Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Pages: 1 [2] 3

Author Topic: Differences between TM751, TM751-C, RR501, and other X10 RF transceivers  (Read 2619 times)

madbrain

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 0
  • Posts: 121

So, I received one of the two additional RR501s I ordered from Ebay today.
It's a much older revision than the one I already have.

Version I had on the left of this picture is the one I have. On the right is the one I received.



They perform extremely differently from each other, even at the exact same outlet, which the exact same setting - house code and unit code (yes, I'm aware they are on different codes in the picture). The one I received today is much worse. The RF receiver seems to be OK - at least, it toggles the outlet at the bottom just fine based on on/off commands sent from the CM17A. The PL transmitter hardly works, though, even to control devices very closeby in my office such as the ceiling light and audio amplifiers. It's kind of a crapshoot, which is not the case at all with my existing RR501, or the RTM75.

Has there been any notable improvement between RR501 revisions that might explain any of this, or is it just the external packaging that's changed ?
I'm leaning towards returning it as defective, but wanted to ask the community first to see if there is another possible explanation before I do so. Either way, the unit I received is pretty much useless to me - the functioning outlet is the one thing I don't need. The transceiving capability is what I need.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2022, 07:05:39 PM by madbrain »
Logged

brobin

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 148
  • Posts: 1214

While I don't know any details, I'm sure improvements were made during the product's life and that old one looks very old. 

In reading this and remembering several of your other threads, it would seem that the real issue that needs to be resolved is signal integrity in your home.  A signal amplifier, such as an XPCR, would be best but I know you've mentioned that you don't feel comfortable working with wiring and don't want to get an electrician involved. 

Assuming you have an electric dryer outlet, the Signalinc Smart Home (X-10) Plug In Signal Coupler Model 4816A2 might very well improve things for you. It simply plugs into the dryer outlet and the dryer (if electric) plugs into it.  There's some on ebay right now starting at $17 delivered and it might be a useful improvement.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/224917514069?hash=item345e20e755:g:pt8AAOSwsJJiOyoU
Logged

madbrain

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 0
  • Posts: 121

While I don't know any details, I'm sure improvements were made during the product's life and that old one looks very old. 

Yes. And it's yellow on one side, and likely sun damaged. It didn't match the white one in the listing. The seller was understanding, and refunded it, including shipping. This one is going to e-waste, unless anyone here wants it, but you'll have to pay for shipping. PM me in that case.

I drove 30 miles round trip (in an EV, no money on gas spent) to go pick up a RCA HC50RX transceiver that was listed on craiglist. There was an HR12A remote as well. The seller let me have them for free, which is a price that cannot be beaten.  Picked them up about an hour and a half ago, after dark. Both are working fine. The HC50RX outlet only answers on unit code 1. There is no unit code dial, only house code.

I temporarily reconfigured HomeAssistant to send PLC signals through the CM11A directly via PLC, instead of the CM17A through RF. At first, the HC50X wasn't responding to the corresponding code - the relay for the outlet wasn't getting switched. I then moved the HC50RX to another outlet, and surprise, it worked ! So, this one has a PL receiver, and should thus be "polite", like my old RR501, and unlike the RTM75.

Quote
In reading this and remembering several of your other threads, it would seem that the real issue that needs to be resolved is signal integrity in your home.  A signal amplifier, such as an XPCR, would be best but I know you've mentioned that you don't feel comfortable working with wiring and don't want to get an electrician involved. 

Thanks, I'm aware of this product. I'm not sure if it would really work. Money is a bit tight right now, as I'm still not working, so I'm not taking a chance on it.

Quote
Assuming you have an electric dryer outlet, the Signalinc Smart Home (X-10) Plug In Signal Coupler Model 4816A2 might very well improve things for you. It simply plugs into the dryer outlet and the dryer (if electric) plugs into it.  There's some on ebay right now starting at $17 delivered and it might be a useful improvement.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/224917514069?hash=item345e20e755:g:pt8AAOSwsJJiOyoU

As a matter of fact, I do have a 4-prong dryer outlet upstairs in the back in my laundry room. And there is a Signalinc 4826A (active model) plugged in to it. My dryer is a gas dryer, and not plugged in to this outlet.

