Author Topic: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?  (Read 8384 times)

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Offline CW2274

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #75 on: September 06, 2019, 02:55:00 AM »
I'm assuming it's the same, but looks like you Weatherflow folks may be getting some love from the NHC.

https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCUAT5+shtml/060351.shtml

might give you insight into there network which has been around prior to the consumer releases https://weatherflow.com/professional-services/weather-networks/custom-designed-mesonets/the-weatherflow-hurricane-network/
Ah.....

Offline vreihen

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #76 on: September 06, 2019, 05:05:50 AM »
Ah.....

The experience from operating a commercial weather observation network as their "day job" in remote coastal locations has trickled down into the design decisions for their consumer stations, such as not using spinny cups and tipping buckets that need occasional attention.  I'd be willing to bet that they also have more meteorologists and data scientists on staff than any other PWS manufacturer.....
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Offline CW2274

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #77 on: September 06, 2019, 05:29:30 AM »
The "Ah" was not meant as a slight, as you apparently took it, but as an acknowledgement of WF's involvement as I knew nothing of it. Remember, I'm the one who brought this to attention in the first place.

Offline weather34

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #78 on: September 06, 2019, 06:28:14 AM »
Ah.....

The experience from operating a commercial weather observation network as their "day job" in remote coastal locations has trickled down into the design decisions for their consumer stations, such as not using spinny cups and tipping buckets that need occasional attention.  I'd be willing to bet that they also have more meteorologists and data scientists on staff than any other PWS manufacturer.....

problem is meteorologist and scientist wouldnt or cant squeeze all that knowledge into a $300 consumer product otherwise they would have no professional based industry to sell or provide too .

  .. ps im not rubbishing before mr rogers misinterprets but hey we can rubbish accurite thats ok .. but hey lets not talk or discuss about the rain  because im still so unconvinced on its consistency and recent methods almost two years on now its still most common issue raised on there forums.   [ You are not allowed to view attachments ]

as for lightning plop it near or in a vicinity of a gas combi boiler or when a neighbors lawn mower is running or someone welding nearby , i can trigger both of mine with my zippo lighter and many other methods . best one is a put a sky solar panel on it . but i get it not everyone has the same outcome but thats why i go on about consistency from one report to another from one day to another.  best position i found was horizontally mounted i use two of them purposely for lightning not temperature.i have reasonable results of approaching  storms long before i can hear them.

anyway show me the consistency in rainfall measurements across a wide user base of weatherflow consumer hardware and if you got about 10 hours read this public thread and look for any consistency from report to another ..there are reports from same users one day it is all good best thing since the invention of the wheel the same users next day not so good .. has we say in turkish tutarlılık yok .... :-k :-k https://community.weatherflow.com/t/rain-update-june-2019/3699/172
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Offline Dennis Rogers

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #79 on: September 06, 2019, 06:57:47 AM »
I have seen all the weather stations around me all have slight differences and a weather station is only as good as the best location as no one in a city can really have.

Many are placed on a roof. The wind maybe correct, rain will be off, dew point and temp.

Have it lower down the temps, dew points, rain will be more correct, so unless you got the land to set things up properly your not going to get consentant results.

I know all the 5 in 1 stations its recommended setting it to 10 feet as this gives the best all round balanced data.

I found with drizzle weather flow wont pick it up.

Normal rainfall my weather flow works well and pretty much spot on.

With even the bucket tipping are off at times, strong wind and heavy rain will give incorrect results.

There is no perfect system and the nearest is the old fashioned manual rain gauge that you got to manually empty.

My temps with weatherflow are inline with all the stations around me and within 1 degree of offical forcasts.

That is since I put my air inside an ambient radiation solar shield mounted on the south side of the house with ventilation all around it

I know weather flow intend to come out with a tipping bucket so it will catch drizzle and are committed to the sensor they use also.

If and when they come out with a tipping bucket the best of both worlds as weather flow indicates as soon as the first few drops start and something a tipping bucket cannot do and by the time it shows rain the ground allready has a good soaking of rain.


Also unless you buy a Davis, there is no other station offers quick wind updates. A 3 second wind update is impressive in the weather flow price range and Miles better than the Altlas's 10 second wind update which is only really giving an average, whereas weather flow gives more wind data and love when it does rain tells you how many mins it's been raining.

Love my weather flow; sure it's not perfect as no station is and certainly in a city cannot have the perfect spot and weather varies from 1 spot to another.

At work which is 6km away from home gets more rain than at home or can be the other way around so every station will vary. And looking at weather underground even every weathet station has some variations so who is to say your station is right or wrong.

If there are massive variations then yes it will be your station but minor ones and pretty much in line then it's safe to say for your area it's most likely pretty correct.

