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Paul Alciatore
09-17-2012, 02:39 PM
I have developed an electronic project kit for a universal, IR remote control RECEIVER that works with 99% of all existing TV/VCR/DVD/etc. remote controls. Before putting it up for sale on the web, I want to get some comments from actual users with various degrees of experience in electronic assembly. These volunteers should have a few basic electronic tools, including a suitable soldering iron or station with a small tip (1/8" or less). The kit does not have any surface mount components so assembly should be fairly easy. They will also need to have or have access to a regulated 5 Volt DC power supply to test it: wall warts will do. Although it is not normally included in the kit, I will provide a wired, mating connector for power connections and use of the logic outputs. They also must have sufficient free time to be able to assemble the kit and complete and return a questionnaire in a reasonable amount of time. I do not require that they answer all questions, just the ones they have comments on. An addressed and stamped envelope will be provided.

If you would like to volunteer, please respond to me via a private message with the following information: Name, e-mail address, degree of experience in electronic assembly (beginner, intermediate, or advanced/pro), and an agreement to assemble the kit and return the questionnaire withing a week to ten days after receiving it.

Paul A.
PAE

Mike Amick
09-17-2012, 03:13 PM
Hi .. Paul ..

Just curious .. but isn't there like .. an unbearable amount of competition for this product. I can
go to the drug store and buy an IR remote for 7 bucks that will work with most all tv's.

Paul Alciatore
09-17-2012, 04:47 PM
Mike,

OK, I goofed and left one word out of the original post, (receiver). Yes there are a lot of IR remote TRANSMITTERS out there. But this is an IR Receiver kit. That is the other end which is usually in the TV or VTR or DVD, etc. It allows you to use any of the IR remote transmitters for other devices, like opening your curtains or controlling an AC vent, turn your air compressor on while sitting at the mill, or whatever you want to control that does not normally have a remote built in. Some electric/electronic knowledge would be needed to interface it to such devices, but anybody who can assemble it can probably do that too.

I am correcting the original post.



Hi .. Paul ..

Just curious .. but isn't there like .. an unbearable amount of competition for this product. I can
go to the drug store and buy an IR remote for 7 bucks that will work with most all tv's.

Lew Hartswick
09-17-2012, 06:17 PM
Sounds like it would be fun, 15 years ago, before I retired, :-)
...lew...

Paul Alciatore
09-17-2012, 11:24 PM
This seems to be going great. So far I have about 11 responses, mostly from persons who describe themselves as expert or advanced.

I do want some opinions from those advanced persons, but I could really use some more beginners and intermediate types. I really want to see if they can succeed with it.

My sincere thanks to all who replied and I hope to make up the list tomorrow if some more beginners apply.

Paul A.

Mr Fixit
09-17-2012, 11:53 PM
Hello Paul,
What practical applications would we be able to use this for, and what would you recommend we test it with should we try your kit? I am a electrician but not well versed in electronics, so does that put me in the begginer or intermediate group. I would consider your offer, I'm just not wanting to use up a kit or waste your time and money.

Chris
Mr. fixit for the family

CCWKen
09-18-2012, 12:37 AM
It would be nice to be able to control vent/filter fans and some lights with a remote but these are already available. Too pricey for the return but they're out there. I have an air conditioner in the plating shed that is remote controlled. I turn my PC on with a remote and control all the AV functions with it. The PC remote even has mouse functions but my wireless mouse is easier to use. There's a number of things that would be handy to control by remote but the drawback is that you have to carry around a remote. The benefits seem to get lost in function.

Paul Alciatore
09-18-2012, 03:59 AM
Chris,

It is a remote control device, so it COULD be used for many things. I started thinking about this when I wanted a way to control an AC vent in my office ceiling. I know there are many commercial devices to throttle a duct, but the attic is very inaccessible and I wanted something that did not require wires. I am/was thinking about photoelectric cells for power, storage batteries, and a small DC motor. Since it would only be used occasionally, the batteries would store enough energy over longer periods of time. Or so I hoped. Anyway, I needed a method to control it on the ceiling while I sat at my desk. And then I was changing the channel and volume on my TV and the light lit above my head: IR remote would be ideal. Anyway, that is what started it.

With some external relays you could control a light (the board is a low Voltage device). Or you could turn on or off a machine on the other side of the shop. Or open/close some curtains. Or motorize the doors on your expensive TV/media cabinet. Or, well, just use your imagination.



