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'[EE]: Bluetooth to RS232 converters -- source, sch'
2006\09\20@015134 by Vitaliy

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We're currently shopping for a BT>RS232 converter to use as a serial cable
replacement, with a BT>USB module similar to this one on the other end:

http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=150

The product we're plugging it into has +5V on pin 9 to power the module. The
module has to be "transparent" as far as the device and the host application
running on the PC are concerned.

After doing some research, I can't believe how limited our options are. The
modules I was able to find cost $49 in OEM quantities (compare that to $15
for BT>USB in _single_ quantities!).

We will likely require thousands of these BT units, so it probably makes
sense to either manufacture a BT>RS232 converter ourselves, or build a
different version of the device with BT built-in. My experience with
Bluetooth is rather limited, can someone point me in the right direction?
Perhaps there are schematics for something like this already out there? I'd
also love to hear about your experiences with different BT chips.

Best regards,

Vitaliy

2006\09\20@031026 by Matt Pobursky

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On Tue, 19 Sep 2006 22:51:28 -0700, Vitaliy wrote:
{Quote hidden}

About this time last year I worked on a project that embedded a
bluetooth module. We found some modules for about $20 in 1000's.
Seems like 10K is the sweet spot and you can get something for more
like $15 then. You'll still have to do RS232 level conversion and a
3.3V local supply but that should be easy and inexpensive. Other than
that it should be transparent to the application.

We used the Blueradios module that Sparkfun uses because it's the
same footprint as the Roving Networks module. The A7 Engineering
module is attractive too, about $20 @1000 pcs. Almost all the modules
I looked at use the CSR chipset, it seems to be the most popular.

Here are some links to OEM bluetooth module suppliers, hopefully
they'll be helpful:

http://wintecind.com/oem/bluetooth.htm
http://www.flexipanel.com/BluetoothModules.htm
http://www.blueradios.com/hardware.htm#BRC11
www.benelec.com.au/AVL_GPS_Products/02945001.htm
www.lesswire.com/products/net_comp/oem_adapter.htm
www.c-com.com.tw/c-com-products-btm-103.htm
www.zbausa.com/blue_topaz_bluetooth_mini_module.asp
www.bluegiga.com/default.asp?f=2&t=1&p=1200&subp=200
http://www.tdc.co.uk/bluetooth/bt_tdk.htm#bism
http://www.rovingnetworks.com/modules.htm
http://www.a7eng.com/products/embeddedblue/embeddedblue.htm

Matt Pobursky
Maximum Performance Systems








2006\09\20@035915 by Vitaliy

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Matt Pobursky wrote:
> About this time last year I worked on a project that embedded a
> bluetooth module. We found some modules for about $20 in 1000's.
> Seems like 10K is the sweet spot and you can get something for more
> like $15 then. You'll still have to do RS232 level conversion and a
> 3.3V local supply but that should be easy and inexpensive. Other than
> that it should be transparent to the application.
>
> We used the Blueradios module that Sparkfun uses because it's the
> same footprint as the Roving Networks module. The A7 Engineering
> module is attractive too, about $20 @1000 pcs. Almost all the modules
> I looked at use the CSR chipset, it seems to be the most popular.
>
> Here are some links to OEM bluetooth module suppliers, hopefully
> they'll be helpful:

Thanks a bunch for the links!

So in your opinion, if you're dealing with 1k+ quantities, is it less
expensive to buy rather than manufacture? Or have you decided to go with a
ready-built module because of time constraints?

Best regards,

Vitaliy

2006\09\20@154443 by Steve Baldwin

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On 20 Sep 2006 at 0:59, Vitaliy wrote:

> So in your opinion, if you're dealing with 1k+ quantities, is it less
> expensive to buy rather than manufacture? Or have you decided to go
> with a ready-built module because of time constraints?

I went through the same process for a customer and came to the same
conclusion. It wasn't a hard one to decide on.

If you are looking for a pure serial link replacement and are supplying both
ends, have a look at Zigbee or the Zigbee inspired solutions. There may a
better solution there if it fits with your data needs.

Steve.


