Radio Clock

Started 23rd September 2021

I bought "UK MSF Time Atomic Radio Controlled Silent Wall Clock Quartz Movement Mechanism DIY Kit Replacement Set Accessories" which is a clock movement that takes its time from the MSF transmitter in the UK.

This worked well out of the box. It came with a pin in place locking the mechanism at 12 o'clock - any radio controlled clock must know where its fingers are.

Taking the front off revealed the insides, three blob chips, a couple of crystals, a ferrite rod antenna, and an interesting connector strip.

The board is marked "HD-1688MRCSD" which exists on the Google. I found a blog about it, the maker is "Sheng Bang", but no data sheet was forthcoming.

The edge connector is marked
I can guess that the first three relate to the three buttons on the back of the clock, the connections to which are visible at the top of the photo, and that VDD and GND are power rails. First look with a 'scope shows both CDS connections providing the same output signal. Given three pulses the time between the first and the third is 1 second, but the second pulse is not in the middle. The signal is not present when the clock is receiving the radio data.

Radio controlled clock, David PillingRadio controlled clock CDS pin, 100ms x 500mv, David Pilling

The pulses have three different durations - short (10668 μs), medium (10912 μs) and long (11157 μs). Each minute consists of a long pulse followed by seven short ones (4 seconds), then seven sequences of a medium pulse followed by fifteen short ones (seven times 8 seconds).

There are long and short gaps between the pulses. The long and medium pulses are always followed by a long gap.

I have an Arduino ATMega 328p program (link below) which measures the time an input is above and below a threshold (in microseconds), for the data stream, this is the typical output:

11156 532996 10668 446171
10667 530310 10667 448125
10668 529943 10668 449101
10668 529942 10669 449101
10914 529697 10669 449100
10669 529942 10669 449101
10669 547526 10668 431516
10669 529941 10669 449100
10668 529942 10668 449101
10668 530920 10668 448124
10667 530920 10668 448125
10667 529943 10667 449102

Small numbers are pulses, big numbers gaps.



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Page last modified on October 28, 2021, at 01:17 AM
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