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max.spicer
2005-11-07, 13:22
A friend is building me a power supply for a new amp that has no ir capability. I'd like to be able to turn on the amp via the squeezebox, so this is going to be a part of the ps design. Given that it's a custom device, we can be fairly flexible so I'm wondering what my options are at the squeezebox end. As far as I know, we have the following options atm (in descending order of preference):

1) The yet to be finished geekport
2) Hack the current ir output to trigger the ps
*** Huge gap between above and below in terms of preference! **
3) Detect the signal level on the audio outs (a la some powered speakers) - not too good as don't really want a connection between audio outs and ps
4) Monitor the digital out(??)

Of the above, the geek port would obviously be the best. Is there any further information about when this is likely to be done? Is there anything that my mate and I can do to help? Is there any information that we could use in the design of the ps to make sure that we could use the geek port when it does become available? Specifically, is there power available or is it just a data output? Is there any known pin out?

I've done quite a bit of searching on this, but have only been able to find out the following so far:
"It's a CMOS switch 74HC4066 - sort of like a "low current solid state relay". Allows the headphone function to be changed to data port by disabling the headphone amp and passing bidirectional data signals through. None of its pins are floating." (http://forums.slimdevices.com/showpost.php?p=38431&postcount=2)

Thanks,

Max

PS I don't do electronics! My mate, however, very much does!

Jeff Coffler
2005-11-07, 14:04
Hi folks,

From: "max.spicer" <max.spicer.1y58fn (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com>

> A friend is building me a power supply for a new amp that has no ir
> capability. I'd like to be able to turn on the amp via the squeezebox,
> so this is going to be a part of the ps design. Given that it's a
> custom device, we can be fairly flexible so I'm wondering what my
> options are at the squeezebox end. As far as I know, we have the
> following options atm (in descending order of preference):
>
> 1) The yet to be finished geekport
> 2) Hack the current ir output to trigger the ps
.....

For what it's worth, I would just *LOVE* to have some sort of a trigger
output from the geekport.

Sort of like:

If Squeezebox is ON, give me a closed dry contact, or a 9v output, or
whatever, from the geekport
If Squeezebox is OFF, give me an opened dry contact, or drop 9v output, or
whatever

I've heard that this sort of thing was being looked at, but I'm not aware of
it being done or not.

Thanks in advance,

-- Jeff

P.S. I have been contemplating using the upcoming async notification of the
CLI for this: If the CLI says the player turned on, use my automation system
to engage a dry contact. But this is more involved, and requires dragging
wire from the automation system to the Squeezebox for the dry contact. Much
easier to get this from the geekport ...

trash
2005-11-07, 14:10
I would like to see this as well, except maybe something a bit more generic (i.e some simple serial communication style like plain serial port data (8 bits, no parity, 1 stop bit), or I2C, or ???)

At least this way you can task the output of the geekport for what you need, rather than just burning the port for a simple on/off switch.

Heck, the data out of the geekport doesn't need to be fast. Anything in the 1200->9600 baud range would be fast enough for turning on switches/led's

Trash

lostboy
2005-11-07, 15:28
I use the xpl support in slimserver to send messages indicating squeezebox status (on or off) to an xpl manager app on my server (same box as slimserver). This sends X10 commands through the mains to an X10 switch connected to the amp's power. All the hardware is available retail and plugs in. The xpl apps are open source and need very simple scripting to set up the signal-response behaviour required. I've found this reliable, the amp switches within a second of the SB changing state.

Chris

max.spicer
2005-11-07, 15:29
What sort of price range are you talking here? How much do the switches and transmitters cost?

Max


I use the xpl support in slimserver to send messages indicating squeezebox status (on or off) to an xpl manager app on my server (same box as slimserver). This sends X10 commands through the mains to an X10 switch connected to the amp's power. All the hardware is available retail and plugs in. The xpl apps are open source and need very simple scripting to set up the signal-response behaviour required. I've found this reliable, the amp switches within a second of the SB changing state.

Chris

radish
2005-11-07, 15:51
What sort of price range are you talking here? How much do the switches and transmitters cost?

Max

Basic plugin X10 switchable outlets can be had for $10-15 (at least that's what I paid). Standalone switches (e.g. light switches) are a similar price, the computer based controllers were more like $100 last time I looked.

lostboy
2005-11-07, 15:54
Max,

As a minimum you'll need

a) a computer to x10 mains interface - CM12U - £45

b) a mains switch for each amp - plug device is AM12U - £18 ea

prices above from www.laser.com - links to other suppliers at www.automatedhome.co.uk

xpl downloads and info from www.xplproject.org.uk [including some CLID apps which you could integrate through xpl to display on your SBs, PCs and Tivos all at the same time :-)]

Chris

Jeff Coffler
2005-11-07, 17:20
From: "trash" <trash.1y5aqz (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com>

> I would like to see this as well, except maybe something a bit more
> generic (i.e some simple serial communication style like plain serial
> port data (8 bits, no parity, 1 stop bit), or I2C, or ???)