==========================================
Steve Baldwin                          Electronic Product Design
TLA Microsystems Ltd             Microcontroller Specialists
PO Box 15-680, New Lynn                http://www.tla.co.nz
Auckland, New Zealand                     ph  +64 9 820-2221
email: spam_OUTsteveTakeThisOuTspamtla.co.nz                      fax +64 9 820-1929
=========================================


2006\09\20@162247 by Charles Craft

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Looks like Zigbee has gone the route of USB in requiring membership to use their technology:
http://www.elecdesign.com/Articles/Index.cfm?ArticleID=13412

"e. Developers incorporating the module into an end product

   ZigBee: This type of entity must be a member, as either an Adopter or Participant. They must also obtain ZigBee product certification if they wish to use the logo on their product. Product testing is defined and straight forward. If they are an adopter member, there would be an additional $1,000 logo admin fee for the first product ($500 thereafter). There is no logo fee for Participant members.

f. Developers incorporating a self-contained ZigBee product within a product

   ZigBee: If it is contained within the product then this case is treated the same as e). If it is already a ZigBee Certified Product and can be separately packaged as an accessory and plugged in to a PCI slot, USB port or other I/O by the end user, then no membership or additional testing is required."


{Original Message removed}

2006\09\20@185114 by Matt Pobursky

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On Wed, 20 Sep 2006 16:22:44 -0400 (GMT-04:00), Charles Craft wrote:
{Quote hidden}

Ouch! IANAL but that last paragraph reads to me that if I embed a
Zigbee Module by soldering it onto my PCB, even though it's a "Zigbee
Certified Product" I must still become a "member" and pay the Zigbee
Gods if I want to use the Zigbee logo. That sure sounds like "double
dipping" on the revenue stream yet again...

Bluetooth at least got this right. You don't have to pay a double tax
if you use a Bluetooth certified device as the manufacturer of the
device has already paid. That was one of our considerations for using
a pre-certified module.

Matt Pobursky
Maximum Performance Systems




2006\09\20@202032 by Regulus Berdin

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Matt Pobursky wrote:
> Bluetooth at least got this right. You don't have to pay a double tax
> if you use a Bluetooth certified device as the manufacturer of the
> device has already paid. That was one of our considerations for using
> a pre-certified module.

True. But if you use the Bluetooth logo, you must certify your product
if it follows the standard bt profiles and have it listed.
Pre-qualified components / software stacks are not re-tested but must be
declared.  Non-standard bluetooth implementations is legal but cannot be
certified.  This is to ensure interoperatiblity.

regards,

Reggie
http://www.microelektronics.com


'[EE]: Bluetooth to RS232 converters -- source, sch'
2006\10\10@100024 by alan smith
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NXP now has a bt1.2 module, BGB203 and BGB204.  Not sure on pricing tho
               
---------------------------------
How low will we go? Check out Yahoo! Messenger’s low  PC-to-Phone call rates.

2006\10\11@205445 by Regulus Berdin

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alan smith wrote:
> NXP now has a bt1.2 module, BGB203 and BGB204.  Not sure on pricing tho
About $5-$6 dollars in 10K quantities.

BGB203 is flash based with ARM7TDMI core with built-in bluetooth radio
in a module.  While BGB204 is ROM based.

I am using BGB203 in some of the products I developed.  The problem with
this chip is that you will need a Bluetooth stack (HCI level) which is
very complex to make from scratch.  You either license one from Ericsson
or from Philips/NXP.  My client negotiated Philips to release to them
the HCI object file for the projects.  I only make the upper HCI
software and the user interfacing.

CSR bluecore chips are better.  HCI and even up to RFCOMM stack are
already included in the chip/module.  User programs/profiles are loaded
in flash and run in VM (virtual machine).

SPP (serial port profile) is the profile needed for RS232 converter
application.  For the hardware only a 3.3V regulator, MAX3232, a CSR
bluecore module and few passives are needed.  Even MAX3232 is not need
if you don't need RS232 voltage levels and want to connect directly to
your processor.

regards,

Reggie
http://www.microelektronics.com

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