Dissecting the SoundGraph iMON MM

Correction: The device is actually an iMON Multi-Median (MM), which includes an IR receiver and a remote control.

My friend recently passed me a brand new unopened SoundGraph iMON IR receiver device. Here’s how it looks like:

As you can see from the box, it supports up till Windows XP. If you’re thinking how the terms “Windows XP” and “brand new unopened” go together, it’s because he’s kept it for 4 years.

The receiver is quite interesting, it’s a transparent orb with the usual IR filter at the front. I can’t help but notice the PCB looks like it only has a few components in it. And you know what Dave from the EEVBlog always says: “don’t turn it on, take it apart!”

Unsurprisingly, it uses a Cypress Semiconductor CY7C63221A for USB communication. Cypress Semiconductor is quite well-known for manufacturing single ICs which combine a USB transceiver and microcontroller to lower component count. You can find their chips in some keyboards and maybe mice as well. The CY7C63221A is already obsolete, but luckily Octopart still has a cached copy of the datasheet.

In the middle is the IR receiver, which is a 3-terminal device that (I assume) decodes 36-38 kHz modulated IR signals and outputs the de-modulated signal.

So it looks like I won’t be able to tell how it communicates just by looking at the chip, but at least it’s supported by LIRC. I’ll probably hook it up and try it out when I have time.

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