I'm not convinced that this makes a whole lotta sense. Realistically, if
you're doing RS-232 output, you'll want to go to some sort of a computer (be
it a "special purpose" computer - i.e. home automation controller, or a PC,
or whatever).

If you're doing this, then you mind as well just grab what you need via
SlimServer's CLI, which is VERY rich. Indeed, I control my Squeezeboxes via
the CLI with a very rich interface. See this:

http://sourceforge.net/project/screenshots.php?group_id=62827

for a screenshot.

I'm after something much simplier. I want *LOCAL* control (no computer) to
turn on an amp or something. I'm not picky about what I get, as long as
it's simple. If you give me an RS-232 port, that's pointless (I mind as
well just supply a dry contact via my home automation system), as I'd need
some sort of processor to interpret it.

Lots of amps have trigger inputs to turn on. That's all I'm after here.

-- Jeff

pfarrell
2005-11-07, 17:24
On Mon, 2005-11-07 at 16:20 -0800, Jeff Coffler wrote:

> I'm after something much simplier. I want *LOCAL* control (no computer) to
> turn on an amp or something. I'm not picky about what I get, as long as
> it's simple. If you give me an RS-232 port, that's pointless (I mind as
> well just supply a dry contact via my home automation system), as I'd need
> some sort of processor to interpret it.
>
> Lots of amps have trigger inputs to turn on. That's all I'm after here.

Most of these are just 5V, very low current sensors, which control some
real or solid state relay to fire up the 50 amp currents feeding the
amp.

Seems nearly trivial for a geekport hack.
Of course, I'm a software guy, don't let me near a soldering iron.



--
Pat
http://www.pfarrell.com/music/slimserver/slimsoftware.html

max.spicer
2005-11-08, 02:49
Sadly this is way beyond my budget. The power supply is designed to be a cheap alternative to a cheap plug in to the wall device i.e. around £20-£30.

Any comments on the geek port, Sean? Any hints at all as to what to design for would be appreciated!

Max


Max,

As a minimum you'll need

a) a computer to x10 mains interface - CM12U - £45

b) a mains switch for each amp - plug device is AM12U - £18 ea

prices above from www.laser.com - links to other suppliers at www.automatedhome.co.uk

xpl downloads and info from www.xplproject.org.uk [including some CLID apps which you could integrate through xpl to display on your SBs, PCs and Tivos all at the same time :-)]

Chris

cliveb
2005-11-08, 03:35
Sadly this is way beyond my budget. The power supply is designed to be a cheap alternative to a cheap plug in to the wall device i.e. around £20-£30.
I too was eagerly waiting for the geekport to enable me to toggle power to my power amps, but gave up waiting. In the end, I lashed up a solution using a configurable IR detector. (Taught it to respond to the SLEEP button on the SB remote - which I wasn't using and seemed appropriate for the purpose).

You're in the UK, right? So am I, and the simplest configurable IR device I could find was a lampholder (which can be disassembled quite easily with careful use of a craft knife). Maplin have them at £9.99, order code L17BB. Of course, being designed for a lamp, you can't use it as the direct feed for power amps - it's not rated for a high enough current. So you have to use the output of the IR detector to control a power relay. Maplin do a suitable one for £4.99, order code N24AW.

NigelMSB
2005-11-08, 05:06
In the end, I lashed up a solution using a configurable IR detector. (Taught it to respond to the SLEEP button on the SB remote - which I wasn't using and seemed appropriate for the purpose).

I've been half-looking for something like this but off-the-shelf (not really a DIY man). Like an IR version of a 240V mains timer switch. Ideally it'd take discreet on/off IR codes (rather than toggle) via the IR blasting support in SB2s. Of course, 5V from the geekport would be even better (less to go wrong, etc.).

gonk
2005-11-08, 06:06
I have earlier looked for a remote power off to my hidden amplifier. I think the simplest solution would be to turn off the digital outputs when SB is turned off. It is a very simple task to build a circuit that detects when the digital outputs are disabled.

My recomendation is to vote for this bug:

http://bugs.slimdevices.com/show_bug.cgi?id=1397

cliveb
2005-11-08, 06:07
I've been half-looking for something like this but off-the-shelf (not really a DIY man). Like an IR version of a 240V mains timer switch. Ideally it'd take discreet on/off IR codes (rather than toggle) via the IR blasting support in SB2s. Of course, 5V from the geekport would be even better (less to go wrong, etc.).
You can get remote controlled 13A sockets in various packages from Maplin (order codes L53BB, L55BB, L95AR, etc). They are radio rather than IR controlled, though, and the handsets look pretty clunky. But if you want something that'll work out of the box, they do the job.

I agree that a geekport signal is the neatest solution. How about it, Slim Devices? Any progress on the SB2/3 geekport?

