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Intermittent Dropouts Observed at 4 feet with XBEE Pro Series 1

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My project uses a pair of XBEE Pro Series-1 modules. One sends serial data at 115200 baud and the other receives. Data string is 20 ascii characters.

For troubleshooting purposes, the modules are only 4 feet apart. All functions correctly, but if I cover one of the XBEE modules with my hand without touching any parts, I get intermittent data dropouts (meaning the receiver fails to receive data). If I move away my hand, all functions normally. The spec for range states 300 feet indoor, 1 mile outdoor.

Could a degradation in XBEE performance be caused by my wireless router and/or Apple TV devices (3 total)?

Any XBEE setting or other tip to prevent or reduce these dropouts?
asked Jan 25, 2016 in IEEE 802.15.4 by randomvibe New to the Community (0 points)

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1 Answer

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I have never had an Apple TV or WIFI connection reduce the range that bad but if they are sitting all next to each other and they are all on the same channel, it could. Try changing channels.

The other question I have is which antennas are you using with these modules?
answered Jan 25, 2016 by mvut Veteran of the Digi Community (13,094 points)
I'm using the XBP24-AWI-001 module with the built-in wire antenna.
Per your suggestion, I changed the channel from C (default) to 17.  Also updated the firmware from 10EC to 10EF (newest as of today).  MAC MODE (set at 2, non-default) was kept the same.  All other parameters left at their defaults.  Result: intermittent dropouts still observed.  I'll try changing the channels again.
Make sure the wire whip antenna is perpendicular to the module was well.
You should not need to change the Mac mode at all.  The default value of 0 for MM should allow you to get the range you want.  Providing you do not have any interference and have perfect RF LOS conditions.