Review of SONOFF BASICR4 Smart Switch and S-MATE2 Smart Remote Control

Sonoff SMATE-2 + BASICR4 automation demo

We’ve received two new devices from SONOFF for testing, namely the BASICR4 Smart Switch and the S-MATE2 Smart Remote Control. For those familiar with SONOFF devices, the Basic series is well-known as it was one of the initial products SONOFF introduced to the Smart Home market. It’s a Wi-Fi switch that can be used for various purposes, including controlling lights, fans, and other electrical devices. The BASICR4 model enhances capabilities while reducing costs compared to its predecessor. The S-MATE2, on the other hand, is the second version of a simple Remote Controller powered by batteries. It wirelessly connects to other SONOFF devices that support the eWeLink Remote Gateway feature, enabling full control within the same ecosystem. This expands its usability across different devices. Let’s delve into the details. SONOFF BASICR4 Introduction The Basic series has been a long-standing Wi-Fi Switch family allowing control of electrical devices through the eWeLink app […]

Meet the $1,000 ESP32 board with 512 GPIOs (12V/24V)

KinCony IoT KC868-A566

KinCony IoT’s KC868-A566 is an ESP32 WiFi & BLE IoT board with a massive 512 GPIOs, more specifically with 256 12V/24V digital outputs and 256 digital inputs that should meet most people’s requirements, except for its price, as it is currently selling for $1,000 on Aliexpress. The board is based on ESP32-WROOM-32E, and besides the massive numbers of GPIOs, also adds four analog input ports, an Ethernet port, and an RS485 connector. The company also made sure it can run ESPHome open-source firmware and integrates well with Home Assistant open-source home automation framework. KinCony IoT KC868-A566 board specifications: Wireless module – ESP32-WROOM-32E with ESP32 dual-core microcontroller 4MB flash 2.4 GHz WiFi and Bluetooth LE connectivity, built-in PCB antenna, fully compatible with ESPHome firmware Ethernet – 100/10Mbps Ethernet via vertical RJ45 jack USB – 1x USB Type-C port Serial – RS485 interface I/Os 256x MOSFET outputs (12V/24V 5000mA per channel) with […]

SONOFF iHost Review – A future-proof Smart Home Hub for local control

SONOFF iHost review

ITEAD has sent us a Sonoff iHost Smart Home Hub for review, and this device seems to be what many SONOFF fans have been waiting for, especially in terms of local control. meaning it can work without an Internet connection. SONOFF is known for its durable devices and good interoperability, but they are still catching up with other companies in terms of local control. Finally, the iHost Smart Home Hub fills the gap. In addition to local control, it also comes with privacy features as data stay local. SONOFF plans to expand its ecosystem by including devices from other brands compliant with standards such as Zigbee 3.0. Furthermore, the iHost Smart Home Hub is more like a platform than just a product, as it has add-ons to add more capability over time. In the future, it can be expanded to support the new “Matter” standard, similar to Home Assistant. The […]

SONOFF MINI Extreme (MINIR4) ESP32 WiFi smart switch can fit into most gang boxes

SONOFF MINI Extreme

SONOFF MINI Extreme (aka MINIR4) is a ridiculously small WiFi smart switch based on ESP32 wireless microcontroller and designed to be connected to a load such as a light bulb and a wall switch that can be a momentary switch, a door exit switch, an SPDT switch, a latching switch, or even dry contact sensors. The tiny form factor (39.5×33 x16.8mm) enables the WiFi smart switch to fit into various boxes, even the smaller European gang boxes. Just like other SONOFF home automation devices, the MINIR4 works with eWelink mobile app, but it also implements some new interesting features such as the ‘Detach Relay’ mode. SONOFF MINI Extreme (MINIR4) specifications: MCU – Espressif Systems ESP32 dual-core wireless microcontroller Connectivity 2.4 GHz WiFi 4 Bluetooth LE used for pairing Input – 100-240V ~ 50/60Hz 10A Max Output – 100-240V ~ 50/60Hz 10A Max (resistive load) Dimensions – 39.5 x 33 x […]

