Continue to Site

Welcome to our site!

Electro Tech is an online community (with over 170,000 members) who enjoy talking about and building electronic circuits, projects and gadgets. To participate you need to register. Registration is free. Click here to register now.

  • Welcome to our site! Electro Tech is an online community (with over 170,000 members) who enjoy talking about and building electronic circuits, projects and gadgets. To participate you need to register. Registration is free. Click here to register now.

ir signal generator

stevesxm

New Member
hello troops,
i am a long retired ME and well out of my area of expertise and need some help, please. i need a device that acts like a typical ir remote control to control a bunch of devices simultaneously. in an simple on/off sense. i believe i can program all the devices on the same frequency so i only need a single/dual freq device... now... i know i can simply take the existing remote and make a device that pushes the button and on the face of it that seems simple enough but for a variety of reasons i need something more reliable and elegant that that.... so the question for you guys that actually know about this stuff.... is that something i can buy off the shelf ? a programmable ir signal generator ? or failing that, how much would something like that cost to build? OR could i hardwire the remote's circuit board membrane switch to a relay or something ?

when and if you answer... remember you are talking to an old mechanical guy.... so pretend you are explaining it to your 11 year old...
 

DrDoggy2

Member
not something id really want to do as a first time project , but an arduino can run that.

first you must note that devices may use seperate frequency , although most run on 38khz, you will need to verify that with a sensor and a scope, (not sure but a IR photo cell attached to a cell phone mic jack and read with a spectrum analyser MAY get you results required).

Also inside that frequency is a binary code, which you will need to scan on each device to get the on off instruction.

Once you get that info you are ready to transmit, add a button, use a transistor and IR LED, from there its just programming, which you will need to taylor to yourself with the info received from above, another step where an actual scope would be invalueable, I can't help with IR circuit, since i didn't use a transitor and got results but not a good but im sure someone can post one if needed.

OR instead of dropping 200$ on a scope and arduino you can prolly get a "programmable IR remote" for similar price, but cant gaurentee its compatability, or that it can do a macro(multiple instructions with one press of button).
 

For The Popcorn

Active Member
Each device will have a somewhat unique code to turn it on or off – two different models of Samsung TVs may respond to the same code for example, but a Samsung DVD player or a Sony TV will not. So making a "control any/everything" control won't be practical. If you have a limited number of set devices, you can "learn" the codes from their existing remote controls and send them out in turn.

One challenge you may have is that some devices don't have separate codes for ON and OFF. Sending the code just toggles the state. Some cable company boxes were controlled this way, and their remote could learn the codes for the TV. Nice – one button to turn on the cable box and TV. Unless they got out of sync, then one button would turn on the TV while turning off the cable box & vice versa.
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
As others have said, frequency doesn't matter much - 38KHz is most common, and works fine with everything I've ever had occasion to use - with the exception of B&O, you used to use some wildly different modulation frequency - something like 100KHz.

IR remotes work by digital codes, not frequencies - and you would have to replicate those (my PIC tutorials show how to do it in PIC assembler for Sony SIRC remotes - but it's very easy to transmit different codes, simply bursts of 38KHz for the correct period, and gaps of the correct period. My tutorial explains Sony codes - but there's lot's of information out there on all kinds of different coding systems.

Transmitting is dead easy - receiving is more complicated.
 

stevesxm

New Member
recieving isn't my problem. the boxes all have their own receivers..... and to be more specific..... these are the newer dish network satellite receivers. when you get one, the first thing is asks you in the setup screen is to
" pair the remote " ... you point it at the box and push a button and the box now knows all the codes for that remote. and you can un-pair it the same way. so... im not sure who is learning what... whether the remote has the codes in it and the box learns them or the other way around... either way its not really my problem. my problem is more basic. i use 12 or 24 of these boxes to run head end systems in hotels and resorts. all the boxes want to do " updates" which turn the boxes off and they don't come back on when they are done. the early boxes had settings where you could defeat this. the newer ones don't. so i need a way to , when the boxes get done "updating " to turn them back on. in this case it means hitting the " ok" button on the remote. now... i can set ALL the boxes to operate off the same code i think. i think this because in the instructions it warns you not to pair the remote around OTHER boxes obviously because then those boxes learn that remore as well... so in reality i only need ONE of these binary codes and someway to blast the rack. once a day. like i said... push come to shove ill make a rotarty cam or a solonid to just push the button... but i would like a dedicated device. now... someone mention universal remotes.... and i know about those and those are capable of LEARNING the codes fro the original remote you put them faceto face and push one button on each and the new one learns the old codes... somehow... its all magic to me. but i know there is a way for these things to learn
 

