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CPI Panels

maxpol

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May 8, 2009
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18
Hi all,

I'm helping out a friend in getting an intercom system working at a new (old) farm they've got. There are a bunch of CPI DR10 remotes scattered around the house and the various buildings and those all work fine. Where the challenge comes in, is there used to be a Motorola Base station at some point but that was ripped out by the old owner, so all is left are a twisted pair and a power supply. There was a box of radios left about (Motorola Radius m1225, SM50 and a CM200) which i picked up to test with and a couple of the DR10 remotes.

I have also picked up a CPI MR100 and an MR200(N) from eBay in hopes of getting this to work, but both boxes yield the same result. I am able to get audio from the Motorola into the DR10 stations, however, when I TX from the DR10 station, neither box keys up the Motorola. The goal is to have 2 way comms from handhelds around the property to the stations and vice versa.

I'm a ham so have radio experience, however, this is the first time I'm dealing with a remote system, so it's a bit outside my wheelhouse. As I can't get either boxes working, I'm sure I'm missing a critical part somewhere, so any help would be appreciated.

Thank you!
 

RFI-EMI-GUY

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Dec 22, 2013
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4,659
That looks like a DC control system. The polarity of the TX pair matters. If it is reversed the TX wont work.
 

maxpol

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May 8, 2009
Messages
18
Awesome, thanks, will have to give that a go. Just to make sure I'm on the same page, when you say the TX pairs matter, that would be on the remotes side right? I currently just have a standard RJ11 cable plugged from 2 stations into a 2 port RJ11 splitter and that goes into the back of the MR units. So I would reverse the 2 pairs and see if that works?
 

RFI-EMI-GUY

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Depending upon the configuration the remotes might be 2 wire or 4 wire. With 4 wire, the TX and RX are on separate pairs. With 2 wire TX and RX are on same pair. There would be jumpers inside to configure 2 wire versus 4 wire. It is likely you have a 2 wire setup.

That said, the TX from the remote control has a fairly high voltage on it which translates to several (tens) milliamperes of positive current for either F1 or F2. The termination panel has either a sensitive relay or opto coupler to derive PTT for the base station. If you press the "monitor" button on the remote a few milliamperes in negative polarity flow to activate a different relay or optocoupler. That circuit defeats the Private Line tone squelch of the radio so that co channel traffic can be monitored. Wiring for the monitor circuit is performed at the microphone "hub switch" in some cases unless a programmable I/O is present on the rear of the radio.

All of the remotes must be wired so that the polarities of the pairs match when they arrive at the DC termination panel. If it does not work from any remote, then reverse the polarity at the termination panel. If some remotes don't work and most do, reverse the polarity of the ones that don't work. By polarity I mean only for the pair carrying the TX signal. If you have Red Green Yellow and Black and Red and Green are your TX pair, only those two wires need to be swapped to correct the polarity. Assuming this wiring is undisturbed, perhaps only the new Remote termination panel is reversed.

All of this assumes that there is DC continuity of all the interconnecting wiring. If the wiring goes between two buildings, it may be on a 25 pair copper cable once provided by the phone company. If someone abandonded that cabling and put in a wireless or Fiber link, it won't work.

Remotes can be configured for intercom so that someone on the first floor can intercom someone on the second floor without keying the transmitter (NO DC applied) . Likewise, someone transmitting to a mobile from a remote should be heard on all of the remotes. If you have the manual, the jumpers should explain all this.

It might help to bring two remotes together with the DC termination panel and test them "on the bench" first to rule out equipment problems.
 
Last edited:

maxpol

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Joined
May 8, 2009
Messages
18
Depending upon the configuration the remotes might be 2 wire or 4 wire. With 4 wire, the TX and RX are on separate pairs. With 2 wire TX and RX are on same pair. There would be jumpers inside to configure 2 wire versus 4 wire.

That said, the TX from the remote control has a fairly high voltage on it which translates to several (tens) milliamperes of positive current for either F1 or F2. The termination panel has either a sensitive relay or opto coupler to derive PTT for the base station. If you press the "monitor" button on the remote a few milliamperes in negative polarity flow to activate a different relay or optocoupler. That circuit defeats the Private Line tone squelch of the radio so that co channel traffic can be monitored. Wiring for the monitor circuit is performed at the microphone "hub switch" in some cases unless a programmable I/O is present on the rear of the radio.

All of the remotes must be wired so that the polarities of the pairs match when they arrive at the DC termination panel. If it does not work from any remote, then reverse the polarity at the termination panel. If some remotes don't work and most do, reverse the polarity of the ones that don't work. By polarity I mean only for the pair carrying the TX signal. If you have Red Green Yellow and Black and Red and Green are your TX pair, only those two wires need to be swapped to correct the polarity. Assuming this wiring is undisturbed, perhaps only the new Remote termination panel is reversed.