RelayFi – A Tasmota compatible 4-channel relay board (Crowdfunding)

RelayFi Tasmota 4-channel relay board

CoreData Global, a Singapore-based research and development firm, has just introduced the RelayFi 4-channel relay board based on ESP32 and compatible with Tasmota open-source firmware, as well as Espressif’s ESP RainMaker cloud and ESP-NOW networking API. RelayFi is fitted with an ESP32-WROOM-32D WiFi and Bluetooth module, four relays capable of handling a load of 250 VAC/7A or 30 VDC/10A, and EL817C Optoisolators for safety. The board also comes with CH340C USB to TTL chip for programming, an I2C header for expansion, and some jumpers for relay selection. RelayFi specifications: Wireless module – Espressif Systems’ ESP32-WROOM-32D module with ESP32 dual-core Tensilica microcontroller, 32Mbit SPI flash, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n up to 150 Mbps, Bluetooth 4.2 LE, and PCB antenna Relays 4x relays up to 250VAC/7A or 30VDC/10A 4x EL817C optocouplers for safety 4x relay status LEDs Screw terminals Relay selection jumper USB – 1x micro USB port for power and programming via […]

Sonoff ZBBridge gateway can be used as a Zigbee router/repeater

Sonoff ZBBridge Zigbee router

Sonoff ZBBridge WiFi to Zigbee gateway was introduced in April 2020, and a few months later got support for Tasmota ESP8266 firmware and Gecko firmware for either Home Assistant or Zigbee2MQTT support. But there’s now a new Tasmota firmware that converts Sonoff ZBBridge into a Zigbee router (a.k.a. Zigbee Signal Repeater or Zigbee Range Expender) following a request on Tastoma Github’s issue tracker from last year. The firmware, unofficial yet signed, was released a few days ago by xsp1989 Github’s user with a link to the firmware on Google Drive. Digiblur successfully tried it out on its own Sonoff Zigbee bridge and published the instructions. Assuming you already have Tasmota flashed to the device, switching to the router software is basically a firmware upgrade from the Tasmota web interface. Once the update is complete, you’ll still need to access the console in Tasmota in order to run a command to […]

Ikea PM2.5 air quality sensor’s ESP8266 hack adds WiFi, MQTT, and Tasmota support

Ikea VINDRIKTNING ESP8266 board

Ikea VINDRIKTNING PM2.5 air quality sensor functionality can be augmented with an ESP8266 WiFi board or module, and open-source firmware adding MQTT, or the popular Tasmosta firmware for more features. Out of the box, Ikea air quality sensor simply shows green (good), yellow (ok), and red (not good) colors to indicate the level of pollution with PM2.5 levels. But Sören Beye (Hypfer), who also happens to have developed Valetudo firmware for smart vacuum cleaners, has added a Wemos D1 Mini board to his sensor and developed open-source firmware with MQTT support. You’ll need to open the air quality sensor, and solder three wires between the ESP8266 board and the 5V, GND, and Tx (data) pin from the Ikea VINDRIKTNING mainboard. After flashing the firmware, you still get the original LED indicator plus PM 2.5 air quality data sent over MQTT and WiFi.  The update system supports Home Assistant Autodiscovery with […]

10-channel floor heating valve controller supports Tasmota, MQTT, Home Assistant

ESP32 floor heating valve controller

Voltlog has designed an open-source hardware floor heating valve controller powered by an ESP32 WiFi module making it compatible with Tasmota open-source firmware, and by extension MQTT protocol and Home Assistant automation framework. The board can control up to 10 valves triac controlled outputs and spring connectors for a floor home heating system, and also offers a one-wire srping connector, an I2C header, and safety features with two fuses, although it’s obviously not UL nor TUV certified. Voltlog decided to design his own board instead of buying off-the-shelf solutions because of the high price of such products and the lack of open-source firmware for integration into a home automation server powered by Home Assistant. You can flash firmware to the ESP32 either through a VoltLink USB to Serial converter or you can use your own USB to serial converter module through the on-board JST-SH 1.0mm pitch 6 pin connector. This […]

UP 7000 x86 SBC