I know my weather flow is pretty much in line with the stations around me expect when its drizzling and then rely on my echowitt to indicate correct rainfall which is pretty accurate according to my manual rain gauge.

Having 2 stations fills the missing gaps like rain the weather flow wont pick up. But at times buckets dobt register rain properly either and why a manual gauge is the best backup
« Last Edit: September 06, 2019, 07:15:15 AM by Dennis Rogers »

Offline nincehelser

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #80 on: September 06, 2019, 08:28:59 AM »
Acurite dont have accurite lighting stricks either. Lots of false stricks. They where worse when they first came out but still would not totally rely they are correct.

When the altlas came out lots off issues, but weather flow have a better and more dedicated team and have professional meteorologist, and team, whereas acurite dont.

I have heard a lot of false lighting stricks on the altas

Yes, we know there were some problems with lightning on some of the first production model.  That was tracked down to a misrouted motor wire caused by a particular assembler at the factory.  The problem was corrected, and Acurite committed to fixing any that were found in the future even after the warranty period.  It was not a problem encountered by everyone.  I have two production models in operation and have had no lightning strike problems at all. 

I have one mounted near my weatherflow Air and the Air is basically "deaf" in comparison.  It's interesting since they both use the AS3935 chip.  My Atlas and the local TV weather station alerting me through my smartphone have both been accurate reporting lightning strikes in my vicinity.  Not so with the Weatherflow Air for some reason.

Also, Keri Strenfel of Acurite is a professional meteorologist on staff at Acurite. 

Offline nincehelser

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #81 on: September 06, 2019, 08:34:58 AM »
Also unless you buy a Davis, there is no other station offers quick wind updates. A 3 second wind update is impressive in the weather flow price range and Miles better than the Altlas's 10 second wind update which is only really giving an average, whereas weather flow gives more wind data and love when it does rain tells you how many mins it's been raining.

How are you getting 3-second wind updates from the Sky? 

I'm running a stock Sky, Air, and Hub, but I'm only getting 1-minute reporting from the app, and 5 minute reporting from wunderground.

Offline Dennis Rogers

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #82 on: September 06, 2019, 02:28:28 PM »
Easy dont have power saver turned on. Gives me 3 sec wind onscreen updates average wind and gives gusting.

Much better than acurite which I found there stations not as reliable as ambient or ecowitt which is  better than ambient.

A wind speed of ten seconds is a joke I find but the 3cseconds of weather flow is miles better than the altlas.

Through the app I am getting a 3 sec wind update. The specs says you get a 3 sec update. If not there is something wrong with yours.

It will give an average wind speed updates every minute but it you look at your app the wind is showing every 3 secs plus direction.

For what your paying for the atlas a 10 sec wind update is far from good enough it's a joke. That put me off atlas right there and none other with fast wind updates bar davis
« Last Edit: September 06, 2019, 02:41:45 PM by Dennis Rogers »

Offline waiukuweather

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #83 on: September 06, 2019, 02:31:42 PM »
yes, its easy to get fast wind updating from weather flow :)
works great that :)

Offline nincehelser

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #84 on: September 06, 2019, 05:06:24 PM »
Easy dont have power saver turned on. Gives me 3 sec wind onscreen updates average wind and gives gusting.

Much better than acurite which I found there stations not as reliable as ambient or ecowitt which is  better than ambient.

A wind speed of ten seconds is a joke I find but the 3cseconds of weather flow is miles better than the altlas.

Through the app I am getting a 3 sec wind update. The specs says you get a 3 sec update. If not there is something wrong with yours.

It will give an average wind speed updates every minute but it you look at your app the wind is showing every 3 secs plus direction.

For what your paying for the atlas a 10 sec wind update is far from good enough it's a joke. That put me off atlas right there and none other with fast wind updates bar davis

I don't have the power saver on.

Guess something is messed up somewhere. 

My weatherflow has also been falling off the network often of late.  Sometimes I have to completely reset the WiFi network information.... other times it just comes back on it's own.

I wouldn't call it "a joke", but weatherflow certainly hasn't been as accurate or reliable as I'd like from a weather station for general purposes.  I like the technology direction though.


Offline waiukuweather

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #85 on: September 06, 2019, 05:15:49 PM »
I think it does a great job, especially if you use a second windspeed/rain sensor set at ground level for rain
(they ideally need to have a separate rain sensor)
and the best thing is they are open to suggestions (weatherflow) and are wanting to improve
but you are not going to please everyone
but just because someone does not agree or does not like does not mean someone else will feel or think the same

Offline nincehelser

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #86 on: September 06, 2019, 05:43:15 PM »
One thing that I'm not real comfortable with are their "calibrations".

I can understand it from a research and development aspect to improve the equipment, but at a consumer level I'm left wondering if I'm really seeing "my" data or something that's more of a "group effort".

