Sariel

BlueSmartControl

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So, I was given the opportunity to test a prototype of a new device to come. It's a very interesting alternative for the SBrick. Release date and price are not known yet.

Project website: http://www.bluesmartcontrol.com/?page_id=110

Here's a full review:

Highlights:

- up to 6 motors controlled with a single unit

- different size factor: the central unit is much flatter than the SBrick

- the Android app is not only full of features but also perfectly stable: I have tested several releases with Android 4 and 5, and it hasn't crashed even once

- there are converter plugs included, so it works with both PF and 9V Lego motors

- you can design your own interfaces directly in the app, right from the start

- you can also create Trains layouts in the app, with track switches and signals activating motors and lights that operate these parts of the track

- you can create sequences of commands (e.g. run motor X for time Y at speed Z) and execute them with a single button

- the developer is promising more features, including connecting to devices other than Lego motors and reacting to events from them

Edited by Sariel

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Looks great and another great review.

I can see these dying out though cos TLC must be thinking along the same lines with its control systems.

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TLC must be thinking along the same lines with its control systems.

I admire your optimism but you're talking about the company that is just about to introduce its first pneumatic cylinder with realistic proportions, only 30 years after creating its pneumatic system.

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So how does it stack up against the SBrick ? The BSC unit seems to have a much poorer mold quality but this might be wrong.

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Cool system, but can there be multiple units operating on a single device ? And I'm surprised that there isn't a 8 output design... Maybe Sbrick will release a larger version for lesser cost than 2 sbricks.

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The BSC unit seems to have a much poorer mold quality

Umm, maybe because it's not a mold? It's still a prototype with a 3D-printed housing, just like the SBrick's first prototypes...

Cool system, but can there be multiple units operating on a single device?

One app can control multiple units, yes.

Edited by Sariel

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Excellent review! This appears to be very versatile with other areas of the LEGO system other then Technic. Its amazing how you able to make all those kinds of customization to the interface and along with how it controls the individual drive units. Lots of potential here.

I have some concerns about the BlueSmartContro around its 9v power supply. We all know that LEGO PF system can only handle a certain amount of motors on one 9v PF battery box. This one is able to handle the load of 6 L motors compared to the 2 LEGO PF system can operate. My guess the additional motor on this is for certain train functions where motor power distribution is quite low then the motor load would be with a Technic 4 wheel vehicle like the 9398.

Edited by Boxerlego

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Looks promising, and also, tiny.

The software looks very complete.

One thing i have missed in the (p)review: how does it compare to hamster control?

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Like Sariel I have a prototype BSC unit too - but I am probably too lazy to write a full review... One thing I'd like to add to Sariel words: BSC has much lower requirements on Android device than SBrick. It works with plain Bluetooth 2.1 and Android 4.0. Tested succesfully on my ageing Nexus-S phone.

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Excellent review as always. BlueSmartControl looks good promising.

I wonder when more essential details will be published, like:

Which BT version BSC is based on? This would help determine what kind of devices could be used for control.

Devices normally work in such short distance without much issues. What working from a distance? Any notes about planned range?

While smartphones/tablets and other smart devices are quite good it terms of customizable layout they do not provide any physical or tactical feedback. Is there any information if will be possible to use some physical devices (like game pads) for control? Without any intermediate device, like PC or laptop.

Edited by zux

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So, I was given the opportunity to test a prototype of a new device to come. It's a very interesting alternative for the SBrick. Release date and price are not known yet.

Project website: http://www.bluesmart...om/?page_id=110

Here's a full review:

Highlights:

- up to 6 motors controlled with a single unit

- different size factor: the central unit is much flatter than the SBrick

- the Android app is not only full of features but also perfectly stable: I have tested several releases with Android 4 and 5, and it hasn't crashed even once

- there are converter plugs included, so it works with both PF and 9V Lego motors

- you can design your own interfaces directly in the app, right from the start

- you can also create Trains layouts in the app, with track switches and signals activating motors and lights that operate these parts of the track

- you can create sequences of commands (e.g. run motor X for time Y at speed Z) and execute them with a single button

- the developer is promising more features, including connecting to devices other than Lego motors and reacting to events from them

This sounds pretty promising, since I plan on buying an Android phone this would be better than the buggy (so I heard) SBrick on the Android app store. Any disadvantages compared to SBrick, assuming an Android platform?

Is there ble as well? If not how will it work with Apple devices

I get the feeling that SBrick is probably best for iOS.

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This is indeed VERY promising.

Few questions that immediately come to mind:

1. Will it work with iOS?

2. Planned launch date

3. Target price?

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Sariel, Thanks for the good review :classic: :classic: But when the little bugs are gone from this bleusmartcontrol.......Which one is better, based on your experience??

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Which one is better, based on your experience??

I don't think it's as simple as that. They're different, and BSC is still a work in progress (with an unknown price).

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BSC has much lower requirements on Android device than SBrick. It works with plain Bluetooth 2.1 and Android 4.0.

Does that mean that its power consumption is more than SBrick when idle?

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This is indeed VERY promising.

Few questions that immediately come to mind:

1. Will it work with iOS?

2. Planned launch date

3. Target price?

Two out of three of your questions have been answered in the first line of Paul's post.

Release date and price are not known yet.

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Any notes about planned range?

smartphones/tablets ... do not provide any physical or tactical feedback.

Is there any information if will be possible to use some physical devices (like game pads) for control? Without any intermediate device, like PC or laptop.

+1 on the same questions :)

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Thanks for the review. A flatter package seems more useful for builds outside of the Technic forum.

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It's interesting that there are going to be more Bluetooth add on controllers for Lego Power Functions. However, I have my doubts about this particular controller. I understand that it is an initial prototype, but I still worry about durability, especially if those connectors are planned for the final version. Also, it annoys me massively that you'd have to buy additional proprietary cables to make it work. Also, the issues with the M and Servo motors are annoying as well, but presumably they will be sorted out. However, if reports are true, the software side is much better than the SBrick. But, I think the Vengit guys have and advantage, in that they already have a solid piece of hardware, and software is relatively easy to produce. But, only time will tell.

By the way, I could have sworn there was another Bluetooth controller called the Upcore or some such. Whatever happened to that?

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Some notes to BSC

As iOS is not a Major issue in europe they foccused on Android, I suppose !

According to BT4.0 Spec it should be compatible to BT2.1 !!

I checked with LEGO 1 year ago:

The PF Connectors Patent was issued 2014 !!

SBrick is violating a lot Patents !!!!!!

An official request to LEGO got this answer: Take a laywer, we are not telling you if you can make your own PF connector !!!!

best regards

Andreas

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I checked with LEGO 1 year ago:

The PF Connectors Patent was issued 2014 !!

SBrick is violating a lot Patents!!!!!!

The SBrick does not use the same PF connector design, it is quite different. Different enough to keep the Vengit team out of trouble.

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