NigelMSB
2005-11-08, 06:26
A follow-up. From what I can see, there's not much out there for non-X-10, ready-made, infra-red power switches. The closest I've found is this:

http://cbav.com/ac-powerswitch.htm

No good (for me) since it's for the USA market.

NigelMSB
2005-11-08, 06:33
I agree that a geekport signal is the neatest solution. How about it, Slim Devices? Any progress on the SB2/3 geekport?
Assuming the voltage trigger via the geekport gets implemented, anyone know of a non-X-10, ready-made, 240V adapter that takes a voltage trigger for it's relay? An an adapter would be better than a wall socket replacement (can move SB2+amplifier around the house, etc.).

In the mean time, here's the enhancement request to vote for/add comments to:
http://bugs.slimdevices.com/show_bug.cgi?id=2378

kolepard
2005-11-08, 07:28
> I have earlier looked for a remote power off to my hidden amplifier.

I have an add-on outlet that I found at Home Depot. It plugs in to the wall and then turns the power on and off using a small RF remote. I don't use it with my stereo, though I cannot think of a good reason not to do so. Something like that might work for you.

Kevin

trash
2005-11-08, 08:17
From: "trash" <trash.1y5aqz (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com>

> I would like to see this as well, except maybe something a bit more
> generic (i.e some simple serial communication style like plain serial
> port data (8 bits, no parity, 1 stop bit), or I2C, or ???)

I'm not convinced that this makes a whole lotta sense. Realistically, if
you're doing RS-232 output, you'll want to go to some sort of a computer (be
it a "special purpose" computer - i.e. home automation controller, or a PC,
or whatever).

If you're doing this, then you mind as well just grab what you need via
SlimServer's CLI, which is VERY rich. Indeed, I control my Squeezeboxes via
the CLI with a very rich interface. See this:

http://sourceforge.net/project/screenshots.php?group_id=62827

for a screenshot.

I'm after something much simplier. I want *LOCAL* control (no computer) to
turn on an amp or something. I'm not picky about what I get, as long as
it's simple. If you give me an RS-232 port, that's pointless (I mind as
well just supply a dry contact via my home automation system), as I'd need
some sort of processor to interpret it.

Lots of amps have trigger inputs to turn on. That's all I'm after here.

-- Jeff


This is in fact a great way of doing it. You don't need a full blown computer. Any small microcontroller will be able to handle the serial input and react in a certain way. Over here in Canada anyways, some PIC micros are less than $1 each! And they are so low power that it could probably run off the headphone jack (i.e in a stereo headphone jack, the left could be the serial signal, and the right could be constant on at max volume which, if I understand, would be around + 3 volts.)

Trash

abdomen
2005-11-08, 08:42
> I have earlier looked for a remote power off to my hidden amplifier.

I have an add-on outlet that I found at Home Depot. It plugs in to the wall and then turns the power on and off using a small RF remote. I don't use it with my stereo, though I cannot think of a good reason not to do so. Something like that might work for you.

Kevin
RF, not IR? In either case, I can't seem to locate the product online; could you supply a link or more terms to search on?

kolepard
2005-11-08, 08:59
>kolepard Wrote:
>> > I have earlier looked for a remote power off to my hidden amplifier.
>>
>> I have an add-on outlet that I found at Home Depot. It plugs in to the
>> wall and then turns the power on and off using a small RF remote. I
>> don't use it with my stereo, though I cannot think of a good reason not
>> to do so. Something like that might work for you.
>>
>> Kevin



>RF, not IR? In either case, I can't seem to locate the product online;
>could you supply a link or more terms to search on?

Yep, RF.

The only useful thing I can find on the box is "Appliance Control Device"
Model Number RC001. The model number on the remote is TR-001. There
isn't even a manufacturer listed on either piece. Sorry I can't be
more specific.

Kevin
--
Kevin O. Lepard
kolepard (AT) charter (DOT) net

Happiness is being 100% Microsoft free.

abdomen
2005-11-08, 10:06
Yep, RF.

The only useful thing I can find on the box is "Appliance Control Device" Model Number RC001. The model number on the remote is TR-001. There isn't even a manufacturer listed on either piece. Sorry I can't be more specific.

Kevin

Thanks for the helpful response! I was hoping "RF" had been a typo; a cheap IR-controlled power outlet could be a practical solution given the existing ir blasting capability. If anybody knows of such a thing, I for one would be interested.

fcm4711
2005-11-09, 08:53
Hi all

Here is an idea to (mis-)use IR blaster output to trigger a relay.
One could code a plugin sending out an IR signal constantly while SB2/3 is turned on. A little logic (timer) hooked up to the IR blaster output detects the signal and turns the relay on for a couple of seconds. If more IR signals arrive within time the relay stays on. As soon as the SB2/3 is turned off no more IR signals are sent and thus the relay turns off some seconds later.

Felix

max.spicer
2005-11-09, 11:14
Can't I just turn on on the first signal that I receive and off on the 2nd (and so on)? The plugin would then just send a signal on power state changes. Are there any details on the outputs from the headphone jack in this mode?