I just went upstairs to the laundry room, and used the HomeAssistant app on my phone to change the state of some X10 switches.

The lights on the Signalinc unit blinked red when I did that, meaning it's at least receiving the PLC signals. I don't know if it's properly repeating them or not. I could see from the window that the light near the hot tub turned on, so at least that XPS4 switch received the signal.

I unplugged the Signalinc temporarily to see if there is any change to the performance of my overall system. I would expect it to get worse. So far, from what I'm seeing, no noticeable change, but I didn't test every X10 device yet.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2022, 03:28:33 AM by madbrain »
Logged

brobin

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 148
  • Posts: 1214

Glad to hear you have the coupler plugged in.  Although money is tight, your best bet to improve your signals would be the XTBR from JVDE which is a plug-in unit.  You can ask Jeff about a refurbed older unit that may save some money off the $89 price.  Although I no longer need it, it made a world of difference when I did. 
http://jvde.us/xtb/xtbr.pdf
Logged

madbrain

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 0
  • Posts: 121

Glad to hear you have the coupler plugged in.  Although money is tight, your best bet to improve your signals would be the XTBR from JVDE which is a plug-in unit.  You can ask Jeff about a refurbed older unit that may save some money off the $89 price.  Although I no longer need it, it made a world of difference when I did. 
http://jvde.us/xtb/xtbr.pdf

The XTBR looks like a 3-prong 120V unit. Would it really outperform the 4826A that is 4 prong and runs on a 240V outlet ?
And I don't suppose those could be used together, that would just cause signal loops.

If my 4826A isn't really repeating, XTBR might make sense, but I don't have a way to verify that. I don't have an X10 signal meter, or know where to get one. I don't know which outlets are on which phase, or even which circuits, also. Is there a way to tell without opening them and/or tracing things to the breakers in the various panels? All I can measure is whether X10 devices can be operated at all, and whether they work all the time or intermittently, for example, only when the EVs are not charging, etc.

I appreciate the help trying to fix my powerline signal, but I really have a ton of modern electronics, and even if I could get it to work today at minimal cost, I think it's going to always be a cat-and-mouse game whenever other devices get replaced/added in the house. There are 230+ LED lightbulbs, 97 switches, probably 2/3 of which are vacancy sensors and can be noise sources themselves, a lot of hardwired appliances, 2 plug-in EV chargers, and many, many 120V plug-in devices. Lately, I have been measuring the idle power consumption of plug-in devices in my home, using KP125 smartplugs. I am not done with downstairs, and the spreadsheet already has 100 entries. Upstairs is bigger. By the time I'm done measuring everything, there wlll very likely be over 200 entries. That means there are over 500 noise sources/signal suckers to contend with on my property. Do you really think this can all be mitigated with a single plug-in coupler/repeater for $89 ?

I'm not saying dealing with the powerline signal at my house is an impossible task, but I think it will cost a whole lot more money than $89 to fix it. And if it takes, say, $500 more in hardware (filters, couplers, etc), and $500 more in electrician labor (probably a very conservative estimate), plus all the time testing, does it make sense ? I could easily see it costing much more.

Kasa HS200 Wifi switches can be had for $40 for a 3-pack. Even spending $20/switch on an electrician, I have just 4 XPS3, 5 XPS4, and perhaps 4 companion switches, the cost of replacing everything hardwired X10 with Kasa is still under $400. The main reason I haven't done so already is that Kasa switches only come in white, and there is no direct replacement for an IR543 in the Kasa world.  There are Z-wave switches in the right color, but they cost a lot more ($40 per switch). The IR543 replacement can be built with FLIRC and a Raspberry Pi, but the later is currently in short supply. I suspect those color/Pi supply issues will not last forever, and hopefully money will be less tight for me also by the time that changes.

