Author Topic: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable  (Read 5293 times)

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Offline bmcgregor3

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Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« on: October 07, 2014, 04:54:53 PM »
Well I have and exciting project ahead of me and have hopefully not bitten off more than I can chew!

I just received the 6322C ISS and my first task is to power the unit.  There are several posts about how to power the ISS.  A few spec sheets show that the ISS draws 30mA at 4-6 VDC and that the console power unit can be directly connected to the provided barrel plug on the board.  The console power adapter is listed to provide 5VDC at 300mA regulated and I assume that the ISS power from the console is essentially pass through.  Silly me, I did not think of ordering the power supply with the ISS which would have made this first step easier.  So, I was wondering if the 5.2 VDC 400mA (or 5VDC 500mA) I have in my drawer of power supplies would work or if it is not worth the risk?  I have another box at home to go though this evening.

Next step is to map the RJ-11 connector.  Looking at the bottom of the connector the wires are left to right - Yellow, Green, Red, Black.  Logic would tell me that Red=+ and Black=-.  I might feed power into the barrel connection and put a volt meter on the cable to make sure.   

Now to figure out how to map the yellow and green wires to a serial port to start listening.  Snapper informed me in another post the the ISS only sends data.  Any suggestion here would be much appreciated.  I have been reading Dekay's posts regarding intercepted wireless communications and have to believe that data would be consistent.

Ultimately, I would like to develop a Raspberry Pi database logger that I can connect to via VPN and pull data from.  Should not be that hard right?

Offline RainmanWeather

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2014, 05:51:05 PM »
This cat has been skinned before, albeit closed-source commercially..

Direct Connect Kit - Meteohub - smartbedded

You may find some clues there or at least encouragement that it most certainly can be done.. one interesting thing that jumps out at me is that the smartbedded dongle uses the USB to power the ISS.

Hope it helps!

Offline bmcgregor3

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #2 on: October 07, 2014, 06:32:45 PM »
Well, so much for my novel idea!  Not sure how I missed it looking through all the forums.  Going to still make a run at it though. 

Wonder what is in that black box serial usb converter?

It is interesting that they can power the ISS off of the Raspberry PI USB.   A couple sites say the Pi B puts out 5V at 600mA so the 500mA power supply I have should be fine.

The  DB9-to-JR11 adapter should have the pin connections.  If only I had one around...

Anyway, thanks for the information!

Offline Bushman

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2014, 09:38:33 PM »
Notice that the direct connect kit does NOT provide a pressure reading.  Major short coming in my books for what is otherwise a neat idea.

Offline belfryboy

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2014, 01:02:27 AM »
The serial data from the ISS is a differential signal using IIRC a maxim max483 chip. I'll try to find more info when I am home again.

Offline mcrossley

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2014, 04:32:53 AM »
Take a look at this topic... http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=13205.0

It gives you the bit rate and parity which is a start.
Mark

Offline bmcgregor3

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2014, 04:42:25 PM »
A few updates about this project:

The ISS supplied cable is four conductor rj-11 and the receiver on the board is set up for 6. 

Looking from bottom considering 6 conductors (it is interesting that the color configuration is the opposite of the US Bell system)

1 - not used and isolated on board
2 - Y - Ground
3 - G - Communication (see notes below)
4 - R - Communication (see notes below)
5 - B - +5 volts
6 - Following the etch line on the board takes this to main processor which leads me to believe there may be some programming capability with a 6 conductor connection.  What else makes sense???

There is an AMD ADM348 chip just below the rj-11 connector on the board.   This chip is RS-422 and RS-485 compliant has full and half duplex options, no simplex option from what I have seen.  Even with a magnifying glass I cannot follow the chip outputs to the rj-11 connector to understand output configuration of which there are a few.   Someone posted that the ISS is a transmit only.  However since the boards can be daisy chained (read on another post that someone shorted the dip switches on wired boards and hooked up multiple ISS's to a single console) I believe that there is a master slave relationship between the console and possible multiple ISS's.  Chime in if you know something about this.

I have a blackbox RS232 (D9) to RS-422 converter that I am going to play around with to see if I can pick anything up with.  If the ISS is only transmission that I would have to think that the RS-422 is the way to go since it can receive on two channels.  Again chime in if you have something to add.  Based on my assumption I need to figure out what line is TD and which is RD.

