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Author Topic: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!  (Read 5694 times)

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Vito

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Hello everyone,

I've been using the Vera devices for the past few years (with over 80 controlled devices at my house), and have been a professional developer for more than 20 years!  I'm absolutely excited about reprogramming my home automation capabilities and providing some custom tools to use against the Almond+.  If there's anything you're particularly interested in, feel free to share it through a reply here.

-Vito

LGNilsson

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Re: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2013, 11:37:28 pm »
Wow, sounds like you've got some serious experience. Expect a lot of questions  ;)
It'd be interesting to get a more detailed description of what type of sensors you have and how you've set things up.

Vito

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Re: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2013, 12:55:12 am »
Hello Lars,

I'm going through some of my order history to pull up some links to some of the devices I'm using, just to help out.  I may not always have time to respond quickly, but I'll do my best whenever questions come up.  From what I know about SECURIFY, you all are very communicative - which is what I'm looking for in a company.  So I'll do my best to be as communicative as I can.

Here are some of the devices that I have in use at my house:

Aeon Labs Z-Wave Minimote
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007J26PIS

Leviton VRCS2-MRZ Vizia RF + 2-Button Scene Controller
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0032ZB9HI

Elk M1 to Leviton Z-Wave Interface
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B006M4BOJY

Elk ELK-930 Doorbell and Phone Ring Detector
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0007N72ZG

ELK M1KPNAV Touchscreen Keypad
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005MGU9U8

Yale YRD220-ZW-ORB Electronic Touch Screen Deadbolt
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005NLKQJG

Yale YRL-220-NCR-0BP Touchscreen Lever Door Lock
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BA1CYP2

Remotec Zwave Dry Contact Fixture Module (Garage door opener)
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00913ATFI

Leviton VRCZ4-MRX Vizia RF + 4-Button Zone Controller with Infrared Remote Capability
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0032ZDDUE

eMonitor 4-44 Energy Monitor
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B006Z5OKL4

IR Music Controller 60 Watt 3 Ports With Remote for Color Changing LEDs
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005AQPU5Y

Foscam FI9821W Indoor Pan/Tilt H.264 720p Wireless IP Camera
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00AJWK5WW

Leviton VRE06-1LX Vizia RF + 600W Electronic Low Voltage Scene Capable Dimmer (great for LED lights)
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001U3Z4B6

Leviton VRS15-1LZ Vizia RF + 15A Scene Capable Switch
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001HT0PB2

Leviton VP0SR-1LZ, Vizia + Digital Matching Remote Switch (for 3-way and 4-way setups)
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001HSYT3S

Leviton VRF01-1LZ Vizia RF + 1.5A Scene Capable Quiet Fan Speed Control
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001HT4M48

Leviton VRCS4-M0Z Vizia RF + 4-Button Remote Scene Controller
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0050T2O1O

HomeSeer HSM100-S2 Z-Wave Multi-Sensor
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007AGDV2Q

GE 45600 Z-Wave Basic Handheld Remote
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0013V6RW0

Schlage LiNK Wireless Keypad Entry Lever Add-on Lock
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001NEK6LA

Jasco 45609 Z-Wave Wireless Lighting Control On/Off Switch
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0035YRCR2

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0013V58K2
GE 45613 Z-Wave Technology 3-Way Dimmer Switch Kit

Jasco 45609 Z-Wave Wireless Lighting Control On/Off Switch
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0035YRCR2

GE 45631 Z-Wave Wireless Keypad Controller
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003OUWABU

I know that's a long list, and I'm sure I'm missing quite a few components - but this is definitely the bulk of them.

-Vito


Vito

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Re: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2013, 01:00:48 am »
A few more I quickly realized were missed...

Trane TZEMT400BB3NX N N SL Home Energy Management Thermostat
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008DNAGBO

Aeon Labs DSB05106-ZWUS Z-Wave Multi-sensor
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008D5TYGU

GE 45603 Z-Wave Technology Wireless Lighting Control Fluorescent Light & Appliance Module
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0013V58HU

Mi Casa Verde SmartSwitch with Immediate Wattage Energy Usage
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007UZH7B8

Offline pete

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Re: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2013, 05:59:36 am »
Welcome to the forum Vito!

