Multiple RFID readers, one Pi

5 posts
by samgray111 » Sat Apr 20, 2013 11:02 pm
Hi there,

Please bear with me as I'm just in the early stages of planning this as part of a university project,

I am trying to find a method of connecting multiple RFID readers to the Raspberry Pi, however In addition, I would also need a method of detecting which reader was activated.

I was hoping to use the following readers,, simply because I already have one. These readers are very simple to use, they work completely plug-and-play on the Raspi and upon scanning a tag/card, they will simply input the string of the token into the active program (as if it was just a keyboard/generic input device)

The way in which I was kind of thinking of detecting which device was activated was to simply add a prefix to the input string, then I could simply parse the first couple of digits of this input and work out which reader it came from. This is just a vague idea at the minute and to be honest, I would have no idea where to start to identify even which USB port is being used.

I am completely open to using 'component' RFID Wiegand readers as I understand many people have done successfully, however (and this is where my knowledge gets VERY shaky) as I understand it, You would do this using the I2C bus of the Pi? and there is only one input for this?

My language of choice would be C++ or Python, however I'm happy to learn what I have to! :-)

My budget is fairly low and so I would ideally like to stick to readily available cheap readers such as the one I linked to earlier or, if a wiegand reader, something like the following

Absolutely any help you guys would be able to offer would be much appreciated, as I say, this is very much just my initial thoughts on the project and I understand I am going to have to put a lot more thought into it yet.

Thanks in anticipation,

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by kencodes » Sat Jun 08, 2013 4:28 am
I'm not sure what has become of your multiple RFID reader project, but I am working on something similar and came across your post. I'm afraid that all I have to contribute to help you is a bit of information about the I2C bus. It is a multi-drop bus that can be used to connect many I2C compliant devices on the same two wire interface.

Were you successful in getting things to work?
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by assuncao » Wed Oct 23, 2013 1:00 pm
Hi guys,

I'm under the same need, I need connect about 16 RFID readers in one Pi. Were you successfully at this?
If yes, could you share the best solution?

Thanks in advanced!
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by artokun » Wed Jan 21, 2015 9:49 pm
I was wondering if any of you were able to come up with a solution. I would like to be able to connect multiple RFID reciever antennas onto one rPI and be able to determine which one was activated, or show as being active. Ideally it would also relay the ID of the RFID device being used on it.

I need it for my university project for this summer. I will keep looking but if any of you have any pointers I would be happy to hear from you.
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by danjperron » Thu Jan 22, 2015 9:01 pm
What about the project I did using arduino and RC-522.

Maybe it will gives you some hint to do it cheap.

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