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TC420/421

Kalum

Member
Joined
8 Jan 2018
Messages
1,050
Location
Scotland
Since there's not a lot of info about the TC421 I thought I'd add a quick post

I set mine up to day with my twinstar 600s and is working well, only issue is it loses the connection between phone and unit now and again and I need to search for it again then works again, once sync'd I'll hardly use it so not a massive issue of it dropping out now and again. It's also a bit of a faff connecting and setting up as the instructions are poor to say the least.

Good points is that you can set up new modes and alter all time periods and intensities via the app, 4 modes set up and sync'd with the unit and all run perfect

Screenshot_20180228-151152-270x480.png
 

jazzta

Seedling
Joined
12 Feb 2018
Messages
4
Location
Bulgaria
When I was asking for photos , I had in mind the cable worlds for all channels red, green, blue. Twinster 600S arrived and dismantled it, and I think I can only set the sunrise and sunset , not every color . Bad news .
IMG_20180226_144906.jpg IMG_20180226_144924.jpg
 

aquacoen

Member
Joined
8 Feb 2018
Messages
78
Location
Netherlands
Can't find a clear picture of the Twinstar powerset, but the light has a cable with a jack. So no need for cutting cables.. The plug on the power addapter is male the lights has female.. So find another set of fitting jack plugs with cables or screw connector male and female. The jack plug has a universal +/- (Inner is plus/outer is minus) if it has cables it will be red for positive obviously the other for negative. The jack with screw connectors has +/- markings so you can't miss that.

Connect a female plug for the 24 volt addapter with the positive to the V+ and negative to the V- Input connectors

Connect the male plug to the output connectors with the positive to the V+ and the negative to the Ch1 or any other preferd channel for the light. :)

Measure the diameter of the male jack plug and search for DC power plug in MM measured to find the correct one.
:)

As promised an update:
Today I installed my Twinstar 600SP in combination with the TC421 and it runs perfectly! Thanks again for your help guys.
 

willsy

Member
Joined
19 Mar 2012
Messages
98
Just to update this for completeness. I finally got round to modding the TC420 with this mosfet, for use with the Twinstar 900S.

I bought some 6 amp cable from Maplin and a couple of DC jacks (2.5/5mm). This means that I didn't have to mod the Twinstar cables in any way.

The power from the Twinstar adapter feeds the mosfet power in. I then have a jumper cable coming off the mosfet to the TC420 power.

Soldering the PWM gate on the TC420 to the PWM input on the mosfet was a bit fiddly but ok.

I then attached the mosfet to the roof of the TC420 case with a 'no more nails' strip and closed it back up.

It is working perfectly and, unlike some of the cheap dimmers you can buy for Chichoros style lights, there is no buzzing when dimmed.

I am running a full schedule today and will keep any eye out for heat from the TC420, but I do not expect any problems.

Thanks to zozo for giving me the confidence to try this out!

If anyone else wants to program their Twinstar 900 on the relatively cheap, I'd be happy to answer any questions you have.
Hi David,

I've got a 900s on the way and would love to use the TC421 with it!

Any chance you could knock up a quick diagram on how to do this?

I'm a bit lost with this...

Thank you.

Will
 

David Hewitt

Member
Joined
15 Mar 2017
Messages
25
Location
Edinburgh
Hi Will

Apologies, weekend has been too hectic. I'll get you sorted out with photos and notes during the week.

Cheers

David
 

willsy

Member
Joined
19 Mar 2012
Messages
98
Hi Will

Apologies, weekend has been too hectic. I'll get you sorted out with photos and notes during the week.

Cheers

David
Hi David

No worries at all. I know what it's like! :)

Whenever you get a spare moment is fine.

Thanks again.

Will
 

David Hewitt

Member
Joined
15 Mar 2017
Messages
25
Location
Edinburgh
Hi Will

Sorry it has taken me so long to get back to you.

It is all based round this MOSFET. It is currently unavailable but I reckon this guy is exactly the same. I used this site for guidance. The following is how I used both with the Twinstar 900s.

This first shot is an overview of what the modded device looks like:

o5xYTbqsDBVDF9FPYxDri1dR-5VQqdXQl2H=w2656-h1494-no.jpg

7T1e45o8vv2kumbG3


I have used double sided tape to stick the MOSFET onto the roof of the TC420.

You need to solder a small pin on the board to the J1 PWM input signal on the MOSFET. Thankfully, this is all the soldering that is required.
P-sJ-Ie5rGtCGScBgDulvL2Wx5GLItFjIX3X=w1440-h810-no.jpg


B8W3oWyXA07GYgZwBsI365gGZE-OQRf6T9S=w2656-h1494-no.jpg


You then want to run some suitable cable (i went for 6 amp electrical cable) from the power in ports on the MOSFET to a female a 2.5mm/5mm jack AND V- and V+ screws on the TC420 (marked GND and VCC on the circuit board). This is four cables running into two ports.