Here too have Homeseer, Z-Wave (leviton, z-troller and micasaverde), UPB, X-10 (legacy and JV Engineering) and Insteon. 

I went to utilizing Homeseer in the late 1990's and the Leviton HAI Omnipro II panel (s) in the early 2000's.  (using both today).

Elk's M1 Gold  (purchased many Moose products years ago) stuff is top notch.

I do have a mixture of serially connected Omnitouch, IP connected Omnitouch plus Homeseer Touch screens all over the house (sandbox).

I am looking forward to playing with the Almond + both relating to WLAN and Automation features as you are.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2013, 02:39:20 pm by pete »
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Pete
Lockport, IL  USA

Vito

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Re: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2013, 11:56:00 am »
Hi Pete,

Thank you, and I haven't heard about HAI OPII, but just looked it up and read briefly about it.  I have to say, I'm looking forward to taking part in the community here.  I've spent the last three years building out my home automation pieces, and I'm looking forward to adding some intelligence to my house, now that I have enough components to provide knowledge to work with.

I'll be adding controlled blinds next, as I'm tired of opening and closing curtains almost every day.  :)

-Vito

LGNilsson

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Re: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2013, 11:05:58 pm »
That's a lot of kit...  ;D
I guess we need to try to get our hands on some of those things to test, as compatibility testing is going to be one of the more time consuming things going forward on our end once the beta hardware is done.

Offline GeoLeaf

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Re: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2013, 04:01:56 pm »
Hello

This is GeoLeaf.  I drive a Leaf.  WoW!  What at lot of gear.  What do you find as most reliable; Z-Wave, Insteon or old X-10?

Thanks,

Vito

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Re: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!
« Reply #8 on: August 15, 2013, 12:29:12 pm »
Hello GeoLeaf,

Unfortunately, I have not had the chance to test out any Insteon devices, and it's been at least 15 years since I've used X-10.  That being said, the only reliability problems that I've encountered were either with the Z-Wave controlling device (Vera), or with specific Z-Wave modules.  For example, there are *very* few Z-Wave dimmers that work with LED lights.  I ended up using the electronic Leviton dimmers for both LED lights and fans, as they work flawlessly, but are extremely expensive (~$150).  Even some of the On/Off switches don't work well with LED lights, as even in "Off" mode, the switches often allow a small amount of electricity to pass through the switch.  If you have a chandelier running 3.5 watt bulbs, even a tiny amount of electricity will cause the bulbs to light up dimly - which is annoying! :-)

As soon as I receive and setup my beta Almond+ unit, I'll purchase a few more devices and do some further testing.  But right now, I'm very happy with my Z-Wave setup.

-Vito

Offline pete

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Re: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!
« Reply #9 on: August 15, 2013, 12:59:01 pm »
Quote
What do you find as most reliable; Z-Wave, Insteon or old X-10?

That is a "loaded" question; one which almost goes into the realm of much debate.

Today I use all three plus one called UPB.

I have gone full circle with X-10.  I have this traditional outdoor illumination "thing" every year around Christmas time.  Many years ago I started with X-10.  Just the past 10 years I have used Z-Wave and Insteon and UPB for said said endeavor and also switching from incandescent little bulbs to LED lamps and back again to incandescent bulbs.

I have sort of regressed these last few years in my old age to using X-10. 

Mostly because of the programming time involved and wanting to get the endeavor of holiday lighting done quickly.

Some folks always had issues with legacy X-10; mostly relating to powerline noise.  Its is the first and a very simple transport.  Here today I have upgraded my X-10 by utilizing JV Engineering XTB boosters.  I configure all of the switches to one code and send a command to them and they all go on at one time.  I do not get poweline feedback other than seeing them go on.

The natural progression of the X-10 protocal was an end user device device that could talk using the old X-10 and something new.

