USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

USB infrared remote control receiver/transmitter. Get one for $20, including worldwide shipping.

USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby coste » Sat Nov 24, 2012 7:36 pm

Hello
After reading the pages about the Infrared Toy and browsing the forum, I can't figure out if and how the Toy works with IRScope.
It seems possible to load a firmware which allows this, but :
- is the firmware loadable via USB or does it need a PIC programmer ?
- once this firmware is loaded, do we have access to the other modes (IRMan, IR sampling, SUMP, ...) ?
I work with IRScope as I have to deal with codes in Pronto Hex format.
The IR Widget, usual companion of IRScope is for now unavailable, and before buying the Infrared Toy I would be sure I can use it !
Thanks in advance.
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby coste » Sun Dec 09, 2012 11:26 am

As nobody replies, I reply myself ... best way to be sure to get an answer !
I finally baught the Infrared Toy, hoping it would work with IR Scope.
As it came, it didn't, but after loading the firmware USBIRToy-irW.hex (found at viewtopic.php?f=29&t=2554&p=30056&hilit=irscope#p30056) via USB, everything worked fine. I could capture IR signals and decode them to Pronto format. Many thanks to JTR, he did a good job.
Now I have a wish : every time I want to use the IR Toy to send signals, I must reload the "standard" firmware to have it respond to anything but IRScope. Well, via USB the updating is fast, but it would be fine if IRScope mode was resident in EEprom with the other modes.
After reading the thread I understand that IRScope is anaware of the IR Toy and so cannot itself set the good mode, but there was a proposal to make IRScope the default mode, which could be changed by the other applications speaking to the IR Toy.
Do you have any information concerning the future relations between IRScope and IR Toy ?
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby KamalS » Sun Dec 09, 2012 11:12 pm

coste wrote:As nobody replies, I reply myself ... best way to be sure to get an answer !
I finally baught the Infrared Toy, hoping it would work with IR Scope.
As it came, it didn't, but after loading the firmware USBIRToy-irW.hex (found at viewtopic.php?f=29&t=2554&p=30056&hilit=irscope#p30056) via USB, everything worked fine. I could capture IR signals and decode them to Pronto format. Many thanks to JTR, he did a good job.
Now I have a wish : every time I want to use the IR Toy to send signals, I must reload the "standard" firmware to have it respond to anything but IRScope. Well, via USB the updating is fast, but it would be fine if IRScope mode was resident in EEprom with the other modes.
After reading the thread I understand that IRScope is anaware of the IR Toy and so cannot itself set the good mode, but there was a proposal to make IRScope the default mode, which could be changed by the other applications speaking to the IR Toy.
Do you have any information concerning the future relations between IRScope and IR Toy ?


So you bought the Toy and used the fw_upgrade tool to load USBIRToy-irW.hex into the Toy?

Do you have the "latest" USBIRToy-BLxFWyy-DUMP.hex available?

Does USBIRToy-irW.hex use the Microchip provided CDC drivers or something else?

As an answer to your question: supporting the IRScope software as it stands now requires the Toy to essentially be a USB<->TTL bridge with no "protocol" modification - hence it cannot display a standard menu etc to the terminal as IRScope does not know how to interact with such a menu.
Looking forward to meeting other hobbyists. PM me if you are in or around Orange, CA!
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby ian » Mon Dec 10, 2012 2:36 am

Do you have any information concerning the future relations between IRScope and IR Toy ?


As I recall nobody there was really thrilled with us using that app so I kinda dropped the subject further.
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby coste » Mon Dec 10, 2012 8:09 am

My IR Toy (which I received three days ago) had an older firmware version. So I first updated it with the v22 via the bat file update-USBIRToy.v22.bat which came with the firmware distribution. I didn't try v23, as it seems there are problems with it.
Noting that the updated IR Toy didn't work with IRScope (normal as IRScope waits for one sample each 100µs, and IRToy sends
only the durations of on and off states, and off durations are flawed by the IR demodulator), I browsed the forum and found the info from JTR with the reference to USBIRToy-irW.hex. I tried it, and everything worked fine, as I said.

