Long Range Volume Control - RC Groups
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Apr 12, 2017, 03:21 PM
Registered User
Discussion

Long Range Volume Control


Good Afternoon,

My name is Josh. I am the owner of the outdoor product company Juvie Juke Box. We make electronic snow goose callers that our customers can use during special seasons in the US and in both the Fall and Spring in Canada. We currently have our units running off a 400-800w marine grade amp, which gets sound from an MP3 player via the AUX or RCA connection built into the amp. We are open to switching to a different amp style if it helps us accomplish our goal of remotely controlling the volume as well. We have searched high and low for being able to adjust the volume wirelessly and have come up with nothing but frustration. I have seen coyote hunting callers with the ability to adjust volume from up to 300 feet away but can not figure out how. I realize this isn't about remote controlling planes but it seems like this forum is overflowing with super knowledgeable people of remotes in general!

My question is does anyone know of a way to accomplish this? We have messed with bluetooth stuff and nothing we have tested works past about 10-15 feet which is not justifiable in adding to our products since most customers (and ourselves) would like to control volume from at least 50 feet.

Thanks!
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Apr 12, 2017, 05:10 PM
AndyKunz's Avatar
How do you do a manual volume control right now? What amp are you using? How does your amp differ from the coyote caller amps?

Andy
Apr 12, 2017, 10:45 PM
Registered User
vollrathd's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Juvie Juke Box
My question is does anyone know of a way to accomplish this? We have messed with bluetooth stuff and nothing we have tested works past about 10-15 feet which is not justifiable in adding to our products since most customers (and ourselves) would like to control volume from at least 50 feet.

Thanks!
You'd think a simple el-cheapo 2.4 Ghz radio system consisting of a transmitter and receiver driving a cheap servo would work. Just mechanically link the servo arm output to the volume control of your unit, and, you're done. The receiver requires a simple regulated 5 Volt power supply capable of a couple of Amps, only while the servo is being moved.

Range of this sort of thing is line of sight. IE, the amp must be visable. If the remote unit is visible, range would be far beyond 300 feet.

Ref:
https://hobbyking.com/en_us/hobby-ki...v2-mode-2.html
https://hobbyking.com/en_us/power-hd...-08sec-9g.html
Apr 12, 2017, 11:22 PM
Registered User
You obviously have a remote that's going sufficiently far.
Two more buttons available?
Have an electronic potentiometer in the audio line, adapt a little circuit, e.g. an arduino, hook two button outputs of the receiver to it, tadaa, volume up and down.

Or, even simpler:
have the same sound with different volumes as tracks.
Last edited by learningarduino; Apr 13, 2017 at 02:35 AM.
Apr 13, 2017, 09:08 AM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyKunz
How do you do a manual volume control right now? What amp are you using? How does your amp differ from the coyote caller amps?

Andy
User adjusts volume through their MP3 player currently. Our amps are what I assume considerably larger than the amps used in the coyote calls. We are driving 2-6 100W speakers whereas the coyote calls are driving 1 speaker.

learningarduino, I like where you are going with that! The supplier we are currently getting our on/off remotes from may have something along those lines, I'll email them and see. The reason customers want to be able to adjust volume is some feel when birds are coming over high on migration days they want to turn the caller as high as itll go to get their attention then as they work down turn the volume lower and lower. We don't utilize this theory ourselves but want to fit the needs of everyone.
Apr 13, 2017, 11:24 AM
Stuart
srnet's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by vollrathd
You'd think a simple el-cheapo 2.4 Ghz radio system consisting of a transmitter and receiver driving a cheap servo would work. Just mechanically link the servo arm output to the volume control of your unit, and, you're done.
Agreed. Keep it simple.

With all the kit for a standard RC Link being readily available, already packaged, designed for porable use, low cost, tested and low risk to give to paying consumers, it becomes a simple mechanical problem of how to link a servo to a pot.