One example: "RainCheck".  I can have it "On" or "Off", of course, but is there a way to compare my reading to the radar-derived reading? 

Offline waiukuweather

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #87 on: September 06, 2019, 05:59:50 PM »
but there can be a lot of variation in rain readings between rain gauges close to each other
and so an average over those is probably better
which is what is happening when they calibrate against other known sources and rain radar
at least they are trying to get the system improved and auto learning etc etc
kudos to them I say for doing all that
but there will be people who don't have the same opinion etc but that does not mean everyone will and should have that same opinion

Offline vreihen

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #88 on: September 06, 2019, 06:23:31 PM »
I don't have the power saver on.

WF sends four different observation types via UDP and the web API.  The first one is obs_air and obs_sky observation packets, and they are sent every minute for things like temperature and wind averages.  The second one is rapid_wind, which is sent every 15 seconds (power save) or 3 seconds (power hungry).  They call it rapid because it is sent rapidly, not that it is alerting to a wind gust or something.  The third and fourth packets are for the start of rain and a detected lightning strike, and those are sent immediately whenever one of those events is observed.  There are other packets sent for hub status and debugging.

If you are only seeing wind every minute, you are probably looking at obs_sky and not rapid_wind.....
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Offline nincehelser

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #89 on: September 06, 2019, 06:23:50 PM »
but there can be a lot of variation in rain readings between rain gauges close to each other
and so an average over those is probably better
which is what is happening when they calibrate against other known sources and rain radar
at least they are trying to get the system improved and auto learning etc etc
kudos to them I say for doing all that
but there will be people who don't have the same opinion etc but that does not mean everyone will and should have that same opinion

This kind of blurs the line between honest, independent data and just taking a third-party "best estimate" using radar.

It's sort of like what wunderground used to be doing with pressure data... ie, they think your pressure reporting isn't accurate, so they started adjusting it in a "black-box" fashion.  That did not go down well with folks who were taking great pains to be accurate with their pressure data.

I can understand it being used to tweak the accuracy of the haptic sensors during the development phase, but the way they are presenting "Rain Check", it sounds like this is a "permanent" solution for poorly sited or calibrated sensors.

Offline nincehelser

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #90 on: September 06, 2019, 07:19:54 PM »
I don't have the power saver on.

WF sends four different observation types via UDP and the web API.  The first one is obs_air and obs_sky observation packets, and they are sent every minute for things like temperature and wind averages.  The second one is rapid_wind, which is sent every 15 seconds (power save) or 3 seconds (power hungry).  They call it rapid because it is sent rapidly, not that it is alerting to a wind gust or something.  The third and fourth packets are for the start of rain and a detected lightning strike, and those are sent immediately whenever one of those events is observed.  There are other packets sent for hub status and debugging.

If you are only seeing wind every minute, you are probably looking at obs_sky and not rapid_wind.....

I've seen the 3-second data on the network.  I'm just not seeing it in the app or wunderground.

I've been running on the assumption that they were throttling due to server load.

Something is amiss.  I just took a look at my records, and it seems since May I have had many more Weatherflow outages than I realized.   A few times I've had to re-enter my Wifi info by hand to get it running again, but apparently it's dropping more frequently and coming back on its own.

Oddly, the outages seem to start shortly after I added the solar panel to the Sky. 

Offline Dennis Rogers

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #91 on: September 06, 2019, 08:22:50 PM »
I think it does a great job, especially if you use a second windspeed/rain sensor set at ground level for rain
(they ideally need to have a separate rain sensor)
and the best thing is they are open to suggestions (weatherflow) and are wanting to improve
but you are not going to please everyone
but just because someone does not agree or does not like does not mean someone else will feel or think the same

I second that  mine is right up there with my ecowitt and Davis vue and find mine accurate expect for drizzle which it wont pick up

Drizzle for us is a very rare event. Even compared to every other station in my area my weather flow is as good as any of them.

Remember lots of people mount theirs on the roof so every condition expect wind will be incorrect and rainfall will be well out. My ecowitt ( ambient 2029a) clone does a good job of rainfall compared to my manual rain gauge but wind updates are poor like the altlas, and even mounting the altlas on your roof is only giving average wind speed not actual wind speed.

That's the beauty of the wind flow a 3 sec actual wind speed.

Everything I read about 5 in 1 most are mounting them wrong anyway which will account to variations.

They always recommend 10 feet and this will give the most balanced readings.

No 5 in 1 should be on the roof, at least ambient have fixed this idea where you can extend the cups and wind direction miles higher than the station and why altlas members dont use this feature beats me.

And has been said you can get a sperate sky unit and place it at ground level to give more accurate rainfall.

Offline nincehelser

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #92 on: September 06, 2019, 08:50:03 PM »
The Atlas sampling window is also about 3 seconds.  (The 5n1 window was 4).

