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Author Topic: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA  (Read 3704 times)

Tuicemen

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ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« on: February 05, 2021, 06:22:26 PM »

I've been playing with a $2 ESP8266 ESP-01S board doing some simple tasks like controling LED lights, reading a DHT sensor and posting results on a a server running on it. I know simple stuff and I'm very late to this!
 The ESP32 is the successor to the ESP8266 but both have several recent versions. I know several here have played with one version at least of these over the years, so I'm interested in your ideas and thoughts on these.
 I'm looking at getting one of the newer versions but I'm not sure what more I'd like to do with it just yet.
Do I realy need 12-16 GPIO pins? I haven't been able to utilize the 4 easy to configure ones on the ESP-01, which I've read can be configured into 12 Pins
It would be cool to pull out my Pi Zero inside my CM15A and use one of these in its place however I think that is beond my abilities.
I've also thought about trying to send X10 RF with one but I don't realy need another X10 RF sender or receiver.
I've also been thinking about creating a HG mini, however what would I use it for?
There are several projects posted on the web for these but very few of those seem useful for me (at least not yet). Maybe some one will inspire me. ;)
 I'm wondering: ???
Which boards did you use and what did you do with them?
Did you incorporate them into your X10 HA setup?
Are you still using the board?
Are you expanding on it?
Or did it fail to live up to your expectations?
 >!
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petera

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2021, 08:28:02 PM »

Your best bet for feedback on this subject would be the Home Assistant forum. I doubt if many of the users here have deployed either with X10 so I imagine your feedback here would be limited. If you haven't already done so register on the Home Assistant forum where you could exchange ideas and touch base on the latest developments in all things ESP.

Personally I've been using ESP since its inception, mainly the ESP8285 in the early days and it works nicely with the TIP10RF which unfortunately wasn't available on your side of the pond. In fact programmed correctly they can completely replace X10 and ZWave (no harm on the ZWave front). You'll find an example of them in most of today's disposable electronics. I'd give the HG Mini a miss though. It looks flaky to say the least and when it comes to support you're on your own  rofl

I hope you weren't asleep when this was all happening. Maybe you've been living off grid too long  rofl
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petera

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2021, 09:26:58 PM »

One thing to note. Be damn careful with your voltage here. 3.3v and no tolerance. Not sure how you're programming it but I've always used the Arduino to do the heavy lifting. Again there's so many versions of these chips doing the rounds and not all perform the same. They support Micro Python but C is far superior when it comes to these boards. You'll find out as you experiment. Fried ESP is not very tasty  rofl
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petera

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2021, 10:41:11 PM »

You can flash Tasmota on to your ESP and the sky’s the limit https://tasmota.github.io/docs/Getting-Started/ Again heed the warnings on voltages.
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Tuicemen

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2021, 07:23:15 AM »

I hope you weren't asleep when this was all happening. Maybe you've been living off grid too long  rofl
I'm afraid I may have been doing both! rofl I had heard of these when they first came out but like the Raspi I just couldn't bring my self to playing with them.  :-[
The Idea of soldering up pins and using a bread board probably was the thing that turned me off to me these were toys not the work horses they are.
I'm using Arduino to flash this but had used ESP Easy to flash some SONOFF low voltage modules several years back for my solar tracker and that was just to get local control. I know what a fried ESP chip smells like, but never tasted one!  rofl
Thanks for the links but I'm more interested in what users Here are using them for.
 >!
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petera

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2021, 07:46:18 AM »

I hope you weren't asleep when this was all happening. Maybe you've been living off grid too long  rofl
I'm afraid I may have been doing both! rofl I had heard of these when they first came out but like the Raspi I just couldn't bring my self to playing with them.  :-[
The Idea of soldering up pins and using a bread board probably was the thing that turned me off to me these were toys not the work horses they are.
I'm using Arduino to flash this but had used ESP Easy to flash some SONOFF low voltage modules several years back for my solar tracker and that was just to get local control. I know what a fried ESP chip smells like, but never tasted one!  rofl
Thanks for the links but I'm more interested in what users Here are using them for.
 >!

