MB RF from ISS reception problems

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Daemon
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MB RF from ISS reception problems

Post by Daemon » Thu Dec 27, 2018 3:20 am

Hi,

I set up a new Meteobridge Pro Red a few days ago, and seem to be having problems with the RF connection to my Vantage Pro 2 (also only a few weeks old). I've found several threads with people having very similar problems, but not the solution. The problem is this:

At a distance of 62m direct line of site through open window, MB only receives rain sensor, at -85 db for 5 seconds then drops and never reacquires in 3 hours, all other sensor show -- on MB display.

At distance of 10m direct line of site (outside running on battery pack), MB only receives rain sensor, at -75 db for 5 seconds then drops and doesn't reacquire in 30 minutes.

At distance of 3m direct line of site (outside running on battery pack), MB receives no sensors and doesn't acquire in 20 minutes. All sensors on MB RF display a --

With Davis logger set to repeat and MB set to receive via console:

At distance 1m all sensors acquired in 8 minutes at -38 to -40 db.

At distance 15m all sensors acquired at -55 to -65 db.

At distance 24m all sensors acquired at -75 db, degrading to -80 db over 10 minutes, then signal lost and not reacquired.

MB connection to home WiFi is good and stays stable out to at least 32m (furthest tested). The installation is on a small acreage in a rural area with very little signal interference other than WiFi network. The Davis console reception from ISS is acceptable in all locations within the house at furthest tested distance of 80m.

My ideal installation location is 60m from ISS through single brick wall. My second choice installation is 62m from ISS through single glass window. I'd be happy enough to buy a repeater if absolutely necessary, but with the current reception issue I don't think this would solve the problem.

I am in Australia and Davis equipment was purchased in Australia (as was MB). The MB is set correctly to ISS on stn#1, RF module Vantage on AU915 MHz, direct reception selected, RF Sense on -90 for all direct ISS attempts.
For console repeat attempts all setting the same except for Stn#2 set to match logger repeat station, via console selected and RF sense set to -10 db below reported signal strength at each trial and -80, -90 and -95 tried at 24m trial.

I'm currently running the MB via repeating off the logger at a separation of 1m, which is not ideal for me, so I'd really appreciate any advice or assistance about the MB reception problem.

Secondary problem is that the MB inside Temp and inside Hum are reporting wildly different to console: MB indoor temp is 14 to 22 C high, hum is approx. 20% low, pressure matches between logger and MB. Although the Davis console inside T and H readings have struck me as a bit erroneous since I set the station up a fortnight ago, the values being reported by the MB are a fantasy, and though I don't use these datum, it bothers me that they are so wildly wrong. The error magnitude appears non-linear.

Thanks Daemon.

Mattk
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Re: MB RF from ISS reception problems

Post by Mattk » Thu Dec 27, 2018 4:47 am

Using RF then the MB internal temp (thbotemp) is certainly going to be higher then the console and doesn't have a lot of meaning in this type of setup. It's not wildly wrong, the temps are valid just the terminology is a little meaningless as the MB's internal temp is inside the MB and really should be ignored in this setup.

At 60+ metres you are going to have some MB reception issues through a wall etc as even thou Davis claim 300m this is also rather overstated by quite a bit. Davis's spec through walls is something like 60-120 metres and you will find increasing the MB antenna size/gain etc doesn't overly increase reception.

Some of your test results appear a little odd? At 10 metres through a brick wall you shouldn't have an issue, dropping signal and not re-acquiring is an odd one? Not acquiring at 3m direct line of sight, just not right. Taking 8 minutes to acquire at 1m re-transmit from console is also odd, something not quite right there? Have you double checked your ISS dip switch settings, is #4 off

I assume after every MB settings change you are Saving and in most instances to be sure then Reboot. What is your MB FW version

You could drop the RF sense direct from ISS down to -80db and re-check direct ISS link

Do you have a Davis logger and if so what type?

Daemon
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Re: MB RF from ISS reception problems

Post by Daemon » Thu Dec 27, 2018 6:32 am

Hi Matt, Thanks for the reply.

The temp and humidity I am unsure of is labelled "indoor temp" "indoor hum" on the Live Data tab. I thought these came from the Davis console, which is why I thought it odd that they don't match the console reported indoor temp/hum. These are not present if there is no RF reception. If they are from inside the MB, that would make sense of the readings, but I thought the MB internal measurements were the ones labelled "system temp" "system hum" on the Live Data tab, which are present even if there is no RF reception. The sys T is even higher. At this moment the outdoor T is 30.4 C, the console screen indoor T is 30.9 C, the MB "indoor T" is 44.4C and the MB "system T" is 50.8 C.

I thought 60m through a wall might be a bit of a stretch, which is why I tested through an open window or outside running on batteries, without joy. I figured if I can determine what distance it works at, I can decide if a repeater might be needed, but no reception at 3m is a bummer. All the ISS direct tests are no obstruction in line of sight. The console repeat tests are inside through internal gyprock walls or in the same room.

I went and checked the ISS dip switches and #4 is definitely off, as are all the others (default transmission on #1).

I definitely saved all the changes each time, and rebooted and tried again if it didn't work. I also tried these things a couple of times each on consecutive days and I also tried with RF sense at -70 and at -80, incase there was some noise issues. The only change in behaviour is at lower RF sense there is not even momentary reception.

My MB firmware is reporting as 1.4 and software as 3.8 on the system tab.

I have the Davis IC6510 USB data logger.

Mattk
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Re: MB RF from ISS reception problems

Post by Mattk » Thu Dec 27, 2018 7:03 am

If you were connecting the MB physically via Davis logger then indoor temp/humidity etc is using the Davis console data, with RF then the MB is receiving straight from the ISS (or re-transmit) and the MB really doesn't know if a console exists or not so reports its own internal values and what you are seeing is normal internal temps etc.

I and USB loggers simply don't get on so have no idea re connecting the MB to the station via the USB logger which certainly can be done, an MB connected via an IP logger then yes what the console displays is what the "internal" MB temp/humidity displays.

MB FW is all good but something just doesn't sound right with some of the reception testing? A repeater will basically do nothing more than the console re-transmit but at least with a repeater you could position it different to the console. But a repeater would not solve the reception issue over and above the console re-transmit performance you are getting at the moment. Something just not right?

Daemon
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Re: MB RF from ISS reception problems

Post by Daemon » Thu Dec 27, 2018 8:49 am

Thanks for that explanation re indoor data. I should have thought of that myself if I weren't dim.

Agreed something wrong with reception, and others have had this problem according to past threads. Hopefully someone will know how to solve it.

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