DrDoggy2

Member
receiving IR is required to know the code to send.
When you are pairing , you are telling the remote what the code to turn on the tv is. which was preprogrammed in a table.

updates do not turn off the tv, so the "box on" button on one remote should work for all boxes. Since they are all same brand of box.

Just watch out for sync issue in post 3, i wasted 100's of hours as a cable tech training customers how to stay in synch. best to just leave tvs unpaired in your "main" remote
 

For The Popcorn

Active Member
Does a remote, once paired to a particular box, operate all the others?

If not, can you pair an already paired remote, does it then control both boxes?

"Pairing" may mean Bluetooth, or tying the serial number of a remote to a box.
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
recieving isn't my problem. the boxes all have their own receivers..... and to be more specific..... these are the newer dish network satellite receivers. when you get one, the first thing is asks you in the setup screen is to
" pair the remote " ... you point it at the box and push a button and the box now knows all the codes for that remote. and you can un-pair it the same way. so... im not sure who is learning what... whether the remote has the codes in it and the box learns them or the other way around... either way its not really my problem. my problem is more basic. i use 12 or 24 of these boxes to run head end systems in hotels and resorts. all the boxes want to do " updates" which turn the boxes off and they don't come back on when they are done. the early boxes had settings where you could defeat this. the newer ones don't. so i need a way to , when the boxes get done "updating " to turn them back on. in this case it means hitting the " ok" button on the remote. now... i can set ALL the boxes to operate off the same code i think. i think this because in the instructions it warns you not to pair the remote around OTHER boxes obviously because then those boxes learn that remore as well... so in reality i only need ONE of these binary codes and someway to blast the rack. once a day. like i said... push come to shove ill make a rotarty cam or a solonid to just push the button... but i would like a dedicated device. now... someone mention universal remotes.... and i know about those and those are capable of LEARNING the codes fro the original remote you put them faceto face and push one button on each and the new one learns the old codes... somehow... its all magic to me. but i know there is a way for these things to learn
That doesn't sound like 'learning', it sounds like they use radio remotes (like a Firestick), rather than IR.

So are they IR?, or RF?.

I know exactly what your problem is, I've also done satellite boxes in hotels for TV distribution - remotes are a complete nightmare.

Assuming they are IR?, and you can set all boxes to use the same codes?, then you would just have to program a PIC, or Arduino, or whatever, to output that code when required.

However, having been there, done that, I can pretty well predict that not all boxes will respond every time.
 

DrDoggy2

Member
oh ya, new RF, have different codes. and only work with one box at a time, pairing a second code drops the first one. RF remotes still need IR pairing for tv too.

I am talking about pure IR, boxes are the same codes, pairing is for tv brands. IR pairing is just telling remote which brand the tv is. in the old days there were was a book that came with several 3 digit numbers per brand, and you had to try each one till it worked. The latter has that table built in and while you are in programming mode you are just cycleing through the table.
 
Last edited:

stevesxm

New Member
receiving IR is required to know the code to send.
When you are pairing , you are telling the remote what the code to turn on the tv is. which was preprogrammed in a table.

updates do not turn off the tv, so the "box on" button on one remote should work for all boxes. Since they are all same brand of box.

