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Author Topic: CM15A RF Range Problems...  (Read 38396 times)

Billaban

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #15 on: December 30, 2006, 02:20:27 PM »

Followup.

A quick look at the AHP Activity Monitor (AM) doesn't show the dozen plus iterations of the PR511 B16 On/Off iterations while testing up and down my street.  But the remote control of the light worked flawlessly.  Is this a bug?  Is the Activity Monitor unreliable?  I was anticipating relying on AHP AM when I start playing with the SDK.....  comments please.....

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Tuicemen

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #16 on: December 30, 2006, 07:06:50 PM »

Does this activity normally show up in the AM?
I've noticed the AM occasionally misses some commands not on house codes it's set not to transceive.
When using the SDK there is a monitoring program Ahcview.exe located in the SDK Bin folder and displays info that the SDK can see\use.
I most cases it is more accurate then the AM! ::) ;) :D
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Billaban

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #17 on: December 31, 2006, 08:28:59 AM »

Does this activity normally show up in the AM?

Yes.  I didn't save the AM log but it sure looked like the AM displayed all the traffic until I got maybe 20 yds from the house.  The remote worked EVERY time for at least a dozen iterations as I wandered as far as I could down the street and still see the PR511 fixture. 

Sitting here in front of the AM with the remote I can see out the window to the PR511. The AM log contains every single On/Off.  Very strange.  Am I missing something here?  If the remote control "works" that means the CM15A has properly received the RF signal and generated the X10 command to the PR511.  I'll have to try this experiment again.

I've noticed the AM occasionally misses some commands not on house codes it's set not to transceive.
When using the SDK there is a monitoring program Ahcview.exe located in the SDK Bin folder and displays info that the SDK can seeuse.
I most cases it is more accurate then the AM! ::) ;) :D

Good.  I'll see if I can get that running.  I may not have the necessary runtime setup at the moment.  I had to do an Ghost image restore of my PC to a pristine condition to solve a DSL problem.  Thanks for the tip.

**** Update ****

The ahcview app does pickup more than the AHP AM.  It's also interesting to note that with my PR511 set to B16 it is sending B1,2,3,4 On commands when it's motion sensor is tripped.  I chose B16 (initially) to avoid sending ON commands to other devices, i.e., 16+1, etc is not valid so I expected a No op.  Not a problem, but I don't recall seeing that defined in the documentation for the PR511. I'll revisit the doc. FWIW - none of the aforementioned additional ON commands generated by the PR511 showed up in the AM.  Wow, that could really screwup somebody in a diagnostic adventure.

Billaban
« Last Edit: December 31, 2006, 09:07:23 AM by Billaban »
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paulnoel12

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #18 on: January 16, 2007, 09:17:32 PM »

i was wandering if anyone was using the on alert software and if when having range problems is it acceptable to extend the wires on the widow/door transmiter so as to keep the magnetic switch at a door and the sending unit closer to the CM15A so it will be able to get the signal better or will extending the wires to the magnet cause any known problems
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JMac

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #19 on: January 16, 2007, 10:16:35 PM »

I was able to get more range (and reliability) using a metal rod positioned above the MS10A case (passive repeater), as well as extending the antenna of the CM15A by 9 1/2 inches ( all as previously presented here on the forum).  Now I get hourly (approximately) sensor checks on all my OnAlert modules.
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paulnoel12

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #20 on: January 16, 2007, 10:27:52 PM »

would mounting the sensors on a metal track susch as a roll up door track have any affect
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Puck

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #21 on: January 16, 2007, 10:32:29 PM »

would mounting the sensors on a metal track susch as a roll up door track have any affect

As long as there is no metal between the switch and the magnet, you should be fine.
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Brian H

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #22 on: January 17, 2007, 06:46:38 AM »

Mounting the sensor on metal could effect it. As Puck said the magnetic switch parts should be fine.
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paulnoel12

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #23 on: January 17, 2007, 03:32:37 PM »

Hey I just tried something at my work with the CM15A to extend the range. Instead of modifying it which i might still do later after the warrenty is gone. I took the suggestion of the 9 1/2" wire and I taped it to the existing antena, then I took another peice of the #12 solid wire also 9 1/2" and taped it to the tranmitter for the door window sensor. I but both so they were pointing toward the ceiling I then held the transmitter above my head and test the open and closed I am going through one interior wall and then through a double firewall and was able to get a good and consistant signal at about 200ft away. The firewall does have two openings in it and all of the buildings walls have metal studs in them. I am going to do this same thing to all my sensors and test it for awhile and see if it gives me continuous good results and will keep everyone informed.
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JMac

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #24 on: January 17, 2007, 03:40:41 PM »

Looking good.......for your information, I started out this way to find the best orientation of the wire for my use.  I would think that each structure might require a little different angle.  Check the activity monitor for sensor reports.  I get them (about) hourly, whether OnAlert armed or not.
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dave w

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #25 on: January 24, 2007, 12:13:26 PM »

FWIW dept.

I have both Stick-A-Switches and motion detectors that quit "working" when I stick them on a refrigerator. It is not a factor of the refrigerator acting as a shield. Instead I think it is the metal refrigerator throwing the transmitter off frequency or killing it altogether. All I have to do is pull the transmitter 1/2 to 1 inch away from the refrigerator and they work. I need a spectrum analyzer to really see what is happening, but a lot of factors are at play here. I can see where an aluminum surface might have a different effect on the transmitter circuitry than a steel surface.

What I HAVE taken to the bank, is knowledge that X10 might not like getting stuck on metal.
There that was helpful wasn't it?
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Brian H

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #26 on: January 24, 2007, 12:16:12 PM »

David; very well could be the metal shifting the transmit frequency. I think most of the transmitter is on a PC board parallel to the back side.
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dave w

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #27 on: January 24, 2007, 04:33:17 PM »

Yes I am fairly sure that is exactly what is happening. Where are those Motorola "Communications System Analyzers" (R2600) when you need them  ;)
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Walt2

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #28 on: January 29, 2007, 09:22:44 AM »

Perhaps someone who has had success with the SR731 Smart Repeater will jump in and explain their setup! ;) :D ;D

My SR731 doesn't seem to work at all with my CM15A.  As others have stated, the AHP Activity Monitor doesn't even show anything.  This is even when I use the "test button" on the SR731, which generates a M1 "on" and M1 'off'.   No M1 'on' nor M1 'off' shows up in the AHP Activity Monitor.

IMHO, the CM15A is not compatible with the SR731.  Possibly because the SR731 "tags" its repeated RF signals, as repeats, and the CM15A "sees" these tags as making the RF signal invalid (and therefore ignores them).  Though, that is just a guess.

Let me add that the latest CM15A/AHP "package" being sold by X10 on their website, includes the Smart RF Repeater.  I wonder how they could do that.  Has AHP been updated lately, such that it how works? 
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richard j

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Re: CM15A RF Range Problems...
« Reply #29 on: July 16, 2007, 10:04:52 AM »

I saw that there are many problems with receiving RF signals of any range over 5 feet with the CM15A.

I also noticed that there were many solutions of various degrees of difficulties, so I chose the simple one.  I bent a wire coat hanger so I could tape it to the side of the CM15A antenna and now it works fine from 40 feet at least.

I tried from outside at 100 feet at least and it didn't work, but maybe the batteries are low, as that controlled has been in use for a couple of years.
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