death of 3g - part II

Adafruit cellular platform - SMS and IoT over celluar

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frotz
 
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Re: death of 3g - part II

Post by frotz »

I too am looking for a 4G/5G replacement for the FONA boards. Botletics' SIM7000 shield seems to do the trick for data transfer and uses firmware based on that for the FONA. What I'm really after is something to do voice as well. Botletics has a SIM7500 shield that is supposed to provide that functionality, but development has been stalled since 2018. Timothy Woo, the guy behind Botletics says this is due to lack of free time.

Everything for these shields appears to be open source and available at Github (https://github.com/botletics) so how about joining me to lend him a hand?

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rskup
 
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Re: death of 3g - part II

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Hi Frotz, check out the Waveshare SIM7600 breakout boards if you're looking for voice. I have the large board, I haven't specifically used it for voice but it does have the 3.5 mm jack for a headset.

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frotz
 
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Re: death of 3g - part II

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rskup wrote: Sun Nov 06, 2022 10:15 pm Hi Frotz, check out the Waveshare SIM7600 breakout boards if you're looking for voice. I have the large board, I haven't specifically used it for voice but it does have the 3.5 mm jack for a headset.
I looked that up and found something that can plug into a Raspberry Pi or an Arduino: https://www.waveshare.com/wiki/SIM7600E-H_4G_HAT. Is that along the lines of what you're talking about?

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Re: death of 3g - part II

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Yes, I got the "G" version (which I know is overkill for the US). There's also a smaller version, https://www.waveshare.com/wiki/SIM7600G-H_4G_HAT_(B)

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frotz
 
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Re: death of 3g - part II

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rskup wrote: Mon Nov 07, 2022 4:22 am Yes, I got the "G" version (which I know is overkill for the US). There's also a smaller version, https://www.waveshare.com/wiki/SIM7600G-H_4G_HAT_(B)
What are you using to control your SIM7600 board? I was hoping to use an Arduino for simplicity, reusing the FONA library code, I have spare Arduinos (not Pis), and people are scalping Pis of all kinds. When I asked Waveshare about making 4G board to plug directly onto Arduinos (turns out the Arduino pins are for breakout board use), I was told that because the 7600 module talks 4G, an Arduino is not powerful enough to control it.

I guess I could get a Pi Zero when Adafruit gets them back in. The code for what I'm up to looks like it could be easily reworked to target a Pi Zero at the bare metal level.

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Re: death of 3g - part II

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Hi frotz, I'm using a Pi-4B to control it. I see no reason why an Arduino couldn't control it...however you would have to make sure the i/o voltages between the two boards are compatible. Which Arduino do you have?

I'm really puzzled by their statement, "because the 7600 module talks 4G, an Arduino is not powerful enough to control it". That's very odd, it's just serial i/o controlling the Waveshare.

On my Pi I have PuTTY, and mainly use that to send the AT commands over the Pi's serial pins to the Wavershare's serial pins, RXD on TXD on that yellow pinout strip. It's the same two pins you would hook an Arduino too (again, gotta make sure the i/o voltages are compatible).

Anyways, now I want to prove them wrong, which Arduino(s) do you have?

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frotz
 
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Re: death of 3g - part II

Post by frotz »

rskup wrote: Thu Nov 10, 2022 10:38 pm Hi frotz, I'm using a Pi-4B to control it. I see no reason why an Arduino couldn't control it...however you would have to make sure the i/o voltages between the two boards are compatible. Which Arduino do you have?

I'm really puzzled by their statement, "because the 7600 module talks 4G, an Arduino is not powerful enough to control it". That's very odd, it's just serial i/o controlling the Waveshare.

On my Pi I have PuTTY, and mainly use that to send the AT commands over the Pi's serial pins to the Wavershare's serial pins, RXD on TXD on that yellow pinout strip. It's the same two pins you would hook an Arduino too (again, gotta make sure the i/o voltages are compatible).

Anyways, now I want to prove them wrong, which Arduino(s) do you have?
That statement puzzled me too for the same reasons. I chose not to reply to it.

I have Arduino Unos, but what I really want to use is an Arduino Nano because space and heat are extremely limiting factors for this project. A Pi would generate too much heat. Looking closer at the SIM7600G-H, I see that it interfaces with a Pi Zero by tapping the Pi's USB lands with pogo pins.

Another thing... Does anyone know where I can get a data sheet on the SIM7600 series of chips? The manufacturer's page for it (https://www.simcom.com/product/SIM7600G.html) has a lot of PDFs, but none of them seem to be what would serve as a data sheet.