Max


Hi all

Here is an idea to (mis-)use IR blaster output to trigger a relay.
One could code a plugin sending out an IR signal constantly while SB2/3 is turned on. A little logic (timer) hooked up to the IR blaster output detects the signal and turns the relay on for a couple of seconds. If more IR signals arrive within time the relay stays on. As soon as the SB2/3 is turned off no more IR signals are sent and thus the relay turns off some seconds later.

Felix

fcm4711
2005-11-09, 13:08
Hi Max

This should be possible with a 'special' IR file that only consists of one 'on' and 'one' off time (i.e. one bit). However the signal is always modulated with about 38kHz which means on the output you get a couple of pulses.
The other problem you get with this approach is that SB and amp can get out of sync since you don't know if it's a 'power on' or a 'power off' IR signal unless you also decode the signal.

Felix

cooperised
2005-11-10, 07:32
Hi,

I'm the friend of Max's who'll be building the PSU for his new amp. I thought I'd post my thoughts so far, having read through the options.

Ideally, of course, the amp power should cycle with the squeezebox power, instantly and transparently - just as if the squeezebox contained a power amp of its own. Solutions involving another remote, or even an unused button on the SB remote, just don't satisfy my sense of neatness I'm afraid. ;-) The X10 route, though neat, is expensive; it's also overkill for such a simple application IMHO.

In the absence of a geekport, I think I'll end up going down the IR blaster route, with different codes for switch on and switch off - I don't mind doing a bit of decoding, for example on a cheap PIC (the 6-pin 10F200 is 55 pence here in the UK).

Can anyone tell me more about the IR blaster? How easy is it to send custom codes at custom baudrates? And how much of its functionality is in firmware? For example, it would be useful to disable the 38KHz carrier, since I'll probably just hardwire the IR blaster output into the PSU. Is this possible?

For anyone who's interested, I'll be using an optoisolator and a triac to switch the mains supply to the PSU (it's a cheap, small and silent solution). The same trick would work for any mains-powered device, so I'll try to make the schematics available once it's built.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Andy

fcm4711
2005-11-10, 16:12
Hi Andy


Can anyone tell me more about the IR blaster? How easy is it to send custom codes at custom baudrates? And how much of its functionality is in firmware? For example, it would be useful to disable the 38KHz carrier, since I'll probably just hardwire the IR blaster output into the PSU. Is this possible?


IR Blaster works like this: For each bit in an IR command the plugin sends a high/low time value (in microseconds/modulation) which tell the firmware to send for hightime and wait for lowtime. The firmware also applies the carrier during the hightime.

But there is a mode for remotes that do not use a carrier. The format is called ITT and consists of 20uS hightime and multiple of 20uS lowtime.

To tell the firmware to send such an ITT impuls the hightime needs to be set to 1 and the lowtime can be set as needed. The result is a 20uS hightime (fixed) and the specified amount of lowtime.

So it would be possible to send two different patterns for 'power on' and 'power off'.

Power On: hightime(20uS), lowtime(10*20uS), hightime(20uS), lowtime(10*20uS)
Power Off: hightime(20uS), lowtime(20*20uS), hightime(20uS), lowtime(20*20uS)



begin remote
name ampswitch
bits 2
flags ITT

one 1 10
zero 1 20

begin codes
power_on 0x03
power_off 0x00
end codes

end remote


Felix

cooperised
2005-11-11, 01:34
Hi Andy
But there is a mode for remotes that do not use a carrier. The format is called ITT and consists of 20uS hightime and multiple of 20uS lowtime.

To tell the firmware to send such an ITT impuls the hightime needs to be set to 1 and the lowtime can be set as needed. The result is a 20uS hightime (fixed) and the specified amount of lowtime.

So it would be possible to send two different patterns for 'power on' and 'power off'.


Thanks Felix. So how much does the firmware care about sticking to the ITT standard? Could I write something like


begin remote
name ampswitch
bits 8
flags ITT

one 10 0
zero 0 10

begin codes
power_on 0x55
power_off 0x88
end codes

end remote

to send straight binary? Assuming 10-bit codes are ok, this could even be extended to add start/stop bits and send RS232-compatible codes. Would it work?

Andy

fcm4711
2005-11-11, 04:16
Hi Andy

Unfortunately not. The IR code in the firmware is implemented as a ring buffer of 50 32bit values. Each consisting of 16bit for high- and 16bit for lowtime. There is a 'process' checking this ringbuffer and sending out the IR bits (32bit values) accordingly.

Each IR bit is sent in one of three modes: high-low w/ carrier, low-high w/ carrier or high-low w/o carrier.

The modes are triggered like this:
high-low w/o carrier (ITT): hightime = 1, lowtime = variable
low-high w/ carrier (RC5): hightime = variable, lowtime = 0
high-low w/ carrier (NEC): hightime != 1, lowtime != 0

So for ITT mode the hightime always needs to be set to one. The firmware then set the IR Blaster output to high for about 20uS followed by the lowtime where the output is set low.

