Review: Sonoff 433 RF WiFi bridge


The good folk at Sonoff have sent me yet another gadget to review. This is a slightly curious device - an IP to 433MHz remote. This allows a smartphone to control smarthome gadgets which usually require an RF remote control.

It costs £8 plus postage direct from Itead.

This is similar to an Infrared device I reviewed a few years ago.

It's a cute little box, small and light enough to hide away anywhere. Even under use, it doesn't get hot.

A small black box nestles in my hand

Note - it only connects to 2.4GHz WiFi. That's standard for these cheap gadgets.

Powered by the ubiquitous micro-USB, it comes with a short cable, but no plug socket. I assume you have plenty at home.

A micro USB socket on the side of the box

Blinken lights! Little status LEDs so you know what's going on.

Three LEDs on the side of the box

Software

You need to use the eWeLink app. Like lots of smarthome apps from China, it isn't the prettiest - but it works. The translations on the app and the user guide would benefit from a more professional approach, but it is adequate.

Screenshot of app

The app is quick to respond - but I found that it would occasionally log me out, and I'd have to re-enter my password to continue.

It also supports Amazon Alexa! Incredible for a device this cheap. As I mentioned in my previous review, setting up the eWeLink Alexa skill is a bit cumbersome - but it works!

Buttons!

You also get a keyfob with four buttons on it.
A keyforb with multiple buttons

It is an RF remote which you can pair with the box. Kinda neat if you don't want to unlock your phone to activate something.

Usage

It works - but there's a catch - how many 433MHz devices do you have? I had to dig out some old demo kit in order to play with this gadget. If you've got compatible devices, this is a useful gizmo - but most modern devices have WiFi built in, so it may be worth upgrading older devices if you can.

If you have devices which need 433MHz controls, this is a ridiculously cheap way to add them to your home network. The Alexa control is the icing on the cake.

Teardown

It isn't a review if you don't get to see the guts 🙂

The retail model I've got has populated debug headers and an internal on/off switch.

A PCB

Nice and neat design. I'm told that it should be fairly easy to flash and dump the firmware. For those who care about such things, the main chip is the ESP8285.

Get It

8 thoughts on “Review: Sonoff 433 RF WiFi bridge

  1. LightwaveRF switches use 433MHz so this might work as a cheap replacement for their £60 bridge (which I'm not very impressed with). Did you find out how many devices it can control?

    1. The manufacturer days "16 at most".
      If you have more than that, you should be able to use multiple bridges.

      1. It can only add four RF Remotes, so if we add four 4-button RF Remotes(each button learn with one RF device), we can control maximum 16 RF devices.
        But for others, like RF Alarm, RF Curtain Switch, they are counted as one RF Remote.

  2. Tell me, is it planned to increase the ranges of operating frequencies. 433.92 is no longer programmed.

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