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Thread: Success Modifying VictorPV Sketch to Accept Renard Protocol from ESPixelstick

  1. #11
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    Default Re: Success Modifying VictorPV Sketch to Accept Renard Protocol from ESPixelstick

    As I mentioned above, I modified a couple of sketches found on this forum to accept Renard protocol. I did this because I found that the ESPixelstick (and other ESP boards that run the same firmware) can output a serial data stream in Renard protocol such that I could feed the data to an Arduino MEGA and run dumb AC or DC lights via wireless E1.31.

    I used the ESPixelstick to perform all of the testing until I was succesful. But I did not want to add another board to my setup since I had room on my MEGA shield to add an ESP-01 module. So I added the ability to mount an ESP-01 module by referencing work by Shelby Merrick (ESPixelstick) and others. I have everything working as planned. I now use a Pi3 running FPP to transmit the data over WIFI. So now I won't need to use USB extender cables from my laptop to the MEGAs as I did last year.

    I had my new MEGA shield made by DirtyPCBs.com along with an AC distribution/Zero Cross board and a DC distribution board. Below are a couple of pictures of my test setup. Hopefully the final assembly will be much neater. All of the boards sit in a Dri-Box such that I can put them outside nearer the props that they control. While I will only have to have one AC supply cord running TO the box, there will still be a lot of cables LEAVING the Dri-Box.

    Looking forward to using these controllers from last year along with the ESPixelsticks and 3000 pixel channels this year.

    EDIT- problem uploading pictures right now. Will try again later.

    Kevin
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by kev; 09-07-2017 at 12:49 PM. Reason: added photos
    Kevin

  2. #12
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    Default Re: Success Modifying VictorPV Sketch to Accept Renard Protocol from ESPixelstick

    can't upload pictures

    EDIT - Ooops!!! Tried to load pictures that exceeded the size limitations.
    Last edited by kev; 09-07-2017 at 12:50 PM.
    Kevin

  3. #13
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    Default Re: Success Modifying VictorPV Sketch to Accept Renard Protocol from ESPixelstick

    Ok I'm back, I got the ESPixelstick flashed and on my network and hooked to the Arduino with several SSRs. any idea how.if the test mode works because I am only getting the random blinks since the arduino is not receiving anything.
    Also tried with xlights output to lights and nothing.
    have you got yours working with the ESPixelstick yet?

  4. #14
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    Default Re: Success Modifying VictorPV Sketch to Accept Renard Protocol from ESPixelstick

    Quote Originally Posted by beeder007 View Post
    .....if the test mode works because I am only getting the random blinks since the arduino is not receiving anything.....
    test mode works?? ESPixelstick test mode?? not sure what you are asking.
    Kevin

  5. #15
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    Default Re: Success Modifying VictorPV Sketch to Accept Renard Protocol from ESPixelstick

    So I just reread what I wrote, i see why it was confusing.
    When logging into the ESPixelstick via the web interface, going to the testing tab i change disabled to chase and nothing changes.
    The SSRs attached to my Arduino just keep flashing at random.
    ESP data connected to arduino RX ground connected to ground.
    any advice on how to check if its my arduino sketch or if the ESPixel stick is just not outputting any data.

  6. #16
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    Default Re: Success Modifying VictorPV Sketch to Accept Renard Protocol from ESPixelstick

    OK. Got it.

    You said in post #10 that you had it working. I assume that was your Arduino running the Renard sketch connected directly to the computer. So we know the Arduino and sketch work. Now you have introduced the ESPixelstick to the equation.
    On the ESPixelstick, when you programmed/flashed it, did you select the Renard option?
    And I just now noticed that you might be using an UNO instead of a MEGA. I think the code should still work (it did for you earlier) but I did read somewhere that the Renard protocol sometimes has problems with the USB serial input of Arduinos.
    Kevin

  7. #17
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    Default Re: Success Modifying VictorPV Sketch to Accept Renard Protocol from ESPixelstick

    Quote Originally Posted by beeder007 View Post
    ........have you got yours working with the ESPixelstick yet?.......
    Yes. I got my setup working with the ESPixelstick. Then I designed an ESP-01 directly into my MEGA shield. So now I am not using the ESPixelstick per se, just the ESP-01 module with Shelby Merrick/Bill Porter software.
    Kevin

  8. #18
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    Default Re: Success Modifying VictorPV Sketch to Accept Renard Protocol from ESPixelstick

    Kevin,

    Can you describe your connections between the ESP-01 and the Mega?

    The ESP is 3.3v logic whereas the Mega is 5v logic. Are you using a logic-level converter to connect the ESP-01 directly to the Mega? When you used the ESPixelStick, how did you connect to the Mega (V+ to 3.3v, V- to GND, D to Serial 3 Rx?)?

    Thanks,
    Matt

  9. #19
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    Default Re: Success Modifying VictorPV Sketch to Accept Renard Protocol from ESPixelstick

    Quote Originally Posted by lightsinvabeach View Post
    Kevin,

    Can you describe your connections between the ESP-01 and the Mega?

    The ESP is 3.3v logic whereas the Mega is 5v logic. Are you using a logic-level converter to connect the ESP-01 directly to the Mega? When you used the ESPixelStick, how did you connect to the Mega (V+ to 3.3v, V- to GND, D to Serial 3 Rx?)?

    Thanks,
    Matt
    it has been awhile since I did the testing. When using the ESPixelstick, I think that I just connected 12v and let the on-board regulators do their work. Also, when using the ESPixelstick, there was an on-board level shifter from 3.3v to 5v.

    When I integrated the ESP-01 into the MEGA shield, I also added a 3.3v regulator onto the shield. And I added a level shifter to change the ESP-01 output from 3.3v to 5v. However, the MEGA input can react to the 3.3v data signal. I remember testing the data communication at 3.3v and at 5v and it worked with both. Below is the schematic.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Kevin

  10. #20
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    Default Re: Success Modifying VictorPV Sketch to Accept Renard Protocol from ESPixelstick

    Since the ESPixelstick uses the ESP8266 module, would I be able to Kev's code, posted at beginning of this thread, for an Arduino Uno (or Mega) if I attach the standalone ESP8266 wifi module to the Arduino?

    I'm currently using the original Victor_PV Arduino code to control my relay board via serial connection from FPP on a Raspberry Pi, and it works beautifully! Was hoping to take it a step further with either wifi or ethernet instead of maintaining the serial connection to the Pi.

    Thanks!

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