March 21st, 2004, 11:49 PM
Multiple MatrixOrbital MX4 on one system - Serial Plugin?
I have just started to make my system work with Girder, Media Center and the Matrix Orbital MX4. I would like to install multiple MX4 units around the house.
Currently I am using LCDriver and LCD Master and am having some success with a single MX4. My goal is to have multiple MX4's around the house. The plan is to have only one source simultaneously play in the different zones of the house with each zone having independent volume control. I currently have an external volume control/audio router that can take care of the different zones volume. This unit is controlled via RS-232 and is working through Girder.
From what I can tell it is not possible to install multiple Matrix Orbital units with the LCDriver. Is it possible to alter the plug-in so that it can be installed as a serial .ini file? I am not a coder, so I might need to work with friends that code. I just need to find out where/how to start.
Ideally, each LCD panel/pushbuttons around the house would show the same information, but the physical buttons would be such that Girder would know which panel had the button press and take the correct action. I haven't played with this, but if each LCD panel was on its own COM port would it be possible to change the naming in the .ini file so that the pushbuttons on each panel would be recognized as coming from the corresponding room?
Is there a better way to accomplish this?
Thanks in advance.
March 22nd, 2004, 06:17 AM
You would have to use the serial plugin to do this. The serial protocol for the MO displays is actually fairly straight forward and probably wouldn't take too long to figuire out as long as you have some technical savvy.
However, given the time/cost of doing this, I would seriously look at www.netremote.org...
May 15th, 2004, 12:53 AM
LCD 3.0 includes optional support for multiple displays.
LCD 3.1 includes support for keypad input maps. This is mainly for making different devices look the same to a script. But it can be configured for the opposite effect, making different instances of the same device generate different events.
It's still in pre-release, but anyone who wants to test it can send me a PM.
May 15th, 2004, 04:28 AM
Your idea sounds very similar to what I would like to do sometime, although I just sold my Flat, going house hunting in a minute....
Anyway, the way I see it is.
It would be great if you could setup addresses for each room, thus you could sent info from/to keys/lcd, with the address forming part of the signal and the appropiate display would respond, you could then wire the displays up either serially (daisychained) or from a hub on the serial bus.
Problem with you PC serial port / RS232 serial lines is they are not great for long distances, I have a test lead at work which is 25m, I don't know how much further you could go with it, probably not much further before noise and signal loss became an issue. A better candidate would be RS485 bus, which is balanced, you could get a couple of hundred meters out of this.
Just my thought
May 15th, 2004, 06:22 AM
Re: LCD 3.x
Originally Posted by MMcM
Quick question, how is the marquee mode controlled? Software, Hardware? Options for more then 1 one at a time?
May 15th, 2004, 08:24 PM
Re: LCD 3.x
Each display has separate marquee control with exactly the options that were there before. I didn't touch that this time.
Originally Posted by Mike C
May 15th, 2004, 08:40 PM
So how has this been before? Is it done in your driver or hardware. What I am wondering -- Is the limitiation of 1 line of marquee text a hardware or software issue?
May 20th, 2004, 08:39 PM
It uses a device marquee if there is one. Otherwise it does it itself in software. The serial Crystalfontz displays have it in firmware. That is the original source of the limitation. In the cases where it uses software, it could support more than one, although the interface would need a little rearranging.
May 20th, 2004, 08:58 PM
I see, I thought the MO displays supported marquee on all 4 lines...
I probably could emulate this in lua is the driver will take alot of recoding.
May 20th, 2004, 09:15 PM
MO displays have this mode where writing in the bottom right scrolls up a line instead of wrapping to the upper left, like a glass TTY would do. (I'm probably showing my age.)
The firmware also has commands for drawing bar graphs that are not presently used by the plug-in. They share the custom character space (the fundamental capabilities of the display controllers are all the same), and so don't have an enormous advantage over doing it that way yourself.
At least that's all I see in the data sheet I have (rev 1.0). I have also heard mention here of a fade-in mode, but I don't see it either in the firmware.