We’ve received two new devices from SONOFF for testing, namely the BASICR4 Smart Switch and the S-MATE2 Smart Remote Control. For those familiar with SONOFF devices, the Basic series is well-known as it was one of the initial products SONOFF introduced to the Smart Home market. It’s a Wi-Fi switch that can be used for various purposes, including controlling lights, fans, and other electrical devices..
The Basic series has been a long-standing Wi-Fi Switch family allowing control of electrical devices through the eWeLink app or through small buttons on the device itself. In this version, it has the new ability to connect to external switches (double poles rocker switches) for added convenience. New features in the BASICR4 model include the Magic Switch Mode, eWeLink Remote Gateway, and Auxiliary Overheat Protection. Additionally, the processor has been upgraded from ESP8285 to ESP32. SONOFF has been progressively upgrading its devices with this ESP32 processor, which still appeals to DIY enthusiasts who like to load customized firmware such as Tasmota or ESPHome. The table below compares the specifications between the BASICR2 and the BASICR4.
- MCU: ESP32-C3FN4
- Input: 100-240V ~ 50/60Hz Max 10A
- Output: 100-240V ~ 50/60Hz Max 10A
- Max. Power: 2400W@240V
- Wireless Connectivity: Wi-Fi IEEE 802.11b/g/n 2.4GHz
- Net Weight: 45.8g
- Product Dimensions: 88x39x24mm
- Color: White
- Casing Material: PC V0
- Applicable Place: Indoor
- Working Temperature: -10℃~40℃
- Working Humidity: 10%~95% RH, non-condensing
- Certification: ISED/FCC/RoHS/ETL/CE/SRRC
- Executive Standard: EN IEC 60669-2-1, UL 60730-1, CSA E 60730-1
We have tested the SONOFF BASICR4 functionality through two apps as usual: SONOFF’s own app, eWeLink, and the well-known open-source Home Assistant. We asked SONOFF if there are plans to support other Smart Platforms. Well, there’s a high possibility that SONOFF might introduce support for Matter in the future, enabling seamless integration with platforms supporting Matter such as Google Home, Apple HomeKit, or even Home Assistant, just like the elder sibling of this device, the SONOFF MINIR4M which we reviewed recently.
We use the eWeLink 5.0.1 app on iOS 17.0.1 for the testing. To add the BASICR4 to the app, we tapped on the “+” sign at the top right and selected the 2.4GHz Wi-Fi Access Point. The app will scan for devices, and as usual, we had to press the small black button on the BASICR4 until the light flashed to initiate pairing. Then, we pressed the + button again in the BASICR4 selection, and finally, we could see the new device added to eWeLink as pictured below.
We’ll skip testing common features in eWeLink such as setting schedules, timers, inching, and scenes. What we’ll focus on in this review are the new features specific to the BASICR4: the eWeLink Remote Gateway and the Magic Switch Mode.
This is about integrating an external switch to control the BASICR4. As we write this review, the Double Pole Rocker Switch is the only type of external switch supported by the BASICR4. Other SONOFF products that connect to an external switch, like the Extreme Mini Wifi, have S1 and S2 ports to insert wires from the external switch (hardware-based). However, the BASICR4 lacks these ports and it’s where the (software-based) Magic Switch Mode comes into play. The wiring is done as depicted in the image below, using a Double Pole Rocker Switch.
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