Comments: BC118 BLE Mate 2 Hookup Guide


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  • Member #659003 / about 8 years ago / 3

    Has anyone successfully hooked this up to an arduino uno? I hooked up the the pins as follows: GRN -> Reset RXI -> RX (tried with TX as well) TXI -> TX (tried with RX as well) VIN -> Tried 5V and 3.3V CTS -> GND BLK -> (No Connection)

    And powered the board using battery instead of the USB because I know that takes control over the serial port. Is there any way to make this happen without the use of the FTDI SmartBasic?

  • Member #473442 / about 5 years ago / 1

    Ok. I've been tasked with interfacing a prototype that uses the BC118 with a raspberry pi. Can I directly connect this or should I just use a FTDI interface and link two BC118's and use a serial port?

  • Member #1107137 / about 6 years ago / 1

    Hi there. Has anyone succesfully connected the BC118 BLE Mate2 to a Macbook though BT? As I have understood this module doesn't implement a serial protocol? Then is it impossible to comunicate with the module via BT using the termial or any other TTY emulator software?

  • -------------------- Tech Support Tips/Troubleshooting/Common Issues --------------------

    Quickstart Hardware Connection

    If you just want to quickly connect and test the BLE Mate 2, I recommend using a 5V FTDI and a serial terminal. Connecting directly with an FTDI is useful in getting familiar with the BC118's commands before using the BLE Mate 2 in a project. Just follow this connection and connect your serial terminal to the enumerated COM port (set to 9600 8-none-1-none):

    BLE Mate 2 <=> 5V FTDI
    GND     <=>   GND
    VIN     <=>   VCC
    TXO     <=>   RXI
    RXI     <=>   TXO

    Factory Reset

    To reset the BC118 to its factory state, connect the bluetooth to an FTDI with a serial terminal connected as explained above. Then send these commands:


    Transparent Mode

    With the help of the user manual [ ] and following BlueCreation's Demo Tutorials [ and ], I was able to pair and connect two BC118s together and send data through a data pipeline. By sending data (like ASCII characters) from one BC118, you will see the same output at the receiving BC118.

    Configuring BC118 as a Peripheral Device

    Choose one BC118 that is connected to your computer as your peripheral. The BC118s should already be set as a peripheral by default. If it is not, just send these commands:

    set cent=off

    The red LED labelled LED1 will blink and be advertising.

    Configuring BC118 as a Central Device

    Choosing the other BC118's connected to your computer, send the command:

    set cent=on

    to configure the BC118 as a central device. After rebooting,the central BC118 should automatically scan the area for another Melody Smart enabled device and connect. The blue LED labelled LED0 will blink until it is connected to the peripheral. Once paired and connected, the peripheral BCC118's LED will be a solid red and the central BC118's LED will be a solid blue.

    Note: Make sure that the "ACON=ON" by sending the command "cfg". Otherwise, it will just keep outputting a list of bluetooths in the area and not connect.

    Temporary Transparent Mode

    Now that both bluetooths are paired and connected, just send the command "TRS" to each serial terminal connected to the central and peripheral BC118. The command will immediately put the BC118 that received the command into transparent UART mode. Typing any character from your keyboard in the serial terminal will be transmitted to the receiving bluetooth and vice versa. Keep in mind that a power cycle will cause the BC118 to go back into command mode and you would need to send the "TRS" command again in order to put each BC118 into transparent mode.

    If one of the bluetooths is receiving data that was sent like:

    RCV=hello, this is a tes

    , it is a good indication that the receiving BC118 is still in command mode and the buffer is slowly emptying the received data through the "RCV" Melody-Smart Prompt after a period of time. Send the "TRS" command to set the device in transparent mode so that the bluetooth is not in command mode.

    Automatic Transparent Mode

    To have the BC118s set to automatically act as a transparent device similar to the RN-41 and RN-42 on the BlueSmirf and the Bluetooth Mates, just enter these commands for the central and peripheral BC118s:

    set trse=on
    set trsm=1

    A power cycle will put the central and peripheral BC118s in transparent mode as soon as they are paired and connected.

