needs for now. Any one of them can be easily added to the Raspberry Pi for full X10 functionality.

A special mention must go out to GenieLabs of HomeGenie fame and BW Systems of HA Bridge fame. Again a donation to their current endeavours I'm sure would be greatly received. Finally a special mention to Tuicemen and a few others for pulling it all together into one single downloadable image.

Of course the best reward for all above will be your reports back on your successful X10 setup  >!
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Tuicemen

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2018, 08:56:49 AM »

Of course the best reward for all above will be your reports back on your successful X10 setup  >!
So true! ;)

I believe even the CM17 firecracker can be used with HG as I've seen a firecracker module in the package manager.
As well with the available script writing tools included in HG it is possible for end users to add the ability to interface with many other Hubs or HA devices and protocols not already supported by HomeGenie.
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Hollybrook

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #13 on: April 14, 2019, 10:13:31 PM »

I have the Pi external to the CM15A which is plugged into the XTB-IIR ...

It is not a good idea to plug the CM15A directly into the Boost input because the CM15A does not have AGC to ignore powerline noise.  I recommend plugging it into a nearby AC outlet, and use the XTB-IIR strictly as a repeater. 

The XTB-IIR Boost input is isolated from the powerline by a low-pass filter so it can differentiate between signals coming in there from those coming in over the powerline.  A return signal bandpass amplifier passes X10 signals from the powerline back to the Boost input so devices can monitor X10 powerline traffic.  Powerline noise near the X10 bandpass can also be amplified and look like X10 signals.  The CM15A is a "polite" transmitter, and will delay or inhibit transmissions when it believes there is already X10 traffic on the powerline.

Note that 1.20 and later firmware versions include a mode option to reduce the return signal amplifier gain.  That will reduce the amplified noise, but it also reduces the ability of the XTB-IIR to repeat weak incoming X10 signals.

Jeff

Jeff,

I went away for the holidays and never got back to see this thread until this evening...

This may explain some of the intermittent issues I have, which I have been attributing to my unique house wiring.  I have two main panels connected in parallel at my incoming power meter, both of which have distant sub panels connected to them.  One of the panels has the XTB-IIR connected to it on a dedicated 240V circuit breaker, along with a V572A connected to the XTB.  This is where I currently have my CM15A plugged into the Boost outlet and have the PiX10Hub plugged into the USB input of the CM15A.  I am relying on the power meter connection to bridge into the other main electric panel and its associated circuits.  The wiring in our old and many times improved house is spaghetti.  Just a few weeks ago, I found a wire at the roof of my attic that was running the length of the house and unterminated at the far end.  It was hot and connected to the line inside one of my living room outlets!!!

Functionally, I think the optimum would be to have the CM15A only provide X10 commands to the XTB.  That way, all the AC and RF commands would originate from the XTB.  I believe I disabled the CM15A RF transmissions by wiping all the macros and disabling transceived codes through AHP prior to hooking up the PiX10Hub, but I did not make any HW mods to be sure.

So...my question is whether you think I will be better off with the configuration I have now, with the increased powerline noise, or have the CM15A plugged into a wall outlet and have the XTB resend its signals.  I will experiment, but since I have no adequate test equipment, it will be difficult to unequivocally determine any improvement.
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JeffVolp

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Re: Erratic behaviour?
« Reply #14 on: April 14, 2019, 10:41:48 PM »

Functionally, I think the optimum would be to have the CM15A only provide X10 commands to the XTB.  That way, all the AC and RF commands would originate from the XTB.  I believe I disabled the CM15A RF transmissions by wiping all the macros and disabling transceived codes through AHP prior to hooking up the PiX10Hub, but I did not make any HW mods to be sure.

So...my question is whether you think I will be better off with the configuration I have now, with the increased powerline noise, or have the CM15A plugged into a wall outlet and have the XTB resend its signals.  I will experiment, but since I have no adequate test equipment, it will be difficult to unequivocally determine any improvement.

Due to the possibility of amplified powerline noise causing the CM15A to delay or inhibit transmissions, usually the best configuration is to plug it into a nearby wall outlet instead of directly into the X10 Boost input.  But if you know you have low powerline noise the CM15A can work fine when plugged into the X10 Boost input.  Try both options and choose whichever works best.

Jeff
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