All of this assumes that there is DC continuity of all the interconnecting wiring. If the wiring goes between two buildings, it may be on a 25 pair copper cable once provided by the phone company. If someone abandonded that cabling and put in a wireless or Fiber link, it won't work.

Remotes can be configured for intercom so that someone on the first floor can intercom someone on the second floor without keying the transmitter (NO DC applied) . Likewise, someone transmitting to a mobile from a remote should be heard on all of the remotes. If you have the manual, the jumpers should explain all this.

It might help to bring two remotes together with the DC termination panel and test them "on the bench" first to rule out equipment problems.
Gotcha. My apologies, should have specified in the inital post, this is all on the bench right now. I've also tried just the remote into the back of either modules and still the same thing.

The property is all wired up on 2 wire, including up at the tower where the setup used to be. I could try reversing the polarity on the cable I've got now and see what happens. As for the monitor, that one I don't have on these bases. All i've got is a PTT button and a volume knob on the unit.
 

Attachments

RFI-EMI-GUY

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Dec 22, 2013
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Yeah; Probably the polarity is reversed. if it is all two wire and you can talk and listen between the remotes then all you have to do is make sure when you transmit that a voltage is produced. It will have only a few milliamperes if terminated into the MR100. If open circuit, you might see as much as 175 volts depending upon the design. If you see less and it produces the correct current when terminated, no worries.

If the building wires are damaged and have water leakage it can mess the system up.

This is pretty old school stuff I worked on at Motorola in 1976.

Nobody really uses the monitor feature even though FCC requires licensees to monitor.
 

maxpol

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May 8, 2009
Messages
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Yeah; Probably the polarity is reversed. if it is all two wire and you can talk and listen between the remotes then all you have to do is make sure when you transmit that a voltage is produced. It will have only a few milliamperes if terminated into the MR100. If open circuit, you might see as much as 175 volts depending upon the design. If you see less and it produces the correct current when terminated, no worries.

If the building wires are damaged and have water leakage it can mess the system up.

This is pretty old school stuff I worked on at Motorola in 1976.

Nobody really uses the monitor feature even though FCC requires licensees to monitor.
Yeah for sure antique stuff, looking at some of the diagrams in the house and it's dating back to 1990, so for sure a bit out there :)

Just did the following: Plugged in one of the remotes directly into the MR200 and put a multimeter in between, swapped out polarities and both ways I've come up with 160V DC when holding down the PTT on the remote. So does that indicate that there's a short somewhere even when there's no other devices and it's just straight through?
 

ramal121

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The control current of the remote needs to match that of the termination panel also.
 

RFI-EMI-GUY

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Yeah for sure antique stuff, looking at some of the diagrams in the house and it's dating back to 1990, so for sure a bit out there :)

Just did the following: Plugged in one of the remotes directly into the MR200 and put a multimeter in between, swapped out polarities and both ways I've come up with 160V DC when holding down the PTT on the remote. So does that indicate that there's a short somewhere even when there's no other devices and it's just straight through?
The MR200 is a tone control termination panel , it is not compatiblee with your DC remotes. . The MR100 is the DC termination panel.

The voltage is high because the MR200 does not have the circuitry to load the DC current.

Try the MR100 termination panel in both polarities.
 

RFI-EMI-GUY

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Beware the odd nomenclature CPI uses. If yours is a -4W version, the control current is on the second pair and so either you have to bridge the two pairs externally, or go inside and change jumpers or switches to merge the DC control with 2W.

-4W Four wire simplex operation. TX and RX audio on one pair, control current on the second pair.

This option is what most would call 4 wire!:
-FD Full duplex operation on four wires. TX audio and control current on one pair, RX audio on the second pair.
 

maxpol

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May 8, 2009
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Thank you both the help! @RFI-EMI-GUY , you were right. It was the polarity. I have moved back to the MR100 box and with the regular cable, when I key up, the monitor light gets lit up. When I've cut the cable and swapped polarities, the PTT came on. So that was it. Thank you so much for all the help, much appreciated. Just find it extrordionary how simple the circuitry is, yet how much control can be had.
 

ramal121

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Cutting the cable is a little much. You can flip polarity of the wireline by a dip switch on the bottom of the remote.
 

maxpol

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May 8, 2009
Messages
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Cutting the cable is a little much. You can flip polarity of the wireline by a dip switch on the bottom of the remote.
Sure. This is just on the bench and have a bunch of rj11 cables, so no big deal to slice. This, at least for me, was a for sure way to test it. And yes there are RG terminals on the back of the MR100 and that’s probably what I’ll use at the property as there’s just 2 bare wires in that box.
 
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