The 4-channel Sonoff 4CH Pro is a new product from ITEAD, available from them directly or from Amazon in the UK– though you might reasonably question why the UK Amazon price is higher in pounds than the original is in dollars.
Essentially the unit is a development of their earlier Sonoff 4CH and I’ll do some basic comparison here.
Comparing this with the original 4CH product, you may recall I wrote to them to point out that their connector colour scheme was all wrong – with green as neutral – well, they’ve gotten rid of the colour scheme in total and made several other changes. The handy PCB fuse has gone in favour or a soldered-in-place fuse (I would have thought that was a backward move), the connector layout is more logical, it is now possible to use mains power OR 5-24v DC and the relays themselves look considerably more beefy – a good thing as there’s no way I would put anywhere NEAR 10 amps on those originals. Tracks look substantial and there are now nice air gaps everywhere for safety.
Where the original units claimed CE and ROHS, I note they now claim CE and FC. The toggle buttons are also now easily accessed from the front without having to remove a cover. As well as WIFI access they’ve added 433Mhz remote control – though the actual remote control does not come with the unit.
There are considerably more components on the 4CH Pro than its predecessor and it looks solid – both of course are in DIN-RAIL mount cases. Whereas before you could hook up mains to the unit and loads straight off the connectors, as the new relays are not attached to anything, you have to have some external connectors to make this all work but then – I LIKE that as the outputs are now totally un-committed. So for example I could be using three of the outputs to control power stuff and the 4th to put across a traditional thermostat contact pair – something you could not do when the relay central contacts were attached to mains power. Clearly being unattached you can also use the normally CLOSED contacts which you could not before.
At £22 from Amazon including postage – and given that you have four outputs – equivalent to and in some way more flexible than four separate mains control units, this seems to represent reasonable value for money. The unit is also compatible with Amazon Alexa which is a plus – though of course using non-standard software this feature has been available for some time though I do note that the software I’m referring to has “future” support for the Pro – he already supports the original 4CH so I’m sure it won’t be long before that is taken care of, at which time I’ll re-flash the unit and update this blog – I’ve put my request in. https://github.com/arendst/Sonoff-Tasmota – I really don’t want to use a special APP with this – preferring my normal MQTT control.
More on this as the Tasmoto software appears for this unit. Up to now it looks like a winner. I’ll soon tell you now near you can get to 10 amps as I plan to control a hot water heater to make use of “happy hour” electricity.