In the meantime, I'm trying to spend a minimal amount to keep things working by adding RF transceivers at multiple outlets, which wouldn't require dealing with all the powerline noise issues. I think it may well turn out to be a viable solution. I need to get back to testing the RF range now, and see how far the transceivers will actually work from the CM17A in my home.
Logged

madbrain

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 0
  • Posts: 121

In the meantime, I'm trying to spend a minimal amount to keep things working by adding RF transceivers at multiple outlets, which wouldn't require dealing with all the powerline noise issues. I think it may well turn out to be a viable solution. I need to get back to testing the RF range now, and see how far the transceivers will actually work from the CM17A in my home.

I tested the RF range of the RCA HC50RX transceiver from all 17 rooms & closets.  It was set to house code C. The XPS4 for my hot tub light is set to C1, which is the same as the outlet for this transceiver. I went walking around, plugged it in to different outlets, and toggled the switch in HomeAssistant on the phone. HA was setup to use the CM17A to send signals.

Great news - the RF signal reaches from almost every outlet I tested, even the one farthest from the CM17A. I could tell because I heard the relay at the bottom switch back and forth. Not sure about the couple where it didn't work - could be the outlets themselves not being live, I wasn't walking around with an outlet tester to check.

The PL signal didn't travel in all cases, though. I could see that the hot tub light wasn't getting toggled sometimes, even when the bottom outlet on the same code was. However, I could usually resolve this by plugging the HC50RX into another outlet within the same room. I didn't have visibility to the hot tub from every room, so I couldn't directly check, and some closets/bathroom only have one outlet to try. But I walked around a lot and was satisfied with what I found, basically, that single transceiver could be used to control distant lights from most rooms, which is a lot more than I can say for either of my two CM11As that send signals only through PL. That shows that my idea was sound, at least.

Now, the very vexing part of the late night is that I snapped the transceiver antenna when testing from a rotated outlet under a kitchen countertop. Amazingly, the RF signal still reaches without it in most cases. Where it doesn't, letting the antenna just rest on it and touch is enough to fix it. Obviously, doesn't work for a rotated outlet, though. This is why I won't attempt to do electrical work myself, I'm too clumsy. Anyway, this can probably be fixed with some silver sodder. I see that there is a plastic door for the antenna, but I'm not sure how to open it.

I figure since I have a non-working RR501 with an antenna on it, I have a spare antenna, and perhaps I can use that part for the HC50X.

I opened up the HC50RX. Amazingly, there is no electrical connection to the antenna, just a piece of plastic. I guess this is all working by induction.
I was able to put the HC50RX back together without losing the button, house code control, or screws. It still functions as before. The plastic pieces near the bottom outlet now separate when pulling, though, which wasn't the case before. It looks like bottom screw is held to the electronics board, but not screwed to the plastic piece at the bottom. I opened it up again to check. The plastic part it's screwed into is broken. I guess I did that while opening it. Maybe a longer screw would help, or glue, or both, but it probably won't hold, so I don't think I will attempt it. I really should have started by opening up the bad RR501 unit instead of the HC50RX, what was I thinking ?

Anyway, does anyone know how to open that plastic door to remove/replace the antenna on the RR501 and/or HC50RX ?
Logged

madbrain

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 0
  • Posts: 121

Anyway, does anyone know how to open that plastic door to remove/replace the antenna on the RR501 and/or HC50RX ?

Nothing that a pair of pliers couldn't handle, as it turns out. Antenna swap was performed. HC50RX is repaired, and now works again as normal. Wish I hadn't opened it up.

I doubt anyone wants the RR501 with a snapped antenna and defective PL transmitter ;)
Logged

Brian H

  • Community Organizer
  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Helpful Post Rating: 301
  • Posts: 13104

The one on the right is an earlier version of the RR501. They may have a different RF receiver between them. They are very different between the two models electronic designs. I had the power supply in an older model start failing. I changed the Zener Diode and filter capacitor in it. If it didn't fall off. You may find a date code sticker on it and get a clue to its age.

The no physical connection to the Antenna is normal. If you look closely at the base of the antenna it has a round metal plate on it. Inside you should see a metal sheet stuck to the inside. The RF signal is coupled trough the small capacity of the plastic between the two metal pieces. The RR501 has a hot chassis where the power line is directly connected the modules electronics. A direct antenna connection would result in a shock hazard and maybe sparks.