@mcrossley - Thanks for the link for parity and baud rate!

@Bushman - Good Observation - I am really looking to use this for recording Temp, wind and rain.


Offline dalecoy

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2014, 05:23:55 PM »
...  However since the boards can be daisy chained (read on another post that someone shorted the dip switches on wired boards and hooked up multiple ISS's to a single console) ......

Please supply the link to that post.

I can confirm from my current configuration that a single ISS will (of course) provide correct data to multiple consoles.  (In fact, it works for 2 consoles wired in parallel - rather than the series wiring that RS-422 specifies).

Offline bmcgregor3

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #8 on: October 09, 2014, 06:18:59 PM »
I am not sure that I will be able to find the post again but will check my office system tomorrow to see if I bookmarked it.
I am fairly sure that the post did not describe the connection detail only that you could short the terminal headers to  simulate using dip switched on a cabled ISS.  I only thought it would be logical to make the connections in the daisy chain format since that is native to RS-485/422 and the on board  ADM348 chip.

Offline snapper

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2014, 07:06:56 PM »
I have a blackbox RS232 (D9) to RS-422 converter that I am going to play around with to see if I can pick anything up with.  If the ISS is only transmission that I would have to think that the RS-422 is the way to go since it can receive on two channels.  Again chime in if you have something to add.  Based on my assumption I need to figure out what line is TD and which is RD.

The 2 pins are D+ and D- as RS422 is a differential signal. Therefore you need 2 wires for transmit and 2 extra wires for receive.
As there are only 2 wires, plus power, the ISS cannot receive any data from the console; its a transmitter only.

I just connected the centre 2 pins on a wired ISS to a RS485 to RS232 converter, set to 4800 baud,8,n,1 and could see the data without issue.

The ISS transmissions I saw were always for ID 1, which makes sense as the system was never designed for multiple wired ISS devices.
I guess you could try shorting the DIP switch contacts to see what happens, but I don't see the point?

Offline dalecoy

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2014, 07:08:39 PM »
I am not sure that I will be able to find the post again but will check my office system tomorrow to see if I bookmarked it.
I am fairly sure that the post did not describe the connection detail only that you could short the terminal headers to  simulate using dip switched on a cabled ISS.  I only thought it would be logical to make the connections in the daisy chain format since that is native to RS-485/422 and the on board  ADM348 chip.

I'm curious, because I don't quite see how that would (or could) work.

Offline snapper

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2014, 07:36:14 PM »
6 - Following the etch line on the board takes this to main processor which leads me to believe there may be some programming capability with a 6 conductor connection.  What else makes sense???

Actually that makes a lot of sense - the wireless ISS doesn't have the rs422 chip soldered in place but does have the socket fitted like the cabled ISS.
I guess they may use this socket to upload the correct regionalisation settings (or even firmware) to allow the same wireless hardware to be used in different countries (e.g. UK versions use a different transmitter frequency than US)
This would fit in with the ability to switch the consoles from US to EU frequencies by issuing commands via the serial port when in test mode...

Did you note what pin this went to on the processor?

Offline bmcgregor3

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2014, 08:54:49 PM »
I am not sure that I will be able to find the post again but will check my office system tomorrow to see if I bookmarked it.
I am fairly sure that the post did not describe the connection detail only that you could short the terminal headers to  simulate using dip switched on a cabled ISS.  I only thought it would be logical to make the connections in the daisy chain format since that is native to RS-485/422 and the on board  ADM348 chip.

I'm curious, because I don't quite see how that would (or could) work.

Here is my assumption:  That the console and ISS processors that are handling the data don't really know how the information is being transferred.  On the ISS there could be a RF setup or in my case the AMD ADM348.  The information has to arrive there in the same format.  The configuration of the board is completely modular so why would you format the actual data differently for different types of transmissions.  On the wireless side there may be more error checking but the content between should be the same.  Now I have never seen a console and do not know if the wireless mode is capable of received data from a wired ISS.  Would seem to be a lot of work to have wired and wireless consoles handle the data from the ISS differently.  From what I read on Dekay's site the serial commands are not always consistent...
« Last Edit: October 09, 2014, 09:12:01 PM by bmcgregor3 »

Offline bmcgregor3

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #13 on: October 09, 2014, 09:39:58 PM »
I have a blackbox RS232 (D9) to RS-422 converter that I am going to play around with to see if I can pick anything up with.  If the ISS is only transmission that I would have to think that the RS-422 is the way to go since it can receive on two channels.  Again chime in if you have something to add.  Based on my assumption I need to figure out what line is TD and which is RD.

