UniPi Gate RS485 Linux IoT Gateway features 600 MHz Rockchip RK3328 SoC

UniPi Gate RS485 Linux IoT Gateway

Based in the Czech Republic, UniPi Technology design and manufacture programmable logic controllers, gateways, sensors and systems for smart homes, building management systems, industry and automation projects. Their latest product is UniPi Gate G100/G110 Linux IoT gateway with Ethernet and RS485 interfaces. When the company contacted CNX Software about the gateway, they told us the system was based on a quad-core Cortex-A53 processor clocked at 600 MHz. Since we are not aware of such SoC, we asked, and UniPi told us it was Rockchip RK3328. That processor is normally clocked at 1.5 GHz, and it turns out the company purposely underclocked the processor to 600 MHz to extend the temperature range and reduce the heat emitted by the CPU. UniPi Gate G100 & G110 specifications: SoC – Rockchip RK3328 quad-core Cortex-A53 processor @ 600 MHz System Memory – 512MB RAM Storage – 16GB eMMC flash, MicroSD card slot Networking – 2x Ethernet RJ45 ports (1x Gigabit Ethernet, 1x 10/100M Fast […]

$4 ITEAD CC2531 Zigbee USB Dongle Works with Zigbee2MQTT Out of the Box

ITEAD CC2531 Zigbee USB Dongle

Some of ITEAD Studio’s Sonoff home automation devices include Zigbee connectivity with for instance Sonoff BASICZBR3 smart switch or a version of Sonoff S31 smart socket with integrated Zigbee. Those devices usually work via a Zigbee enabled gateway that could be a router, Raspberry Pi SBC, or mini PC, which ITEAD did not offer so far. But to help people making their own Zigbee gateway the company is now selling a low-cost ($3.99) CC2531 USB dongle preloaded with CC2531ZNP-Prod firmware (Zigbee coordinator firmware), and compatible with Zigbee2MQTT open-source Zigbee to MQTT bridge once plugged into a PC, Raspberry Pi, or another Linux SBC. ITEAD CC2531 Zigbee USB dongle specifications: MCU – Texas Instruments CC2531F256 Zigbee and IEEE 802.15.4 wireless MCU with 8kB RAM, 256kB Flash pre-loaded with CC2531ZNP-Prod firmware for zigbee2mqtt application Host Interface – USB 2.0 male port Expansion – 8-pin unpopulated header with 8 I/Os Debugging – Debug connector Misc – 2x user buttons, 2x user LED’s Dimensions […]

GetWired Aims to Make RS-485 Wired Home Automation Affordable and User-friendly (Crowdfunding)


You may think about installing a home automation system, and WiFi may appear like the obvious way to go since it removes the need for cumbersome cabling, but wired networks are more reliable and secure, and there’s no need for batteries to be recharged or replaced. However, such wired home automation systems may be difficult to install and are often expensive, so Domatic decided to work on a solution to lower the costs and improve the ease of installation and use. Meet GetWired RS-485 wired home automation solution. Getwired is comprised of four modules communicating over the standard RS-485 protocol: MCU Module based on Microchip ATMEGA328PB MCU @ 8 MHz with 64KB SPI flash, an RS-485 transceiver, a 12-pin interface for connecting shields and 6 different Molex connectors for I/O including PWM, analog, interrupt pins, as well as I²C and 1-wire interfaces – Dimensions: 40 x 25 mm 2SSR Shield – 2-channel AC controller shield with solid-state relays, supporting 200 […]

Shelly H&T is a Battery Powered ESP8266 WiFi Temperature & Humidity Sensor

Battery Powered ESP8266 Temperature Humidity Sensor

WiFi and long battery life do not usually go hand-in-hand, but as we’ve seen recently, companies have managed to design battery powered WiFi cameras that are said to last up to a year on a charge. So for simpler WiFi devices it should be feasible to last over a year, and that’s what “Shelly H&T” – an ESP8266 based battery-powered WiFi temperature and humidity sensor has apparently achieved, with claims of up to 16 months battery life. Shelly H&T specifications: Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n WiFi (Wifi 4) Sensor – Temperature & humidity  Battery – 1x CR123A battery good for up to 16 months Dimensions – 35 mm Ø sphere with flat top/bottom  The firmware supports MQTT, and a Rest API, and works with Alexa, Google Home, and home automation suites like OpenHAB, Home Assistant, or Domoticz. The sensor is “open source ready”, meaning you’ll be able to flash your own firmware through the serial interface as shown below. The device […]

