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 […]

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 […]

Xiaomi 6-in-1 WiFi & Zigbee Smart Home Kit Works with Domoticz Home Automation Software

Xiaomi “Mijia” 6-in-1 smart home (security) kit is an home automation set with a WiFi & Zigbee multi-functional gateway with RGB light and speaker, a wireless switch, a window/door sensor, a  human body sensor, temperature & humidity sensor, and a smart socket. The key features of each item are as follows: Multifunctional Gateway Remote Control WiFI and Bluetooth connectivity Built-in speaker Light sensor and 18x RGB LED for notifications potentially trigerred by connected sensors: body sensor, door sensor, IP camera… Online radio support Window / Door Sensor Set Light and rings the gateway when opened or closed Away from home mode: can trigger IP camera recording Power – CR2032 cell battery that should last for 2 years Smart Wireless Switch Programmable one key switch to turn off all lights/applicance, turn on one light at night, etc… Human Body Sensor Motion sensor allowing you to control other devices through the gateway Power […]

How to use Sonoff POW with ESPurna Firmware and Domoticz Home Automation System

Sonoff POW is an ESP8266 based wireless switch with a power meter that comes pre-loaded with a closed-source firmware that works with eWelink app for Android or iOS by default. But we’ve also seen Sonoff POW, and other Sonoff wireless switches from the same family, can be flash with open source firmware supporting MQTT (Message Queuing Telemetry Transport) lightweight messaging protocol such as ESPurna, and I initially sent data from Sonoff POW to ThingSpeak via an MQTT broker (mosquitto) to draw some pretty charts. I did that with the switch connected to a lightbulb, but I’ve since installed Sonoff POW in my office to measure the room’s power consumption minus the ceiling light and aircon as shown below. Sonoff cable mechanism is really a pain for hard copper wires, as they are hard to push inside the mechanism, and something come out. I finally managed by it took longer than […]

How to Install Domoticz Home Automation System in NanoPi NEO and Other ARM Linux Boards

I’ve recently started experimenting with IoT projects, and the first hurdle is to select the hardware and software for your projects are there are simply so many options. For the hardware your first have to choose the communication protocols for your sensors and actuators, and if you are going to go with WiFi, ESP8266 is the obvious solution, used together with your favorite low cost Linux development board such as Raspberry Pi or Orange Pi to run some IoT server software locally or leveraging the cloud. But the most difficult & confusing part for me was to select the server software / cloud services as there are just so many options. I prefer having a local server than something running only in the cloud, as my Internet goes a few hours a month, so I started with a solution combining ThingSpeak with MQTT gathering data from Sonoff power switches running […]