Project update 10 of 14
Over the past two years, we have been designing, prototyping, and building a product that we think will be something to last for years to come. This is something that we wanted to give our Home Assistant users as an easy way to get started, but also to upgrade as your home grows.
Well, this dream is finally coming to fruition. We are shipping to our first backers over the next two weeks! We want to thank everyone who has been waiting for their units as we know this has been a long time in the making. As we learned more and more about what it takes to produce a product that was up to our standards, you all stood by us and believed in our mission.
Our first production run, by the numbers:
A total of 2046pcs are currently in transfer to Crowd Supply.
1046pcs Home Assistant Yellow (with CM4)
1000pcs Home Assistant Yellow Kit (with Power Supply)
86 Cartons of Yellows
As we have finished the first production run on our side, we have shipped from our manufacturer over to Crowd Supply’s warehouse. Over the next 2 weeks, they will be processing and then shipping out your units! Make sure to check out your shipping address to make sure it’s correct on the "Order Details" page of your Crowd Supply Account.
We have also been working on making sure you know exactly how to set up your Home Assistant Yellow when you get it. You can now check out yellow.home-assistant.io where you find all the documentation you need for your Yellow. We will be updating this with more and more guides and resources over the coming weeks.
As we announced last time, the PoE variant did not make it through the approval. We were hoping a quick redesign would help us to get through the approval. Unfortunately, improving emissions turned out to be more challenging than expected.
We initially started with a Texas Instruments PoE chip (TPS23734RMTR to be specific). However, due to the chip shortage, we had to switch away from this chip (and it was the right decision, as even today the expected delivery date for that chip is mid-2023). The current design is built around Monolithic Power Systems MP8008.
Ethernet uses differential signaling, which causes most emissions to cancel out. However, with Power-over-Ethernet two challenging things come together in terms of electromagnetic interference (EMI): Fast signals and power. Transmitting fast signals along with power can cause high radiated emissions. Many consumer devices supporting PoE are using a metallic case, probably for exactly that reason.
After the failed emission test we created a improved version. We went with the redesigned version and the MP8008 evaluation board into EMC lab again. Unfortunately, both showed similar results, and both designs failed radiated emission tests. It is not uncommon for an evaluation board to not pass emission tests as their primary purpose is to let the user evaluate the chip. But it made us wonder what needs to be done to get within limits with that particular PoE chip. Fortunately, Monolithic Power Systems was very receptive to our issues. We spent two days in the EMC lab at MPS Germany to analyze the problem further. We created a redesign with several mitigation strategies and ordered a prototype PCB for this redesigned version. After verifying and testing these mitigation options and concluding on a final design, we should have a passing design by the end of August.
Close, but not quite there yet: Measurements done at MPS EMC lab
Very limited availability: Home Assistant Yellow Copper Edition - Emission test with a metallic shield
Unfortunately, that means that the PoE version will not ship before October 2022. If you want to have a Yellow Kit faster than this, the power supply kit will be shipping more units soon!
Thank you all for hanging in there with us as we go throughout this journey. The Home Assistant Yellow will be a huge milestone for Home Assistant and we are happy to share this experience with everyone!