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My RTI Remote Setup Experience
#1
I'm going to document here my experience with learning RTI and getting it working. I needed to get away from a touch-screen only remote control for the TV so I did a little research on solutions and decided RTI would be a clean option.

The first task was to figure out what hardware I needed. This was not very straight forward as RTI is dealer only. I found the software, crappy PDF manuals, and lots of ambiguous hints of information online. I finally ended up picking up a ZRP6, RM433, and T2CS. It turns out the ZRP6 has a serial port so you don't need a CM232. I later discovered there are two-way communication options, which I didn't purchase. Finally, I discovered a good way to figure out what options are available is by loading the devices into Integration Designer and seeing what features appear in the menus. For example, I noticed there is a nice new theme, but its only available in the newer remotes. Also 2.4ghz /zigbee two-way communication options appeared when loading those devices into the software.

Next was to setup what I had. I wasn't sure I was going to keep it, but it was working okay during my initial tests and it seemed better gear (aka the next generation with two-way) was much more expensive. I was initially worried that it might be too slow having a the remote tell the processor to send a command over the serial port to a serial server (ethernet). Then CQC gets the info via virtual serial port, runs a script, and finally tells a GC100 to send an IR command to the cable box. BUT. It works fine Smile.

I used the RP6 driver in CQC since that is a serial port driver. (I think if you have an XP* processor you can use a generic ethernet driver). I initially starting having CQC learn the RS232 commands from the ZRP6 processor but that got to be too tedious so I created a script with Enum types etc that used a parameter. Creating the script to read a parameter took a bit of time but once it was done I could configure buttons much faster and it was ultimately much cleaner and less prone to setup errors.

Anyway, for right now I only have the TV controls on the RTI but so far I'm very happy with it. Having CQC in the middle of the RTI interface is also very nice. The user experience with the remote is extremely simple because CQC makes sure the user request works for the media center state by add/subtracting to the user requests.

In the future I'll add some lighting, thermostat, and other stuff, but in the first day of use with the TV it appears to be very solid.
--Kill all the serial ports--
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#2
For future readers... Keep in mind also that you can parameterize the trigger strings when using something like the RTI that sends out text strings. So that can be used significantly reduce the number of commands required in some cases.

So, if you wanted commands to do, say, select TV channels, you can have a single command to do that and pass in a value to the command that indicates the channel number. So you'd only have to train one command.
Dean Roddey
Explorans limites defectum
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#3
I'll be monitoring this thread as It will be part of my next components. Keep us posted...

/cheer
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#4
I took a slightly different route to get to the same great end-user experience.

I 'taught' an RTi T1B/RP6 a single set of ASCII strings. I then wrote a driver that keeps track of state (i.e., if source is TiVo then a press of the '1' key sends a TiVo command of '1', if the source is 'Lighting' I set scene 1 on the lighting controller).

In any case, the dedicated remote that has a backlight that comes on when shaken (not stirred), the hard keys, etc, make for a great user experience.

I've attached the driver. It is only a model as nobody else will have the same equipment but is may be useful to see how the state is maintained and how I used three 'power' presses in a short time to power off the theater (Pressing a source key turns on the theater if needed).


Attached Files
.cqcdrvpack   RTiRP6.CQCDrvPack (Size: 8.26 KB / Downloads: 0)
Mark Stega
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#5
Thanks for sharing mark! I like the idea of three power presses.

I should really be writing my code in drivers more. For some reason I started in using macros and saving state in the variable driver but I think I'd have a cleaner system if I was writing more driver code.

How do you save state of the system if you restart the CQC process if not using the variable driver? In this case the state is changed and stored in CQC so you can't "poll" the device.

Also, are you doing two-way? I just realized I could get a ZM24 and a two-way remove connected to my zrp6 without having to buy a xp processor. (never mind, I just read T1B/RP6 in your post. Maybe someone else can chime in on this)
--Kill all the serial ports--
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#6
I don't save the state over a CQC restart as I have essentially none. The only time I have a restart is either an upgrade or a power fail that goes beyond my 10-15 minute UPS.

My states are:

TiVo/BluRay/Kodi/Lighting so a single button press would bring me back into sync. But if it was a power failure my projector also cycled so I would have to start the theater by picking a source in any case.

To save state across restarts you could continue to use the variable driver. Or you could write out a simple file based state and read it on driver startup.

You could certainly start the journey to device drivers with the driver pack above. You can at least see how I did the power handling and states. Replacing the code with your own should be pretty easy.
Mark Stega
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#7
Quote:Also, are you doing two-way? I just realized I could get a ZM24 and a two-way remove connected to my zrp6 without having to buy a xp processor. (never mind, I just read T1B/RP6 in your post.
The reason I ended up with the one way remote is that I acquired the T1B, an RP6, a CM232, and an RM433 for $231 total. I couldn't pass up such a deal.
Mark Stega
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#8
If it's simple state and not a lot of it, the driver base class provides config read/write commands that just read/write a string of text to the configuration repository. So those are simple to use and you could just format out some simple text, or JSON or something, and then parse it back out.

It's not something you would want to be constantly writing to though, just for storing data at termination and loading it on initialization.
Dean Roddey
Explorans limites defectum
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#9
Update on my RTI setup...

I haven't changed much of anything but I have noticed the remote locks up on occasion (i then have to pull the back off and hit the switch). Sometimes it doesn't lock up at all and other times 2-3 times in an evening. It seems to have a higher chance of locking when I press a lot of buttons consecutively.

Other than that it has been working well.
--Kill all the serial ports--
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#10
Is it the remote or the hub? Though I guess you'd need two remotes to be able to know for sure.
Dean Roddey
Explorans limites defectum
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