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rskup
 
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Re: death of 3g - part II

Post by rskup »

Hey frotz, looks like both the Uno and Nano is 5V i/o yes? And the Waveshare came setup as 3.3V i/o -- at least mine did, the large Waveshare board version. Are you thinking of the large or small Waveshare board?

For the large board, it does sound like you can change its i/o voltage by de-soldering/re-soldering a tiny jumper at the VCCIO junction on the back of the board. I'm not brave enough to try that though, I would probably try a logic-level converter first.

Anyways, I dug around and found a spare Adafruit Feather (their #2771), it's 3.3V i/o. I'm gonna wire it up to my Waveshare over the weekend just to do it, if they think an Uno won't work, they would probably think a Feather won't work either.

Yes, that little Waveshare board and the Pi Zero/pogo pin setup looks pretty nice and compact, very cool!

I didn't find any SIM7600 "datasheets" here, but here's where I go for all my Simcom chip info:
https://simcom.ee/documents/

In the SIM7600E folder is the SIM7600 Series Hardware Design pdf, AT command manual, and lots of other stuff.

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frotz
 
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Re: death of 3g - part II

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rskup wrote: Fri Nov 11, 2022 12:23 pm Hey frotz, looks like both the Uno and Nano is 5V i/o yes? And the Waveshare came setup as 3.3V i/o -- at least mine did, the large Waveshare board version. Are you thinking of the large or small Waveshare board?

For the large board, it does sound like you can change its i/o voltage by de-soldering/re-soldering a tiny jumper at the VCCIO junction on the back of the board. I'm not brave enough to try that though, I would probably try a logic-level converter first.

Anyways, I dug around and found a spare Adafruit Feather (their #2771), it's 3.3V i/o. I'm gonna wire it up to my Waveshare over the weekend just to do it, if they think an Uno won't work, they would probably think a Feather won't work either.

Yes, that little Waveshare board and the Pi Zero/pogo pin setup looks pretty nice and compact, very cool!

I didn't find any SIM7600 "datasheets" here, but here's where I go for all my Simcom chip info:
https://simcom.ee/documents/

In the SIM7600E folder is the SIM7600 Series Hardware Design pdf, AT command manual, and lots of other stuff.
Have you been able to try an Arduino on that board yet?
\

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rskup
 
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Re: death of 3g - part II

Post by rskup »

Hi Frotz, meant to update this but kept forgetting. In one of the recent posts, viewtopic.php?t=195689, jimk123 and I have been testing/trading info on running that Waveshare board from a Feather (3V i/o).

I haven't tried an Arduino because the ones I have (Uno's) are 5V i/o, and I'm reluctant to do the de-soldering/re-soldering of the jumper on the Waveshare board to change the i/o voltage from 3V to 5V.

Anyways, we both got the Waveshare/Feather combo working, I'm using the FONA sketch (FONAtest_KEY_mode), and jimk123 is using the Botletics sketch (ESP32_LTE_Demo).

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Re: death of 3g - part II

Post by jimk123 »

Hi Frotz
I started with botelitics SIM7000A boards but my application requires reliable SMS incoming and outgoing messages and quickly discovered the CAT-M NBIOT devices were not suitable for that and the cost of incoming messages using hologram was prohibtive at .19 cents per message.

Then rskup showed me the waveshare 7600 series board which are true LTE devices meant for voice and SMS and I bought this board:

https://www.waveshare.com/sim7600a-h-4g-hat.htm (I am located in the US)

I ended up using it with the Adafruit ESP32-S3 TFT Feather - 4MB Flash, 2MB PSRAM, STEMMA QT Product ID: 5483 $24.95, for a few reasons. rskup was very helpful getting me started with the wiring and jumper settings. It was easy to wire up (used hardware serial) and use the default 3.3v logic of the waveshare board and I liked the fact it had a built-in color display so I could write messages to the screen and it also has a stemma/qwiic connector making it easy to attach other sensors. I am using Ting mobile service for the SIM and very happy with the service and cost.

If you decide to use that waveshare board with the adafruit esp32 feathers I could probably help with the pin assignments. I also preferred to use the botelitics software, I had good luck with it previously and it was cloned from the original adafruit FONA code, and it worked fine with the waveshare.

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Re: death of 3g - part II

Post by jimk123 »

forgot to mention I would NOT recommend an UNO (way to little memory) or a 5v board, go with on of the adafruit esp32 3.3v boards, so much easier.

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