Felix

lostboy
2005-11-12, 04:35
This follows up on abdomen's suggestion that a basic IR controlled mains switch would be the simplest way of doing this - at least for those of us who are not gifted with either the time or the skills to go cooperised's route (and sadly I have neither).

After a little searching I found a velleman project kit (some simple assembly required!) which offers an IR controlled 240V 5A relay. It is the K6713 available from CPC in the UK for £20 here http://cpc.farnell.com/jsp/endecaSearch/partDetail.jsp?SKU=HK00755&N=411 (you may have to click on this link twice to get the right page) and info here http://www.velleman.be/common/product.Aspx?lan=1&id=9356 .

The next problem would be how to get the right IR code output from the IR blaster. There is a pronto ccf for the velleman IR codes from remotecentral.com, but I don't know how you could put these codes into the plugin.

Chris

abdomen
2005-11-13, 13:44
This follows up on abdomen's suggestion that a basic IR controlled mains switch would be the simplest way of doing this - at least for those of us who are not gifted with either the time or the skills to go cooperised's route (and sadly I have neither).

After a little searching I found a velleman project kit (some simple assembly required!) which offers an IR controlled 240V 5A relay. It is the K6713 available from CPC in the UK for £20 here http://cpc.farnell.com/jsp/endecaSearch/partDetail.jsp?SKU=HK00755&N=411 (you may have to click on this link twice to get the right page) and info here http://www.velleman.be/common/product.Aspx?lan=1&id=9356 .

The next problem would be how to get the right IR code output from the IR blaster. There is a pronto ccf for the velleman IR codes from remotecentral.com, but I don't know how you could put these codes into the plugin.

Chris
Thanks for the research. I am in the U.S., but at least I now know such a product is out there.

lostboy
2005-11-13, 14:58
Try www.vellemanusa.com - and the same part no.

Chris

fcm4711
2005-11-14, 03:27
Hi Chris,

I had a look at the pronto ccf file as I hoped it would give me the on- and offtimes needed to put together a lirc.org file, but unfortunately it's in pronto's internal format and not man readable.

Felix


There is a pronto ccf for the velleman IR codes from remotecentral.com, but I don't know how you could put these codes into the plugin.

Chris

lostboy
2005-11-14, 12:12
Thanks Felix, I had a good search for CCF to LIRC conversion/translation etc., but haven't found anyone claiming to have found a way to do this.

If ever you need the info in the future there is a good explanation of the pronto CCF hex format here http://www.remotecentral.com/features/irdisp1.htm - but please don't spend any more of your time on the velleman diversion as I don't think we've any willing guinea pigs yet.

However, if you're thinking of developing the IR plugin to load CCF codes as well as LIRC then of course I wouldn't stand in your way :-)

Many thanks for the plugin - I'm looking forward to using it when I get some more SBs.

Chris

cooperised
2005-11-18, 08:49
Hi there,

I've just about sorted Max's PSU, and will post schematics when it's done. Two final questions:

1) What's the pinout of the headphone jack in IR blaster mode? Is power available there?

2) Does the squeezebox transmit true ITT, with a start pulse, end pulse and 300uS lead-in/lead-out waits? (see http://www.xs4all.nl/~sbp/knowledge/ir/itt.htm.) I'm expecting the answer 'yes' because the squeezebox seems to do most other things right :-)

Thanks
Andy

fcm4711
2005-11-18, 12:01
Hi Andy



1) What's the pinout of the headphone jack in IR blaster mode? Is power available there?


If you look at a regular stereo-jack the tip (left channel) is IR Blaster out, the next ring (right channel) is unused and GND follows.
ASAIK there is no power, but Sean can give you a definitv answer on this.



2) Does the squeezebox transmit true ITT, with a start pulse, end pulse and 300uS lead-in/lead-out waits? (see http://www.xs4all.nl/~sbp/knowledge/ir/itt.htm.) I'm expecting the answer 'yes' because the squeezebox seems to do most other things right :-)


The answer is 'yes'. Actually it's dependent of the conf file. Firmware only takes high/low pairs of times and turns the output on and off accordingly. The format (header,code,trail,footer etc.) are put together in the plugin. So if you define a 'header', 'trail' and 'footer' in the conf file you get true ITT.

Felix

max.spicer
2005-11-19, 03:23
Sean, any chance you could weigh in here?

Max


If you look at a regular stereo-jack the tip (left channel) is IR Blaster out, the next ring (right channel) is unused and GND follows.
ASAIK there is no power, but Sean can give you a definitv answer on this.

cooperised
2005-11-22, 03:54
OK, last question:

What form does the IR blaster output take, electrically? Is it a 5V logic-level output, or is it designed to drive an IR LED directly?

