If you have seen this previous post here at TBs , you won't be surprised to see a 3rd party Bluetooth receiver for Power Functions System arriving.
This is a development from COREDevelopersTeam, in Czech Republic.
UPCORE G1 (in short CORE) is a new Bluetooth receiver designed specifically to interwork with the LEGO Power Function System.
Just as matter of curiosity, UP means "improved", CORE means "core of your fun" and G1 means "first generation".
As per the advertised specs, CORE will offer:
- 9 PF interface connectors
- 3 proportional outputs
- 5 non-proportional outputs
- Can drive up to: 2 PF XL-motors, 4 PF M-motors or 3 PF Train Motors simultaneously. CORE has overload protection, so attempting to drive too many motors will not damage anything. The power a motor consumes depends on what load it handles.
- Gyrosensor ±2G
- It can detect collisions,falls, blows or XYZ axis tilt, just to give a few examples.
- Micro USB B port - For firmware upgrades
- On/Off button - Also serves as a command to reset the UPCORE G1
- LED - Used to indicate: power on/off, searching drivers, low battery status, signal loss, hardware failure
- Bluetooth 4.0 - 10m range, but possible to go up to 100m if control device is equipped with Bluettoth Class 1
- Dimensions: 11 x 6 x 3 modules
- And last but not the least, a 2 year warranty is also being advertized!
As far as I can tell, CORE molds and plastics will be also up the own LEGO quality products.
I just can't wait to get my hands on this sweet...
Below you can see a demo where a LEGO 8043 Motorized Excavator, equipped with a CORE Beta-version prototype, is used for the proof-of-concept.
It is not yet clear from this video which kind of functionality the remote interface will provide, namely in terms of customization or tailoring to your specific LEGO model.
One can think about remote control layouts with a customized combination of linear "sticks" (full FWD/full REV or proportional), X-Y proportional, jog dials, etc...
And that's exactly how it will work. The application will be fully customizable!
- The user sets the individual controls according to the required function (e.g. proportional connector 1 and 2 to control car chassis, the app automatically generates the control icon, it's the "circle" on the smartphone on the box).
- Users positions the "circle" on the control pad, by dragging it anywhere.
- Once finished the driver is saved in a file, which can be copied and shared.
A specific application for trains control is also being prepared. With this app train fans will be able to program a timeline with train speed, acceleration, deceleration, railway switches, drawbridges, platform lighting or even the other buildings in your LEGO village or town.
User will program the intended actions into table with a timeline (on the X axis) and a list of 8 connectors (on the Y axis). The user sets the connector to a specific action at a specific time in this table, which will translate in a signal (9V or PWM according to the connector) being delivered to the PF element attached (motor, lights and whatever LEGO will come up with in the future).
The CORE website mentions that currently hardware and firmware are not open source, but in the near future, hardware and firmware will be released for free creation. However as far it seems the source code for iOS, Android and Windows drivers will be available from the beginning so that one can develop his own customized remote control applications as well.