Being unable to pull cables between a PC and a CNC operated machine we found this wireless adapter to be a very good wireless option for replacing cables. We have now been using this serial bluetooth adapter for almost a year without any problems. Highly recommended.
Earlier we have used several other brands of Bluetooth adapters which mostly also worked fine but the cost was double as much as this one. Basically this adapter does the exact same thing as other much more expensive units, the only difference is that you can buy 2 of these (or almost 3 in some cases) for the same price as one of the expensive adapters.
The adapter is made of thin plastic, it withstands drops and knocks but it would be great if it was made a bit more rugged. But again, considering the price this is acceptable.
On the side is the Bluetooth adapter on/off switch which is kind of small, so if you have big fingers it might be difficult to turn the serial adapter on and off. One the other side of the serial Bluetooth adapter is a connector for connecting a battery. What I like about this is that according to the specifications any standard 5V battery can be used. This gives a lot of options regarding type and size of battery. There is also a mini USB connector which can be used for powering the adapter. This is the option we are using since its convenient when using the adapter next to a computer. The DCE/DTE switch is a nice feature, no need to fiddle around with null modem adapters or other such things.
To be able to configure the Bluetooth adapter you need to read the user manual (before you start :-) The reason is that this unit uses proprietary commands to specify the parameters. To program the adapter you need to connect it to a serial RS232 port and use a terminal program to connect to the unit. It can't be done over Bluetooth. This is kind of a minus, it would be nice to have dedicated software which could connect over Bluetooth to the serial Bluetooth adapter and then configure it this way. However, not even most of the more expensive serial Bluetooth adapters I have seen have that feature.
So my overall rating of this unit is:
Pros: cheap, good solid design, multiple power options
Cons: small buttons
Serial Bluetooth Adapter - RS232
Date Added: 02/26/2010 by Jack Brown