I can compare a newer RR501 to an older one and see if the RF part has changed.

The XPR has a much larger output. I believe over a 10 volt X10 signal. Designed to be near a coupler to get the signal to the other phase. Is a 120V AC device so a coupler is needed for both phases.

My XTB-IIR has over a 10 volt X10 signal on both phases on my XTBM X10 meter and the lowest X10 reading I have in the house around 1 volt of X10 signals.

I had the 3 pin version of the Smarthome Coupler repeater. One phases output is dead but the LEDs still flashed as normal.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2022, 06:54:40 AM by Brian H »
Logged

madbrain

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 0
  • Posts: 121

The one on the right is an earlier version of the RR501. They may have a different RF receiver between them. They are very different between the two models electronic designs. I had the power supply in an older model start failing. I changed the Zener Diode and filter capacitor in it.

Thanks.

Quote
If it didn't fall off. You may find a date code sticker on it and get a clue to its age.

Date code is 5L50 .

Quote
The no physical connection to the Antenna is normal. If you look closely at the base of the antenna it has a round metal plate on it. Inside you should see a metal sheet stuck to the inside. The RF signal is coupled trough the small capacity of the plastic between the two metal pieces. The RR501 has a hot chassis where the power line is directly connected the modules electronics. A direct antenna connection would result in a shock hazard and maybe sparks.

Thanks. That makes sense.

Quote
I can compare a newer RR501 to an older one and see if the RF part has changed.

Thanks. I didn't open up either revision of my two RR501s. I have a third on the way from Ebay that should arrive next week, also older revision.

Quote
The XPR has a much larger output. I believe over a 10 volt X10 signal. Designed to be near a coupler to get the signal to the other phase. Is a 120V AC device so a coupler is needed for both phases.

My XTB-IIR has over a 10 volt X10 signal on both phases on my XTBM X10 meter and the lowest X10 reading I have in the house around 1 volt of X10 signals.

I had the 3 pin version of the Smarthome Coupler repeater. One phases output is dead but the LEDs still flashed as normal.

Unfortunately, I have no way to measure the signal strength.  It's quite possible that my 4826A is in the same state as yours was. It doesn't seem to be doing much. I wish I had a scientific way to measure it. I just don't have the tools.

I have plug-in filters with short extension cords at many outlets in the rooms that have X10 switches/plug-in modules nearby. They look quite ugly. The filters do seem to be helping, though.
Logged

Brian H

  • Community Organizer
  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Helpful Post Rating: 301
  • Posts: 13104

5L50 Week 50 of 2005.
I was thinking of the TM751 with the metal foil on the inside. The RR501 has a metal tab soldered to the board parallel to the inside case that couples the RF.
I did not see much different between a older and newer one in the RF area. The power supply, case and local on off button area is different. There maybe other component changes I did not see. Mine are 2010 and look like your newer one in the photo. Checked my notes. The earlier one had a 20V Zener diode for around a 20 Volt supply. My newer one from 2010 has a 40 volt (two 20 volt Zeners in series) power supply. Feeding the power line transmitter.

I know X10 eventually went to surface mounted chips with different designs. I don't know if the even later  RR501 is one of them. If it was changed. The surface mounted chip probably used a lower voltage but may still have the higher voltage driving the power line transmitter.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2022, 12:47:38 PM by Brian H »
Logged

brobin

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 148
  • Posts: 1214

Do you really think this can all be mitigated with a single plug-in coupler/repeater for $89 ?

Perhaps not 100% but I would expect that you'd see a satisfying improvement.  I would leave the 4826A in place as a bridge unless it caused problems.  The XTBR would be located next to the CM11A or whatever is your primary source of signals. If you get a refurbed older unit the CM11A would plug directly into it.  It would boost the signal strength by 10x which would overcome a lot of noise and deliver a more useable signal to every device.  Leaving the 4826A in place provides a path for that stronger signal to reach the other 120 leg. 

