Weather Station Hardware > What Weather Station Should I Buy?

What do you want to see in a low-cost station?

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Hi all,

I'm the owner of Argent Data Systems, and we've had our venerable ADS-WS1 weather station on the market for many years now. The station was designed to fill a particular underserved niche at the time, namely low-cost remote site monitoring.

When the station was developed, there were a number of inexpensive home weather stations available but they all depended on USB connections with proprietary software, if they had any interface at all. Peet Bros and Davis were the best options if you wanted to put up a station on the amateur radio APRS network, but they were hundreds of dollars before adding a TNC and radio. The ADS-WS1 has always been sold at $155.

It was built primarily for APRS, with an RS-232 output for local use and also support for voice readout over the radio and it has a base unit with the APRS TNC built in. It's still in production but is getting pretty long in the tooth - it doesn't have USB support, for one and still requires a serial port to configure.

The wind and rain sensors are made by a supplier that has also provided parts for a lot of the other consumer-grade stations you've seen on the market, so they're nothing special but thoroughly proven. We've gotten the anemometers up to 106 MPH in a wind tunnel and they hold up well.

The WS1 was already due for a refresh before the pandemic hit, but then component shortages had us scrambling to keep anything in production and the redesign got put on the back burner. We're finally getting a chance to get back to it now and I'm looking for your input.

What do you want to see in an affordable weather station that's not well covered by existing options? What we've got in the works already for the next version includes NFC configuration support, so you can set up the station by tapping it with an Android phone (iOS support to come eventually, I hope, but Apple is always a pain to work with when it involves hardware) and using an app to change settings. I expect it'll also have LoRaWan support but it's not decided whether that will be on all boards or if it'll be offered as an add-on module.

We've also got particulate sensors on hand that we've been evaluating and will either be available as an internal addition to the station itself or as an external box, depending on what fraction of our customers want that feature.

Basically our place in the market is between homebrew solutions and $1000+ professional stations. We're here to serve the hobbyists, researchers, and others who need to deploy remote weather stations on a budget and get the most bang for their buck. We're not out to go head to head with the likes of Vaisala - we're here to give you a station at least as good as any you'd put together with Arduino or ESP32, but ready to use, documented, and polished.

So let me know what your requirements are. Do you want cellular data support? WiFi for use at home? LoRaWan? How important is particulate monitoring to you? Is logging to SD card important to you? Do you have specific price and power budget numbers you're trying to hit?

Let me know and we'll do our best to make sure the next version meets your needs!



PM sent.

Hi Scott, funny you mention Peet Bros stations. I've used them for years, but I smoked the console after a location move hooking up the weather picture.
I see your station outputs the Peet serial stream.
What I'd like to see a lower cost weather picture on the market. I just finished writing a bash script to scrape data from a Ecowitt GW1100 and send it to the weather picture.
I find the visibility of bright red LED's a big plus, they can be read across the room. At the right price, I'd have them at out local boat club and our fishing coop.


I always thought that thing was weirdly overpriced. I think the problem with competing directly against it with the same kind of device is that today it'd actually be a lot cheaper to just put a monitor on your wall and hook it up to a Raspberry Pi. And cheaper than that would be writing an app for something like an Amazon Firestick.

I agree with you on the WP cost.
I'm sure I'm missing something, but I haven't seen a App skin for anything that isn't very busy and just a basic display like the WP.
Pi skins I've see, as well as PWT are nice on a desk android tablet. Does PWT work on a firestick and monitor? Google vs Amazon, something to look at tomorrow.
Also, is monitor screen burn still a thing with big non-moving characters? That is why Led's may be old school, but just work.



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