The 2 pins are D+ and D- as RS422 is a differential signal. Therefore you need 2 wires for transmit and 2 extra wires for receive.
As there are only 2 wires, plus power, the ISS cannot receive any data from the console; its a transmitter only.

I just connected the centre 2 pins on a wired ISS to a RS485 to RS232 converter, set to 4800 baud,8,n,1 and could see the data without issue.

The ISS transmissions I saw were always for ID 1, which makes sense as the system was never designed for multiple wired ISS devices.
I guess you could try shorting the DIP switch contacts to see what happens, but I don't see the point?

The default setup for an ISS is ID1.  I am looking for the post about changing the id (solder bridge across DIP socket) and hooking two wired units.  The console would parse ID1 and ID2 data separately just like wireless.  Why?  Lets say you had 4 ISS setup adjacent to a shared network.  You could pipe all of the connections through the network to be received by 1 console.  I run a Public Works department and a larger town or county could do this at remote locations to monitor weather for tasks like snow removal and winter road treatments.  I have a storm water project coming that I am setting this up for.   A RS422 system would allow this very easily and I don't think we can assume that this is not set up half or full duplex just because we only see data coming out of the ISS.  My theory is that if you connected two ISS units, changed the id of one ISS(solder bridge across DIP socket), connected them daisy chain the console would parse the data from the two units.  I would think that one of the ISS units would be powered via the barrel connector.

See this post about daisy chaining consoles.  http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=773.0

Offline dalecoy

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #14 on: October 09, 2014, 09:54:06 PM »
See this post about daisy chaining consoles.  http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=773.0

That talks only about having one cabled ISS sending data to two or more consoles.  I don't see anything in that post about jumpering dip switches or shorting terminal headers.

See my next post about why multiple ISS' will probably not work.

Offline bmcgregor3

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #15 on: October 09, 2014, 10:05:59 PM »
See this post about daisy chaining consoles.  http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=773.0

That talks only about having one cabled ISS sending data to two or more consoles.  I don't see anything in that post about jumpering dip switches or shorting terminal headers.

See my next post about why multiple ISS' will probably not work.

Still looking....  I thought the multiple console setup confirmed that the communication is half or full duplex which is why the crossover is required.

Offline bmcgregor3

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #16 on: October 09, 2014, 10:07:21 PM »
6 - Following the etch line on the board takes this to main processor which leads me to believe there may be some programming capability with a 6 conductor connection.  What else makes sense???

Actually that makes a lot of sense - the wireless ISS doesn't have the rs422 chip soldered in place but does have the socket fitted like the cabled ISS.
I guess they may use this socket to upload the correct regionalisation settings (or even firmware) to allow the same wireless hardware to be used in different countries (e.g. UK versions use a different transmitter frequency than US)
This would fit in with the ability to switch the consoles from US to EU frequencies by issuing commands via the serial port when in test mode...

See picture in previous post for back of board

Did you note what pin this went to on the processor?

Offline dalecoy

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #17 on: October 09, 2014, 10:07:37 PM »
I'm curious, because I don't quite see how that would (or could) work.

Here is my assumption:  That the console and ISS processors that are handling the data don't really know how the information is being transferred.  On the ISS there could be a RF setup or in my case the AMD ADM348.  The information has to arrive there in the same format.  The configuration of the board is completely modular so why would you format the actual data differently for different types of transmissions. 
...... Would seem to be a lot of work to have wired and wireless consoles handle the data from the ISS differently. 

Almost agreed on all of those points - and the data is the same format - HOWEVER:

1.  The consoles do have slightly different firmware.  Not a "lot of work" if differences were required.

2.  The cabled console doesn't have to worry about how to handle frequency hopping, RF frequencies, etc.

3.  But - most relevant to your application - the wireless console will not handle data from two (or more) ISS'.  [It will handle things like a remote anemometer, etc., but only ONE temp/humidity/rain/sun/uv.].  So, by extension of your argument, the cabled console won't do that either.

