Author Topic: X10 20A filter  (Read 3541 times)

bkenobi

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X10 20A filter
« on: December 15, 2013, 05:16:54 PM »
I have an X10 brand 20A wired filter that I've installed in a project box and have set up to filter my PC equipment from the rest of the house to remove noise.  I've been using this for quite some time and it seems to work fine.  I have been testing HomeGenie with a Raspberry Pi connected to my backup CM15A.  The CM15A (as well as all the other hardware) is connected behind the filter.  I sent a command to test it's functionality and was surprised to see AHP pick up the signal.  Is it expected that the filter would not isolate X10 commands from the filtered side to the unfiltered side?  To be fair, the primary CM15A is on the same circuit and not far from the filter, so if it were simply reducing the "noise" (X10 signal in this case), perhaps the primary CM15A would still see it with sufficient signal strength.

The only reason this is really important is that I was planning on testing the system in an isolated environment prior to switching over.  If I can't isolate the two systems though, that poses potential issues and I'll have to keep that in mind during testing.  I currently have 2 extra X10 20A wired filters, but no other filter available.  I've been half keeping an eye out for another Smarthome FilterLinc since they seem to be really nice units.  Will those isolate the signal better?  I have a couple around the house, so I'll try myself but I'm curious if anyone has a known working isolation method.

Brian H

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Re: X10 20A filter
« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2013, 08:04:54 AM »
I did a quick test so results may vary depending on your power lines characteristics and how the tested filter loaded it.
XTBM on an outlet with around 7.55 Volts X10 A4 signal.
XPPF 0.04 volts
Filterlinc 0.21 volts
Act AF120 0.18 volts
XPF 0.20 volts.

bkenobi

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Re: X10 20A filter
« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2013, 08:17:00 AM »
Interesting results!  From the looks of it, my best bet would be to use a XPPF (5A X10 plugin filter).  I'll keep an eye on eBay and other sources for a module.  Thanks for testing so quickly.  I was planning on testing my XPF and a filterlinc setup last night but had dinner plans.

NJSailor

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Re: X10 20A filter
« Reply #3 on: December 16, 2013, 10:01:54 AM »
I repeated Brian's test adding a JVDE XTB-F10 (A superb filter, by the way)

Using and A4 signal at 4.35V and my XTB-IIR off
XPF            0.15V
XPPF          0.09V
XTB-F10     0.09V

So, similar results but the gap narrowed. I suspect the variation is due to inconsistencies in the X10 products and my lower unfiltered signal level.
With my XTB-IIR on, all values were 9.99V so it blasted through everything.

I don't think any filter will give you enough isolation. Most X10 devices will hear a 40mV (0.04V) signal in the absence of noise.

I would think that you should be able to test by using different house codes and making sure that you uncheck the test house code(s) transceived in the primary CM15A.

Graham

NJSailor

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Re: X10 20A filter
« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2013, 10:15:26 AM »
I just realized that these filters may not be symmetrical so I also ran the test with a maxi controller in the filter and the XTBM on the other side (supply side of the filter). My CM15A is on this same circuit so my XTBM was seeing approximately the same signal as the CM15A..

Device     Signal     CM15A
XPF         0.11V       Read the signal
XPPF       0.09V       NO Signal read
XTB-F10  0.06V       NO Signal read

Graham

bkenobi

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Re: X10 20A filter
« Reply #5 on: December 16, 2013, 10:52:45 AM »
Changing the house code may be an option since I won't actually be controlling things during testing.  I'll just have to make sure that any triggered actions go to a different HC/UC than the actual device so I don't mess things up with my current WAF.  I have an XTBM as well, so I'll try a comparison between the XPF and Filterlinc-10.

bkenobi

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Re: X10 20A filter
« Reply #6 on: December 16, 2013, 06:15:02 PM »
Code: [Select]
Device      CM15A signal   Source signal   CM15A
XPF         0.02V          4.50V           Read the signal
FilterLinc  0.00V          3.87V           NO signal read

It looks like the FilterLinc works great!  Since this is a test and Filterlinc's (and XPPF's for that matter) aren't given away for free any more, I'll just reallocate a module and leave it's equipment unplugged for now.  If I had a way to move the test away from the primary CM15A, I suspect a XPF would work correctly.  I have 2 spares, so I could potentially use that but meh, this works too.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2013, 06:19:45 PM by bkenobi »

Brian H

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Re: X10 20A filter
« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2013, 03:19:37 AM »
I am glad you found a solution.

I am not surprised you got different results than I did.
I know my test outlet has a signal sucker on it.
A TV with a capacitor from Line to the Ground pin and a capacitor from Neutral also to the Ground pin.
I don't have a filter on it because my XTB-IIR  hits it so hard. I didn't install a filter. That capacity may have effected my readings.