The highest wind value recorded during the 10-second reporting interval is then sent.

It's not an average over the reporting interval.

Offline Dennis Rogers

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #93 on: September 06, 2019, 11:08:45 PM »
Yeah but does not update to your screen every 3 secs like weather flow. Only updateams wind speeds at 10sec interviles. Still not good enough in my opinon

Offline vreihen

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #94 on: September 07, 2019, 08:43:43 AM »
I've seen the 3-second data on the network.  I'm just not seeing it in the app or wunderground.

The app and web site both use the 3-second rapid_wind info to update the icon on the left side of the wind card.  I'd grab a screen capture of mine, but ironically there's a hurricane spinning off the coast and we're not seeing as much as a draft here right now.....

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Offline arrowspace90

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #95 on: October 06, 2019, 01:24:54 PM »
Just joined the Weatherflow club.   If I scanned this forum more carefully, I would have known about these sooner, as I see lots of geeks did.
The tech is pretty cool, have to admit.  No doubt lots of questions about accuracy.
I have a Davis Pro II, way up on steep high roof where, apart from the winds, it shouldn't be.  I have long been dissatisfied with its siting.
So, the Weatherflow "Sky" sits down on a fence top between 2 houses and trees nearby.  The winds shouldn't be right on the money there whether the tech works or not.  The haptic rain sensor?  Holy cow, I have no idea about that, but I love the idea of it.  I have a Stratus manual rain gauge right next to the Sky, which has in the past reported more rain than the roof Davis, which it should down at the 6 foot height (except for surrounding houses, etc). So I will get a pretty good comparison for rain amounts.   
The Weatherflow looks like fun to me.  If nothing else, it's great to see someone trying out new weather tech on us.

Offline waiukuweather

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #96 on: October 06, 2019, 01:52:19 PM »
now that's the spirit!

Offline arrowspace90

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #97 on: October 11, 2019, 03:35:10 PM »
Had my first experience with "Rain Check" last night.

Went to bed with my WF showing about .26 inch rain.   Got up this morning, with no more rain, and it was adjusted up to .42. 
My roof Davis, which under-reports due to being over 25 feet up, showed about .46 inch of actual measured rain.
My Stratus manual tube, on the fence 2 feet from the WF, showed .32.
Gosh, I don't know what exactly to believe.  Or maybe there's just not anything to actually believe.
If my WF is not able to actually measure the rain, then why do I need it?  I can probably just get a number from the same source software that WF uses, right?   https://metstat.com/real-time/qpe/
« Last Edit: October 11, 2019, 03:39:51 PM by arrowspace90 »

Offline nincehelser

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #98 on: October 11, 2019, 04:49:16 PM »
Had my first experience with "Rain Check" last night.

Went to bed with my WF showing about .26 inch rain.   Got up this morning, with no more rain, and it was adjusted up to .42. 
My roof Davis, which under-reports due to being over 25 feet up, showed about .46 inch of actual measured rain.
My Stratus manual tube, on the fence 2 feet from the WF, showed .32.
Gosh, I don't know what exactly to believe.  Or maybe there's just not anything to actually believe.
If my WF is not able to actually measure the rain, then why do I need it?  I can probably just get a number from the same source software that WF uses, right?   https://metstat.com/real-time/qpe/

Prescinding the siting issues, it's hard to beat an old fashioned rain gauge for truth.

You've hit exactly my concern with "rain check".  I'm not sure if it's a temporary fix or final solution.

I'm hoping they are still trying to make the rain sensor work instead of throwing in the towel.

Maybe it's just not a great idea to mix the rain and wind sensing in one unit?

Offline doubleohwhatever

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Re: Opinions on WeatherFlow smart weather stations?
« Reply #99 on: October 11, 2019, 04:50:29 PM »
For the past year I've been testing out different precipitation sensor technologies. This includes radar (Lufft R2S, WS700, WS10) and piezoelectric/haptic (Vaisala WXT536,WeatherFlow).

TLDR: Get a bucket sensor

Long version:

None of the radar-based devices provided even remotely accurate data. I just gave up on them. The Vaisala WXT line and the WeatherFlow devices appear to use very similar if not the same technologies. Both rely on interpreting the impact of rain drops and overall these do perform better than radar-based sensors. Vaisala claims their sensor is 95% accurate but this is BS and they know it. The WXT536 even allows you to connect a rain bucket. That being said, the Vaisala sensor *is* more accurate than the WeatherFlow sensor (but not by much). My guess is that the slightly improved accuracy isn't due to a better algorithm but rather due to better construction. The Vaisala unit has a very sturdy stainless steel rain sensor surface.

So the bottom line is that from what I've seen with hands on experience, none of these new technologies can beat a bucket in terms of accuracy. WeatherFlow should consider selling a wireless rain bucket.

 

anything