Troubleshooting XCam2 Camera Switching

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Questions

Why can't I switch between my cameras?

Why are the pictures from my cameras overlapping each other?

When I try to switch cameras, why do both cameras stay on?

Answer

In order to switch cameras, an X10 Transceiver Module (models TM751 or RR501) or equivalent (ActiveHome Pro USB Interface, security alarm console) is required. Make sure that the transceiver is plugged in and set on the same House Code (the letter dial on the front) as your cameras (the letter dial on the addressable power supply). See the multi-camera system instructions for additional instructions on the initial setup of multiple cameras and a Transceiver. Make sure that you are using the correct power supplies; you should use an XM13A with most standalone cameras and an XM14A to power Ninja Bases. When you check the power supplies, make sure that the headphone-jack style connectors between camera and power suppply are fully pushed together. If a connecter is only connected halfway, the camera will be stuck on.

If you have a Transceiver installed and working, the issue of not being able to switch cameras is most likely caused by poor communication on your house wiring. There are a number of possible causes. A couple of simple tests can help you determine the source of the problem.

Most houses are fed from a 220 volt service which is then split into two phases of 110 volts each in the circuit breaker panel (breaker box). The X10 signals, which are transmitted onto the house wiring on one phase, will normally travel across to the other phase through the breaker panel, pole transformer, etc. Try testing communication across your phases by turning on an electric oven or clothes dryer, because these 240 volt electronic items can assist with coupling the two 110 volt phases, which will allow X10 signals from one phase to cross over to the other. While the oven or dryer is on, try controlling your cameras. If you find you can control the cameras when the oven or dryer is on, but cannot when they are turned off, you are dealing with a phase issue. Please see this support page for more information.

To correct a phase problem, you can install a phase coupler (or phase bridge). They are available through an X10 dealer/installer listed on www.x10pro.com.

A second test requires a surge protector. Plug the surge protector into an outlet, and remove anything that is connected to it. Plug one of the addressable power supplies and a Transceiver into it. Now try to turn the camera on/off with your Remote. The surge protector creates a short signal path, and can block noise that might be interfering with the X10 signals transmitted over your house wiring (from the Transceiver to the camera's power supply). This will also help rule out malfunctioning equipment. The easiest way to determine if any particular device is causing interference is by unplugging it. If this fixes the problem, consult an X10 installer about plugging the offending appliance into an X10pro Noise Filter XPPF, available at www.x10pro.com (navigate to it through "Lighting and Appliance Current Control Catalog," then "Couplers/Filters/Accessories").

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Key Topics: battery, pack, camera, switch, signal, interference, overlap

Relates to: ZB10A, ZB11A