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Author Topic: Remote Control Range Issues  (Read 26458 times)

ChopperPilot

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Remote Control Range Issues
« on: October 20, 2007, 07:11:38 PM »

We installed a Sentinel camera outside a metal building which appears to be shielding the remote control signal.
We wired the video directly so that is not an issue.
Any suggestions on what we should do?

I was thinking of trying to remove the antenna from the sentinal and wiring an extension to it so that I can pass the antenna inside the hangar and have better line of sight with the remote.  Anybody ever move an antenna from a Sentinel?  How many wires run into the antenna? and can I just splice them onto a 3 ft extension to move it?

The other option would be to try to move the USB control unit closer to the camera and potentially cut a hole in the hangar wall for line of sight control as well.  Don't really want to do this one.

Thanks,

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dave w

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2007, 06:06:24 PM »

We installed a Sentinel camera outside a metal building which appears to be shielding the remote control signal.
We wired the video directly so that is not an issue.
Any suggestions on what we should do?

I was thinking of trying to remove the antenna from the sentinal and wiring an extension to it so that I can pass the antenna inside the hangar and have better line of sight with the remote. 


If you are talking about the "paddle" antenna, that is the 2.4GHz antenna for the video I don't think that is the antenna receiving the pan and tilt comands from the remote. (Anyone feel free to help me on this).

I think the pan and tilt is handled on a seperate 310MHz RF link. 

You might try a "passive repeater". If you have some coax handy (RG 58, RG 6, etc)  try this. Strip 18" of shield and braid way from center conductor and postion the 18" center conductor (now an antenna) near the Sentinel. Poke the coax thu the same hole you ran the Sentinel video coax through. Now take the other end of the coax, strip back 18" of shield and braid for the "inside antenna". Hold the remote close to the "inside antenna" and see if the Sentinel responds. If it does, send me money. if it doesn't...sorry I got you back up on the ladder.

(synaps fired here)

You might be able test the use of a passive repeater by just running 36" to 40" of stiff bare wire (14ga copper from a hunk of Romex should do nicely) through any hole in the metal wall near the Sentinel. Where the wire passes through the wall, it must not touch the metal. You want approximately 18" inside the building, and approximately 18" outside the building. If that works then the passive repeater described above should work as a more permanent solution.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2007, 12:25:55 PM by dave w »
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Brian H

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2007, 06:11:40 PM »

As far as I know David is correct. Wireless video is in the 2.4 GHz range and the pan and tilt is X10s 310 MHz.
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HA Dave

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2007, 10:54:28 AM »


The other option would be to try to move the USB control unit closer to the camera and potentially cut a hole in the hangar wall for line of sight control as well.  Don't really want to do this one.


What is the USB unit (model) that you are using? If your controling the Camera with the AHP (CM15A) this could be a very easy fix... much has been written (posted) about extending the antenna of the CM15A.
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Brian H

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2007, 06:17:56 PM »

The CM15As transmitting antenna is glued inside the case and not the well documented receive antenna most have seen range modifications to.
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HA Dave

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2007, 09:01:12 PM »

The CM15As transmitting antenna is glued inside the case and not the well documented receive antenna most have seen range modifications to.

My mistake. Sorry ChopperPilot and thank you Brian H for pointing that out. Could the Smart Repeater (SR731) be useful, or modified to be useful?
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Brian H

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2007, 09:17:43 AM »

I don't know if the SR731 could be used. I have never played with one.
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KDR

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2007, 06:49:38 PM »

I use a SR731 so that I can use the CM15A to work with one of my Ninja's. Without it I can not get AHP to move it and its hit and miss with my CR14A remote.

No somewhere here on the boards, do a search for the SR731 there was some posts about it working and not working as I recall. Seems that maybe there might of been a change in the SR731 at some point.

----------------KDR
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sphon721

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2008, 02:33:40 PM »

no good unless that repeater can do wireless, the sentinel does not use powerline commands, i have been searching for a way to get better RF wireless from the cm15a to the sentinel, I found one post talking about changing the daughter board out but it was only a suggestion, im thinking a 310mhz tuned antenna may be the solution, may have to do it on the cm15a and the sentinel. anybody help here??????
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Alan V

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2008, 04:12:21 PM »

I haven't tried it, but you could use an LPA1 from Ramsey Electronics to boost the signal from the CM15A.

http://www.ramseyelectronics.com/cgi-bin/commerce.exe?preadd=action&key=LPA1

It's not all that cheap, but if it solves the problem then it may be well worth the price.
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sphon721

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #10 on: September 15, 2008, 05:14:55 PM »

awesome, thanks for the link, i will def try one, the cm15a has a single conductor antenna, do you use the ground as the antenna shield wire?

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Alan V

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #11 on: September 15, 2008, 05:34:54 PM »

awesome, thanks for the link, i will def try one, the cm15a has a single conductor antenna, do you use the ground as the antenna shield wire?


Yes.  When you open up the CM15A you will see an area on the PCB near the antenna wire labelled "Gnd".  Solder a wire to that point and use it for the shield.
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Brian H

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #12 on: September 15, 2008, 06:44:48 PM »

Just remember. Any modifications to the CM15A violates the FCC Acceptance. The amp can do up to 1 watt. You will be responsible for interference and violations.
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sphon721

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2008, 02:25:19 PM »

 :'
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TrinityEB

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Re: Remote Control Range Issues
« Reply #14 on: September 19, 2008, 09:55:34 AM »

We installed a Sentinel camera outside a metal building which appears to be shielding the remote control signal.
We wired the video directly so that is not an issue.
Any suggestions on what we should do?

I was thinking of trying to remove the antenna from the sentinal and wiring an extension to it so that I can pass the antenna inside the hangar and have better line of sight with the remote.  Anybody ever move an antenna from a Sentinel?  How many wires run into the antenna? and can I just splice them onto a 3 ft extension to move it?

Sounds to me like he's talking about the CR15A handheld remote and NOT a CM15A.

ChopperPilot, there is a single brown wire inside the P/T base that functions as the antenna receiving signals from the handheld remote.  You can see pictures of it here...
http://www.lunaseamedia.com/upload/x10-mods/ninja_base.html.  Those pictures are for a Ninja P/T base, but from what I understand the internals are similar to the Sentinel and Vanguard cameras.

Another option if you're not comfortable with doing surgery on your camera is this:  The X10 Smart RF Repeater Extender SR731 / PSX01 .  It's tuned to the 310MHz signal that the remote operates on and intercepts/resends the signal.  Unfortunately it's been discontinued, but I was able to purchase one via eBay for use with a Vanguard camera we installed at our church.  The camera is mounted in the rear of the sanctuary about 10 feet high and I was only getting about 10-15 feet range line-of-site with the remote.  I positioned the SR731 about a foot or so away from the camera and now the remote works throughout the entire sanctuary.

- Frank.

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