aquarium automation - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 13 Old 12-18-2010, 10:04 PM Thread Starter
shadetreeme's Avatar
aquarium automation

I am thinking about using the x10 system to controll all the tanks in my house from the PC.
I am looking into this system because not only will it control all my tank lights. It can controll the room lights and about anything else you want. It is programable and able to be accessed by the web.
You can setup a page for each tank, and have it controll each set of lights individually. It can even dim and brighten standard bulbs.
Cost wise with no web access the controller and sofware is 29.99 and a 5 pack of modules is $30 plus shipping. The modules are Rated at 15 amps, 1/3 hp, 500W. These are not dimmable, but simple on off.
Here are some of the detail about this system....
X10 Million Dollar Promotion: ActiveHome Pro System Lowest Price Ever - NOW ONLY $29.99

Now if you want to spend some cash ..... this system will let you sign into your house, turn on the lights, acces the live web cam, and even look around with live pan, tilt, and zoom.

I have used their products in my last house to controll home lighting....( even had a keychain remote that would turn on the outside lights when I got home) so I know the hardware works. From what I have read the software is pretty amazing as well.

Any thoughts welcome.
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post #2 of 13 Old 12-19-2010, 10:20 AM
Its a neat idea, but i think its unnecessary for most aquarists... Fluorescent bulbs don't dim, and i dont really see a purpose to turning tank equip on and off from afar. Might be neat to have if you want to set up your lights to be off for a few hours during the day and on when you got home... but then again u can just flip the switch when u get home..
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post #3 of 13 Old 12-19-2010, 10:36 AM Thread Starter
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I guess I just like gadgets !!!!
My thought is that rather than buying timers for each tank, I can conrtol everything from the pc or by the remote controll if I want to turn stuff on outside the timer settings. My big tank is in the basment with little light, so I was thinking it would be cool to have the room lights slowly come up then have the floresents come on. I also don't want to run the halides on all day so I can have them come on later.
The online thing would be cool later when I hook up the camera. You could check on the tank while at work or online.
I plan on getting the system anyway because I am lazy. I can sit at my desk and turn on the fan, change the termostat, and dim the lights all without gettin off my fat butt.
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post #4 of 13 Old 12-19-2010, 05:02 PM
the camera sounds like a neat idea.
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post #5 of 13 Old 01-20-2011, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
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Well I went and did it.... The stuff is pretty cheap and you can have alot of fin with it. I have my lights set up.... some dawn to dusk, and some for set times. I am using the system for other things in the house as well. Here is a shot of the computer interface:

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post #6 of 13 Old 01-21-2011, 08:38 AM
nice, looks good. how long did it take to install the system and set it up?
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post #7 of 13 Old 01-21-2011, 09:28 AM Thread Starter
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That is one of the best parts about this system.... its easy. The basic setup only took like 15 min and the tanks I am controlling are in 3 different room on two different floors of my house.
All you do is set the code on the module A-P and 1-16 so the first one would be A1, then plug the light into the unit.... like you would a normal timer..... and your set.
Here is a pic of the unit:

The software will do some cool stuff if you want to get into it..... I have my 125 in "my" room, and I am going to set it up so that if I turn the projector on for the TV it will automaticly turn off the white lights in the tank, and turn on the blue LED. It will also do lots of other cool .... non aquarium stuff too .
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post #8 of 13 Old 01-31-2011, 12:29 AM Thread Starter
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OK... been tweakin the setup. Now the 125 works like this.....
Dawn fluorescentlights turn on
30 min delay.... CO2 and diffuser pump come on.
11am halides on.
3pm halides off.
4pm CO2 off.
dusk flourescents off.
Dusk blue LEDs and airpump turn on.
Dawn LED air pump off.
It is also coo to use the remote to work all of components.... If I want the halides and air pump on so I can check it out... click click.... good to go.
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post #9 of 13 Old 02-01-2011, 02:20 AM
sounds really useful for when you are on vacation.
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post #10 of 13 Old 02-04-2011, 05:33 PM
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X10 is a ok system but makes a loud click when you turn on or off you light switches x10 is alsow a anolog systen and is not very reliable if you want to controll your tank from your computer and your computer is on another phasew of the electrical pannel than you need to buy a phase coupler also a bett alternative is upb switches it is a digital siganal tha is more reliable and dosen't make a loud clicking noise just my input I work for a home automation company and know the down falls of x10 and it is kinda old technology as of today standerds but can probly get it relitively cheep
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