$10 H801 WiFi RGB LED Controller Supports Sonoff-Tasmota Open Source Firmware

H801 WiFi LED Controller

This week-end, I played with ANAVI Light Controller, an open source hardware solution based on ESP8266 used control 12V RGB LED strips. The board has the advantage of being open source with KiCad schematics, Arduino firmware, and HTML5 server program available, so easy to get started and modify the features as you see fit, and it also supports external I2C sensors via three headers. That’s a low volume project made in Eastern Europe and as a result the board costs $25, so I was shortly made aware there were cheaper solution, and if you are ready to mess around a little bit, H801 WiFi controller appears to be one of the most interesting solution as it sells for under $10 shipped on Aliexpress or eBay, and is officially supported by Sonoff-Tasmota open source firmware. H801 specifications: Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n WiFi (2.4GHz) with about 10 meter range Output – 5x PWM (R, G, B, W1, W2) each up to 4A, […]

$24 Eastron SDM120C Smart Meter Supports RS485, ModBus, Up to 45A Load

A couple of days ago, I wrote about Sonoff POW R2 WiFi switch with power monitoring function that meant to be connected to your mains via terminal, and I was made aware of another product – Eastron SDM120C – that also does power metering, but support up to 45A (good enough for whole house in many cases), and use RS485 / Modbus communication instead of WiFi. I’ve also noticed it’s compatible with Domoticz with source code released on Github, so it might be worth a look. Eastron SDM120C specifications: Rated Voltage (Un) – 220/230V Voltage Range – 0.8~1.2 Un Base Current – 5A Max. / Min. Current – 45A / 0.25A Frequency – 50/60Hz Remote Reading – RS485 port using Modbus RTU protocol Pulse Output – Pulse 1: 1000/100/10/1 imp; pulse 2: 1000 imp/kWh Power Consumption – <2W/10VA Safety / Certifications: AC voltage test – 4KV for 1 minutes Impulse voltage test – 6KV @ 0.5J open circuit Over current […]

Review of Sonoff B1 Smart RGB Light Bulb – Part 2: Sonoff-Tasmota Firmware

I’ve already reviewed Sonoff B1 light bulb using the stock firmware combined eWelink app for Android, and as promised in the first part of the review, I’ve also tested the ESP8285 based WiFi light bulb with Sonoff-Tasmota open source firmware, and report my findings in this new post. Before we can play with the new firmware, we need to install it, and I’ve just explained how to upgrade Sonoff devices to Sonoff-Tasmota firmware either using some soldering skills and a USB to serial board, or some network configuration skills and perform an OTA update using ITEAD Studio/eWelink original firmware update mechanism. So for this part of the review, I’ll assume we have just freshly update the light bulb with Sonoff-Tasmota using the binary images released by the developer. First, you’ll need to find the IP address of the light bulb with your router or tools like nmap or arp, and access the web interface in your web browser with for […]

ESPurna Firmware Now Supports Power Meters “Augmented” with ESP8266 Modules/Boards

Sonoff-Tasmota and ESPurna are the two main open source firmware used in home automation devices, such as Sonoff wireless switches, based on Espressif ESP8266 WiSoC. Xose Pérez – aka Tinkerman – has recently purchased “dumb” power meters / kill-a-watt meters, added WiFi to them with ESP-01 module and Wemos D1 mini board, and implemented support in ESPurna firmware leveraging earlier reverse-engineering work by Karl Hagström. The power meter above looks exactly like the one I’ve been using for review for over two years, and has been more more reliable than other models, such as Broadlink SP2 (with built-in WiFi) that gave up on me after a few months. Xose actually noticed that old and newer models of the power meters were based on different solutions. Karl’s meter relied on ECH1560, while Xose’s new meter was instead based on Vango V9261F, which has a public datasheet, and was already being worked on by Domoticz community. While he connect ESP-01 to one of the […]