Should be interesting to see if anyone here is actually using them. Anyway good luck with that
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bkenobi

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #6 on: February 06, 2021, 03:55:45 PM »

I've had a Sonoff TH16 for a few years but never did much with it. I recently found a use for a couple so ordered some Sonoff Basic units.  They are pretty nice once flashed with Tasmota (I recommend a CH340 + Tasmotize). However, the version I was sent was the R2 v1.3 which doesnt have many GPIO broken out. If you are concerned about soldering a header in place, you wont like what it takes to access I2C on the new boards. The ESP chip is a square SMD ~0.25". To add GPIO one must solder to 2 pins on the chip. I can hardly see the pins without a magnifying glass so I'm not likely to go that route!

Tuicemen

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #7 on: February 06, 2021, 05:06:48 PM »

I do have another Sonoff basic unit which still has the factory firmware some where at my off grid place.
I did consider digging it out and flashing it with a new custom firmware but the ESP-01S can basicaly do what it can with a relay, less the Alexa function of the eWeLink skill.

 -:) I guess a good project may be to add a DS18B20 Temperature Sensor (what the Sonoff TH16 uses) to my ESP-01 to monitor my lake temperature at the off grid place.

I played with flashing a new firmware over WiFi today, very cool!
« Last Edit: February 07, 2021, 05:03:44 PM by Tuicemen »
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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2021, 05:03:18 PM »

I do have another Sonoff basic unit which still has the factory firmware some where at my off grid place.
I did consider digging it out and flashing it with a new custom firmware but the ESP-01S can basicaly do what it can with a relay, less the Alexa function of the eWeLink skill.

 I was going through the Audiuno forums today and seen a post about an Ardiuno skill. Doing a bit of digging I seen several Skills which should work with the esp8266 or esp32 boards. Most looked like they use MQTTT.
There is even a separate MQTTT skill however it appears to only handle lights and switches currently.
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Tuicemen

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2021, 09:14:43 AM »

I read an article the other day that showed placing a ESP-01 into a old flashdrive or inside a old 3-5volt wallwart.
Wish I had book marked it  B:( :-[ both required a voltage regulator and the old flashdrive mode stated not to plug into a PC but use a Phone charger. If I had a old dead flashdrive laying arround this would have been a cool project.
However after thinking about it I have several old phone charges and other 3-5 volt walwarts laying around in a junk box. B:(
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Tuicemen

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #10 on: February 15, 2021, 08:34:11 AM »

I just recieved a few Wemos D1 boards to play with. These have 4 times the memory of my ESP-01S and Sketches are incredibly fast loading to these with the Ardiuno sketch uploader. I had played successfuly with sending X10 commands to HomeGenie with my ESP-01S but doubt the Wemos D1 would much faster with that.
I've started to look at the Platform.io software for uploading sketches. Reports are this is easier to use then Ardiuno ide but so far I don't see it. I've yet to beable to upload a sketch.  B:( :-[
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petera

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #11 on: February 15, 2021, 11:00:10 AM »

I just recieved a few Wemos D1 boards to play with. These have 4 times the memory of my ESP-01S and Sketches are incredibly fast loading to these with the Ardiuno sketch uploader. I had played successfuly with sending X10 commands to HomeGenie with my ESP-01S but doubt the Wemos D1 would much faster with that.
I've started to look at the Platform.io software for uploading sketches. Reports are this is easier to use then Ardiuno ide but so far I don't see it. I've yet to beable to upload a sketch.  B:( :-[

If you don’t mind me asking, what are you trying to achieve here. The instructions for creating the HG mini controller have already been clearly outlined here. https://github.com/genielabs/homegenie-mini so I’m a little confused as to what your end game is.