Just watch out for sync issue in post 3, i wasted 100's of hours as a cable tech training customers how to stay in synch. best to just leave tvs unpaired in your "main" remote
you misunderstand. when the dish box updates it turns itself off and when its done it comes back on to the standby/screen saver screen.... so on the he system that channel is lost. we aren't talking about the tv 's at all.. just the dish box going into standy
 

stevesxm

New Member
Does a remote, once paired to a particular box, operate all the others?

If not, can you pair an already paired remote, does it then control both boxes?

"Pairing" may mean Bluetooth, or tying the serial number of a remote to a box.
two things.... first because you can pair and unpair , my assumption is that the remotes are generic in the sense that they have one table in them that is transferred to whatever box it gets paired to. second... because of the warning they give in the instructions about not having other boxes nearby when pairing, my assumtion is that you can pair the same remote to any number of boxes .. which is helpful for me.
 

stevesxm

New Member
That doesn't sound like 'learning', it sounds like they use radio remotes (like a Firestick), rather than IR.

So are they IR?, or RF?.

I know exactly what your problem is, I've also done satellite boxes in hotels for TV distribution - remotes are a complete nightmare.

Assuming they are IR?, and you can set all boxes to use the same codes?, then you would just have to program a PIC, or Arduino, or whatever, to output that code when required.

However, having been there, done that, I can pretty well predict that not all boxes will respond every time.
whats a PIC or arduino ? and they are IR.... no antenna on the devices. all the rf ones have antennae. they may not all respond instantl but if i signal maybe 10 times or so, or even w/ multiple remotes, for sure i can get them all to come back on... maybe not all at once but in a couple mins of each other and at 3 am nobody is going to care.
 

DrDoggy2

Member
yea, but its all about how the remote works, if you can post an img of yours so that we can clarify what you have, that would be best, and maybe an img or model number of the box too. You say IR so I was going on that, but if it is newer IR + RF that changes thinigs.
 

stevesxm

New Member
yea, but its all about how the remote works, if you can post an img of yours so that we can clarify what you have, that would be best, and maybe an img or model number of the box too. You say IR so I was going on that, but if it is newer IR + RF that changes thinigs.
i can certainly do that. not right this minute but later.... and thx. good suggestion. for reference.... the device is the newer dish network hopper systems. the ones im working on are duo's and wallys but if they are " hopper" they all have the same software, screens and protocols. the MAIN hopper device IS RF.... all the other are IR... at least i think they are.... they only work on line of sight and have no antenna.

ADDENDUM : not im not so sure. the documentation offers no clue but online people refer to these remotes as RF ... i can't hardly believe it but thats what they are saying... well remiving the back cover it says remote 52.0 UHF 2G.... so they are apparently RF ... sorry for being stupid.... thing is the duo right next to it IS IR or maybe its both for all i know at this point.... but either way.... no i gues i need a UHF blaster... is that easier or harder ?
 
Last edited:

DrDoggy2

Member
a quick google search says you do have the RF ones. so each box is paired to their own remote via RF.
the IR is there still for the old tv technology, and yes you dont see the antenna. I dont even think you can pair 2 remotes to one box.

then a cloned/universal/master remote wont work either. Nor will RF boosting.

The work involved for a UHF hack may be similar process but RF circuitry is way beyond me, I cannot even build a simple am radio transmitter.
 

stevesxm

New Member
a quick google search says you do have the RF ones. so each box is paired to their own remote via RF.
the IR is there still for the old tv technology, and yes you dont see the antenna. I dont even think you can pair 2 remotes to one box.

then a cloned/universal/master remote wont work either. Nor will RF boosting.

The work involved for a UHF hack may be similar process but RF circuitry is way beyond me, I cannot even build a simple am radio transmitter.
again.... im not looking for a remote . i have all the remotes in the world. what im looking for is a stand alone device that produces a programmable RF freq to REPLACE the remote... either buy or have someone build it. now that we know its RF and not IR ( sorry ) does that change anything ? and is it possible ? surely there are programmagable uhf transmitters off the shelf ?
 

For The Popcorn

Active Member
I think you are failing to see the point. Whether the remotes are IR or RF, you have to transmit a coded signal to each box. The box apparently has some way to know if it's paired remote is being used, so that's even more information that must be discovered and transmitted.