Now, I recklessly said it was enough to re-update the Toy with USBIRToy.v22.hex via USB to come back to the original behaviour ! I have been trying it, and nothing happens. I suppose the USBIRToy-irW.hex doesn't contain the bootloader, so now my IRToy is unable to update via USB. For me it's not very annoying, as I bought the IR Toy to work with IRScope and replace the IR Widget which was unavailable at the time. I suppose it's always possible to reload the original firmware with a PIC programmer. If I have time I'll try this.
Naturally, the best solution would be to have an "IRScope mode", but it should be the default mode, as IRScope doesn't speak to IR Toy, and I understand this can create problems for the "standard" IR Toy users.
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby coste » Mon Dec 10, 2012 8:59 am

Shame on me, I didn't read the doc to the end ...
To flah again the original firmware, no need to use a PIC programmer, it's enough to short PGC/PGD.
I tried this, and the USBIRToy.v22.hex was correctly flashed.
I suppose this is obvious for a PIC geek, but I am more familiar with Freescale microcontrollers...
So, although somewhat laboriously, I can switch between IRScope mode and the standard ones
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby KamalS » Mon Dec 10, 2012 4:54 pm

coste wrote:I browsed the forum and found the info from JTR with the reference to USBIRToy-irW.hex. I tried it, and everything worked fine, as I said


coste, I am a bit confused:

The IRT you purchased came with the factory image that has the bootloader + the IRT Program

Now, when you say ".. USBIRToy-irW.hex. I tried it, and everything worked fine, as I said."
Did you use an external programmer to burn 'USBIRToy-irW.hex' on the IRT PIC?

I was under the impression that the USBIRToy-irW.hex can be uploaded into the PIC via USB through the bootloader - does that not work?
Looking forward to meeting other hobbyists. PM me if you are in or around Orange, CA!
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby coste » Tue Dec 11, 2012 5:01 am

KamalS
Yes I could flash USBIRToy-irW.hex in the IR Toy via USB, using the commands "Bootloader.exe" and then "fw_update -e -w -v -m flash -vid 0x04D8 -pid 0xFD0B -ix USBIRToy_irW.hex"

But, when I wanted to revert to the original firmware with the commands "Bootloader.exe" and "fw_update -e -w -v -m flash -vid 0x04D8 -pid 0xFD0B -ix USBIRToy.v22.hex" Bootloader.exe didn't work

After shorting PGC/PGD, I could run "fw_update -e -w -v -m flash -vid 0x04D8 -pid 0xFD0B -ix USBIRToy.v22.hex" and the original firmware was correctly flashed

So, no need for a PIC programmer, just a jumper to revert to original firmware
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby pio » Mon Dec 17, 2012 3:39 pm

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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby Qwlciguk » Mon Dec 17, 2012 11:42 pm

It would better to simply modify the IRScope software to send a cmd to switch the IRToy from IRToy mode to widget mode. Maybe another mod to switch it back to IRToy mode on exiting IRScope software. The original widget design doesn't pay any attention to data sent by the host computer. So, modifying IRScope to send a cmd would not affect the existing widgets out there at all. The source code for IRScope is open to anyone wishing to modify it. If I remember correctly, it's written in Visual C, but is not compilable with the free Visual Studio version.

If anyone decides to do this, there are a few requests for modifications to IRScope. The one that I can think of is to change the timeout on detecting IR from the current 5 seconds to something much larger, as some IRScope users complain that they can't get everything together and press the button on the remote within 5 seconds after clicking the capture button in IRScope software. There have been a few other requests related to data formatting/presentation, but I expect that those won't interest much of anybody here.

A.A.
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby pio » Tue Dec 18, 2012 4:14 pm

If you mean the "Capture Duration" timeout, it can be set in the UI, below the COM port drop-down list (v2.01a).
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby Qwlciguk » Tue Dec 18, 2012 11:19 pm

No, not that timeout. The one I'm talking about is the timeout whilst waiting for the first IR bursts. If you start a capture and don't actually shoot any IR within 5 seconds, it cancels the capture and displays an error message. This timeout is hard-coded with no adjustability. The timeout to which you refer, is simply the total duration of recording.

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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby KamalS » Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:27 am

Qwlciguk wrote:It would better to simply modify the IRScope software to send a cmd to switch the IRToy from IRToy mode to widget mode. Maybe another mod to switch it back to IRToy mode on exiting IRScope software. The original widget design doesn't pay any attention to data sent by the host computer. So, modifying IRScope to send a cmd would not affect the existing widgets out there at all. The source code for IRScope is open to anyone wishing to modify it. If I remember correctly, it's written in Visual C, but is not compilable with the free Visual Studio version.


Note that you don't need to touch the IRScope software at all!

I believe by adding RTS and DTR handling to the irWidget firmware, you can make the IRToy emulate the IRWidget exactly - to the effect that it does not matter to IRScope what the underlying hardware is.