I know you’ve stated on many occasions that you’ve no interest in “learning a new language” but maybe your time could be spent more productively taking one of the on line Python courses and you could come at a project like this from a more structured approach.

While your endeavours in all things ESP/Arduino are to be commended I’d say up to 95% of the X10 user base still use AHP. Maybe a course in C/C++ would be more keeping in line with the requirements of the user base, their desire for an updated version of AHP as per this post http://forums.x10.com/index.php?topic=29218.0
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Tuicemen

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #12 on: February 15, 2021, 11:51:30 AM »

The end game here is to expand my HA setup and to maybe eliminate a PI inside my CM15A, possibly replacing it with a ESP board inside it or a CM11. Maybe something like a WM100 Pro will result from it, however I doubt it ::) :'.
dhouston was very close to this at one point, I believe he dropped the idea when Gene released HomeGenie-mini.

The HomeGenie-mini build is a simple thing and I may attempt one just for fun! Platform.io is not as easy as Gene's write up makes it out to be (unless your already familiar with Platform.io)
However I believe I am making progress with Platform.io, and since it integrates nicely with Visual Studio, once I have the sketch upload figured out the sky is the limit. ;)

The last AHP version was written with Visual Studio so it is possible a AHP ESP version could be created. No one is interested in updating AHP or this would have been done by now. :(
 I've gotten away from using a PC for my HA and have no intentions of returning to one for that.
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petera

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2021, 12:57:12 PM »

The end game here is to expand my HA setup and to maybe eliminate a PI inside my CM15A, possibly replacing it with a ESP board inside it or a CM11. Maybe something like a WM100 Pro will result from it, however I doubt it ::) :'.
dhouston was very close to this at one point, I believe he dropped the idea when Gene released HomeGenie-mini.

The HomeGenie-mini build is a simple thing and I may attempt one just for fun! Platform.io is not as easy as Gene's write up makes it out to be (unless your already familiar with Platform.io)
However I believe I am making progress with Platform.io, and since it integrates nicely with Visual Studio, once I have the sketch upload figured out the sky is the limit. ;)

The last AHP version was written with Visual Studio so it is possible a AHP ESP version could be created. No one is interested in updating AHP or this would have been done by now. :(
 I've gotten away from using a PC for my HA and have no intentions of returning to one for that.

For someone who appears to have a passion for all things X10, has time on their hands and is constantly looking at ways of fitting boards into a CM15 I'm amazed you haven't taken up the very generous offer from Jeff Volp to continue producing his high quality X10 equipment.
http://forums.x10.com/index.php?topic=31418.0

Surely time spent on a proven venture like this would be time well spent and at the same time providing customers like the user base here with high quality X10 hardware. Who knows, with a little more technical input from the right people you might even be able to produce commercially something along the lines you outline here. You might even make a few dollars from a venture like this into the bargain.

Maybe if you reached out to Jeff you might find some common ground in order to pursue a project like this.  Sounds like a very rewarding project to me.
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brobin

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Re: ESP8266 or ESP32 Wifi enabled boards & HA
« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2021, 01:24:17 PM »

Designing, tweaking and tinkering are very different from operating a manufacturing company, even as a small tabletop enterprise.  The sourcing, kitting, production, marketing, sales and support functions are a completely different skill set.  Sadly, the market for Jeff's products are mostly limited to serious X10 users who are in ever shorter supply and have probably already purchased what they need from Jeff.  The bottom line is that there really isn't much of a bottom line in pursuing the business and, as Jeff found, no real financially rewarding exit strategy.  Even X10, who stands the most to gain in producing at least some of Jeff's designs won't step up.  Let's face it, there is very little, if any, new blood joining the X10 community.  Someone just starting out in HA wouldn't even be exposed to X10 in the market anymore and going with a WiFi/Zwave/ZigBee based solution eliminates all the PLC issues which only get worse over time.
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