Before the game changing XTB-IIR was offered I first used the XTB (older version of XTBR) along with a 4826A in an 8500sf house that had dozens of Leviton branded X10 wall switches and just about every other type of X10 module in existence.  While not perfect, the XTB made a substantial improvement in signal reliability.  You might ask Jeff if he accepts returns if it doesn't help.

Ideally, you'd install an XTB-IIR but they are no longer available unless one pops up on ebay.  If you did find one - or wanted to try the XPCR or another 240v repeater - you would not have to hire an electrician to install it.  Although wiring it at the panel is best, you could also buy a dryer plug and attach the wires to it as a replacement for the 4826A.

To identify circuits in your home a $30 circuit finder (amzn.to/35Aovjf) is a very valuable tool and requires no skill or wiring to use.  Most importantly, any version of an X10 signal tester would be a wonderful investment.  They're as hard to find as hen's teeth now but I'd be willing to loan you a basic one - and an XTB as well - for the cost of postage and a refundable deposit.  PM me if you're interested.
Logged

madbrain

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 0
  • Posts: 121

Perhaps not 100% but I would expect that you'd see a satisfying improvement. 

Satisfying would be when all the signals go through 100% of the time, and I don't believe that alone would get me there.

Quote
I would leave the 4826A in place as a bridge unless it caused problems. 

I don't think it's causing problems, but it might not be helping.

Quote
The XTBR would be located next to the CM11A or whatever is your primary source of signals.

The CM17A is now my primary source of signals, but those are now RF, and the XTBR doesn't help those. The PLC signal sources are from transceivers, which are in multiple locations.

I have two CM11A, but neither is reliable. They lock up frequently and when they do, no PLC commands go through at all for periods of multiple minutes or longer. I believe the lockup issue is a known bug with the CM11A, unfortunately. I have seen the lockup problem with multiple programs - HomeGenie, HomeSeer, HomeAssistant, so I'm fairly confident it's a hardware issue. But even without that bug, noise/signal suckers still gets in the way. At this point, I'm using the CM11A only to receive signals, not send them, and I don't have any automation that depends on receiving signals,
it's just to update the device state in Home Assistant. It might be interesting to experiment with that and see if that works, though. I don't know if the CM11A locks up only on sending signals or also on receiving them.

Quote
Leaving the 4826A in place provides a path for that stronger signal to reach the other 120 leg. 

I thought both the 4826A and XTBR were repeaters. If they are both repeating, won't that call signal loops ?
Are you saying they can be used together without issue ? Of course, if one isn't repeating at all (as my 4826A might not be), then there is no problem, but that would be the same as just using one.

Quote
Before the game changing XTB-IIR was offered I first used the XTB (older version of XTBR) along with a 4826A in an 8500sf house that had dozens of Leviton branded X10 wall switches and just about every other type of X10 module in existence.  While not perfect, the XTB made a substantial improvement in signal reliability.  You might ask Jeff if he accepts returns if it doesn't help.

Thanks, this is helpful information. I see that the XTBR is available on Amazon, and I believe that automatically gets a 30-day return policy. Not certain if this is something I want to mess around with yet, though.

Quote
Ideally, you'd install an XTB-IIR but they are no longer available unless one pops up on ebay.  If you did find one - or wanted to try the XPCR or another 240v repeater - you would not have to hire an electrician to install it.  Although wiring it at the panel is best, you could also buy a dryer plug and attach the wires to it as a replacement for the 4826A.

The FAQ from http://jvde.us/xtb/xtb_faq.htm about the XTB-IIR says this :

Quote
Can the XTB-II/R be connected to a 240V dryer outlet?  Yes it can, especially if the dryer outlet is relatively close to the main distribution panel.  However, the conductors in a standard dryer cable are too heavy to connect to the internal terminal strip.  Three or four conductor 16 or 18 gauge 300V power cable can be wired to a separate dryer plug that can be purchased at a home building center or an electrical supply store.  Be sure to purchase a plug whose prong alignment matches your receptacle.  If the dryer outlet is a long run from the main distribution panel, it would be better to try to locate the XTB-II/R closer to the panel.

Unfortunately, my dryer outlet is on the end of the house opposite the main panel.
It seems like I would still have to mess around with it (receptacle, box) a little to connect it to a 240V dryer outlet, also.

