Color Control GX: Accessories & Tips
Update Nov 19th 2018: The latest Wi-Fi dongle compatability info is here: https://www.victronenergy.com/live/ccgx:start#internet_connectivity See the section 1.6.2 Wi-Fi USB dongle.
Update Jan 4th 2016: Tested Wi-Fi dongles as below, per Victron Live.
For further internet connectivity information see Victron Live: https://www.victronenergy.com/live/ccgx:start#internet_connectivity
With the recent release of firmware v1.16 for the Color Control GX (CCGX), there is now Wi-Fi USB support for the CCGX, which some may prefer over other internet connection options.
The tested Wi-Fi dongles available for the CCGX are:
CCGX WiFi module simple (Nano USB), small, low cost. Victron part number BPP900100200
Startech USB300WN2X2D, slightly higher cost and also better reception. Victron part number: BPP900200100
In the photo below you can see the small Zyxel Wi-Fi dongle. If your CCGX is installed in a panel without easy access to the rear, you may want one or two USB extensions for your CCGX accessories, such as a USB stick for data or a Wi-Fi or GPS dongle. If so, you may find the USB extension socket shown below suitable, when used in conjunction with a standard USB printer cable.
This is handy if you wish to move your Wi-Fi adapter or GPS for easier access or to a better reception area, for instance. In my case this allows me to place the dongle as high as possible in the interior of my boat, for the best reception.
In fact I also bought the higher gain Startech too, which gives around a 20% gain in reception, but I find I tend to use this for my laptop as the antennae is far better than the built in one. The Startech also has a clip which mounts on the back, and at the top, of your laptop screen. It is also a back up for the CCGX if I’m in a poor Wi-Fi reception area.
When not using the Wi-Fi, I also use the Neutrik USB port for my laptop mobile broadband and for 3G data comms to and from the CCGX, via the 3G USB dongle shown below, which is then plugged into my 3G Wi-Fi router.
In due course I shall change to a direct SIM card insertion 3G/4G/LTE/Wi-Fi Machine to Machine (M2M) router. This is much easier then messing with a USB mobile broadband dongle and router or Mi-Fi units.
A M2M router also gives more options such as DDNS, SSH, SFTP and HTTP access to the CCGX, which some of us need, and in fact may be used by more users in the future as other CCGX enhancements come on stream. I also like the mobile data connection ‘keep alive’ functionality of these routers. They are ideal for remote and mobile locations.
There is an ongoing discussion on the various options in the blog post link below and its comments section, as to what may suit various users.
This is my own BMV, CCGX installation on my boat.
To the right of the picture you can see I have fitted a dual USB full power charging point for phones/tablets. There is also a cigar lighter socket too for my 12V Netbook. The units can be separated and used individually rather than in the mounting plate shown, if you wish. The full range is here:
In the photo you will also notice at the top left a powered USB hub, which accepts and expands the capabilities of the CCGX for multiple BMVs or MPPT controllers, for example.
It is a powered Anker USB 3.0 4-Port Hub. Unlike most powered hubs it can accept a 12V supply, so doing away with the mains transformer.
CCGX on Victron Live
By now, we trust most of you have discovered Victron Live. The links below are from the CCGX section.
Further information on other products can be found in the Welcome to Victron Live start page.
Your comments and questions are welcomed.