JP1 Interfaces

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JP1 Interfaces

Contents

Introduction

In order to use the JP1 software to program your remote, you need an interface to connect the remote to your computer, for which several models now include a USB lead as original equipment. Otherwise you can build your own or purchase one from any one of several vendors. The first JP1 remotes had the same interface. But over the years, new types of JP1 remotes have been introduced which require different interfaces, the latest being USB.

Lists of JP1 remotes and the type of interface each requires can be found at http://www.hifi-remote.com/wiki/index.php?title=RemoteChart
- and the technical details with a brief history of JP1 interface designs at http://www.hifi-remote.com/forums/dload.php?action=download&file_id=5204

Interface Types

UEI is the maker of all JP1 remotes. They change the way they build remotes every so often such that they require a different type of interface. There are currently two basic types of JP1 interfaces: JP1 (Flash) and JP1 (EEPROM). Their older remotes had a separate MCU chip and an EEPROM chip, with all the JP1 activity occurring on the EEPROM chip, so it didn't matter what brand and model of MCU they used because the access to the EEPROM was the same. These remotes are called JP1 or "JP1 (EEPROM)"

Then they switched to using flash based MCU chips, which meant it was no longer necessary to have a separate EEPROM chip. The protocol needed to access the flash chip is completely different to that needed to access the old EEPROM chips. Furthermore, the access method sometimes changes when they switch from one brand of flash chip to another. All these flash based JP1 remotes are called "JP1 (Flash)" (also JP1.x, JP1.1, JP1.2, JP1.1/2, JP1.2/3 or JP1.3). Below are the different types of JP1 remotes, where the type is indicated on the circuit board beside the JP1 connector. However in some cases the connector may be mislabeled.

JP1 indicates a remote with an EEPROM chip.
JP1.1 indicates a remote with an SST brand flash chip.
JP1.2 indicates a remote with Motorola HCS08 flash chip.
JP1.3 indicates a remote with Samsung S3F8 flash chip.
JP1.4 is a new platform that has no JP1 support yet.
Mini-USB or Micro-USB indicates a remote which is supplied with a USB lead.

Some JP1 (Flash) cables will work with both JP1.1 and JP1.2, but NOT JP1.3, these are usually called JP1.1/2 (Flash) cables.

Some JP1 (Flash) cables will work with both JP1.2 and JP1.3, but NOT JP1.1, these are usually called JP1.2/3 (Flash) cables.

If you have a JP1 (Flash) cable, you can use a special "JP1 EEPROM Programming Adapter" to program a JP1 (EEPROM) remote. There are many advantages to this approach since JP1 (Flash) interfaces are compatible with the latest operating systems and I/O ports, and the adapter is less expensive than a JP1 (EEPROM) USB cable.

Some remotes have additional constraints related to the JP1 pins that require special consideration. The Radio Shack 15-133, 134 and 135 models have a smaller opening that the standard plug will not fit. In this case, you can remove the outer clip from the connector and reinforce with super glue, or purchase a cable with a smaller connector or an an adapter with a smaller connector. Some models are JP1 compatible but not "JP1 Ready", having no pins, but pads where the pins should be. In this case an adapter with pogo pins (spring loaded pins for making good contact with the pads) can be used. The connector is held against the pins when communicating with the remote. Some models have no pads at all, so a connector must be soldered to various points on the circuit board, like on the Radio Shack 15-100. Some models, like the URC-6131, require both an EEPROM chip and a connector to be soldered in.

Interface Designs

There are many different interface designs. JP1 (EEPROM) interfaces include the "Simple" design which connects to your PC's parallel printer port and a USB design. JP1 (Flash) interfaces include two serial designs (one with discrete transistors and another with an IC), as well as a USB design. The serial interfaces are compatible with serial ports and with USB to Serial adapters. The parallel interfaces are compatible with parallel ports and parallel PCI or PCMCIA adapters. They are not compatible with USB to parallel printer adapters. Below are several interface design and troubleshooting documents.

EEPROM Interfaces: http://www.hifi-remote.com/forums/dload.php?action=category&cat_id=49
Flash Interfaces: http://www.hifi-remote.com/forums/dload.php?action=category&cat_id=121

Interface Vendors

JP1 is a hacker project. All JP1 interfaces are hand made. You won't find a JP1 interface at any retailer like your local Radio Shack. Since these interfaces aren't mass produced, there are no economies of scale. So the interface often costs more than the remote. But this is still a great value since a JP1 remote with its interface cable and software becomes as functional as remotes costing 10 times as much. Below is a list of JP1 interface vendors.

Tommy Tyler: http://www.hifi-remote.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=9405
DIY Gadget: http://www.diygadget.com/jp1-1-1-1-2-1-3-cables.html
TX SAT Electronics: http://www.txsat.net/

Interface Drivers

The drivers for JP1 (Flash) interfaces are built in to the latest Windows OSs. They use a chip from FTDI. Drivers for JP1 (EEPROM) USB interfaces are supplied by Delcom, the maker of the chip in these interfaces. The Delcom drivers can be problematic and do not work with the latest 64-bit Windows OSs. There are several versions available with which users have varying degrees of success. There is also a generic WinUSB driver for JP1 (EEPROM) USB interfaces which is compatible with modern OSs. JP1 (EEPROM) parallel interfaces do not require a driver.

JP1 (EEPROM) Drivers

JP1 (Flash) Drivers

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