View Full Version : 1st controller...confused on setup?

01/04/2010, 07:30 PM
Thanks in advance for some probably simple questions. I set up my controller and modified the names of the outlets and programmed the lights at this point and i verified the 12/24 times...i'm running ATI with 2 plugs and 1 fan plug. I also have a fuge light set a opposite time as the day lights but the lights erratically turn on and off?? i set all these parameters via the head unit. I tried using ethernet cable- connected it to my laptop that was on a wireless connection.

Sorry maybe it's just me but this users manual was poorly written and the language is a little bit unique, but i still am missing something?'

It seems as if the lights are set to a randomized pump or wavemaker timer? i checked the coding of the outlets which seems overly complex- i understand you can connect a ton of these eb8's but why start out with a coding thats so complex (1_3_1)...

Any tips or suggestions would be helpfull.... i tried searching for video's related to setup but couldn't find anything and neptunes web site didn't give me many clues either. i guess if all else fails i need to call customer service, but i'm trying to avoid that.

01/04/2010, 07:51 PM
Believe it or not, there actually is "method to the madness" for the default outlet naming. But as you've discovered, they can readily be changed as desired.

Using the web interface to configure the system is much easier than using the display unit's menu. I highly recommend getting it configured so you can use a PC (or Mac) and your favorite web browser. I thinks things will be much clearer that way. It sound like you've tried... what did you try, and what was the outcome?

As for the lights... can you post what the current programming for that outlet is?

01/04/2010, 08:05 PM
Thanks for the feed back; i'm eager to get to internet setup- i plugged it into my laptop and i got green and orange lights on both ends of the connection, i typed in http://apex but i got the defaul windows error message??? i continued to follow directions with IP address {typed in cmd in the start menu followed by config/all - which promptly brought up all my Ip detail} i was kind of overwhelmed at this point, and went here to figue it out.

The light questions were pretty basic...it asked fallback? which i turned "on" after the lights continued to flicker on and off
then it asked time on which i set the dawn/dusk lights to 9 am to 20:00
and so on with the remainder lights ..... i saved all functions...is there some thing i have to hit to "run program" ??

01/04/2010, 08:11 PM
If you directly connect the Apex & your laptop, you will need to assign static IP address to the wired Ethernet interface on your laptop, assuming that the Apex is at its original setting of

If possible, it's much easier to leave your laptop configured normally, and connect the Apex into your router.

01/05/2010, 08:21 AM
On the lights...

This sounds like the classic "two EB8s setup and programming the wrong one" problem.

If true, it is a shame new users are still exposed to this frustration.

01/05/2010, 11:46 AM
yes this is exactly what it seems like...any ideas how this happened or how i can undo it?

01/05/2010, 12:29 PM
What HeneryH alludes to is actually user error... caused by the somewhat confusing default outlet naming. Basically, in the scenario he mentions, there are two (or more) EB8s, and the user thinks he/she is programming a certain outlet on the one EB8, but he/she is actually programming the same outlet on the *other* EB8. If this is the case for you, don't feel bad... others have had the same issue.

I mentioned "method to the madness" for the default naming...

Each AquaBus peripheral device gets dynamically assigned a device identifier by the Apex base unit when it is first connected to the base unit. The first EB8 connected is typically ID#3, the 2nd EB8 is ID#4, et al. YMMV. Each will show up in the Apex system as EB8_n where n is the assigned ID.

In the default programming, each EB8 outlet is assigned a sample designation and corresponding programming, i.e. Outlet #1 is setup as a light, Outlet #6 as a chiller, etc. The default name for Outlet 6, for example, could be Chiller_4_6. In this naming convention, the 4 is the device ID and the 6 is the outlet number on that EB8. Likewise, Heater_3_5 is outlet 5 on EB8_3. Clear as mud? ;)

So, what Henery thinks is that you may have programmed (for example) outlet 3_1, but the light you are trying to control is actually plugged into outlet 4_1.

The easiest way to validate this is to plug a lamp or something into an EB8 outlet, then go to the corresponding outlet configuration in the menu you are having trouble with, and manually cycle it on & off to see if the device behaves accordingly.

01/05/2010, 01:27 PM
While this may be user error, if MANY people make the same mistake and it borders on poor implementation.

I unboxed my new unit, plugged in the only EB8 I bought, programmed the lights, heaters, etc that appeared at the top of the list and had the same problem.

I found my error quickly but many people have not.

The poor implementation is why an out of the box configuration shows two configured EB8s when only one was plugged in.

01/05/2010, 02:00 PM
Henrry, I wholeheartedly agree with your first point...I just toned down my words ;)

spoofer... I may inadvertantly have mislead you... for some reason I thought you had 2 EB8s :o.

What I described can also happen if there is a "phantom" EB8, making the first actual EB8 connected appear to be a second EB8. If so, positively identify the real EB8, then delete the phantom one. This can be done via the web interface.. I don't know offhand if it can be done from the display unit menus.

01/05/2010, 03:15 PM
i understand you can connect a ton of these eb8's but why start out with a coding thats so complex (1_3_1)...

You don't have to use that naming convention. You can call an outlet anything you want (no spaces). The naming convention makes sense if you have a bunch of outlets. Suppose you want to unplug your return pump. You've got 2 EB8's, 16 wires. Which one is your return pump? Using Neptune's convention, if your pump was named return_3_3 than it would be EB8#3, outlet #3. No tracing wires to figure out which one is the pump.

Like I said though, you don't have to use that convention, you can name them anything you want.

01/05/2010, 09:54 PM
Gotcha...well i decide to try and start over - so i unplugged everything for a few hours hoping it would loose memory and i could reprogramm it and try it again, well i plugged the lights into the eb8 plug in the aqua bus and head unit and plugged it into the wall.. seconds later the lights are flickering on and off like mad...to the point where i'm concerned it could screw up the lights so i unplugg the EB8 from the wall and at this point the EB8 has a burning electrical smell coming from it and smoke ! i contacted neptune and premium aquatics - neither have gotten back to me - even though jermey from premium ensured me himself or kurt from neptune would call me today to follow up.

so i'm playing the waiting game and not judging anything yet.. It took me a long time to muster up the will to spend this kind of money on a controller and even a longer time to decide on this one, i'm hoping i'll be happy with my decision in the end.

I appreciate all your feedback and advice and i'll keep you posted on what is to come.

01/05/2010, 10:35 PM
I guess as a very recent new user of controllers, I, too, found the instructions to be incomplete and vague. Little by little I kinda had to figure things out on my own and by reading the great threads of info here at RC.

One question that I have is does one use the relay outlets for the higher current bits such as lighting?

01/05/2010, 10:50 PM
i contacted neptune and premium aquatics - neither have gotten back to me - even though jermey from premium ensured me himself or kurt from neptune would call me today to follow up.

Ouch, glad you were testing and found this. I for one have been happy with mine thus far but found that as I play with it more, the more I learn. This is a newer product and us early adopters are kind of like beta testers. Curt has been real good about getting back to me and is great for support.

One question that I have is does one use the relay outlets for the higher current bits such as lighting?

I use the outlets for a chiller and two 250 heaters plugged into a "y" cord as a primary. I have a secondary heater in anouther outlet. I know htat some use the ports for small dosing pumps as they trigger on/off better.

01/06/2010, 11:18 AM
spoke with Kurt from Neptune- need to send it to them for evaluation. :(