RF controllers: what are they, and how do they work?

by George Pizzo
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An RF controller, also known as an RF remote control, is a handheld and wireless device used to control electronic equipment. An RF controller utilizes radio frequency transmissions to control electronic devices. The devices can control radios, audio, video, and even lighting device/bulbs like the case with LED RGB Lights RF Controller.

How do RF controllers work?

RF controllers use radio waves to perform their functions. This means that they work by sending radio waves to send pulses to electronic devices. When you push a remote button, a code language/signal is transmitted to the device for which the remote is designed. A receiver is normally built into the device to accept the code/signal sent by the remote. The reason why one TV model’s remote cannot work for another model is that the receiver is built on the model for which the remote is designed. The receiver also decodes the information sent by the controller and allows the electric device to activate the function commanded by the remote user.

Applications of RF controllers

Below are some of the main applications of radiofrequency controllers;

  • The main and most common application of RF controllers is in controlling distant objects like drones. This is done by transmitting radio signals through a remote control object.
  • RF controllers are also used to control garage doors and open gates. In this case, they are used in the place of infrared controllers or remotes.
  • They are also applied in automatic barrier systems, industrial automation, and burglar alarms. They are used in these scenarios because they offer a larger range of sensitivity and transmission than other types of controllers.
  • Another popular application of RF controllersis in car and motorcycle alarm systems. The reason why you can turn your car on and off from a distance is because of the radio frequency technology in remote controllers.
  • Lighting companies have also found a way to use RF controllers to control colored RGB lights, including neon lights. The controllers are used to manage the color changes, modes, and dimming and brightness technology of the lights. They can also be used to turn the remotes on and off.

Advantages and downsides of RF controllers

One of the main benefits of this type of controllers is that they can penetrate walls, go around objects and corners. This feature makes them a better option as compared to the IR controllers. These controllers also have a stronger penetration capacity. However, like most, if not all, products, they have a limitation. The limitation is that they cannot transmit pulses over 100 feet. Another downside is that RF controllers are costlier than other types on the market. This is mainly because of the advanced technology and the added benefits that they offer.

Conclusion

Other than RF controllers, other common types of controllers are IF and voice. IR controllers use infrared (light) technology to send signals to electronic devices. The light aims towards the direction of the receiver. On the other hand, voice controllers use ultrasonic technology to send signals to the receivers on the electronic devices for which they are designed.

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