RF411A 922 MHz Spread-Spectrum Radio

Overview

The RF411A is a 900 MHz radio designed for license-free use in several countries, including Australia and New Zealand. It provides a hassle-free way to create long-distance wireless links between your computer, dataloggers, and measurement devices. The RF411A has a 920 to 928 MHz operating-frequency range and a configurable transmit-power output of 5 to 250 mW.

The RF411A is compatible with all of its RF400-series radio predecessors, including the RF410, RF411, and RF431. This also means that it is compatible with the CR210, CR211(X), and AVW211.

Note: The RF411A radios are recommended for existing installations that require compatibility with products such as the RF411, CR211, and AVW211. For new installations, Campbell Scientific recommends using the RF412 or RF451.

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Benefits and Features

  • Rugged, low-cost transceivers
  • Can be used in the field as a transceiver or in the office as the base station
  • Transmits up to one mile with omnidirectional antenna; up to 10 miles with higher gain directional antennas at ideal conditions
  • Settings stored in non-volatile memory
  • RS-232 port for connecting to a computer; CS I/O port for connecting to a datalogger
  • Frequency-hops over 25 channels avoids interference from other spread spectrum radios
  • Optional extended temperature testing
  • Faster communication due to elimination of some small "link state packets"
  • Ability to have stand-alone RF router/repeaters (up to 8 repeaters)
  • Greater immunity to interference and RF collisions by using RF retries
  • Reduced power consumption by the datalogger, as the radios perform "packet address filtering"
  • Built-in setup menus allow access to advanced functionality
  • Designed for use in PakBus networks

The RF401-series and RF430-series spread-spectrum radios are similar. The models in these two series differ in their ports used for connecting to computers/data loggers, in their frequencies, and in their transmitting power. Refer to the following table for specifics.

RF401
(retired)
RF401A RF430
(retired)
RF411 (retired) RF411A RF431 (retired) RF416 RF432 (retired)
Frequency 910 to 918 MHz
US & Canada
920 to 928 MHz
Australia & New Zealand
2.450 to 2.482 GHz
USB Ports
CS I/O Ports
RS-232 Ports
Transmitting Power 100 mW 250 mW 100 mW 100 mW 250 mW 100 mW 50 mW 50 mW

Images

RF411A with antenna (sold separately)
RF411A with antenna (sold separately)
RF411A with antenna (sold separately)
RF411A with antenna (sold separately)

Detailed Description

The RF411A is a frequency hopping spread spectrum radio designed for 900 MHz license-free ISM band operation. It has a 920 to 928 MHz operating-frequency range and a configurable transmit power output of 5 to 250 mW. It provides one of three selectable active connections including CS I/O, RS-232, and USB. It has a reverse polarity SMA (RPSMA) antenna jack connection. It is over the air compatible with legacy 9XStream products including the RF410, RF411, RF431, CR210, CR211(X), and AVW211.

Specifications

Radio Type Frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum (FHSS)
Frequency 920 to 928 MHz
Power Output 5 to 250 mW (software-selectable)
Receiver Sensitivity -109 dBm (Campbell Scientific protocols will issue retries wherever a bit error occurs.)
Channel Capacity 7 hop sequences share 25 frequencies.
RF Throughput Data Rate 9.6 kbps
Data Rate 10 kbps
Antenna Connector Reverse Polarity SMA (RPSMA) jack
LEDs Power on, Tx, Rx, diagnostics
RS-232 Baud Rate 1200 to 115200 bps
CS I/O Modes SDC 7, 8, 10, 11, and ME master
Average Current Drain
  • Transmit: < 80 mA (250 mW TX power)
  • Receive: 15 mA
  • Stand-by: < 0.5 mA (depending on power saving mode)
Power 9 to 16 Vdc
Power Connector 2.5 mm DC power jack
Operating Temperature Range
  • -25° to +50°C (standard)
  • -40° to +85°C (extended)
Communication Ports
  • RS-232 9 pin D female
  • CS I/O 9 pin D male
  • USB Type B jack
Dimensions 11.1 x 6.9 x 2.7 cm (4.4 x 2.7 x 1.1 in)
Dimensions are from the tip of antenna connector to other side of case, and from the bottom of case to the top of DB9 connector jack screw. The width includes the thickness of the screw heads on the screws that hold the case together.
Weight
  • 136 g (4.8 oz) without "Ships With" items
  • 283.5 g (10 oz) with "Ships With" items

Certifications

United States (FCC Part 15.247) MCQ-XB900HP
Industry Canada (IC) 1846A-XB900HP
C-TICK Australia Yes, N3013

Compatibility

Communications

The RF411A is over the air compatible with the RF411, RF431, CR211, CR211X, and AVW211. 

