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Resolved Resolved by DJ Sures!

Connecting Xbee To Ez-B

My robot uses the rover 5 to drive around. Currently I am using bluetooth to connect to to the EZ-B, but I find that the distance is very short. I have heard that X-Bee can have much greater distances for connection. (Seen As for large antennas exist for XBee. My robot needs to travel a distance away from me, and the 100m distance with bluetooth has not been enough.

My question is, what all would i need to use the XBee, and how can this be done. Please be specific with step by step, as for I am only partly experianced. I would like to get as much distance as possible and the XBee offers up to 80 Km in distance depending on the chip that you get. Even 1 Km would make a much bigger differance than the 100 m limit. I know that this can be done, as for the bluetooth has to come off and XBee goes on. But do they require another Xbee and the XBee Explorer? If so should I be buying the developer kit, as seen here

Also I am using the camera from the EZ-B website, can I connect this to the XBee that I place inside my Robot so that it can have good distance too. If not can it have a separate XBee that connects to the one attached to my computer? (if that is how XBee works)

Specific instructions on how to do this would be great, for more detail on what I am doing see
here, also if you can help me with my laptop battery issue you will make my day!

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Synthiam
#1  
It's pretty simple:)

1) Purchase two xBee modules: https://solarbotics.com/product/51700/

2) Purchase a USB xBee adapter to connect to your PC: https://solarbotics.com/product/50745/

3) Purchase the Jumper Cable Kit: http://www.ez-robot.com/Shop/AccessoriesDetails.aspx?productNumber=24

4) Download the xBee Datasheet: https://solarbotics.com/download.php?file=1218

5) Unplug the Bluetooth module on the EZ-B

6) Notice the RX, TX, GND and +5 labels on the EZ-B female plug where the Bluetooth module was connected

7) Notice the 3.3v connection on the side header of the EZ-B

8) Use jumper kit: Connect the 3.3v connection on the side header of the EZ-B to pin #1 of the xBee

9) Use jumper kit: Connect the GND connection on the side header of the EZ-B to pin #10 of the xBee

10) Use jumper kit: Connect the RX connection of the EZ-B to pin #2 of xBee

11) Use jumper kit: Connect the TX connection of the EZ-B to pin #3 of xBee
#2  
ok thanks dj sures, i am pretty sure i can get the connection part figured out now, but for using it with the ARC Software do you just put in the com # according to what "Devices and Hardware" says inside control panel (no drivers, etc.). B/c i downloaded a digi program for xbee called x-ctu which is a graphical properties setting program for the xbee. Will I need to be using this?

Also, I am currently using the camera from the EZ-B store, as for the Xbee will be capable of going at far distances, but if my camera cannot then the far distance wont help me, b/c i wont be able to see. But the camera does have an antenna attachment and i was wondering if this can be hooked up to the XBee on either the same or separate xbee? If not is there a larger antenna or other method that i can use to get the same distances as the XBee?

Thanks a lot for clearing a lot of my questions up, only few remain, as for when i took the bluetooth module off and seen those 4 ports I knew how to wire an XBee there instantly.
Netherlands
#3  
Hi kplamondon:)

do you just put in the com # according to what "Devices and Hardware" says inside control panel (no drivers, etc.).
Yes, just like you would with the Bluetooth EZ-B only now you select the Xbee's COM port.

Also, I am currently using the camera from the EZ-B store, as for the Xbee will be capable of going at far distances, but if my camera cannot then the far distance wont help me, b/c i wont be able to see. But the camera does have an antenna attachment and i was wondering if this can be hooked up to the XBee on either the same or separate xbee? If not is there a larger antenna or other method that i can use to get the same distances as the XBee?
Sadly, this isn't cheap/possible. The cheapest solution is probably to buy a cheap smartphone with 3G and set it up as a web-camera.
#4  
ok thanks for clearing those up for me, i was hoping it would be able to, but i guess i will have to keep searching for another method, although would I be able to do a simular method as this or this. And then send the video to the ARC Software. As for where i will be using this I wont be able to set it up as a web camera (no cell service/wifi) or is there another camera that has a better frame rate and distance compared to the one i have right now?

Also i am curious if i can do as shown here with the EZ-B to get video? Which if this can be done than it will work very efficiently, being able to connect to the EZ-B and give data on positions of objects, etc.

Will adding a larger antenna to the camera (specifically the one used by XBee, quite large) give the camera extra distance. As for the XBee I am planning on getting has 1.5 Km distance, but if I can get the camera even half that i will be happy. Still if I can hook up a camera to the EZ-B, sending the signal that way would be most satisfying.
#6  
Good to know that i could do that, now is the frame rate going to be "video like?" And will it connect into the video control on the Builder Software when doing this? And to set this up is the camera XBee going to require a third XBee, or can i connect the EZ-B and jpg camera on the same XBee? Also, where can i buy the interfacing camera shown. Lastly what are you referring to as the "existing array". I know that an array is a list of variables in programming, but in this case I am unsure.

Thanks a lot for your help DJ, I almost have finished getting my blueprints built for the version 2 of my robot.
PRO
Synthiam
#7  
It looks like they give you some software package (According to that link) that receives the video as a driver of some sort. If that's the case, it'll add into ARC. It's hard to say with that opensource stuff - because it's poorly documented.

I can't answer any more questions regarding XBee because I've never used it.

By "Existing array" I mean XBee array. From what I understand, you can connect multiple XBee's as an array? I'm sure that is what I was told. But again, I don't know anything about XBee:)
#8  
yes you can add multiple XBees, i understand what you mean in array now. But i would like to try and connect both devices on the same XBee, as this was said could be done from http://forum.arduino.cc/index.php/topic,54651.0.html, as for this could save a few bucks.

I managed to find where i can buy that exact camera: http://forum.arduino.cc/index.php/topic,54651.0.html so if I can get enough information leading me forward with this camera then I will plan on buying it.

I know what you mean with opensource, as for when I start heavily programming and require some add on to my ide, etc. the opensource to install usually has a read me, but trying to understand and make it work is almost impossible.

Thanks for pointing me in the right direction, I think I should figure it out from here. My main concern was the camera's distance compared to the XBee's, most of all my other questions that I have been trying to figure out for this robot now have answers, and the blueprints are slowly being created.

Although one question I have, if you have heard of the DAGU motor controller for the Rover 5, it allows the quadrature encoders to be used. Is there any way of connecting to this with the EZ-B? I know that EZ-B uses signal wires over quadrature encoders. If not can this be done by connecting an Arduino through the I2C and then connecting the quadrature encoders to the ports on the Dagu controller?

User-inserted image


The encoders are very complicated though, and if you are unaware of any way of doing this, its totally fine. I am not to worried about using them, I just want to know if this can be done.
United Kingdom
#9  
Dagu has been a topic of discussion a few times recently.

This topic is probably the best place to start. There is also a cloud project (under incomplete robots) for it too.

Edit: I just re-read, the encoders are not covered by the above topic, my bad:)
#11  
thanks for the help i am going to close the thread because i am tired of getting emails everyday