Quote
To identify circuits in your home a $30 circuit finder (amzn.to/35Aovjf) is a very valuable tool and requires no skill or wiring to use. 

Thanks, this looks like a great tool indeed, and I'm going to put it on my shopping list. Given the number of outlets, breakers, and panels, it could take a very long time to map everything, though. There are likely over 100 outlets and 40 breakers between 3 panels at 2 locations very far apart from each other - the house is an addition. Many breakers should be dedicated for certain appliances and could be eliminated from testing. Still, that's a lot of walking around and time to spend. I guess I can use the exercise, though, so maybe it can be of help.

The manual for the ET300 doesn't mention anything about phases, though, just breakers. Not sure how I would be able to tell that without opening the electrical panels. I have wanted to know the map for outlets not just for X10 signals, but to avoid overloading circuits. I have not had any breakers trip, but I have seen voltage drops on a couple of occasions. Some could be from my utility, but one time it was my husband using power tools upstairs on the balcony, it caused the voltage drop at one of the two UPSes in my office downstairs down to 60V on the front display. BTW, the Kasa KP125 Wifi smartplugs I bought recently have voltage sensors, and I'm going to setup automations in HomeAssistant to notify me when issues of this sort happen.

I was hoping for a tester along the lines of plugging 2 (or possibly more, if nearby) outlets, and it tells you if they are on both the same circuit and/or breaker, but I guess that can't be done with any degree of certainty. If there is a GFCI, it is easy to tell by just tripping it with an outlet tester and seeing which other outlets/devices lose power, but most circuits outside bathrooms, kitchen and garage don't have GFCIs, so that doesn't work. And I don't think any of the breakers are GFCI breakers. At least, none have ever tripped from using the outlet tester. So, the outlet tester GFCI button only helps determines which outlets are on the same branch, but not the specific breaker, and not the phase.

Quote
Most importantly, any version of an X10 signal tester would be a wonderful investment.  They're as hard to find as hen's teeth now but I'd be willing to loan you a basic one - and an XTB as well - for the cost of postage and a refundable deposit.  PM me if you're interested.

Thanks for the offer. I know those things are very rare now - I haven't seen any for sale on ebay. A loaner would help a lot in the short term, but in the long term, plug-in devices come and go, and I would likely need to test again when I start running into problems from new devices.

I received the second RR501 earlier today - also old revision, almond color on all sides. I set it up on house code D and plugged it in to an outlet in my downstairs utility room. The circulation pump is on an XPS4 set to code D1. I set HomeAssistant to start it every 12 minutes, then stop it after 1 minute. The automation hasn't been reliable, unfortunately. I was watching TV in my home theater, which is adjacent to the utility room. I didn't hear the loud relay at the bottom of the RR501 turn on and off 10 times an hour. The volume was loud, and there are 15 speakers in the HT including 4 subs. Still, I did hear the relay a few times. One thing that I saw also is a case where the pump was turned on, but not off.

I don't know yet if it's an RF problem (signal from CM17A not reaching the transceiver reliably) or a PLC problem. It could be either, or both.
There is a lot of stuff going in that utility room - two electrical panels, one water heater, one furnace, and ceiling light. Everything is hardwired except for the plug-in RR501. I'm going to swap transceivers (RTM75, HC50RX) and see if things improve - some might have more RF reach than the others.
I could also tell HomeAssistant to send multiple X10 on/off commands and see if that helps reliability. I'm not certain if it will ignore multiple commands of the same state (eg. 3 consecutive ON commands, 3 consecutive OFF commands). There is no way to do that manually from the HTTP interface or app. Switch state can only be toggled. So, I have to modify the automation and see if I get a better success rate.

If I get one of the transceivers to work reliably enough to control the pump, I will change the unit code on the XPS4 switch controlling it to something other than 1 (or 9), so I don't have to hear the relay for the outlet at the bottom of the transceiver when toggling the pump. Besides the annoying noise that can be heard across rooms even with the door closed, those relays have to have a limited lifespan in terms of actuations. Is there any info on that ? Same question for the relays in the XPS3 and much quieter XPS4 relay.

