433MHz RF Transmitter Receiver modules for wireless communication

433MHz RF Transmitter Receiver modules for wireless communication

433MHz RF Transmitter Receiver modules are wireless communication modules that uses radio frequency (RF) as signal (similar to what is used in some remote controlled toys). The modules are packaged separately as a transmitter and receiver.

This is an ongoing post. Please suggest corrections, explanations, etc. in the comment section at the bottom of this page.

In this case the receiver module can detect and output any radio signal in the 433 MHz range, whereas the transmitter can transmit a signal in this range via an input. Similarly there are other modules that can handle frequencies in the 315 and 330MHz ranges.

433MHz RF Transmitter Receiver modules are easy to come by and by doing some internet searching, single modules can be obtained for around ZAR30. Good sources include eBay and BangGood.com. Some modules are obviously better quality than others. Apart from being inexpensive, they are small and, with the correct information, they are quite easy to get up and running on a microcontroller like the Arduino and Raspberry Pi using a digital pins.

Sample uses & alternatives

433MHz RF Transmitter Receiver modules work well for short to long distance wireless communication. It can be used to distinguish voltage changes (e.g. simple on-off-like behaviour) or, with some additional programming packages, it can transmit more refined signals such as string variables. These modules are popular to use with 433MHz remote controls.

Alternative wireless communication modules include the XBee (IEEE 802.15.4-2003 ) point-to-point modules, Bluetooth modules and the increasingly popular and ESP32 and other ESP8266-related Wi-Fi modules. Laser Transmitter Receiver modules can also be used for short distance wireless communication.

433MHz RF Transmitter Receiver specifications

Transmitter (square unit)

433MHz RF Transmitter modulePins: 3. Gnd (closest to Ant), Pwr, Tx/ATAD (‘DATA’). Breadboard friendly. Pins might me marked. ‘R’ might also be present on some units indicating receiver.
Signaling: Digital (digital read). Data to be transmitted is read by the Transmitter’s digital pin.
Input voltage: 3 ~ 12 V DC (for max power use 12 V)
Input current: max ≤ 40 mA (12 V) max, min≤9 mA (3 V)
Resonance mode: SAW
Modulation mode: ASK
Working frequency: 315 MHz to 433 MHz (some has customisable frequency)
Transmission power: 25 mW (315 MHz at 12 V)
Frequency error: +150 kHz (max)
Velocity: less than 10 Kbps
Self-owned codes: negative
Size: 19 x 19 x 7 mm
Breadboard friendly: yes
Pin size: male, 5 x 2.54 mm

Receiver (longer unit)

433MHz RF Receiver modulePins: 4. Pwr (closest to Ant), Rx, Rx, Gnd. Breadboard friendly. Pins might be marked.
Signaling: Digital (requires interrupts, digital write). Data that is received is transmitted by the Receiver’s digital pin.
Input voltage: 5.0 V DC +0.5 V
Working current: ≤5.5mA max
Working method: OOK/ASK
Working frequency: 315 MHz – 433.92 MHz
Bandwidth: 2MHz
Sensitivity: excel –100 dBm (50 Ω)
Transmitting velocity: <9.6 Kbps (at 315 MHz & -95 dBm)
Size: 30 x 14 x 7 mm
Breadboard friendly: yes
Pin size: male, 5 x 2.54 mm

Antennae & communication distance

Even if already pre-attached, additional antennae can be added to both the receiver and transmitter unit. Antennae will increase the communication distance potential between the units. To get started, a simple solid copper wire (1 mm thick and 18 to 25 cm long) can be soldiered onto the ANT position. Better results can be obtained by coiling the antenna.

433MHz RF Transmitter Receiver module antennae
Simple commercial copper antennae for 433MHz RF Transmitter Receiver modules

Commercial antennae are also available, for example the 433 MHZ Spiral Spring Helical Antennas from BangGood.com.

It is reported that the maximum communication distance is up to 90 m in an open area (not tested). Apart from a proper antenna and higher voltage, a reduction of the baud rate through programming (allowable range between 300 and 2400 bps) will increase the range and effectiveness.

Other important things to know

Communication is only one way – from the transmitter to the receiver.

Because random outside radio signals are being send and received from many close-by devices, the receiver module is also prone to pick up ‘false’ signals (called ‘noise’).

Receivers are only able to read single short bursts of signal at a time – which becomes a bit of a problem if more than a few transmitters are sending code at the same time.

Recommended parts & accessories

These were the parts that were used. Most are available from BangGood, eBay and RS Components. Direct links to some of the parts are supplied lower down.

  • 433 MHz Transmitter Receiver units
  • 433 MHz Spiral Spring Helical Antennas
  • Breadboard and solderless breadboard jumper cable set
About the author
Renier busies himself with improving his English writing, creative web design and his websites, photoshopping, micro-electronics, multiple genres of music, superhero movies and badass series.

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