As to whether an RF transmitter "changes anything", the answer is absolutely yes. It increases cost and complexity immensely. To send an IR code, (most likely) you have a well understood and documented protocol, and the cost of a microcontroller and IR sender is under ten bucks.

Depending on the frequency the remote uses, you might be able to get a microcontroller dev board that will support the protocol, but there will be a lot of effort required to determine exactly what data must be sent. If there's not a dev board the supports the frequency and you have to roll your own, the cost would be substantial.

TRY THIS

1. Clear the remote pairing from at least two boxes if you can.

2. Pair the remote with the first box and verify operation.

3. Try to pair the remote with the second box without reseting or changing the remote. Verify operation with box 2.

4. Verify the remote still works with box 1.

If this works, continue adding more boxes.

If it doesn't work, you have a lot to learn about the protocol to determine if your wish can be done.
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
whats a PIC or arduino ? and they are IR.... no antenna on the devices. all the rf ones have antennae.
I've NEVER seen an RF remote with an antenna - the most popular RF examples would be the Amazon Firestick remotes and Apple TV remotes - there's no need for an external antenna. Try pointing it at your camera phone, and see if you can see it flashing - although it depends if your phone blocks IR or not - I've just tried my two phones, the Samsung Android shows it fine, the older iPhone doesn't show it at all. If you can't see it on your phone, check your phone using a known IR remote, such as off your TV.

I'm somewhat bemused by the added complication of pairing if its not an RF remote?, I've never seen (or heard) of any such thing for IR remotes, it sounds a really crazy and pointless idea.

A PIC is a microcontroller, an Arduino is a cheap development system containing an AVR microcontroller - they are the kind of things you use to do what you're trying to do - if you don't even know what they are, then I suspect you're completely doomed.
 

stevesxm

New Member
I've NEVER seen an RF remote with an antenna - the most popular RF examples would be the Amazon Firestick remotes and Apple TV remotes - there's no need for an external antenna. Try pointing it at your camera phone, and see if you can see it flashing - although it depends if your phone blocks IR or not - I've just tried my two phones, the Samsung Android shows it fine, the older iPhone doesn't show it at all. If you can't see it on your phone, check your phone using a known IR remote, such as off your TV.

I'm somewhat bemused by the added complication of pairing if its not an RF remote?, I've never seen (or heard) of any such thing for IR remotes, it sounds a really crazy and pointless idea.

A PIC is a microcontroller, an Arduino is a cheap development system containing an AVR microcontroller - they are the kind of things you use to do what you're trying to do - if you don't even know what they are, then I suspect you're completely doomed.
well... not doomed. i made my career doing things no one had done before and , like everything, its just a matter of learning and finding how the elemental and fundamentals and extrapolating from there.... thats where you guys come in... electronics were not my field. if i needed an electronic component i called up the electroic guys and said " how do i do this "? and they would tell me or provide it. for the rest.... maybe i simply haven't been clear...

1) the remotes are clearly RF because it says so right on them. having said that they also have an IR capability.... its a dif remote but im holding it in my hand so i know that true.

2) the remotes don't have the antenna... the device it controls does ... at least in all the hundred cases i done before this.... and that what caught me out on THESE devices... they are RF because the remote says so but the device has no antenna.

3) i already know i can do this with the std remotes i have... thats not the object of the game or the question. the object of the game and the question is " how do i make or buy a device that SIMULATES the remote so i don't have to use the remotes themselves. " i need something more reliable, not battery powered and stand alone.
 

danadak

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
Odd, I cant find an antenna on my cell phone, when did they change to IR ?

I do know my tablet has both IR (or so I think) and Antenna, can never find the blasted antenna,
but someone told me its there right in front of me. And I have an app on it that acts like a remote,
that has to mean receiver is, and can only be IR, or is that app using RF ? Got me. Clearly my
remote knowledge is lacking :)


Regards, Dana.
 

Latest threads

New Articles From Microcontroller Tips

Top