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BLGW and Rako

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Seanie_230
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Seanie_230 Posted: Sun, May 20 2018 7:56 PM
Hello beofans

So it appears that Rako has a wireless system which has some keypads similar to Lutron which I really want to have.

Rako appears to be able to diy also meaning no dealer, they have wireless and the ability to install flush to the wall without power but also can use power in the socked live if you want too,

There is a driver for BLGW which is great news too.

Has anyone installed Rako at home? Used it with BLGW? Any pictures of it in the app and can anyone share any experience?

Cheers

Sean

BLGW - Rekindling the love of ML

Chris Hassell
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These look really interesting @seanie_230

What do you reckon is the minimum setup for having a control panel on the wall (in place of light switches) that can pass commands to the BLGW.

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Seanie_230
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Hello

I spoke to their head office today and they were brilliant they sell to end users.

The minimum needed is a bridge and a wall panel.

I am actually considering using a mix of the wall panel and hue bulbs.

The wall panel can be wireless and surface mounted as it uses a bettery so it can be retrofitted without cutting walls etc.

It’s basically the equivalent to Lutron RA in the UK.

The programming software is free and it looks pretty simple to setup.

I would love to hear if anyone has it / how the BLGW driver works with the bridge. Is there feedback on devices? Is there the ability to listen and capture ?

Cheers

Sean

BLGW - Rekindling the love of ML

Steven_London
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Hi,

I have used Rako for a number of years now and its a very easy system to install and works with the BLGW, using custom strings or now the new external driver. I basically used custom strings before the driver was released.

The system is reliable and make for easy retro-fitting because it uses wireless technology. There is also a wired version which using CAT5 cable. My comments are about the wireless system because that is which I have used. Customer service to date has been excellent. They are very responsive to questions and have swapped out a couple of faulty units no questions asked.

The control panel / switches look like UK style switches, which I like, they are made by Crabtree and therefore you can co-ordinate the Rako panels with normal switches and sockets from the Crabtree Platinum range.

The basic system requires a control panel (switch) plus a dimmer. There are a range of dimmers available and they are about the size of an old halogen transformer. That way they can be inserted through a ceiling hole cut for a spot light. There is also a Rako PILL which will fit in a standard (however deep) UK light backbox - this means that lifting of floorboard to install in ceilings etc is not required.

The standard control panel has 4 light scenes plus raise/lower and off. However, there are other panels available with different configurations.

Set-up is easy, the control panel is put into programming mode and you then select a channel for the dimmer. Press the programming button on the dimmer (the older models used a magnet) and confirm the identity and that's it. I think its 12 channels per room but sorry I cant remember (never needed that many).

With the BLGW you need a Rako Bridge that can either translate RS232 or TCP commands into the Rako wireless signals. I bought the WRA-232 which supports both RS232 and TCP connections and is bi-directional. The new Rako driver connects using TCP and does not appear to be bi-directional. Previously I used custom strings over RS232 which was bi-directional.

I cannot post any images at the moment of the app but will do so later but basically you can set-up scenes and lights. On the scenes page these are virtual buttons that trigger scenes on Rako. On the lighting app page again you can set-up scenes which tie to the 4 scenes on the rako control panel, you can have more but I kept it to mirror the switch in each room. It is also possible to add each dimmer to the lights page so that you can directly control each light. This has Off - 33%, 66% and 100% presets.

Setting up the BLGW is easy:

1. Add the Rako Bridge as a system, select Rako HTTP as the connection type and enter the IP address on the bridge

2. Under Resources set-up scenes and dimmers for each room, e.g. Living Room Scene 1, Living Room Ceiling Light etc... provide the address in the format RRR:CC:S where RRR is the room number, CC is the channel number (0 is all dimmers in the room) and S is the Scene

3. On interface view, select how the scene buttons appear and on what screen in the app. They can be added to scenes, camera view, dimmer view, shares or thermostats. They can be compact and have confirms added. Dimmers cannot be changed and only appear on the lights app page.

That's it - easy.

For custom strings, the configuration was a little more complex because it was easy to address each room and scene separately and then use a macro to link them to a virtual button. But this way allows for the raise and lower to work (mind you have havent tried to get this to work with the new driver) and respond to key release commends to stop the raise or lower. It was also bi-directional which the Rako driver does not appear to be. This was great because the BLGW would respond the pressing a button on the Rako keypad. I used this for controlling Somfy blinds, but since moving house don't need this functionality any more.

Regards

Steven

 

Seanie_230
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Hi there

Thank you for your detailed response it has really put my mind at rest, as you can start small I am going to start with one room at a time.

My dining room has a ceiling pendant which I can replace with a light and a single wall panel, there is an extra swtich located in another room so I hope i can have 1 dimmer connected to 2 Cpanels or have two swtiches control the same light for example.

I will get the bridge later.

 

BLGW - Rekindling the love of ML

Steven_London
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Hi

Yes I started small with one room my kitchen. Rako is very flexible you can have multiple control pannels for a single room, you set the switches on the back to be the same house id and same room id and they work like two way light switches. You can also programme multiple dimmers against the same channel so for example if the ceiling has multiple spots lights that would exceed the rating for a single dimmer you can still use a single channel for all ceiling lights.

In my old flat where I didnt have ceiling access I used PILLs for the ceiling lights, as long as the pendant doesn't exceed 250W it would be very easy to use the existing pendant.

As promised here are some screen shots of both the BeoLink App and the BeoLink2 App.

Steven

Chris Hassell
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@seanie_230 are you going to use Hue Bulbs?

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Seanie_230
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Seanie_230 replied on Mon, May 28 2018 11:39 AM
Hello Chris

I am not sure if I will use Hue bulbs or the Rako dimming modules, hue bulbs may be simpler but I don’t know if selecting a scene will send a trigger to the BLGW.

I am not sure how to begin

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StUrrock
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StUrrock replied on Mon, May 28 2018 9:43 PM
Of all the lighting systems we use Rako

integrates beautifully.
Seanie_230
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Seanie_230 replied on Mon, May 28 2018 10:00 PM
Thank you very much. Getting my head around it all slowly

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Chris Hassell
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Keep me up to date with how you go mate!

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Tassos
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Tassos replied on Fri, Sep 21 2018 7:26 AM

Hello All!

Sorry for asking something which I understand has already been answered but I just want to make sure my setup will work before ordering the components.

I already own a BLGW and I want to control GU10 in the home cinema room. At the time being the GU10s are connected through a trailing edge dimmer to the mains and they are controlled by a retractable Legrand switch (switch is connected to the dimmer via ethernet cable).

To be able to control the GU10s via beolink2 app AS WELL AS the switch I need to buy the rako bridge and a PILL?

Steven_London
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Hi (late reply).

Did you ever change this set-up. Not sure about how the existing Legrand ethernet thing works but if its already running over ethernet is there not a gateway compatible with the existing set-up that could be used?

For Rako, yes you would need the dimmer and gateway to make this work with the BLGW. The PILL is limited to the load it can take, so depending on how many GU10s you have this may not be suitable.

Steven

Chris Hassell
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Hi @Seanie_230 - did you get anywhere with this last year? Would love to find a way of getting my wall light switches replaced to communicate with my BLGW (and therefore also my Hue bulbs).

BeoVision Eclipse 55”, Beolab 18s, Beolab 19s, Beosound 1, Beoplay P2, H3, BeoRemote One IR, BeoRemote One BT, Beoplay S8, Beosound Essence MkII, BeoTime

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