• For a Limited Time the R2R Partner Membership is NOW OPEN! Get some cool swag and chances to win part of over $20,000 in prizes! Click here for more details

reef-pi :: An opensource reef tank controller based on Raspberry Pi.

Bzar

Community Member
View Badges
Joined
Apr 11, 2019
Messages
30
Reaction score
64
agree they are pretty good and affordable alternative. but i doubt they can be as precise as stepper motors, which is what we need for very precise volume dosing to experiment with things involving titration, other than general dosing.
In fact after running ATO via DC motor based peristaltic pumps and using tropical marine all in one, i think i will not need stepper based dosing pumps purely for dosing regimen. The ATO based dosing is pretty effective when I know whats my ATO consumption at weekly cadence
Any progress on stepper interface? With this type of control we could do so much :) Easy reliable precise motors for things like skimmer cup cleaners, dosing, auto feeders, maybe even a reefpi based reefbot for water testing :)
 
Last edited:

redwayjay

Community Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 5, 2019
Messages
55
Reaction score
34
I'm afraid I am not familiar at all with the Apex unit at all. In South Africa, they are prohibitively expensive. I doubt there are more than a handful in the whole country.

Apart from the tinkering factor, that is my main reason for going the reef-pi route.
Hopefully the Hydros from Corallife will make its way to S.A., looks promising.
 

AbjectMaelstroM

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Jul 21, 2019
Messages
1,132
Reaction score
1,402
Location
RVA
Hopefully the Hydros from Corallife will make its way to S.A., looks promising.
Took a look at it and it seems pretty neat and definitely more affordable than the Apex, but slightly less features (unless you get Control 4 which is $400). That being said, if you've got a bit of DIY in you, I would argue ReefPi blows the pants off of anything on the market as far as features vs price. Granted if you want set it and forget it, Hydros is definitely a great alternative.

Curious to see the price of the add-ons/sensors.
 

redwayjay

Community Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 5, 2019
Messages
55
Reaction score
34
Took a look at it and it seems pretty neat and definitely more affordable than the Apex, but slightly less features (unless you get Control 4 which is $400). That being said, if you've got a bit of DIY in you, I would argue ReefPi blows the pants off of anything on the market as far as features vs price. Granted if you want set it and forget it, Hydros is definitely a great alternative.

Curious to see the price of the add-ons/sensors.
For 399 you get hydros 4 one power switch box pH probe and a temp sensor.
The 4 power switch I thought was suppose to be like 35.00.
The wave control is 299.00
ATO I heard was around 100.00
 

marekd1

Community Member
View Badges
Joined
Dec 24, 2019
Messages
97
Reaction score
166
The PCA9685 operates with a supply voltage range of 2.3 V to 5.5 V and the inputs and outputs are 5.5 V tolerant.

And you can connect more than one like this:
1580975133229.png

And give it a proper address. https://learn.adafruit.com/16-channel-pwm-servo-driver/chaining-drivers

If the second pca9685 is in another box that is further away than 1 meter best is to use a shielded cable.
Just a note to be aware of: each pca9685 has pull-up resistors for the SCA and SDA lines. If you are planning to add more than one board you should remove them on the others as they will be all in parallel drastically reducing the overall resistance. As a result I2C communication will be failing or be inconsistent.
 
Fragtacular Sale
OP
Ranjib

Ranjib

7500 Club Member
View Badges
Joined
Apr 16, 2016
Messages
8,211
Reaction score
14,667
Location
Palo Alto, Bay Area
Just a note to be aware of: each pca9685 has pull-up resistors for the SCA and SDA lines. If you are planning to add more than one board you should remove them on the others as they will be all in parallel drastically reducing the overall resistance. As a result I2C communication will be failing or be inconsistent.
Thank you so much for bringing that up. This is very useful and I was not aware of it.
 
Last edited:

marekd1

Community Member
View Badges
Joined
Dec 24, 2019
Messages
97
Reaction score
166
Thank you so much for bringing that up. This is very useful and I wan not aware of it.
Every i2C board you buy will have pullups, so if you adding more than one its a good thing to check. Just measure the resistance between SDA and VCC then SCL and VCC before connecting to the bus. It should be the same after you plug it into the bus.


here is a typical case...

1581133391313.png
 

Bzar

Community Member
View Badges
Joined
Apr 11, 2019
Messages
30
Reaction score
64
Quick question as I haven't found the answer easy enough. What's the best/easiest process to update to the newest version and keeping your current settings?
 

marekd1

Community Member
View Badges
Joined
Dec 24, 2019
Messages
97
Reaction score
166
Quick question as I haven't found the answer easy enough. What's the best/easiest process to update to the newest version and keeping your current settings?
follow this process, just replace the version components...

