Controlling Non B&O Products

A Brief Description

Since the introduction of version 1.32 firmeware, B&O dealers have had the ability to configure the Beo5 to control both B&O and most non B&O products. The Beo5 hardware and firmware support the following non B&O IR (Infra-Red) remote control protocols:-
  • RC5 protocol developed by Philips and used by hundred's of product manufacturers through the availability of cheap standard micro-processor decoding chips. The protocol uses whats called "Manchester coding" or "Bi-Phase Coding" which means it is self clocking because a "0" is defined as a change from signal high to low and a "1" is a signal change from low to high. This protocol consists of 14 bits transmitted with each button press and breaks down as 2 "Start bits" followed by a single "Toggle" bit followed by 5 address bits providing up to 32 (0 to 31) different products and finally with 6 command bits which will allow up to 64 (0 to 63) different commands to the same non B&O product. There is no checksum so if the IR receiver does not get a valid address and/or command, then no function will be performed by the receiving product.
  • NEC protocol is a more complex and robust protocol because it also sends an inverted version of the command, so there is greater reliability of transmission. Most far Eastern product manufacturers tend to use the NEC protocol or a variation of it for their products. The NEC protocol uses what is called "Pulse Position Modulation" method of transmission which means that the width of the transmitted pulse defines if the binary data is a "0" or "1" A pulse width of 1.12 Milli seconds is a "0" and a pulse width of 2.24 milli seconds. The protocol is not a standard as such, and comes in two typical forms. The first being a simple 8 bit address and 8 bit command with each address and command inverted. The second form does not have an invert address field, rather it is used to extend the addressing capability from 65 addresses to 65,000. The normal carrier frequency is 38 Khz
  • Bitstream which as the name suggests is a stream of binary codes with many different carrier frequencies and pulses periods defined by the product manufacturer and is used to control products such as Lutron lighting controllers which are not B&O compatible.
  • Raw is not a protocol as such at all and is the most difficult to configure and contains data in hexadecimal for each part of the transmitted signal. Because this is the raw signal without a protocol layer, ANY infra-red remote signal configuration can be reproduced provided it uses any of the normal carrier frequencies. One or two major brands can only be configured using this method and such a brand is Sony

As more than 95% of non B&O products used within a B&O configuration use either Philips RC5 or NEC protocols for their remotes, for all th others you will need to use either Bitstream or RAW..

For a dealer who needs to configure a Beo5 with products that use the Philips RC5 protocol, then this is quite easy because it is a very simple protocol which also has a level of standardisation in using the same carrier frequency of 36kHz as well as standard address and command codes.

In the download section you will find a template for a TileVision TV used in bathrooms which uses the RC5 protocol as well as a generic template which can be edited using the command codes below. All manufacturers TV's using this protocol have an address field of zero. Also available is a template for a Lutron Rania dimmer which uses Bitstream protocol.

For all protocols except RC5 you need to know the exact IR coding to produce a Beo5 template, so if you wish to produce your own templates for a product not currently available from B&O or this site then you will need a means of capturing and decoding this IR signal. There are many cheap solutions available on the web, but if you happen to own a Lintronic converter box, then you can us that. In my view it is the best solution because it will tell you automatically what type of protocol you are using and in the associated pages details are given on using this method.