Since there is no issue of matching switch colors in that utility room with the rest of the house (it's not a place where anyone normally goes), this seems like a case where it may make more sense to replace the XPS4 in that room with a $15 white Kasa HS200 Wifi switch. I haven't seen any issue toggling the Kasa smartplug state from HomeAssistant not getting executed. I did have issues with automations that depend on sensor states, for example the power consumption sensor, not getting triggered, to notify me when my clothes/dishes/etc are done, or automatically turn my multi-channel amps off when power consumption flattens, indicating nothing is playing.
« Last Edit: April 05, 2022, 07:08:48 AM by madbrain »
Logged

brobin

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 148
  • Posts: 1214

Seems like you have it figured out now. Hope it all works well for you!
Logged

madbrain

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Helpful Post Rating: 0
  • Posts: 121

Seems like you have it figured out now. Hope it all works well for you!

Thanks. I'm still not sure. I think I'll end up solving this, but it may take a couple more transceivers at different outlets. It's frustrating that no single transceiver at a single outlet can reach all my X10 devices, but not at all surprising given previous powerline issues. Sometimes, a specific transceiver at one outlet is able to reach multiple devices, but the devices are on different housecodes, so I have to change the house code on the transceiver or devices to make that work. And/or get more transceivers.

The various versions of the RR501 perform auite differently. The RCA HC50RX appears to be better than all the RR501s I got my hands on, as far as empirical evidence shows, without an X10 signal tester. So, I just ordered one more HC50RX from ebay. I'll open some switches tomorrow and try to consolidate house codes. Still unsure about getting my remaining XPS4 installed.
Logged

Noam

  • Community Organizer
  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Helpful Post Rating: 51
  • Posts: 2817

I'm jumping in kind of late here, and I might have missed this when I read through the above discussion, but I figured it wouldn't hurt to share. I think that mapping out your home (electrically, that is) is time well-spent. There is a huge difference between two outlets (or lights) being *physically* close and being *electrically* close. Points on different circuits will have a longer path than points on the same circuit, and points on different phases will have an even longer path (though a coupler can reduce this distance some). Signal-suckers and noise-generators will have a different effect on the signal depending on where they are located in reference to the transmitting and receiving units. Knowing what's where is going to be your best help when trying to troubleshoot future issues (especially when things suddenly change).
It shouldn't be that hard to figure out which breaker controlls what. It is easier with a helper (and a set of walkie-talkies, or cell phones for communication). Just turn them off one at a time, and see what stops working. Test *every* light and outlet this way (having an outlet tester is useful here). You may find that one outlet is on a breaker by itself - or that a single outlet out on it's own is on a seemingly unrelated circuit (ex: in my house, the outlets along the whole front wall are on the same circuit, even though they are in different rooms).
In most US breaker boxes, the phases are divided by horizontal row (assuming your breaker box is set up such that it is taller than it is wide, and that the breakers flip left/right). Each row is on an alternating phase - so that double-pole breakers (that connect across both phases to provide 220v power) connect to both phases. If you have multiple panels, it may be harder to determine which phases line up between them. If the panels are on different utility feeds (instead of being sub-panels off a main one), they might not bridge until they go back to the utility transformer.
When I installed my XTB-IIR booster a decade ago (I bought it from Jeff Volp), I decided to add a dedicated double-pole breaker for it, and I also took the opportunity to add a split-wired standard outlet on that circuit (top half on one phase, bottom half on the other), to aid in future testing. The box with that outlet (and the 220V one that the booster plugs into) is located right next to my breaker box - thereby giving the shortest signal path from the booster into both phases. This is the ideal place for a coupler or booster.
There may be a limit to how much you can figure out on your own - and you might need to have an electrician (or a friend who knows what they are doing and is comfortable with electrical work) come in and open up your breaker boxes - to complete the mapping (after you figure out what each breaker controls).
Logged
Pages: 1 [2] 3
 

X10.com | About X10 | X10 Security Systems | Cameras| Package Deals
© Copyright 2014-2016 X10.com All rights reserved.