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SimpleRF and WGL800USB question

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  • SimpleRF and WGL800USB question

    I am trying to use a WGL800 with Simple RF. The Plug In has triggers for X10 signals. I also am using a CM11 with my HS3 installation. Is it needed to create separate triggers in the SimpleRF plugin or can I just use traditional events with X10 code received?

    Also my range using the WGL800 is no better then the standard X10 RF receiver modules. I placed the antenna on top of a bookshelf and have experimented moving it and the receiver away from all electronics. No change. Basically I get no reception even from the next room.

    I am using X10 wall switches as my remote transmitters. Any thoughts. I am stumped.

    Bob Silver

  • #2
    Re reception: I have an antenna in my attic. Reception wasn't great so I tried adding a VHF/UHF TV amplifier from Radio Shack. It improved reception 100 fold. I have one DS10 Door sensor outside in my garden shed, on the far side of the garage, 50 ft from the antenna. Flawless reception.
    Real courage is not securing your Wi-Fi network.


    • #3
      A receive RF system (Rx) is limited by the power of the transmitted (Tx) signal at the Rx antenna and the signal to noise ratio (snr) of the signal at the Rx antenna. You can decrease the gain required from the Tx by increasing the gain of the Rx antenna but If the snr isn't large enough then your Rx electronics cannot differentiate between noise and signal. Increasing the gain of the Rx antenna increases the signal and noise equally so it doesn't improve your reception if you are limited by snr.

      If your system is limited by snr then you have to increase the signal or decrease the noise at the Rx antenna. That is what you are trying to do when you move the Rx antenna around. The dipole antenna that comes with the WGL800 is practically omnidirectional. The two antennas (Rx and Tx) should be aligned and if possible, aligned perpendicular to an imaginary line drawn between them. If everything is on one floor you want the antennas to both be vertical. If the noise is primarily from the Tx electronics then there isn't much you can do, but that usually isn't the case. If it is coming from an interferer then moving the antenna location might help. There are other things you could try but I would need a little more information.

      What X10 wall switches are you referring to? Are you using X10 automation (310 MHz) only or X10 security (433 MHz) also? What other RF electronics do you have operating?


      • #4
        Thanks for the reply. I am using the standard x10 4 toggle button stick a switches. Range seems to be about 15-20 feet to the standard x10 from receivers I have. The wgl800 is less then those. They are all on same floor. Distance is the next room. Receiver sits in middle of the 2 rooms. I have tried moving both antenna and receiver about 8-10 feet from computer. There is also my wifi router in the room. I have had the antenna vertical about 5 feet off the floor.

        Thanks again.

        Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk


        • #5
          Under no circumstances should the reception of a RR501 or TM751 be better than a WGL800. I take that back I can think of one case but it probably isn't real. I design antennas for satellites and I have what I call Nolan's rule (I'm Mike Nolan) for these cases: if there is a problem in a test and there is a cable in the test the problem is in the cable. It works 90% of the time.

          Just to verify, the WGL800 does work at some distance from the transmitter? Check your coax between the WGL800 and the antenna and the antenna itself. Connections tight? Center conductors straight and inserted correctly? No kinks in the cable or cuts in the insulation? If you have excess cable don't coil it up near the antenna. Do the same checks for your serial or USB computer interface cable.


          • #6
            I used to have two of the W800 receivers but they both died after a few years. One worked fine at first, then it refused to receive anything so I bought a new one. It worked fine for a while and then started having a very limited range (like 10 feet). I replaced it with a cheap MR26A and the difference was amazing. I could reliably receive the motion sensor signals from the other end of the house. The W800 was aways iffy at that distance. I would recommend picking up a MR26A. They are cheap and work very well. You can also mod them by adding a metal antenna to increase the range, but the stock one worked for me just fine.


            • #7
              Well I have 2 wgl800usb receivers, antennas and coax cables. The eBay seller sent me a replacement when I notified him of my issue. Great seller. Unfortunately both systems perform the same. I tried changing receivers, cables and antennas. When in the same room they work. I can see the green light interact with the rf reception. Go out of the room a few feet and no.

              So could I have 2 bad receivers? Possible but unlikely. My stock x10 receivers work but I use 3 around my home for coverage. Was hoping to eliminate that clutter. The other advantage with the Wgl800 I saw was the speed. When it works really fast trigger action. The stock units have a delay of several seconds before the event runs.

              The primary reason for using these is the convenience of the x10 wall switches. If I could find another alternative I'd use that. I have not seen zwave or anything else that can provide the equivalent to these. At least not with out a hardwired solution.

              Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk


              • #8
                How long are the antennas?
                That got entered too soon. Edit:

                I used to have a WGL800 in the basement of a large 3 story townhouse. It had excellent reception from the third floor.
                The best dipole antenna should be a little less than 1/2 wavelength long. If you are only interested in the X10 automation frequencies of 310 MHz that would be a little less than 19 inches. I just checked the antennas for both the WGL800 and 572A that I have are 10 inches.
                Last edited by mikaluch; April 16th, 2016, 04:17 PM. Reason: fat fingers