Insteon was created as a hybrid of powerline and wireless bridging technology.  I used it and it worked.  I had devices that continued to talk X-10 to the Insteon devices and other devices that spoke Insteon to same said devices.  Initially first generation was using wireless bridging between phases of electricity in the home.  Today 2nd generation Insteon has evolved a bit related to use of wireless methodologies.  Today this has been good or bad depending on how you look at it.  The old users of first generation Insteon either welcomed the changes or just decided not to "ride the wave" of the Insteon protocal "divorcing" themselves from it.

Pause here - my home electrical has always been metal tubing with the 120VAC wires and metal cans for all of the outlets and switches.

I tried Z-Wave next which uses pure wireless and does dynamically create its routing of things protocal.  Fast with their little CPUs.  What a great idea it is to use an evolved wireless protocal for automation.  This does add a bit more complexity when dealing with wireless battery operated devices though relating to its routing and the "checks and balances".  It is quick and easy.

Concurrently utilizing a pure powerline transport called UPB which has evolved a bit over the years.

So relating to your OP (original post). 

Z-Wave (pure wireless) is almost newest today such that the ideology of what is newer can be better? 

That said Insteon (hybrid of wired and wireless) topology and methodology has kind of reinvented itself in the "race" for the standards of automation transport; such that Insteon is new new again and again (X2).  It can be also considered a "natural" transition from X-10 to ...

I do not dim my LED lighting today and do utilize automation for turning it on or off.  I am going with baby steps here as its still very new stuff.  I have redone all of my outdoor lighting over the last 4 years switching from incandescent 12 VAC with huge toroidal transformers (1000 watts each X 4) to smaller DIN mounted 12VDC less than 100 watt transformers.  Still an experiment looking to connect the entire infrastructure to batteries and and solar charging with maybe wireless control transport.

I have no real answer other than give Z-Wave a try with the Almond + and see how you personally like it; I am looking forward to getting my hands on an Almond + to do the same.

Personally I have not tried Zigbee yet and also look forward to giving it a spin with the Almond +. 




« Last Edit: August 15, 2013, 02:02:28 pm by pete »
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Pete
Lockport, IL  USA

Vito

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Re: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!
« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2013, 03:19:46 pm »
I just wanted to add a note to this old thread, pointing out that I just purchased eight new Philips Hue lights (three normal bulbs, three recessed BR30's, a bloom, and a light strip).  It looks as if I will be preferring these lights over a normal LED light and a Leviton electronic Z-Wave dimmer.  This is due to the fact that a "good" LED bulb is about $25 - $35, and the Leviton electronic dimmer is about $150.  Spending $50 on a Philips Hue bulb gives you more capabilities (i.e., color) and eliminates the need to purchase the Leviton dimmer.

You're still forced to purchase some type of wall switch (scene controller) if you want guests to be able to operate the lights without a remote.  But overall, this looks to be the best available lighting setup yet - unless I'm missing something.  I'm using a Leviton scene controller, as well as an advanced GE remote, allowing me to have easy-access buttons to go to "Lights Fully On", "Movie Mode", "Warm / Relaxing", "Lights Off" modes, etc.

Offline Slim4

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Re: Hello! Looking forward to the Home Automation and Development features!
« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2014, 10:46:53 am »
Hi Vito!
I just ordered my Almond + and am geeking out completely about finally getting my home automated.  I was wondering about the Leviton VRCS2-MRZ.  Do you have that set up to control 2 loads?  I want to use it to control just one load (ceiling fan) and then use the other button as a remote scene controller for a scene capable wall outlet.  So I can leave my fan on and also have a switched outlet for a lamp :)
Do you know if that will work?  The sales guy said it will, but I wasn't sure if the LED status indicator on the "remote" button would work correctly if there is no load applied directly to it's pole.

Thank you,

Ben
Z-Wave Setup (WIP)
1x Peanut Wall plug
1x BE469NXCAM716 Schlage Deadbolt

 

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