Cheers
Andy

fcm4711
2005-11-22, 08:43
Hi there

I doubt the IR emitter I am using consists of more than the cable and the IR LED. So, yes, the output is designed to drive an IR LED directly.
But again, Sean knows for sure.

Felix

BTW: I've written down some information about IR Blaster here: http://wiki.slimdevices.com/index.cgi?IRBlaster

max.spicer
2005-11-22, 14:53
Sean, are you reading this and keeping quiet or not reading this? Any ideas on how I could get Sean's attention without at the same time bugging him?

Max


Hi there

I doubt the IR emitter I am using consists of more than the cable and the IR LED. So, yes, the output is designed to drive an IR LED directly.
But again, Sean knows for sure.

Felix

BTW: I've written down some information about IR Blaster here: http://wiki.slimdevices.com/index.cgi?IRBlaster

dean
2005-11-23, 10:48
I'm not Sean, but I do have answer from him.

The IR blaster dongles are just infrared LEDs at the end of a long
cable and are available from a number of sources, including us:

<https://secure.slimdevices.com/order/upgrades.cgi>

The output is from a CMOS driver going through CMOS switch and so it
has a bit of inherent resistance and is current limited and will
drive the LED directly, but will also work as a logic level output.

max.spicer
2005-11-23, 10:57
Thanks Dean. Glad to hear you're not Sean - that would just be weird. ;-)

Max


I'm not Sean, but I do have answer from him.

The IR blaster dongles are just infrared LEDs at the end of a long
cable and are available from a number of sources, including us:

<https://secure.slimdevices.com/order/upgrades.cgi>

The output is from a CMOS driver going through CMOS switch and so it
has a bit of inherent resistance and is current limited and will
drive the LED directly, but will also work as a logic level output.

Duman
2005-11-23, 13:13
I'd love to buy my IR blaster from Slim Devices, but UPS Ground is $11.17 to Connecticut (the Blaster costs $7.00). Could this be a mistake in the shipping calculation? How about throwing it into a USPS Priority Mail envelope and shipping it for a few bucks so I can remain loyal to the cause?

fcm4711
2005-11-27, 07:25
Hi all

I found a way to switch an amplifier on and off without needing to decode the ir signal. :) Check it out here:

www(dot)gwendesign(dot)com/slimserver/dev_hard_and_software.htm#ampswitch

Technical background: The plugin switches between audio and blaster mode causing the right output of the headphone jack to be either low or floating. That can be used to drive a transistor which in turn drives a relay.

Cheers
Felix

Néstor
2005-11-27, 16:56
Hi all

I found a way to switch an amplifier on and off without needing to decode the ir signal. :) Check it out here:

www(dot)gwendesign(dot)com/slimserver/dev_hard_and_software.htm#ampswitch

Technical background: The plugin switches between audio and blaster mode causing the right output of the headphone jack to be either low or floating. That can be used to drive a transistor which in turn drives a relay.

Cheers
Felix

Hi Felix,

thats good news! Will try to get someone to build that for me :-)

One question , is it possible to build some circuit to accept inputs from two sources (lets say SB3 and a regular preamp) and output to the same amplifier, without hurting the "other source device" when you are using one of the sources? (ie, no current is allowed to go into SB3 when using the preamp as source)

Thanks!
Néstor

kolepard
2005-11-27, 17:44
I replied earlier about an RF controlled switch
that would turn the power on and off. There
wasn't much on the device itself (including a
manufacturer name). However, I saw another one
at Home Depot the last time I was there. It's
made by a company called "Commercial Electric"
and had product number 202-620 on it.

Kevin

>fcm4711 Wrote:
>> Hi all
>>
>> I found a way to switch an amplifier on and off without needing to
>> decode the ir signal. :) Check it out here:
>>
>> www(dot)gwendesign(dot)com/slimserver/dev_hard_and_software.htm#ampswitch
>>
>> Technical background: The plugin switches between audio and blaster
>> mode causing the right output of the headphone jack to be either low or
>> floating. That can be used to drive a transistor which in turn drives a
>> relay.
>>
>> Cheers
>> Felix
>
>Hi Felix,
>
>thats good news! Will try to get someone to build that for me :-)
>
>One question , is it possible to build some circuit to accept inputs
>from two sources (lets say SB3 and a regular preamp) and output to the
>same amplifier, without hurting the "other source device" when you are
>using one of the sources? (ie, no current is allowed to go into SB3
>when using the preamp as source)
>
>Thanks!
>NÈstor
>
>
>--
>NÈstor
>
>Whole album Flac files --> Squeezebox (3) --> direct to Outlaw 7100 amp
>using Slimserver Preamp Vol Control --> Monitor Audio S6i
>------------------------------------------------------------------------
>NÈstor's Profile: http://forums.slimdevices.com/member.php?userid=60
>View this thread: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=17974
>
>

seanadams
2005-11-27, 18:25
Hi all

I found a way to switch an amplifier on and off without needing to decode the ir signal. :) Check it out here:

www(dot)gwendesign(dot)com/slimserver/dev_hard_and_software.htm#ampswitch

Technical background: The plugin switches between audio and blaster mode causing the right output of the headphone jack to be either low or floating. That can be used to drive a transistor which in turn drives a relay.