DIY electronic solutions using Arduinos and RF devices are of course possible, but very much more complex and a great deal of work for a commercial application. You do need to consider insurance\liabilty and making sure the controllers you might build follow all local RF and safety.
Last edited by srnet; Apr 13, 2017 at 11:30 AM.
Apr 13, 2017, 02:36 PM
Registered User
I bet a given ready made 2 button transmitter with digital output going into an arduino pro mini and an added digipot pcb will work and look better, let alone follow all local rf and safetry regulations, because there are none.
Any RC controller able to have a servo would be
- hard to build: servos usually do not work with the 270 needed for a volume pot
- weird to control: you'll need a pot that controls the channel. There goes the cheap, because i know not one that has just one channel and a pot. All have a steering wheel and a throttle trigger. Both are unusable for volume control.
- unmodifiable: you just cant drill a hole and solder a pot to the steering that stays where you want it: modifying the tx nils the regulations
- not cheaper: even the cheapest rx/tx plus servo and BEC is more than a ardu clone plus elepot.
- not sellable: you'll need two transmitters: one used like now, and the rc for the volume.

It's just a weird solution to use an rc unit.
Trying to have an additional 2 channels (or even a single would do) on a given regulated RF unit is the way to go.

Also, buy the other unit and dissect it.
Apr 14, 2017, 09:03 AM
Registered User
Nice.
Which radio do you have in mind that has a freely usable pot as ch.3?
Apr 14, 2017, 09:05 AM
Sokol
JureZ's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by learningarduino
Nice.
Which radio do you have in mind that has a freely usable pot as ch.3?
just use the throttle channel stick ...
Last edited by JureZ; Apr 14, 2017 at 09:15 AM.
Apr 16, 2017, 09:59 AM
Registered User
Thanks for all the suggestions, this has opened up a whole new world for me. I do agree about keeping it simple, the simpler the better as that's how customers want it.

learningarduino, do you happen to have a couple links for what you are suggesting. I googled those terms and come up with hundreds of different options.

JureZ, thanks for the links! However, I'm not sure using a remote along those lines isnt going to be very appealing with customers. A simple 2 or 3 button remote the size of a cell phone (or smaller) is kind of what we are after. However, I appreciate you helping me out! Will look into those!

So this is what I've been leaning towards or hoping would work, but everyone I find comes from China or Japan and has a shipment to door of like 21+ days. I cannot find anything like that available from the USA, am I just really bad at googling or is this the case with components like that? If these would even work.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-Motor-Au...4AAOSwa~BYbRsj

The cheapest coyote unit we can buy to tear apart is around 80 dollars so if worse comes to worse we will do that. Hopefully can figure something out doing that.
Apr 16, 2017, 10:48 AM
Registered User
Most of this DIY stuff comes from china these days, so that's kind of normal.
But Arduino is pretty widespread, i bet you'll find someone selling similar stuff at least from the same country.

The unit you linked is infrared controlled, so you'll get maybe 30 feet control range if the conditions are good.

For what i mentioned you'll need an Arduino, i'd prefer a Pro Mini or Nano clone, plus the pot itself, ebay search term X9C103.
Then a bit of software, that thing is up to your fantasy, i can't help with that.
But i'd say having two inputs from the receiver for "more" and "less", the X9C library and a few lines of code are not that hard even for beginners.

Don't forget: You'll need another transmitter & receiver than now, with two more functions, as digital outputs, to control what the arduino does!
But i bet there are enough 433MHz (or 315MHz for you?) key chain systems available via ebay. (My searches won't help you because i am in Germany, ebay and Google show different results for the same searches because of this)
Apr 19, 2017, 06:16 AM
Who let the dogs out?
Phil_G's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Juvie Juke Box
We make electronic snow goose callers
Can I ask what is the purpose of calling the snow geese?
Apr 19, 2017, 10:51 AM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by phil_g
Can I ask what is the purpose of calling the snow geese?
I guess to shoot them...
Apr 19, 2017, 11:11 AM
Who let the dogs out?
Phil_G's Avatar
If that is the case then I would hope that no-one here helps with this request.


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