Elechouse CLONE - COOQROBOT PN532 reader - not recommended!

  • Community Helper

    I've been hearing very negative reports about the PN532 clones so I figured I'd grab a couple and see how they go.
    The first one to arrive is the COOQROBOT NFC Module. This is the blue board pictured beside my red elechouse module for comparison.
    This board is slightly larger than the elechouse version, to accommodate the 4 mounting holes and the pre-mounted connector.
    Mode changing between I2C/SPI/HSU is by physically removing zero ohm links and re-soldering them in different positions. I don't like this, but it comes set up for I2C anyway, so I could ignore it.
    The matching circuit for the antenna appears to have different value capacitors in place, and the through holes for the HSU connector is minus some 100 ohm resistors on the SCK/MISO/MOSI/IRQ lines.
    Read distance is atrocious, and almost as bad as the RC522 unit I briefly reviewed a while back - the ring must be physically touching the board and almost 'rubbed' against it in order to be read or written.
    I suspect this has to do with the matching circuit for the antenna as physically the layout is the same and all other components bar the HSU lines and the capacitors on the matching circuit are the same.

    All in all, a very disappointing module and not recommended for the NFC Ring!

    *Edit: The COOQROBOT board is a clone of the Elechouse V2 board.

  • @Lokki Hi

    Am I f*cked if I'm using PN532 NFC/RFID Version 2 ?

    ( see here http://www.ebay.ca/itm/190992100710?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1497.l2649 )

    I can communicate with Arduino mega (it uses I2C) using the tag provided, but it doesnt recognize my HTC-One... And I haven't received my NFC ring yet so I can't test it...

    Would you be nice and advice me for a breakout NFC module (not a shield) that will work with NFC ring and Arduino Mega ? I have a similar project for unlocking doors of my car... So I need to locate the NFC sensor far away from the board, and I will need one that would have a good library to use as I suck at C++ to write one ...
    Thanks !!!

  • The one made by elechouse is quite good, but you won't be able to detect the ring more than 5mm far from the board.
    I used this board in my project and had to notch the wood between the board and my ring.

  • @Nairod785 Thanks for your answer mate.
    I'm still stuggling to find the right library to use... I have the cooqrobot V2. I used the elechouse lib with success but it's kind of a lame lib..
    Feel free to send me some sketches and lib if you have the time.. I'm still new to Arduino but I have a strong background as web dev so I should be able to get it :)

  • 10 days ago I had no idea how to code an arduino, and it still the same today
    that's just basics stuff you need to assimilate, I found their library easy to use
    Ask Lokki if you want to know more about how to unlock your car
    I only wrote a sketch to detect your ring, check if it's the right NFC inlay and then activate a motor

  • my project might be a bit tricky because I have a 2010 convertible mustang so I need to lock/unlock doors + manage the alarm system as well... but I can do it.

  • Community Helper

    @AlienSKP Hi there, the board you linked to is the same one I just received - it does work, but for me it does not work at a distance, I'm basically rubbing the ring on the board itself in order to make it work. For me it'll work well enough to start the car if I 3D print an extremely thin cover for it, but for the doors I'm investigating using my proper elechouse one as it'll read an alpha between 7 and 9mm away in the right spot.
    I've had reasonably good results with the elechouse library, the functions I've got programmed in are just basic if thens based on the ring UID without bothering about anything else.
    The V3 is the one I use - http://www.elechouse.com/elechouse/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=90_93&products_id=2242
    The clone here is based on the elechouse v2 board and is nowhere near as good.

  • @Lokki
    Thank you so much for your answer !
    Have you posted your sketches somewhere like here or on github ?
    Which breakout board do you recommend instead ? I plan to integrate the board inside the car, as close to the window as possible.
    Thanks again !

  • Community Helper

    @AlienSKP I'd recommend the V3 board I posted a link to which is actually being sold on the elechouse site, there's one on ebay that looks like a V3 but I notice they're trying extremely hard to avoid any mention of elechouse so it's probably a clone. You can try your luck with it if you ilke, http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/PN532-NFC-RFID-Reader-Writer-Module-Arduino-Compatible-/261278168864?pt=Vintage_Electronics_R2&hash=item3cd5647720&_uhb=1
    The sketch I've got on my car starter thread is the same one I used in the demo video, just with a couple of minor tweaks as I haven't gotten around to even attempting to write proper code yet - I'm not very good at it. ;-)

  • @Nairod785 How did the one from AliExpress work out? I bought 2 after seeing more than a couple recommendations that it was a solid unit.

  • Works perfectly, PM me if you want more information