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Joined: 02/11/2015 10:40:42
Messages: 8

I've got a list of wireless products that we have been building for the past few years based around the Digi 2.4GHz XBee Series 1 Pro Radios (point to point using API mode 2). For the most part we have good reception from them but in some cases, you can be standing three feet from the device and get no communication. We have a small packet protocol using within the XBee api payload of less than 50 bytes. Now we are looking for a different source of radios that will improve our close range reliability and hopefully extend our range overall.

I have purchased a few RFM69HCW radios for their long range, high power in 433MHz and am seeing a small improvement in most trials in overall range and definitely close range communication. They do seem a bit slower in per packet communication but that could be just the simple program I've worked up to test the two types of radios side by side in our product. I have a few questions though: As a new design, it is reasonable to assume that the 69 Series radios will be around for some time or should we choose to go to another newer radio series? Also, my attention was peaked by the power hungry but longer range(?) RFM23BPS radio. Has anyone done any range testing both close and far to see the reliability of these radios? From my reading, it sounds like this radio has been the choice to use in long range drone telemetry and that the only way to achieve the boasted 30dB gain is to power the device with 5.5V.

My thought was that our devices would be normally powered by the 20dB radio (69HCW or similar) then have an upgrade-able range module using the RFM23BPS to further boost range in heavy traffic areas or to get that extra long range. So, my last question, does anyone know if the RFM23BPS can talk to the RFM69HCW both at 433MHz or what 20dB radio it is compatible with?

Please chime in with your opinions on this.

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