If you don't know where to patch the irWidget firmware, let me know and I ill create a new thread for it.

Qwlciguk wrote:If anyone decides to do this, there are a few requests for modifications to IRScope. The one that I can think of is to change the timeout on detecting IR from the current 5 seconds to something much larger, as some IRScope users complain that they can't get everything together and press the button on the remote within 5 seconds after clicking the capture button in IRScope software. There have been a few other requests related to data formatting/presentation, but I expect that those won't interest much of anybody here.


Is there a list of requests for modifications to IRScope somewhere?
Looking forward to meeting other hobbyists. PM me if you are in or around Orange, CA!
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby Qwlciguk » Sat Jan 12, 2013 11:58 am

KamalS wrote:
Qwlciguk wrote:It would better to simply modify the IRScope software to send a cmd to switch the IRToy from IRToy mode to widget mode. Maybe another mod to switch it back to IRToy mode on exiting IRScope software. The original widget design doesn't pay any attention to data sent by the host computer. So, modifying IRScope to send a cmd would not affect the existing widgets out there at all. The source code for IRScope is open to anyone wishing to modify it. If I remember correctly, it's written in Visual C, but is not compilable with the free Visual Studio version.


Note that you don't need to touch the IRScope software at all!

I believe by adding RTS and DTR handling to the irWidget firmware, you can make the IRToy emulate the IRWidget exactly - to the effect that it does not matter to IRScope what the underlying hardware is.

If you don't know where to patch the irWidget firmware, let me know and I ill create a new thread for it.

Qwlciguk wrote:If anyone decides to do this, there are a few requests for modifications to IRScope. The one that I can think of is to change the timeout on detecting IR from the current 5 seconds to something much larger, as some IRScope users complain that they can't get everything together and press the button on the remote within 5 seconds after clicking the capture button in IRScope software. There have been a few other requests related to data formatting/presentation, but I expect that those won't interest much of anybody here.


Is there a list of requests for modifications to IRScope somewhere?


Emulating the widget is not the issue here. The IRScope software when talking to a widget simply raises DTR and RTS. Nothing sophisticated. There are other modes that are for other implementations, but they're not interesting here. The IRToy with widget FW can safely ignore DTR and RTS and just assume that we want pulse count mode.

The actual issue here, is that we want the widget FW integrated with the standard IRToy FW. To make that work, we wanted to modify the IRScope software to send a cmd to switch the IRToy into widget mode at the start and switch it back to normal IRToy mode after capture is done. I don't think that using DTR/RTS as a way to detect IRScope client is the way to go, since that would get fooled by other non-IRScope client software that may be raising DTR and RTS. All in all, I think a software cmd is the way to go, but the sticking point there, is that I can't seem to compile the IRScope software and have it fully work. It works partially, but the user interface is largely missing.

I don't know of a list of requested IRScope mods anywhere, but as a long time users of IRScope with my own hardware based widget, I have one and others on the JP1 forum have some too. I know exactly where and how to make the mods, but it's all for naught, since it doesn't compile to a usable program for me.
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Re: USB Infrared Toy and IRScope

Postby StephenR0 » Sat Jan 12, 2013 4:45 pm

Qwlciguk wrote:Emulating the widget is not the issue here. The IRScope software when talking to a widget simply raises DTR and RTS. Nothing sophisticated. There are other modes that are for other implementations, but they're not interesting here. The IRToy with widget FW can safely ignore DTR and RTS and just assume that we want pulse count mode.

The actual issue here, is that we want the widget FW integrated with the standard IRToy FW. To make that work, we wanted to modify the IRScope software to send a cmd to switch the IRToy into widget mode at the start and switch it back to normal IRToy mode after capture is done. I don't think that using DTR/RTS as a way to detect IRScope client is the way to go, since that would get fooled by other non-IRScope client software that may be raising DTR and RTS. All in all, I think a software cmd is the way to go, but the sticking point there, is that I can't seem to compile the IRScope software and have it fully work. It works partially, but the user interface is largely missing.


Do we know if any software tries to raise DTR and RTS to the IR Toy at the same time? If there were no conflict, we could just use IRScope as is. This discussion is becoming more immediate with recent developments on the JP1 forums. Apparently, Tommy Tyler felt strongly enough about the election that he left the forum over it. Since there is currently no hardware for sale that IRScope supports, this is an opportunity for the IR Toy.
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