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523 posts

Ultimate Geek
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Topic # 181404 14-Oct-2015 15:14
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Thought this may be of interest to some of you.

If you have a smartwatch/iwatch which automatically synchronizes its time via Bluetooth or elsewhere then its probably best you stop reading this thread right now. This will probably be of no interest to you. In fact this thread may just bore you to death!  ;-) 

There are plenty of so called atomic watches/clocks hitting our shores. These watches can be found mostly on trademe/ebay and in plenty of our stores. The watches are all advertised as featuring “Multi-Band Atomic Timekeeping” functions. This means they can sync their time with a number of transmitters around the world. An awesome feature if you living in The UK, Europe, Americas, Japan or China.

In New Zealand and Australia however, what they don’t tell you is that this function is pretty useless. There are no radio clock transmitters anywhere near us. Our closest one, Radio VNG in Australia stopped transmitting about 10 years ago. That said, there are some reports that it is sometimes (very rarely) possible for the clock to sync with the JJY Radio in Japan. Anybody in NZ had success? 

Anyway, I decided to go down the route of starting a mini project. Build my own Radio-Clock transmitter at home. That way my watch could sync automatically every day. When researching the subject however I found that somebody has already done all the hard work. Oh well.  This website uses a Java app which simulates the Japan JJY Signal:

http://www.jrcomputing.com.au/Set_Watch/Set_Watch_Auto.html

You then just place your watch close to your laptop earphones and bingo. It syncs.

Somebody else went as far as making an iphone app

So as it turns out, these watches are not so useless after all. 

Here is my latest one. An oldschool Casio GWM5610 Now to build myself a small antenna, hook it up to my raspberry pi and start transmitting around the house. 

Anybody else here played around with this stuff?

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1405757 14-Oct-2015 15:41
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I remember setting my watch via WWV on shortwave before the internet and NTP existed!

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  Reply # 1405763 14-Oct-2015 15:51
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"At the third stroke ..."




Sideface


 
 
 
 


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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1405827 14-Oct-2015 17:55
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The GPS system is an Atomic Clock based timing system and many systems now use this as a reference because it easily accessible everwhere.

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Master Geek
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  Reply # 1405837 14-Oct-2015 18:04
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Very interesting. I heard this when I was in high school, they call it "ground wave" sync watch in China. Many geeks buy Japanese spec watches as they are cheaper and has more choices, but cannot sync in western China area. 

I think this is purely a boys hobby now, but who cares. Thanks very much for sharing the very intersecting info. :D

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1405839 14-Oct-2015 18:08
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I own a Japanese Casio tabletop clock with 'wave ceptor' technology. I bought this in Japan expecting to be able to use it here in NZ, but if I set the time to NZ's time after around a day it will switch back to Japanese time. It has a symbol with a satellite dish on it that lights up when the time is on Japanese zone, so I presume it's receiving these signals all the way from Japan and setting itself back to it's home timezone. For those wondering I'm in Hamilton.

I own an unused Pi 2 so I'm keen to look into transmitting my own signal haha.



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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1407795 16-Oct-2015 12:13
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JoshWright: I own a Japanese Casio tabletop clock with 'wave ceptor' technology. I bought this in Japan expecting to be able to use it here in NZ, but if I set the time to NZ's time after around a day it will switch back to Japanese time. It has a symbol with a satellite dish on it that lights up when the time is on Japanese zone, so I presume it's receiving these signals all the way from Japan and setting itself back to it's home timezone. For those wondering I'm in Hamilton.

I own an unused Pi 2 so I'm keen to look into transmitting my own signal haha.


Awesome to hear that somebody is receiving signals from Japan here in NZ. Is your clock inside or outside when this happens? 

I do know that there are a few people in Aus receiving the signal from JJY. I have tried it here a few times from Wellington and never received it.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1407831 16-Oct-2015 12:57
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DizzyD:
JoshWright: I own a Japanese Casio tabletop clock with 'wave ceptor' technology. I bought this in Japan expecting to be able to use it here in NZ, but if I set the time to NZ's time after around a day it will switch back to Japanese time. It has a symbol with a satellite dish on it that lights up when the time is on Japanese zone, so I presume it's receiving these signals all the way from Japan and setting itself back to it's home timezone. For those wondering I'm in Hamilton.

I own an unused Pi 2 so I'm keen to look into transmitting my own signal haha.


Awesome to hear that somebody is receiving signals from Japan here in NZ. Is your clock inside or outside when this happens? 

I do know that there are a few people in Aus receiving the signal from JJY. I have tried it here a few times from Wellington and never received it.


Yes this is indoors.

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  Reply # 1407906 16-Oct-2015 14:35
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I used to own a Sony clock radio that did this, it synchronised to a transmitter in Germany
Then when I moved from Holland to the UK it kept synching on German time which was a problem.
I bought the exact same model in the UK hoping it would have a UK synch mechanism, but the UK one came without synch!!




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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1408280 17-Oct-2015 16:35
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Here is an interesting device. Its called a Chronvertor
And its just £19.49. Far less than the cost of building it myself.

Anybody know what the legalities of such a device is in NZ? and broadcasting a 40kHz and 60kHz signal? Even just a few meters?

The Chronvertor is a module containing a very accurate battery backed Maxim DS3231 RTC (Real Time Clock) chip working with a Microchip PIC Microcontroller to output the time and date as either a GPS NMEA datagram or a WWVB, DCF77, MSF or JJY radio time protocol.

It automatically takes care of DST (Daylight Saving Time) changes around the world and provides for time-zone offsets to generate any local time.

The RTC time and date can be initially set-up by either connecting it to a GPS module for a few seconds or by serial commands sent by a PC terminal program.


Product manual is here.



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