Hello Paul,
What practical applications would we be able to use this for, and what would you recommend we test it with should we try your kit? I am a electrician but not well versed in electronics, so does that put me in the begginer or intermediate group. I would consider your offer, I'm just not wanting to use up a kit or waste your time and money.

Chris
Mr. fixit for the family

Paul Alciatore
09-18-2012, 04:02 AM
Well, like anything, it has it's advantages and limitations. The thing is, it is fairly cheap and a do-it-yourself thing so I thought the people here might be the types to find uses for it.

If you don't like it, you don't have to use it.



Hello Paul,
What practical applications would we be able to use this for, and what would you recommend we test it with should we try your kit? I am a electrician but not well versed in electronics, so does that put me in the begginer or intermediate group. I would consider your offer, I'm just not wanting to use up a kit or waste your time and money.

Chris
Mr. fixit for the family

MrFluffy
09-18-2012, 05:45 AM
To be honest, its kind of a crowded space even for rx devices believe it or not. My last house had x10 coupled to a wifi->x10 bridge to control all that sort of stuff, and besides the wall switches, everything could be controlled from a x-in-1 remote that did the tv, hifi etc also. Made by marmitek. For controlling a pc via remote we had a ir receiver called a IR RAT, which gave rs232 output of the codes for a pc and worked with any remote.

Have you looked at somehow hooking it up to some of the main home automation systems as a input device? You can check at :-http://www.automatedhome.co.uk for a coverage of a few of the systems.

Ive flood wired for idratek here with extra rj45 ran to blank boxes alongside the main star wiring for the house, but I cant start putting it in until the house has passed inspection (conversion from a barn) as none of the home auto passes code because its so out of date :(
Once that gets underway, probably a way to input remote codes from a sensor on a IR per room basis would be quite interesting.

EddyCurr
09-18-2012, 12:45 PM
Good luck with the kit testing and distribution.

Still have the intact Philips Electronics Engineer 20 set I received as a child.

Guided our preteen in developing an understanding for what's inside gaming devices
as well as in developing a knack for circuit reading, part identification & placement
along with soldering skills by constructing a few contemporary commercial electronic
hobby kits.

Quality time.

If the international border wasn't the financial/logistical impediment it is for a shoestring
deal, I'd volunteer for the group.

.

Paul Alciatore
09-18-2012, 02:04 PM
Sounds like you are way beyond what my device is capable of, but it does "learn" the IR codes from the transmitter that YOU choose to use. And it can be re-trained for a new one at any time. Learning the codes just takes a couple of minutes and the user does not need to know any computer code: just follow some simple instructions. I had my wife do it by just reading them.




To be honest, its kind of a crowded space even for rx devices believe it or not. My last house had x10 coupled to a wifi->x10 bridge to control all that sort of stuff, and besides the wall switches, everything could be controlled from a x-in-1 remote that did the tv, hifi etc also. Made by marmitek. For controlling a pc via remote we had a ir receiver called a IR RAT, which gave rs232 output of the codes for a pc and worked with any remote.

Have you looked at somehow hooking it up to some of the main home automation systems as a input device? You can check at :-http://www.automatedhome.co.uk for a coverage of a few of the systems.

Ive flood wired for idratek here with extra rj45 ran to blank boxes alongside the main star wiring for the house, but I cant start putting it in until the house has passed inspection (conversion from a barn) as none of the home auto passes code because its so out of date :(
Once that gets underway, probably a way to input remote codes from a sensor on a IR per room basis would be quite interesting.

Paul Alciatore
09-19-2012, 05:16 PM
I want to close this request and thank all who responded. Great response: I got a total of 14 volunteers: 6 in the expert or advanced category, 5 more in the intermediate, and 3 beginners. Unfortunately, my economics will not allow me to send kits to all who volunteered but I will be selecting at least two from each of those categories. I am putting some kits together today and will make a final selection of volunteers tonight so notifications should go out then.

Again, thanks to all. I do greatly appreciate it.

Paul Alciatore
09-21-2012, 02:44 PM
One last post, I hope. I have notified all who were chosen to participate via e-mail or in one case a PM on this board. I have sent out some kits and am awaiting some responses from others as I need addresses.

mayfieldtm
09-21-2012, 08:09 PM
Paul:

I'm late to participate and would have loved to, but, please let us know when the Kits will be available.

This is a great idea.
I built a similar device several years ago for a local University.
They had dozens of Classrooms with Video Projectors that needed to be controlled from a variety of Remote Controls.
It was a challenge. A device like yours would have simplified life considerably.

Are you up to selling a "beta" kit of parts?
I can think of at least 2 applications where I would use these immediately.

Tom M.