3Uu3GRqmHnbCTrfptk2p1UDKjiCIbdu5VO9Y=w1440-h810-no.jpg

4DfbBcHcCUpAaSRv1


The blue tape wrapped mess is a female jack that I bastardised. However, I recommend that you buy a solderless 2.5mm/5mm jack as per the picture zozo added on page 2.

You then want to run some additional cable from the MOSFET power out ports to a male jack. In the previous picture, you can see the two cables coming out of the bottom port heading off to a green thing in the blurry background - that's the male jack.

IW1zkBarU_FMTzovdvVsuMoVGbh5jqi-N3s=w2656-h1494-no.jpg

fXv4npuldGGo56Jq1


Once this is done, you just need to connect the Twinstar power pack to the female jack and the Twinstar light to the male jack. Should work a treat.

I appreciate that this is not the best tutorial in the world and the pictures are pretty bad, but I hope it helps give you a general idea. Let me know if you have any specific questions.

Cheers

David
 
Last edited:

zozo

Member
Joined
16 Apr 2015
Messages
8,288
Location
Netherlands
Hi David.. Nice to see it worked all out for you and functions as predicted.. :thumbup:

If you or anyone else want to drive other leds that need constant current e.g. 350mA etc. check these out.
http://www.electrodragon.com/product/2pcs-6-30v-led-drive-pt4115-pwm-tuning/

The PCB has 3 sense resistors, Default all 3 in place it's a 1,2 amp high power led setup, but take away the according sense resistor it's constant current output respectively changes. So these are rather universaly applicable and are driven via PWN excactly the same way. This way you can drive any constant current led between 6-35 volt on a TC420..
 

willsy

Member
Joined
19 Mar 2012
Messages
98
Hi Will

Sorry it has taken me so long to get back to you.

Hi David.

Thank you so much, I really appreciate your help.

Doesn't look too bad I think, I will give it a whirl and see how it goes.

Sure it will help some other people too. It's certainly a fabulous upgrade for the lights, so well worth the effort I think!

Thanks again so much for your time on this...

Will
 

David Hewitt

Member
Joined
15 Mar 2017
Messages
25
Location
Edinburgh
Hi David.. Nice to see it worked all out for you and functions as predicted.. :thumbup:

If you or anyone else want to drive other leds that need constant current e.g. 350mA etc. check these out.
http://www.electrodragon.com/product/2pcs-6-30v-led-drive-pt4115-pwm-tuning/

The PCB has 3 sense resistors, Default all 3 in place it's a 1,2 amp high power led setup, but take away the according sense resistor it's constant current output respectively changes. So these are rather universaly applicable and are driven via PWN excactly the same way. This way you can drive any constant current led between 6-35 volt on a TC420..

Bargain!
 
Joined
26 Jul 2016
Messages
895
Location
Australia
Hey everyone,
Apologies for noobness in advance. I'm looking for a way to create a daily light cycle, is this achievable with TC420?
If yes, would it work with my light? https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B075D9N56X/ref=twister_B075D9V752?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1
How easy is it to set it up?
Thank you!

Yes a TC420/21 can be used to create a 24hr light cycle. Unsure if it will work with that light. Looks like you will need to cut the cord of that light to connect the tc420
 

Djoko Sauza

Member
Joined
23 Jul 2017
Messages
252
Location
SE London
Yes a TC420/21 can be used to create a 24hr light cycle. Unsure if it will work with that light. Looks like you will need to cut the cord of that light to connect the tc420
Wouldn't you need to cut the cord on most lights anyway? Unless they have some kind of transformer?
 
Joined
26 Jul 2016
Messages
895
Location
Australia
Wouldn't you need to cut the cord on most lights anyway? Unless they have some kind of transformer?

Some lights (chihiros maybe others) have a line dimmer which can be removed so you just hook the TC420 in where the basic dimmer would normally go. I found a photo of the light you linked to on Amazon and it has the rotary dimmer hardwired into the power cord.

This is the basic dimmer chihiros use which can be removed

A09145__26185.1506916880.1280.1280.jpg
 

Djoko Sauza

Member
Joined
23 Jul 2017
Messages
252
Location
SE London
Hi everyone. I tried to connect the TC420 to my lights ( https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B075D9N56X/ref=twister_B075D9V752?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1 ), and it didn't work.
In all instances the TC worked but the light wouldn't turn on.

I tried using a 6v charger at first from the wall to the TC, then a speaker transformer with 16v and lastly I just connected a power supply cable to the TC and apparently this "fried" the Input slots, which means I can't get it powered on anymore. However, when connected through USB it comes on just fine.

Is it completely useless now? Anyone know if the other "Power" inlet is still working?

Thanks in advance
 

scubalove

Seedling
Joined
4 May 2018
Messages
14
Location
United States
David, I'm going to get the 900EA, I wonder if the installation with tc420 will be like yours? The MOSFET you got is currently out of stock on Amazon and I can't find it anywhere else than ebay ( 2 months for shipping from china ). Can you recommend something else instead? Thanks a lot.
 
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