Batrium Improvements

slimf

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Sep 26, 2017
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144
I have had my powerwall on for about a week and frantically going through the Victron & Batrium learning curves.

One thing I find odd about the Batrium is the software. I can see no reason why they have chosen to have Win32 based software to configure the device when a web-based interface would suffice? A web-based GUI has so many advantages - The main being it would be accessible from any device - Unlike the current Windows software.

The UI is also confusing, and even simple cosmetic things like the position of text across different tabs are out (by pixels - noticeable).

There is a lack of context-sensitive help and the UI doesn't seem to follow any standard UI design types.

I think the most frustrating thing is the many confusing labels - and how each setting affects another.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to knock the product - but there is certainly room for improvement.

A nice touch in the latest pre-release is the extra cell info passed onto Victron Inverters - I can now see LOW and HIGH cell numbers and voltages as well as temperatures - Neato.

Tight integration like this with other systems is very important - And perhaps they are focusing on that before worrying about pixel perfect text placement in the UI and easy to understand labels / documentation.

It works thou... and all I need to complete my system is sun.. were on day 3 of virtually none.

Edit: Hey Batrium - I live about 45 min away from your Offices.. If you need me to test anything Victron related or need a Victron / Leaf / Batrium system to look at / play with let me know. :p
 

LithiumSolar

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Oct 8, 2016
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I can't speak for Batrium as I don't work for them myself, but I can tell you there are many changes coming in 2021. Keep checking back... ;) I personally prefer Windows software. I typically avoid anything that requires a connection outside of my local secured network to function. I realize everyone has different needs/interest though.
 

slimf

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Sep 26, 2017
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144
I’m talking about a web based UI - no need to go outside your network for that.

just like your internet router, it’s UI would be available on an IP on your local network.
 

hbpowerwall

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One guy... ONE guy can only do so much. But take a seat buddy neat things are coming...
 

daromer

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Its not a 200 persons company :) Its a family company and they have come far :)
 

Wolf

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Sep 25, 2018
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Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to knock the product - but there is certainly room for improvement.
There is always room for improvement in any software and/or hardware combination. Hence we have come from DOS 1.0 to 6.2 (I did like it I admit) to windows 3 and now 10 with some serious junk in between I do still like windows 7 and still use it. I am not trying to compare Batrium to Windows but I think there is a learning curve to every software package. Some are more intuitive some are not. They say MACs are intuitive for most people. It used to be if you put me in front of a MAC PC I used to look at it like a tree full of owls I had no idea what to do. Let alone Linux. You are not going to learn the ins and outs of a comprehensive software package in a day. At least the ones I have rolled out. Let alone the MS Office suite I still have people call me on how to do simple things in Word, Outlook, Excel, etc. Im sure if I plant your face in front of a PC with a CRM like ACT or Goldmine it would take you a couple of months to get it down. Let alone a custom SAP ERP app. Web interface or not. 🙂

The good thing about barium is we have a direct line to the developer/s and we can make suggestions from our experience in the field.
The other day I sent an email regarding the temp sensors on the longmons being a potential of ±5°C off. Well in my climate were the temps drop below 0°C regularly (In the Winter) that ±5°C can mean the difference between charging, turning on a heater to warm the batteries or a shunt trip. I have very sensitive and accurate temp sensors installed in my battery box and the batrium sensors were reading anywhere from 2°C to 4°C lower than the actual temperature. in essence they were reading -1°C or 0°C when it was actually 3°C. I was told to go with my sensors as they are more accurate. I mention this because in the future Batrium may update the quality of the temp sensors and sell a MON that is for colder climates. I may have to pay a bit more but I would be OK with that.

I don't know if you have ever created an ODBC connector from a software package to SQL but at times it's not a treat. We are fortunate to even have the possibilities to be able to incorporate different vendor protocols into a Batrium system.
So @slimf give it some time and you will find things will make sense as with all software interfaces and as the boys in the know say (I am not one of them) better things are coming.

Wolf
 
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OffGridInTheCity

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Dec 15, 2018
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1,462
I'm a Batrium user that's reasonably satisfied - enough to buy a 2nd one recently for the cargo trailer -> camper conversion. I've also spent my whole life as a software development engineer... creating new software and redoing existing software. No one is every 'happy' with the language used, the platform, or the user interface. This was true before GUIs even... csh was created because people couldn't stand sh (bash these days) and we had a raging fight in the office for several years over things like this. At Sybase, the Mac vs Linus meeting room software fight was legendary - lead to a 1,000 cc'ed on a few email fights.... :)

My personal complaints are that the software/user-interface is undocumented. The web site is simple 'echo the dialog' and doesn't tell you much and its impossible to guess the thought-train behind many of the editable fields. And the attempt to extract payment for basic information is also not so good considering the price.

There are many reasons why software is what it is but for sure the existing Batrium software is reasonably complex and amazingly stable (doesn't crash / cudos to the developers) and a simple 'conversion to a web interface' would NOT in any way be simple. I look forward to what @mike said... sounds very interesting.
 
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intra

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Jan 24, 2019
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Since we're talking about improvements, I would love to be able to use one of the WM5 temperature sensors as an ambient sensor.
 

hbpowerwall

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Since we're talking about improvements, I would love to be able to use one of the WM5 temperature sensors as an ambient sensor.
Hang it on the wall? still shows ambient
 

intra

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Jan 24, 2019
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I can definitely say its not -40 in WA, otherwise i'd be in my cold weather gear from my time in Ulaanbaatar :)

Sorry i forgot to add in addition to ambient working, two new options in output functions: "Hi Ambient" and "Low Ambient" so we can use ambient to turn off and on relays. :)
 

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intra

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2.0.12
 

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Batrium

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Feb 17, 2017
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74
Unfortunately the hardware design of WatchMon WM5, WM7 and MM8 does not come equipped with an onboard ambient temperature sensor. There are temperature sensors on the module however these are there to monitor the heatsink for the bypass functionality, being so closely located the ambient readings would be impacted by the bypass process.

On the next generation of WatchMon WM4 supervisor we plan to improve the ambient temperature sensing by adopting the same type of cell monitoring sensor (with JST-XH)
 
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intra

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Jan 24, 2019
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Since I use two of the temp probes for monitoring the pack, would it be possible to assign the last probe as a source for ambient temps?

Solves the problem of a redesign.
 

RoboChicken

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Feb 16, 2021
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The Win software nearly was a deal breaker here. I do not have any Win machines, only Macs and Raspis (Linux).
But I found an old Win7 image on my Mac with Parallels. Runs, settings can be changed.

There is also another software which runs on my Raspian Pi to read from the Batrium and post data on MQTT. It works together with the SolPipLog software from the same author. I do my PV and inverter logging with that on the Pi.
Batrium tool offers SOC based switching, thats all I need.

Batrium is currently working on a web based solution. Coming soon....
 

slimf

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Sep 26, 2017
Messages
144
Web based solution is very different to a built in webserver.
A good example of a use case is on a yacht or in a cabin with no internet.
Victron for example have a UI you can view and control most settings. I cannot fathom why Batrium would be any different. Even the open source diy bms has built in webserver and UI.
 
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