Aquadimm 3 User's Manual
The device is suitable for controlling LED lamps for aquaristic and horticultural use. It has three separate outputs that can be used independently with the same setting options. Furthermore it has three outputs that can be connected to 12V consumers, relays etc. according to the settings. The device also has an analogue input where voltage can vary between 0 and 12V. It can be connected to voltage generated by a thermistor or other sensors. If the voltage exceeds the given rate, the output switches off. It can be used for controlling the CO2 system, the pump, etc. The outputs switch on and off once a day and the LED outputs gradually raise and decrease light intensity. We can even connect incandescent lamps to the LED outputs.
Normally the decimal point on the display marks the functioning of the device with short blinks in every second moving on to the right. The two buttons under the display are menu buttons that we can use for moving on to menu items to the left and to the right. Pushing both in the same time, the device quits the menu. The two buttons next to the display are for setting the rate shown in the menu item.
Three characters are shown on the display. The character on the left identifies the menu item. The one in the middle and the one on the right display the two digit number set in the menu item. The three dots on the display do not serve as decimal points, they are there to identify the three outputs. If we enter the menu with the RIGHT button, the dot on the left will light constantly which means we are now about to set the first group of LEDs. Moving on in the menu to the right, the decimal point in the middle and the one in the right will sign the setting of the third LED group. The menu items repeat in all three cases. Moving further to the right the dot on the left lights up again, but instead of lighting continuously, it flickers, signing the setting of the controlling outputs. Similarly, the flickering dot on the left signs the menu items concerning the individual control outputs; the one in the middle for the setting of the second, the one on the right for the setting of the third output. Moving on, we arrive to the general settings where no dot light up. Navigating in the menu is feasible in both directions. After 10 minutes without pushing a button, the device automatically quits the menu.
Menu items concerning the LED groups (decimal point lights constantly)
A: maximum intensity of light (0-99)
B: minimum intensity of light (0-99)
C: beginning of the rise in light intensity, hour (0-23)
D: beginning of the rise in light intensity, minute (0-59)
E: time of the rise in light intensity, minute x C (0-99) / multiplied by the rate set in item C/
F: beginning of the decrease in light intensity, hour (0-23)
G: beginning of the decrease in light intensity, minute (0-59)
H: time of the decrease in light intensity, minute x C (0-99) /multiplied by the rate set in item C/
Menu items concerning controlling (decimal point flickers)
A: switching on the control output, hour (0-23)
B: switching on the control output, minute (0-59)
C: switching off the control output, hour (0-23)
D: switching off the control output, minute (0-59) /second or millisecond/
E: choosing timing mode (0-2)
0: normal mode - The given output works according to the set ‘switch on’ and ‘switch off’ times
1: second-based mode - in this case the minute given for the switch off time determines the duration of the ‘switch on’ time in seconds, which can be counted from the time of switching the device on. Therefore we can set a switch on time of 1 sec to 60 sec for any given output.
2: millisecond-based mode - the minute given for the ‘switch off’ time determines the number of milliseconds so timing from1 millisecond to 6 seconds is possible in millisecond-division (can be useful for the feeder, the nutrient dispenser etc.).
While using the two modes above, the value of the hour given for the ‘switch off’ time is not affecting the functioning of the device.
F: setting the frequency (1-99) Timing can be set in a way that the output does not activate every day in the given time.
For example: 1->every day-... 3->every third day...99->every 99th day (if the value has been modified in the menu item, the counter of the given output is reset so it will be controlled that day if settings allow)
G: Control output comparator function (0-99)/ only in case of the first and the second output
If it is zero, the function is turned off and the control output is controlled on time, if it is not zero, the output is controlled based on the given time and input voltage (0->0V, 99->12V) If the input voltage exceeds the set voltage value, the output is activated.
G: Control output power switch function (0-1)/ only in case of the third output/
If it is zero, the function is turned off and the third control output is controlled on time; if it is one, the third output switches on if the light intensity of any of the LED groups is other than zero. If none of the LED outputs is activated, it turns off after 20 seconds.
General settings (decimal point is not lighting)
A: Type of the light intensity curve (0-20)
The nature of the rise and decrease can be set form linear to strongly exponential (0->linear)
B: cloudy weather simulation (0-20 -21)
The intensity of light varies randomly between the maximum and a low rate with random speed, up to a given value (0->switched off, 20->most cloudly) When setting value 21, the value varies beteween 0 and 20, according to the level of the analog input. If we connect the analog input to one of the control outputs, the cloudy weather function can even be timed but we can also use a potmeter or various weather sensors.
C: Variation time multiplier (1-6)
While setting the LED outputs in menu items E and H, the given value can be multiplied by the rate we can set here so a variation time of 10 hours can be set.
D: Time setting, hour (0-23)
Setting the time of the control unit
E: time setting, minute (0-59)
Setting the time of the control unit; if you change the value, the second counter turns zero when leaving the menu item.
F: calibrating the clock (0-50-99)
The basic setting is 50, if the value is higher, the clock goes faster, if its lower, it goes slower. It should be used when the clock is not punctual enough and the difference is always in the same direction. A unit means a change of 0.2 second per day so a maximum of +/- 10 sec/day can be set.
Quick ‘switch on’ function
If we quit the menu and push the UP button for more than 5 seconds, all three LED groups are going to light on maximum light intensity until we push the DOWN button. If we push UP again, the first LED output lights by itself while the others are blank; further pushes will make the second and the third output light individually and the next push will make all three blank, even if they should have lit up according to the timing. Switching on the function is indicated by the three dots flickering at same time on the display. We can return to the original state by pushing the DOWN button. Remember to always do this after using the function since the set lamp timings will only work this way. We can access and set all menu items to the left and to the right while using the quick ‘switch on’ option.
In case of power cut
The device does not lose the exact time and settings in case of a power cut and its built-in clock works on minimum consumption. When the power cut is gone, the outputs and the light intensity restarts with the setting they were supposed to have at that time so the switching on and the switching off times are not late because of the power cut. We have to insert a CR2032 type battery to enable the device to function during a power cut. When the battery needs to be replaced, the caption 'Lo Bat' is going to blink on the display from the moment of starting the device till pushing the next button.
The device has a melting fuse inside which melts in case of overvoltage, reverse polarity, an internal error or a short-circuit on the relay outputs. The power from LED driver outputs is not protected by a fuse, it is the responsibility of the user to take care of that with the help of an outer fuse, according to the original amperage of the lamp in use.
Options for use
The LED groups can even be driven with different voltages, with separate power supplies and the control unit and the LEDs are all possible to run from a separate power supply. The first option can be useful if the quantity or the starting amperage of the LEDs are different in the separate groups. The last option might be handy because the control unit can be driven from a smaller power supply to optimize consumption. In this case the power supply of the LEDs can be released from tension during the dark period; this option is available in menu item G3. The positive pole of LEDs and the control unit cannot be connected while the negative pole of the power supplies can be.
The device is not capable of controlling power from constant current source! It can only be used with a voltage controlled power supply. Restriction of the amperage of the LEDs can be performed with resistance. Controlling the electric generator can be managed by controlling the input of the electric generator with the necessary conversion. (We can take a p-p 8V square wave from the base of the FET Gate)
Useful tip: If we control the filter and the automatic feeder from the output, the filer can be turned off for x minutes with the suitable settings.
Voltage supply: 11-25V
LED driver (PWM) outputs:
- frequency of flickering: 240Hz
- resolution 16bit
- maximum current per channel 5A (switch: IRLZ44N)
- maximum current: 1A (switch: BD140)