Other Spread Spectrum Radios

The RF411A is also compatible with the RF410 and CR210, but the communication protocol must be set to transparent. Also, if RF410 and RF411A radios will be in the same RF proximity, do not use 28, 44, 52, 56, or 60 for the RF410 Net Address. RF410 radios with Net Addresses of 28, 44, 52, and 56 interfere with RF411A radios with Net Addresses of 0, 1, 2, and 3, respectively. The RF410 Net Address of 60 interferes with all RF411A Net Addresses.

Campbell Scientific does not recommend using the RF411A in networks containing FGR-115 or RF450 radios.

Transparent and PakBus Protocols

Do not mix RF411A radios using the Transparent protocol setting with RF411A, RF411, RF431, CR211(X), or AVW211 devices using a PakBus protocol setting. This will produce unsuccessful RF traffic. However radios with the PakBus Aware and PakBus Node settings can coexist in the same network.

Datalogger Considerations

Datalogger RS-232 CS I/O
CR200(X)
CR800/CR850
CR1000
CR3000
CR5000
CR9000(X)
CR300 *
CR6
CR510-PB
CR10X-PB
CR23X-PB
Mixed-array dataloggers **

Notes:
*Use a 18663 null modem cable.
**It is possible to connect a mixed-array datalogger (e.g., CR10, CR10X, CR23X, 21X, CR7) by using an SC932A or SC105 between the datalogger's CS I/O port and the RF411A's RS-232 port.

Downloads

RF401A Series OS v.05 (438 KB) 07-22-2015

Current RF401A and RF411A firmware. Requires the Device Configuration Utility.

View Update History

Device Configuration Utility v.2.19 (33.2 MB) 12-06-2018

A software utility used to download operating systems and set up Campbell Scientific hardware. Also will update PakBus Graph and the Network Planner if they have been installed previously by another Campbell Scientific software package.

Supported Operating Systems:

Windows 10, 8.1, 8, and 7 (Both 32 and 64 bit)

View Update History

Frequently Asked Questions

Number of FAQs related to RF411A: 5

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  1. The RF401A and RF411A have distinct advantages over their predecessors, including greater maximum transmit power, lower average power consumption, improved packaging, and the inclusion of USB, RS-232, and CS I/O on a single device.

    • The RF401A is compatible with all of its RF400-series radio predecessors, including the RF400, RF401, and RF430. The RF401A is also compatible with the CR205, CR206X, and AVW206.
    • The RF411A is compatible with all of its RF400-series radio predecessors, including the RF410, RF411, and RF431. The RF411A is also compatible with the CR210, CR211X, and AVW211. 
  2. These radios ship with an SC12 serial cable and a 10873 RS-232 cable.

  3. Antenna selection depends on multiple criteria: 

    • Consider how many stations a particular station needs to communicate with. For remote stations in communication with only one repeater or base station, a directional or Yagi antenna may be an appropriate choice. In contrast, repeater stations that receive data from many different locations will probably require an omnidirectional antenna. 
    • Consider if a high-gain antenna is needed to overcome the path between two points. Higher-gain antennas are larger and more expensive. 

    To help with antenna selection and site placement, consider renting and using a demo kit to test the pathway quality. Campbell Scientific offers a 900 MHz demo kit for the RF401, RF430, CR206X, and AVW206, as well as a demo kit for the RF450. Contact Campbell Scientific for assistance.

  4. The USB device driver for this product has been packaged with the Device Configuration Utility. Please ensure that you are using the latest version of the Device Configuration Utility.

    1. With the Device Configuration Utility open, select this product from the list of devices.
    2. Follow the on-screen instructions for installing the USB device driver.
    3. Click the installation link within the instructions to begin the installation process.

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