All Connectivity Options including Wireless Options
I wanted to give a complete overview of how you can connect to your meters. These are all of the current options that we know of.
Wired Twisted Pair -- Works with all methods mentioned below. This is the best in our opinion if you can do it. It is the cheapest and most reliable. Downside: you have to pull the wire. Here is the wire: http://www.ekmmetering.com/ekm-metering ... -feet.html
Wireless 485Bee Zigbee -- Works quite well. We have seen 300 485Bees with 300 meters in 1 network. We only claim 200 meter range, but we have seen connections of up to 1.5 miles using our antennas in ideal situations. You can also use a directional RP-SMA antenna to extend the range (I would imagine though have not tested this that 13 miles + is possible) with an antenna like this: http://www.l-com.com/wireless-antenna-9 ... -connector
Downside: a bit spendy but much better than the $600 to $800 you would spend for competitors radios with the same functionality (i.e. modhopper) Here is the 485Bee on our website: http://www.ekmmetering.com/ekm-metering ... twork.html
Wireless Bridge IP -- Works, we have a cheap low range option. You can find these easily (with better range) at any electronics retailers. Best when used with the EKM Push: http://www.ekmmetering.com/ekm-ethernet ... ridge.html
Wireless Mesh IP -- Nice option for EKM Pushes. Reasonably priced and scalable. Each node hop cuts the wifi speed in half. We move so little data that this is not an issue. We have seen 6 hops without issues. If you are ok with not having 100% uptime this will work. They also have a web interface so that you can keep tabs on your wifi mesh health. Best used with the EKM Push. Get these here: http://www.open-mesh.com/
Powerline IP Communications -- These work well with EKM Pushes. Good if you are trying to get signal through something like a concrete wall and cannot run wires. Use your 120 volt wires that are already there to transmit the signal. Best used withe the Push. http://www.amazon.com/Livewire-Powerlin ... B003VWY0VY
Cellular IP -- If you do not have an internet connection and it will be hard or expensive to get one than a cellular modem may be the way to go. Any cellular modem with an ethernet port will work with our EKM Push. It can be a bit expensive per month (maybe $20)
Satellite IP -- (haven't seen this yet to be honest) but if you are even out of range of a cellular network you will have to either log data onsite or send it out via satellite data connection.
Let me know if you have questions, or if you can think of other methods.
Things we have found to be useful when installing or using our metering systems.
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