    Making Your UART Device Wireless

    Now that the central and peripheral BC118s are set as transparent devices, you can make your UART device wireless. There was a little bit of latency due to the low baud rate and the way the BC118s were sending data but this will enable you to have a wireless data pipeline using two BC118s and an FTDI.

    Wireless Fingerprint Scanner

    For example, we want to make a wireless connection between the fingerprint scanner GT-511C1R (which uses a UART) and an FTDI on a computer. To do this, we connect the fingerprint scanner to one of the bluetooths. It would be up to you to find a power source to remotely power the UART device (i.e fingerprint scanner) and BC118. Since I already had an FTDI set up, let's connect the fingerprint scanner to the BC118 (configured as a central) and power it with a 5V FTDI:

    GT-511C1R <=> BLE Mate 2 <=> 5V FTDI
      UART_TX <=>    RXI     <=> Not Connected
      UART_RX <=>    TXO     <=> Not Connected
        GND   <=>    GND     <=>    GND
        Vin   <=>    VIN     <=>    VCC

    You would then connect the other BC118 (configured as a peripheral) to another 5V FTDI and computer running the SDK demo software for the GT-511C1R. To finish the connection, you would select the port that the BC118 is connected to in the SDK demo software's Serial Port Number: . Make sure to close the serial terminal that the peripheral BC118 is connected to and that your FTDI's enumerated COM port is between COM3 to COM10. If you are unsure, just check your device manager. Since the bluetooth's baud is set to 9600, you would select 9600 as your baudrate .

    Mesh Networks: Connecting More than One Bluetooth at a Time

    Apparently you can create a mesh network to have a certain number of bluetooths connected together. Usually you are only able to pair and connect to one bluetooth at a time. The data can be broadcasted in a point-to-multipoint configuration or you can send data in a point-to-point configuration. There is a limit to how much data can be sent at a time => .

    I am not sure if you can just have the mesh network without the smartphone and app.

    Resources, Video Demos, and Additional Documentation

    For video demos and additional documentation of the BC127 IC, feel free to check out BlueCreation’s product page => . They also have a YouTube Channel => [ ].

  • Member #721056 / about 8 years ago / 1

    How do you setup a serial interface to an iPhone using this BLE module? I got the Bluetooth 2.0 gold mate to work with my MacBook pro using the BT serial protocol, but my project needs to migrate to an iPhone 5 (or later) platform which doesn't support BT2.0 nor the classic serial protocol. Are there tutorials on setting this up on the Arduino Pro + BLE Mate and an example iPhone serial terminal app?

    My goal is to make an remote control using my iPhone for some machinery. The arduino will manage analog inputs, control outputs and safety of the machine. The iPhone will report machine positions to the user and pass user action commands to the embedded arduino.

    • SFUptownMaker / about 8 years ago / 1

      It's not trivial.

      BLE doesn't implement a serial protocol at all, so for modules like this, the developer (in this case, BlueCreations) has to make a custom profile. That means you'll need to write an app, or use a pre-built one, and that as far as your iDevice is concerned, the thing doesn't exist.

      BlueCreation have posted an example iOS app on their product downloads page for the BC118. I can in no way claim that this will work, or will be helpful. You may also try searching on BC118 or BlueCreation on the iTunes app store to see if they've released anything.

  • how to enter into transparent mode I think i made some mistake and I am stuck. Black screen is what alll i get and neither of the LEDS glow and also tell me how to enter into configuration mode

  • NukeFrenzy / about 9 years ago / 1

    The fritzing image shows the select wire going from pin 2 on the arduino to the OE pin on the SmartBasic. This wire should go to the SEL pin on the SmartBasic. Drove me crazy for a few minutes.

    • SFUptownMaker / about 9 years ago / 1

      Whoops! Sorry about that. I'll get it fixed ASAP.

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