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Cfa633 - usb?

Crystedt

New member
I am interested in a low-cost fan controller and it looks like the best option is the CFA633. I have given the web-site and the specifications document a quick once-over but I do not understand how this unit connects to a USB port but I see several mentions to serial connectivity.

Also, what is the advantage to the 631 & 635 + SCAB over the 633 other than screen size?

Can these units run independent of an operating system?
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... I do not understand how this unit connects to a USB port...
You have to order the USB version (-KU suffix), which comes with a USB interface adapter board.
Can these units run independent of an operating system?
You mean regarding fan control? Yes and no. I think they will control the fans at power up, without a host, but in order to do that you have to first use a host to communicate to the 633 to set up all the fan parameters, and then save that configuration as the "boot state". After that, the fans will not change their operation unless you have a host to command the module.
what is the advantage to the 631 & 635 + SCAB over the 633 other than screen size?
None, except for keys.

631 - 20x2, 4 keys, need SCAB for I/O
633 - 16x2, 6 keys, has I/O
635 - 20x4, 6 keys, need SCAB for I/O
 

CF Tech

Administrator
We have done some custom firmware that closes the loop, reading temperatures and controlling fans automatically. It is not something we could do 1 of, but if you needed modules in a production situation, we could customize this firmware for you. Please write support@crystalfontz.com if you are interested in pursuing this option.
 

Crystedt

New member
Thanks for all the info.

I must say I'm a bit shocked to learn that you need an OS to have fan control. I am looking for a cooling solution for a linux server, and equipment rack and a few other projects as well. I thought I had finally found a flexible fan controller for a decent price. This is sad news.
 
Think about all the parameters needed to setup and control fans, both within the 633 firmware and the host control program. Now think about how difficult and clunky it would be to interface that using just two lines of text and 6 keys. I don't think a standalone like that would be a nice product to setup and use.

Also, it would be much easier to change a control alogrithm when it is an OS task, than to burn new firmware.
 

Crystedt

New member
cosmicvoid, I understand what you are saying, but for some reason I assumed that you would plug in via USB to program the device where it would be written to some EEPROM or such. Anyway it was my mistake in thinking that this was a thermal/fan controller as opposed to just a USB device.
 

CF Tech

Administrator
. . . you would plug in via USB to program the device where it would be written to some EEPROM . . .
This is almost exactly what the firmware I am talking about here does:

We have done some custom firmware that closes the loop, reading temperatures and controlling fans automatically. It is not something we could do 1 of, but if you needed modules in a production situation, we could customize this firmware for you. Please write support@crystalfontz.com if you are interested in pursuing this option.
We just did not have room in the processor to do all of its "normal" functions and the fan control. The special firmware I'm talking about removes a lot of the peripheral functions of the software and adds in the closed loop fan control.
 

Crystedt

New member
CF Tech, I understand what you're talking about but I thought you said...
... It is not something we could do 1 of, but if you needed modules in a production situation, we could customize this firmware for you.
I am not in a production situation, I am just looking for a programmable temperature controller for a few projects.
 

CF Tech

Administrator
Go ahead and write in. If it is just a matter of digging up the firmware and giving you the documentation on the changed commands, then there will not be a huge MOQ.
 
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