 

Michael Lane

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Aug 11, 2018
Messages
658
Reaction score
1,107
Quick question as I haven't found the answer easy enough. What's the best/easiest process to update to the newest version and keeping your current settings?
Upgrading from 2.x to 3.x will require setting everything up again. The settings are not compatible between the 2 versions.
 

Bzar

Community Member
View Badges
Joined
Apr 11, 2019
Messages
30
Reaction score
64
Upgrading from 2.x to 3.x will require setting everything up again. The settings are not compatible between the 2 versions.
Thanks. I'm thinking 3.0 to 3.2. Does the upgrade keep your settings or do i have to backup/replace the db or do i have to write down and redo settings from scratch like 2.x to 3.x ? Just wondering from thoae that have done it.
 
https://www.omegasea.net/

AbjectMaelstroM

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Jul 21, 2019
Messages
1,132
Reaction score
1,402
Location
RVA
Thanks. I'm thinking 3.0 to 3.2. Does the upgrade keep your settings or do i have to backup/replace the db or do i have to write down and redo settings from scratch like 2.x to 3.x ? Just wondering from thoae that have done it.
3.0 to 3.2 you don't need to reset.
 

marekd1

Community Member
View Badges
Joined
Dec 24, 2019
Messages
97
Reaction score
166
Thanks. I'm thinking 3.0 to 3.2. Does the upgrade keep your settings or do i have to backup/replace the db or do i have to write down and redo settings from scratch like 2.x to 3.x ? Just wondering from thoae that have done it.
all settings are retained. upgrade process is the same
 

Tom Bishop

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Jan 1, 2019
Messages
484
Reaction score
964
Location
Missouri
I'm still working on my stand but getting closer, if the weather would co-operate would allow me to get more done. I know its been discussed a lot but one of the items I am trying to figure out is what is everyone using for ATO with reef-pi. My DT will only be 29G so it will not require a large ATO but would like to figure out what is one of the more reliable ones to look into, e.g., optical vs float etc.

Thanks
 

AbjectMaelstroM

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Jul 21, 2019
Messages
1,132
Reaction score
1,402
Location
RVA
I'm still working on my stand but getting closer, if the weather would co-operate would allow me to get more done. I know its been discussed a lot but one of the items I am trying to figure out is what is everyone using for ATO with reef-pi. My DT will only be 29G so it will not require a large ATO but would like to figure out what is one of the more reliable ones to look into, e.g., optical vs float etc.

Thanks
I'd probably get a small pump or even a dosing pump. I'm using a tunze osmolator pump on my 120, but that would be overkill for a 29g tank lol. With a 5g jug you'd be set for a while.

On mine I have to refill the 5g bucket every 3 days or so. I need a bigger reservoir.
 

Michael Lane

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Aug 11, 2018
Messages
658
Reaction score
1,107
I'm still working on my stand but getting closer, if the weather would co-operate would allow me to get more done. I know its been discussed a lot but one of the items I am trying to figure out is what is everyone using for ATO with reef-pi. My DT will only be 29G so it will not require a large ATO but would like to figure out what is one of the more reliable ones to look into, e.g., optical vs float etc.

Thanks
Optical, mechanical, and capacitive sensors can all be used with reef-pi. I think mechanical float sensor makes the most sense unless there are other restrictions.

Here's how I understand the differences between them.

Optical
+ No moving parts to get jammed by snails or algae
- Water drops can stick to the sensor causing false readings

Capacitive
+ Can be mounted on the outside of the reservoir
- Somewhat difficult to get lined up exactly where you want it since the trigger point is somewhere in the sensor

Mechanical
+ Inexpensive
+ 2 can be wired in series to provide fail safe shut off
+ Easy to identify switching point
- Snails and algae can cause the switch to stick
 
Fragtacular Sale

How often do you have some type of algae issue?

  • Constantly Something

    Votes: 170 43.6%
  • Every Month

    Votes: 19 4.9%
  • Every Few Months

    Votes: 47 12.1%
  • A Few Times A Year

    Votes: 55 14.1%
  • Once A Year Or So

    Votes: 43 11.0%
  • Every Few years

    Votes: 18 4.6%
  • Never.....(are you lying?)

    Votes: 22 5.6%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 16 4.1%

Online statistics

Members online
1,900
Guests online
3,955
Total visitors
5,855
MAXSPECT
Top