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Singapore
Asked — Edited

Extending Ez-B Connection Range

Hi, Everyone,

I read in one of Gunner's posting about installing an antenna onto EZ-B's Bluetooth to extend its range.

Anyone tested it and which point do I solder the external Bluetooth antenna onto the bluetooth board?

I did a test and found my $5 USB bluetooth & EZ-B could not connect if there is wall in between.
(max. 1 to 2m range availability only)

I need a minimum 10m to 15m connectivity.

I will purchase a high power 300m USB bluetooth for my PC, but worried the smaller EZ-B's Bluetooth range is too limited.

Another option I have is to install Wi-FI onto EZ-B (my home is totally Wi-Fi covered).

Anyone can give me the instructions on how I can replace EZ-B's Bluetooth with a Wi-Fi mod.?
(if it is possible and supported by ARC software?)

Thanks All !

Regards,
Woon

Canada
#1  
Hello again @Woon

Another forum member, @R2D2 has done the EZ-B Bluetooth antenna mod; check this link, but if all you need is 15m then I think you will find the better Bluetooth USB dongle all you require... they tend to not only have more transmission power but better receiving sensitivity as well.

I haven't yet switched from Bluetooth myself but will soon, either to a TTL-USB direct link to an on-board PC or possibly to WiFi as you are thinking. The connection is technically simple and the choices of adapters many, but I myself haven't yet seen a successfully detailed how-to. But you can check this older link for some ideas.
Singapore
#3  
Thanks, Gunner & Putt Putt :)

Awesome long range Blue tooth transmitter !

Could be an over-kill solution and me losing a few teeth & $.

I will try the external antenna and a USB 300m bluetooth route as it is the next cheapest option.

Regards,
Woon
#4  
Seriously, I would take a look at these modules from SparkFun Electronics, they are easy to use and vary in price and power.

I have 3 of the series 2 on one of my bots and they work just great.

Take a look at their specs and you will see that their range ( depending on which you use ) can vary from a few meters to 40 miles!

https://www.sparkfun.com/categories/111
#5  
If you remove the class 2 bluetooth plug-in that is installed on the EZ-B and install a class 1 bluetooth like this one: https://www.sparkfun.com/products/10268 you should be able to increase the operating distance to around 300 feet when used with a class 1 bluetooth on your PC.
Canada
#6  
@Robot-Doc Thanks for that referal :)... And I just got a class 1 dongle for my PC.

That looks like a drop in replacement (once a header is soldered in) as the VCC GND Tx Rx pins are all in the same order. @DJ, will this be seamlessly interface with the EZ-B firmware?
Singapore
#7  
Just bought USB Bluetooth Class 1 with Antenna and extended my range by 1m.

Total cost: US$9

Just sufficient range for my current project.


Should increase the range further when I add the external antenna onto EZ-B board's bluetooth module later.

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#8  
Cool I just bought one of those , sounds good you get a extra 4 ft range. Maybe you will get another couple meters by adding a external antenna to your ezb.
#9  
It would be super cool to have a 300ft range. Too bad sparkfun charges so much
Singapore
#10  
Hi, Jstarne,

Yes, most important it works.

4 ft may not sound much but ....

PC----12ft------- Thick wall-------12ft----------EZ-B
(Study room)-----------------------------------(Living Room)

Just made it to EZ-B static location successfully.

Regards,
Woon
#11  
How about this for long range bluetooth? My PC is stationary and I can control EZ-B anywhere in the house thru two walls and brick wall that is more than 20 feet away (not in sight), only thing that break connection is the wireless webcam when i ran it thru brick wall. I modified the Bluetooth class 1 dongle with an extended Wifi antenna, this mod has been discussed to death everywhere but a lot people still don't know about. By doing this I don't need to touch the EZ-B board and keep it the way it is.

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#12  
@Gunner The sparkfun Class 1 BlueSM1rf with the header installed works great with the EZ-B, everything is seamless. I just unplugged the stock class 2 bluetooth and plugged in the BlueSM1rf board then powered up the EZ-B and established a connection with a PC using ARC.