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ZigBee plugin wall router


bsanf3

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Digi International introduced the XBee wall router, a ZigBee router used to expand a ZigBee network's range.

http://www.digi.com/products/wirele...wall-router.jsp.

I haven't run across ZigBee range problems, but this might be of some help to others.

Byron

I think the URL got truncated, here's the correct one (I think)

http://www.digi.com/products/wireless/zigbee-mesh/xbee-wall-router.jsp

I have a detached garage where the Zigbee connections seem problematic, my question is how would something like this fix it? Is it both a more powerful transmitter AND a better receiver, such that the HTC can send a signal out and this will receive it in the garage and immediately repeat it to the local light switches?

If so, anyone know here they can be purchased? The online store at the above website does not seem to carry this item.

Also, is there any special configuration that would need to be done or are Zigbee signals standard enough that a device like this would probably just listen for ANY zigbee signal and then repeat that signal?

What I'd really like is a Control4 module that would send out Zigbee instructions over ethernet to a remote device that would plug into ethernet and convert to Zigbee. Imagine, you could then extend Zigbee range over the internet!! You could control remote locations as easily as running Cat6 or creating a secure tunnel.

Thanks for the lead bsanf3!

--Jason

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Anytime we've had problems with Zigbee range we've sold clients the Card Access InHome Wireless Contact Switch (http://www.cardaccess-inc.com/inhomeproducts/index.php?a=wcs_ext) - it's cheap - and even though it's a contact switch (or for $20 more you can get the same thing but as a relay switch) - we're only using it as a Zigbee Extender. Great product and really blasts the entire area with great Zigbee coverage.

FYI - Zigbee v1.1 will all for more than Zigbee server in a project (thus you could take all the HTC's in a project and turn them all into Zigbee servers if they're spaced throughout the house).

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Anytime we've had problems with Zigbee range we've sold clients the Card Access InHome Wireless Contact Switch (http://www.cardaccess-inc.com/inhomeproducts/index.php?a=wcs_ext) - it's cheap - and even though it's a contact switch (or for $20 more you can get the same thing but as a relay switch) - we're only using it as a Zigbee Extender. Great product and really blasts the entire area with great Zigbee coverage.

FYI - Zigbee v1.1 will all for more than Zigbee server in a project (thus you could take all the HTC's in a project and turn them all into Zigbee servers if they're spaced throughout the house).

Thanks, Shawn. So would this do what I was referring to above -- receive a weak (distant) Zigbee signal and just blast it back out at a stronger level (because of closer proximity)? It mentioned on the webpage that it's a Zigbee repeater when running on DC power . . . is the DC adapter an accessory? Or does it come with?

Are there any options at this point for doing the same thing via ethernet?

I have one HTC and one HC-300 but they are both located in a server closet in the basement. It's great from an organization and video distribution perspective, but I think it has hurt our zigbee performance. I would move one of them but they are both being used fully for IR control, and all the components are there in the closet as well, so I really would need some additional zigbee broadcasting ability I think.

--Jason

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The contact switch it does NOT come with the DC (and yes - you need it, if you don't already have one) - the relay extender, it DOES come with (so maybe spend the extra $20 to get it with it - ie: all in one, but they do sell the DC adapter separatly or you can buy one just about from anywhere). The antenna is omni directional - so you just set it up and let it go (I usually put it central in a house - say 1st floor middle in a basement, 1st, 2nd type configuration (where the racks are in the basement).

Zigbee, being very slow - I don't really see going over Ethernet ever - other than once it's received by a Zigbee Server - it can than relay that to other nodes etc... but at the cost of what an Ethernet jack takes to run (I mean we charge around $125 per drop certified, not to mention you still need a switch at additional costs) - it's much much cheaper to just in a Zigbee repeater.

As I mentioned before Jason, your setup is EXACTLY what we do all the time! Put one of these bad boys in and you should be great! If you want - buy two and you can use the second one as a "tester" and walk around your house and see if you have a strong, ok, or poor quality (or use the first one and get a better idea of what you have - but after you plug it in - you won't see how it's changed). We keep an extra one of these guys on the truck ALL the time just to test for dead zones etc... but once we place one of these bad boys in - it usually works GREAT (300 ft boost in all directions with the external antenna model).

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 year later...
Hi Dan

Any idea when we could expect HDK?

Regards

Cor

Zigbee Pro still isn't out yet at this time, we haven't been given a release date for it yet, so no HDK at this point/one the timeline either. Control4 doesnt typically pre-announce...

All this should be confirmed or denied by Hand Waving and Jedi Mind Tricks from The Great RyanE.

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Worked with different Zigbee Pro stacks (Jennic, Meshnetics, Ember). The stacks are not 100% compatible as promised. You have to get out the Zigbee Network Analyzer (from Daintree for example, maybe InSight desktop will help if you have InSight Adaptors) and analyze the communication. Best to stick with Ember for now and wait for HDK...

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  • 2 weeks later...

My install was trying to add a new light switch to my system remotely. The controller was not picking it up. The switch is about 50' from the controller (HC-300), but only 20 feet from 3 switches that works fine. He told me we may need to install an extender. That Control4 makes a device I can plug in and it will boost my system giving me a range of about 300 feet. Does anyone know of this device?

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If he's talking a *Control4* plug-in device, he's probably referring to an Outlet Switch or Outlet Dimmer, which is basically a plug-in Lamp Module, which could help your Zigbee mesh as well as allow you to control 2 switch plugs or dimmer plugs, depending on which device it is.

Otherwise, you could use one of the plug-in Card Access devices with an external Zigbee Antenna. Those (from what I've heard) do increase Zigbee range quite a bit.

RyanE

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  • 3 weeks later...

Ryan is correct with the improvement of mesh and range extension with the addition of the Card Access product. The problem with them are that you have to use an external PSU and in the majority of homes this does not really match the decor of the house.

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