Arduino: 10 common pitfalls with Infrared Remote Control
Over the last few months we have been regular contributors to the Arduino and other forums, answering questions about Infrared remote control projects. It became apparent that beginners typically trip up on many common ‘pitfalls’. So we decided to list off our ‘Top 10′.
We have been intending to add support for LIRC into AnalysIR for a long time. Recently one of our enthusiastic users, working on his Raspberry PI, needed some help getting Air conditioner signals from his ‘Air Conditioner’ infrared remote control decoded. His preference was for a LIRC based approach as he already had this working for his TV via his RPi using a cool web based interface from his smart phone.
Rasberry Pi tight integration with AnalysIr & LIRC
Dublin, Ireland – 31st January 2014. We are happy to announce the latest ‘New Year’ release of AnalysIR to all our backers & supporters. Since the completion of the crowd-funding campaign on Indiegogo we have added over 125 updates and enhancements to AnalysIR, with more to come.
A major highlight of this release is full AnalysIR support for USB IR Toy from Dangerous Prototypes (V1 & V2 hardware) for decoding and resending IR signals at all common modulation frequencies. In our opinion, AnalysIR is now the premier GUI supporting DP’s IR toy, not to mention the Arduino, RPi, MSP430 F5529 LaunchPad (beta) and more. A selection of enhancements in this latest release, include: Continue reading
Since introducing support into AnalysIR for the USB IR Toy we haven’t played too much with setting the different infrared modulation frequencies. After reading some mixed experiences on the Dangerous Prototypes forum we decided to put it to the test. So to start off we implemented a feature in AnalysIR to set the modulation frequency and to default to 38kHz at start up. Next we checked the mechanism described on the DP website about configuring the modulation frequency and everything seemed to work out OK. Continue reading
For anyone following the progress of our ‘Custom TV Infrared remote control’ for the SKY+ box, we received it back for some upgrading over the last week and tomorrow (weather permitting – there are lots of high winds in Europe today, with many flights being cancelled) it will be flown back to its owner, with several upgrades on board.
Custom SKY+ IR Remote control, by AnalysIR
Over the last 2 weeks we have been asked several times about driver circuits for IR LEDs, particularly with good range and coverage. Most of us start off driving infrared leds directly from an Arduino or other MCU using a basic resistor in series with the LED connected to a digital output pin of the MCU.
An oscilloscope snalpshot showing a trace of Ve from the constant current circuit shown below.
Here are some photos we captured, of a sample of our MCU test rigs and custom PCB for AnalysIR.
A sample of our test rigs for AnalysIR
The photo above shows some of our test setup for Arduino, Raspberry Pi, TI MSP430 LaunchPad and the (big) baby of them all the USB IR Toy. The small red custom PCBs are ones we had made via Elecrow which worked out great. So instead of just using solderless breadboards we now plug these ‘half shields’ directly into the Arduino header, or in the case of the RPi using a ribbon cable. The USB IR Toy already has the IR receivers on board and doesn’t require this PCB.
We should also be able to hook up the LaunchPad to this board using headers. So once we receive the full set of headers, we ordered on-line, we will have all our test setups much neater and more reliable. Previously, we used solderless breadboards, as can be seen in the photo attached to the LaunchPad. Continue reading
Today we issued a test release of AnalysIR, supporting V1 & V2 USB IR Toy loaded with firmware V22. If you have an IR Toy and want to test it out, leave a message with your email in the contact form at the top. Naturally, this is available only to backers with AnalysIR. You can support our project and get a copy of AnalysIR via the option at the top of this page.
USB IR Toy V2 from Dangerous Prototypes (via Seedstudio)
We received a V2 USB IR Toy last week from Dangerous Prototypes via Seedstudio.
(See early access note for backers below)
After some initial teething problems we set about playing with this new device. Then we went about trying to integrate it into AnalysIR. We found that operating the IR Toy in ‘Sampling Mode’ worked best for our needs. There are several other modes available which are described on the website below. Continue reading
Following on from our previous blog post about SKY+ RC6 IR codes, we have now completed the project and are about to ship to its new owner – a friend of ours.
We purchased a Sega megadrive Arcade style games console which was BNIB for €25 ($35) and disabled all of the buit-in gaming functionality. We then wired up each of the 12 available switches (Joystick & Arcade style buttons) to the Arduino Nano which was placed onto an Arduino prototyping shield and mounted to the enclosure using ‘lots’ of hot glue. Note some of these consoles come with an additional 2 buttons, which can bring the total to 14. In addition, the joystick has 8 positions in total of which we used only 4 as it would be too difficult for the user to manage all eight. Continue reading