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Thread: Looking for USB input relays...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Habitat For Bats, Jackson GA

    Default Looking for USB input relays...

    I'm looking for a simply USB device that will sense a 5v, 12v, 24v, 28v (i.e. I don't really care) relay closure and trigger software to perform an action.

    The need: I want to test a line for voltage, if it is present I want to sense it and trigger an action so I can monitor it with the PC.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Henrico, NC


    There's a number of devices out there that support contact closure notification/alarming. Unfortunately most are serial based and designed to report via TL1 messaging. I don't know if one of those USB to serial converters would help but then the software could be an issue. And, now that I think about it I recall X10 had a contact closure module.....

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    WidgetWorks Unlimited LLC., Chappaqua New York


    X10 did have a contact closure input device - they used to say you could use it to remotely sense if you forgot to put the garage door down. I would assume that X10 also has a USB computer interface - been several years since I used their stuff. I don't know if their software will trigger outside software or the action that is needed in this application.

    I haven't looked into off-the-shelf options for this, so I can't report on those. I have poked around the Arduino Micro Controllers a bit. They make several preassembled USB/blue tooth interface modules. They're cheap and have grown a great reputation. You'd have to do some simple coding for the Arduino (The SDK is free and I believe the "programmer" is built in to the device.) and then perhaps something on the computer side to trigger your software.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Hobby-Tronics, Chiloquin Oregon


    Give these guys a look see, they have a manual online to look at. I've never used them but the description looks like what you were talking about. Russ

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Brookline, New Hampshire


    Digital I/O and many a to d inputs. I believe I used an active X component to interface to it. Just over $100 but a lot of capability.

    Paul Z

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