Cheers
Felix

Nice!!!

Felix why do you spam-proof your URLs?

fcm4711
2005-11-28, 00:41
Nice!!!Thanks! :)


Felix why do you spam-proof your URLs?Just a habit. This way I am hoping to prevent some spam.

Felix

hhoover
2005-12-01, 18:12
Hi all

I found a way to switch an amplifier on and off without needing to decode the ir signal. :) Check it out here:

www(dot)gwendesign(dot)com/slimserver/dev_hard_and_software.htm#ampswitch

Technical background: The plugin switches between audio and blaster mode causing the right output of the headphone jack to be either low or floating. That can be used to drive a transistor which in turn drives a relay.

Cheers
Felix

I have a friend who wants this or the equivalent, and I'm "consulting" on the design and construction. The circuit, as shown, is pretty simple, but I think it could be simpler yet, BUT I need more info.
If the circuit was designed to drive an IR emitter, then it should also be able to drive an appropriate SSR (solid state relay / optoisolated) since the input to those is an LED too - 1.2V, 8ma. However - I don't know, and can't find any information about what the load limit is for the driver. Would such a load be a problem since it would be on full-time while the squeezebox outputs are on? An IR output is MUCH more intermittent.
There would also likely need to be a change in the IRBlaster software to drive a full-time ON state, rather than just enabling the ground-sink.

TIA

Hugh

fcm4711
2005-12-06, 15:23
Hi Hugh

The output should be strong enough to do that. There is an internal resistance of about 50R (from the analog switch HC4066) but that should not impose a problem. I also do not see a problem having the output turned on all the time while SB is on.

But right now (as of current firmware revision 28) there is no way to turn on the output permanently. A change in firmware is needed to achieve that.

Felix

hhoover
2005-12-08, 22:27
Hi Hugh

The output should be strong enough to do that. There is an internal resistance of about 50R (from the analog switch HC4066) but that should not impose a problem. I also do not see a problem having the output turned on all the time while SB is on.

But right now (as of current firmware revision 28) there is no way to turn on the output permanently. A change in firmware is needed to achieve that.

Felix

Thanks for the info!

The firmware change is a bummer... Hopefully that will get done, eventually. There's a pretty big difference in parts count and complexity between the circuit shown at gwendesign(dot)com (which requires a small regulated power supply in addition) and just using a solid-state relay.

fcm4711
2005-12-09, 05:00
Hi Hugh

You could open up your SB and add the circuit inside so you wouldn't need an additional power supply. Or at least get power from inside your SB.

Felix

Jeff
2005-12-09, 08:15
You could open up your SB and add the circuit inside so you wouldn't need an additional power supply. Or at least get power from inside your SB.

Felix

Fair suggestion, but I really hesitate to do this (Hugh's a friend and is looking at this for me).

First, I have several Squeezeboxes, and would like to be able to use any unit anywhere. (Only some require this; those that are hooked up directly to A/V systems don't need this.)

Second, this would almost certainly void any warentee from Slim Devices. They may not necessarily mind having folks open things up to check seating, perhaps swap a display. But modify the circuitry? Hard to imagine continuing hardware support in that situation ...

What I'd really like is some sort of "dry contact" type closure. If the unit is "on", allow me to sense that via continuity across two pins. If the unit is "off", continuity is lost. If I had that, I could use a standard Power Controller (relay based power), and be done with it. No circuitry required beyond what I've already got (commercially available).

jhwilliams
2005-12-16, 00:37
I have a friend who wants this or the equivalent, and I'm "consulting" on the design and construction. The circuit, as shown, is pretty simple, but I think it could be simpler yet, BUT I need more info.
If the circuit was designed to drive an IR emitter, then it should also be able to drive an appropriate SSR (solid state relay / optoisolated) since the input to those is an LED too - 1.2V, 8ma.

Hi Hugh - how much further did you get with this.

I couldn't find a reliable component that would switch mains (240v here) from 5v. The nearest I got was a solid state device that could switch 230v/3A.

I also considered modifying a "USB Powerboard" - essentially a power board that switches on when it detects a USB signal (+5v). They must be using a similar component because it was 3A also.

So my current design has the 3A solid state device switching a mains relay (which can do 10A). I'll probably buy a cheap digital timer switch and modify that for the 10A portion.

Anyone else experimenting with this design?

p.s. Thanks for the clever idea Felix!

hhoover
2005-12-19, 23:53
Hi Hugh - how much further did you get with this.

I couldn't find a reliable component that would switch mains (240v here) from 5v. The nearest I got was a solid state device that could switch 230v/3A.


