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——————– Tech Support Tips/Troubleshooting/Common Issues ——————–
Using 12V to Power Both the EL Inverter & Microcontroller
If you are using a 12V wall adapter to power the 12V Inverter, you would still need to provide power to the microcontroller side. One solution with your 12V wall adapter to provide power to the 12V inverter and Atmega328P is to get a barrel jack adapter to 2 pin JST adapter [ https://www.sparkfun.com/products/8734 ], thus connecting the 12V wall adapter to the “BATT IN.” This is assuming that your wall adapter is using a center positive barrel jack. From there you can connect the 2 pin JST labeled “DC Out” to the 12V inverter’s input voltage.
To connect the 12V inverter, I recommend using the male DC barrel jack adapter [ https://www.sparkfun.com/products/10287 ] and a 2-pin JST jumper wire [ https://www.sparkfun.com/products/8670 or https://www.sparkfun.com/products/8671 ]. You will need to wire strip the cable to be able to connect it to the screw terminals.
Lastly, you would need to add a solder jumper to SJ1 so that you bypass the voltage regulator between your external power (“BATT IN”) to provide power to the inverter’s “DC OUT”. This will provide power to your 12V inverter’s input.
Soldering the 2x XBee Female Header Pins for EL Sequencer
Be careful how much solder you add when soldering the 2mm 10pin XBee Socket [ https://www.sparkfun.com/products/8272 ]. If you add too much solder, the XBee will have problems when inserting the XBee into the sockets.
Nordic Transceivers vs XBee Series 1 vs XBee Series 2?
I personally have not tested the Nordic Transceivers with the EL Sequencers but it looks like there can only be a maximum of 6x in the network. I recommend using the XBee transceivers. The XBees are easier to use and you are able to use more in the network. I also recommend XBee Series 1 as opposed to using the XBee Series 2. The Series 1 transceivers are easier to use, faster, and reliable. There was more of a latency with the Series 2. It might be due to the mesh network. Both have different applications so in the end it is up to you to decide what would fit best. For a comparison between series 1 and series 2 try looking at this article [ http://knowledge.digi.com/articles/Knowledge_Base_Article/The-Major-Differences-in-the-XBee-Series-1-vs-the-XBee-Series-2 ].
Logic Levels for EL Sequencer?
Considering that the EL Sequencer runs off off 3.3V, you do not need the XBee Explorer Regulated boards or the XBee shield when using an XBee. The exception would be for your “master” controller which would be 5V. This is assuming that you are using a 5V Arduino Uno.
Latency with XBees?
Keep in mind that the more patterns that the EL Sequencer has to run when being controlled via XBee, the longer it can take for it to respond if you have the “master” controller tell your “slave” EL Sequencers to run a different pattern. This is probably because the EL Sequencer has to run through the sequence to turn on/off each of the channels. If there are delay functions being used, it can run slower depending on how you wrote your code. Your “master” controller should have all the patterns to control each of your “slave” EL Sequencers based on the serial data sent. Try using different ASCII characters to turn each channel on and off.
Automating and Syncing to Music
Besides manually programming your EL Sequencer to trigger the channels, try automating the sequence and syncing it with an audio track using Vixen. This was found by a member in our technical support department.
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