1055 User Guide

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Getting Started

Welcome to the 1055 user guide! In order to get started, make sure you have the following hardware on hand:

  • 1055 PhidgetIR
  • USB cable and computer
  • something to use with the 1055 (e.g. an IR remote control and the appliance it controls)

Next, you will need to connect the pieces:

1055 0 Connecting The Hardware.jpg
  1. Connect the PhidgetIR to your computer using the USB cable.

Now that you have everything together, let's start using the 1055!

Using the 1055

Phidget Control Panel

In order to demonstrate the functionality of the 1055, the Phidget Control Panel running on a Windows machine will be used.

The Phidget Control Panel is available for use on both macOS and Windows machines. If you would like to follow along, first take a look at the getting started guide for your operating system:

Linux users can follow the getting started with Linux guide and continue reading here for more information about the 1055.

First Look

After plugging the 1055 into your computer and opening the Phidget Control Panel, you will see something like this:

1055 Panel.jpg

The Phidget Control Panel will list all connected Phidgets and associated objects, as well as the following information:

  • Serial number: allows you to differentiate between similar Phidgets.
  • Channel: allows you to differentiate between similar objects on a Phidget.
  • Version number: corresponds to the firmware version your Phidget is running. If your Phidget is listed in red, your firmware is out of date. Update the firmware by double-clicking the entry.

The Phidget Control Panel can also be used to test your device. Double-clicking on an object will open an example.


Double-click on the IR object, labelled PhidgetIR, in order to run the example:

IR Example.jpg

General information about the selected object will be displayed at the top of the window. You can also experiment with the following functionality:

  • The Show RAW Data checkbox toggles the RAW data window. This window lets you see incoming codes as pulses and gaps (expressed as numbers in milliseconds). You can also re-transmit this raw data.
  • IR Code: the hexadecimal code corresponding to the signal just received.
  • Repeat Count: how many times the same code has been received in a row. If you hold down a button on most remote controllers, it will continually transmit repeat codes.
  • Bit Length: the length of the code in bits.
  • When a code is repeated multiple times, the 1055 will learn the code. It will display the relevant information in the Learn box. For more information, see the technical section.

Technical Details

Consumer IR

The 1055 can send and receive data encoded in various fashions as pulses of infrared light. The various encoding that the 1055 supports are grouped under the general term Consumer IR or CIR. CIR is generally used to control consumer products such as TVs, DVD players, etc. with a wireless remote control, but in general can be used for any application that needs to transmit low speed data wirelessly.

CIR is a low speed protocol - commands generally contain no more then 32-bits of data with a bit rate of at the most 4000 bits/second, but usually much less. There is no concession for anti-collision, so only one code can be transmitting at any time. Transmission distance depends on the power of the transmitter, but needs to be line of sight - though generally this can include bouncing off walls/ceilings, etc.

CIR data is transmitted using a modulated bit stream. Data is encoded in the length of the pulses / spaces between pulses, of IR light. The pulses of IR light are themselves modulated at a much higher frequency (usually ~38kHz) in order for the receiver to distinguish CIR data from ambient room light.

Further Reading

You can read more about IR remote controls in our IR Remote Control Primer.

What to do Next

  • Software Overview - Find your preferred programming language here to learn how to write your own code with Phidgets!
  • General Phidget Programming - Read this general guide to the various aspects of programming with Phidgets. Learn how to log data into a spreadsheet, use Phidgets over the network, and much more.
  • Phidget22 API - The API is a universal library of all functions and definitions for programming with Phidgets. Just select your language and device and it'll give you a complete list of all properties, methods, events, and enumerations that are at your disposal.