The specific part I was looking at was for US mains power (120V/8A) - Sharp S102S01 - see http://rocky.digikey.com/WebLib/Sharp/Web%20Data/s102s01.pdf
The S202S01 should work just fine for 230V EU mains.

At this point, though, we've determined that the speakers / amplifiers in question (the ones that would be switched) consume about 140ma continuously - whether producing sound or not. That level of consumption converts to about $6.25 (~5.20 euros) per YEAR in excess power cost. So - any solution has to be REALLY low cost to pay off in any reasonable time...

Felix's idea, while pragmatic, just grates against my elegance-meter... It would certainly not be useful for a commercial solution. I just wouldn't really consider it unless it were my own hardware (which is NOT the case here).

Mark Lanctot
2005-12-20, 07:07
I couldn't find a reliable component that would switch mains (240v here) from 5v. The nearest I got was a solid state device that could switch 230v/3A.

Did you take a look at Omron's G3NA series? See http://dkc3.digikey.com/PDF/T053/1395-1397.pdf

Every model has a variant that can use 5V as a trigger, switched voltages are 264 VAC or more, currents are 5A all the way up to 90A.

Note: for higher currents you need a heatsink.

Digi-Key has a UK webfront, so it should be readily available, at least in the UK.

jhwilliams
2005-12-20, 19:28
Did you take a look at Omron's G3NA series? See http://dkc3.digikey.com/PDF/T053/1395-1397.pdf

Every model has a variant that can use 5V as a trigger, switched voltages are 264 VAC or more, currents are 5A all the way up to 90A.

Note: for higher currents you need a heatsink.

Digi-Key has a UK webfront, so it should be readily available, at least in the UK.

Looks Perfect.

I'm in Australia, but same principle applies :)

Thanks for the link.

seanadams
2005-12-20, 19:47
Note the geekport output is 3.3V, not 5.

There's a chance it might still trigger a 5v solid-state relay, but don't count on it.

Claus-DK
2005-12-25, 17:26
But right now (as of current firmware revision 28) there is no way to turn on the output permanently. A change in firmware is needed to achieve that.

Felix

Anyone with knowledge on the status of this? Will this be possible in future firmware?

Regards
Claus

Mark Lanctot
2006-01-03, 14:02
Note the geekport output is 3.3V, not 5.

There's a chance it might still trigger a 5v solid-state relay, but don't count on it.

Going back to this post, a few of the Omron G3Ns I mentioned will trigger at 4V.

Awfully close...but as Sean states, no guarantees.

morrison12
2006-01-08, 13:53
Note the geekport output is 3.3V, not 5.

There's a chance it might still trigger a 5v solid-state relay, but don't count on it.

Related to this, I'm assuming something akin to an IR Linc (see [1]) should be used to connect the output of a Squeezebox to the (the IR input of) a Xantech system (e.g. a 789-44 connecting block)with the Xantech system use of 12V ? Unless one uses an emitter on top of a receiver ?

Is this the case ?

Thanks,
James
[1]http://www.smarthome.com/8175.html

NigelMSB
2006-02-14, 11:07
Just found this - a IR-controlled mains power socket that looks like it's for UK/240V:

http://www.possum.co.uk/hc603c.htm

I've emailed then to ask about UK availability and pricing, plus details of the IR protocol used.

oktup
2006-02-15, 05:05
You could try a oneclick power strip - http://www.oneclickpower.co.uk/home.htm - it has one 'master' outlet which controls power to all the others, depending on whether the 'master' is on or off. So turning off (on) the squeezebox would cut (allow) power to the amp. I have one (for other purposes) and it's great. The only issue would be whether the Squeezebox draws enough juice for the oneclick to differentiate between when it's on and in standby, if you see what I mean... if you can wait a week or two til I get my SB3, I'll try it for you ;)

John Lewis sell them, I think £15-20 or something.

NigelMSB
2006-02-16, 11:44
Just found this - a IR-controlled mains power socket that looks like it's for UK/240V:

http://www.possum.co.uk/hc603c.htm
I've emailed then to ask about UK availability and pricing, plus details of the IR protocol used.

They're £161.00 plus £10.00 postage and packing (both excluding VAT). They didn't send any information on the IR protocol used but at that price I'll not bother asking again for that.

The search continues...

cliveb
2006-02-19, 09:00
They're £161.00 plus £10.00 postage and packing (both excluding VAT).
161 quid??!!! What planet are they on???

Try Maplins, order code L55BB. 15 quid. (They are radio (433MHz) rather than IR if that's important).

NigelMSB
2006-02-19, 09:42
161 quid??!!! What planet are they on???

Try Maplins, order code L55BB. 15 quid. (They are radio (433MHz) rather than IR if that's important).
For me, it needs to be IR to tie in with the IR Blaster plugin (for on-off with a SB2). An RF switch and remote would be okay but since the amplifier is just beyond the end of the bed I can always reach forward and turn it off myself. I'm looking for the geek solution - one remote and no reaching forward (something like the Farside cartoon about the perfect vine).