Offline dalecoy

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #18 on: October 09, 2014, 10:14:46 PM »
Of course, if you are going to use a Raspberry Pi to decode the data, and if you can persuade multiple cabled ISS' to play nicely together, then it's theoretically possible to not worry about what the Davis console might do.

Or, you might persuade an Envoy8X (which is natively wireless) to work "cabled".

http://davisnet.com/weather/products/weather_product.asp?pnum=06318

I'm glad you are keeping us informed as this interesting project continues.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2014, 10:17:24 PM by dalecoy »

Offline bmcgregor3

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #19 on: October 09, 2014, 10:44:23 PM »
I am off on a bit of a tangent here and have to admit that I have not really looked into console capabilities.  I am sure that I misunderstood that the console could handle more inputs as being complete ISS's.  Maybe the post I read just showed that you could change the station id of the ISS by shorting the dip switch pin spaces on the board.

Now back to the ISS communication debate: simplex or duplex? I would like to find out what brand  RS485 snapper used so I can check the data sheets.

Offline dalecoy

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #20 on: October 09, 2014, 10:55:04 PM »
Now back to the ISS communication debate: simplex or duplex?

Once again, I'm not quite sure what you are asking.

The ISS is transmit only

That's simplex by ANSI definition.  But doesn't completely fit the ITU-T definition.

However, I get the feeling that you are asking a different question?

Offline geofb13

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #21 on: October 09, 2014, 11:23:21 PM »
Digging back to 2011 for you, though I'm not sure it's what you're looking for either.

http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=11311.0

And to quote you dalecoy:

"A datasheet indicates that the ADM348 (various packaging, etc.) is 'Slew Rate Limited, Half- Full-Duplex, RS-485/RS-422 Transceiver'."

Offline snapper

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #22 on: October 10, 2014, 03:22:45 AM »
I am off on a bit of a tangent here and have to admit that I have not really looked into console capabilities.  I am sure that I misunderstood that the console could handle more inputs as being complete ISS's.  Maybe the post I read just showed that you could change the station id of the ISS by shorting the dip switch pin spaces on the board.

A console can only ever listen to exactly one ISS.
Given that the wired system is a point-to-point link, there will only ever be one ISS so there is no-need for dip switches to change station id.
The need for a station id is twofold:
1. to provide the ability to change wireless transmitter ID to prevent interference with neibouring stations and
2. to provide the wireless system to listen to additional sensor stations, and differentiate between them by id.

To reverse engineer this, you need to look at the whole system, not just a small part of it...

Now back to the ISS communication debate: simplex or duplex? I would like to find out what brand  RS485 snapper used so I can check the data sheets.

Not really a debate, more a fact that the ISS is transmit only. It doesn't matter what the spec sheets say about duplex/simplex...
Many people here have spent many hours looking at this, myself, I have spent days with an oscilloscope and can categorically say that the consoles do not transmit data to the ISS.

The rs485 sniffer I used was just a cheapie from ebay (cost about 5ukp) it has "model STM485S" written on it...
I connected green wire to D+ and red wire to D-

Offline dalecoy

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #23 on: October 10, 2014, 10:12:27 AM »
A console can only ever listen to exactly one ISS.

Just to be pedantic and strictly accurate - that statement does not apply to the Envoy8X, which is a wireless console.

...and a Vue/VP2 console will only recognize (at most) one ISS. 

In context, that's extremely picky - and I apologize to snapper, who is being very helpful.

Offline bmcgregor3

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Re: Vantage Pro2 ISS direct to Computer via Cable
« Reply #24 on: October 10, 2014, 12:32:41 PM »
Thank you to everyone for the valuable information!  If my posts appear naive that is because I am a Civil Engineer tinkering around somewhere I probably shouldn't be.   

For now I am looking at the data on a windows machine and will pull this over to the PI once I get a handle on the packets.

I am now looking at data from the ISS and will start researching what to do with it next.  Probably going to be a few question :)

Attached are a few pictures show the setup for anyone who might be interested.  Note that I am using a RS-422 converter because that is what I had on hand.  If you used a RJ surface mount box verify color to pin in case there is a non standard out there.