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  Reply # 1093498 22-Jul-2014 09:30
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what motion sensors do you have, I have these ones and these doors sensors and one mico switch.  but most of the lights were on normal switches and the wifi bulbs.

the bluetooth sensors for room location could be pretty cool, i always have a fitbit force watch on so that will tell it my location, but im the only one in the house to wear such a device.

i wanted a good alarm system that I could use in conjuction with the z-wave stuff (i.e reuse all the same sensors) and have it all connected, so I could push a button on a wall mounted android device for "Away" etc, and it would set the alarm and lock the house (after say 30 seconds, allowing time to leave the house) but never found a decent alarm that would work.



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  Reply # 1093505 22-Jul-2014 09:46
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I have one of those Aeon Labs 4-in-1 Multi Sensors, and one of these from Fibaro (only released a few months ago). The Fibaro sensor is tiny compared to the Aeon Labs. It is literally about the size of a golf ball. It does everything the Aeon Labs one does, aside from measure humidity. I have one on my ensuite and it is fantastic for detecting motion and turning on presence lighting - different lighting for different times of day - i.e. dims up main lights slowly in the mornings, 50% lighting in the evenings, and a blue LED underbench light if we are in bed (i.e. toilet trips). Works 100% of the time and the ensuite is a long way from my controller - meaning all the ZWave traffic is being routed through my ZWave mesh network.

If you already have an alarm system then using a couple of these works very well for integrating any existing PIRs. These live inside your alarm panel and are powered by the alarms 12V supply. Anytime a PIR is tripped your ZWave network is informed, whilst the alarm system knows nothing about them - i.e. they are parasitic sensors. I do exactly this as my Bosch alarm system has no IP control features. You can also use those binary sensors to detect when the alarm is armed and tripped by attaching them to the output relays on your panel. Then all you would need to figure out is how to arm/disarm. I hacked a spare keyfob I had lying around and placed a ZWave relay across the arm/disarm buttons. This all works very well and was much cheaper than buying a new alarm system capable of doing all this out of the box.

I have exactly what you mention in terms of 'Away' mode. Except I don't manually activate it, it is automatically set when the house detects that there is no one present any more (by tracking phone locations and PIRs/external doors). Works very well and is great piece of mind. The only thing missing is a 'connected' front door lock - that would complete the security system and ensure the house is always secure. 

 
 
 
 




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  Reply # 1126905 12-Sep-2014 07:55
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Hey guys, just a heads up, Smart Things NZ is having a sale on the Vera Lite controllers - 25% off to $224.99. Get in quick as there is limited stock at this price!

http://www.smartthingsnz.co.nz/store/product/veralite/

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  Reply # 1126911 12-Sep-2014 08:06
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SumnerBoy: Hey guys, just a heads up, Smart Things NZ is having a sale on the Vera Lite controllers - 25% off to $224.99. Get in quick as there is limited stock at this price!

http://www.smartthingsnz.co.nz/store/product/veralite/


Nice! Ben, I was wondering if you have any experience with the VeraLite vs OpenHab? I'm revisiting all this stuff now our renovation is under-way and I need to order all my gear soon for the electrician. Is the VeraLite programmable like OpenHab, such that I can do something like "If a light sensor says it's dark and some motion was sensed, then turn on all the lights and blare heavy metal music".  For $224 it might be a better go than the ZStick. Thoughts?

Thanks

BTW: I'm still going over the stupid dimmable LED's and Fibaro dimmer... :) I think in the end I have no choice but to pick normal switches for most of the house and then test one. If that works, slowly add Fibaro Dimmers to everything and bite the cost of the original switches.

Cheers




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  Reply # 1126934 12-Sep-2014 08:18
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I haven't used a Vera Lite personally but from what I understand they are very 'programmable'. Users are able to write their own plugins and there is an app store with pre-programmed modules you can add to your system. This allows you to support different protocols and devices in some cases, along with ZWave. You can then add scenes, triggers, alerts and schedules from the Vera Lite configuration web page. There is plenty of support in the forums at http://forum.micasaverde.com/.

From all accounts the VeraLite is a great controller, the UI is a little dated in some areas, but for the price point it is an excellent starting point (especially at $224.99!) for those wanting to get into home automation but don't have the time or desire to get their hands really dirty with something like openHAB (which is much more text-file configuration based - i.e. no configuration UI).

Have a look around on the web, in particular YouTube, as this is a very popular controller so there are plenty of examples of it in use.

Cheers.

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  Reply # 1126975 12-Sep-2014 08:36
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Thanks. I'll do a little more research then. The setup and phone UI's do seem simple, but then again OpenHab has probably the worst UI I've seen of anything. That thing is hideous and part of the reason I'm hesitant to get into it. My wife would also be appalled if she had to use that monstrosity so I'd need to figure out a way to customise it :)





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  Reply # 1126976 12-Sep-2014 08:39
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If you can develop a fancy UI for openHAB there will be countless users who will be forever in your debt! It is pretty basic, have you checked out the GreenT UI - slightly better...But in reality I believe most things your home automation controller does should be 'behind-the-scenes'. Things should just happen when they are supposed to, and the UI shouldn't be needed all that much in most cases. 

Let me know if you have any other questions.

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  Reply # 1127063 12-Sep-2014 10:37
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No I haven't checked out GreenT yet. I understand the automation without interaction thing but what I'm hoping to do is have an actual tablet in the kitchen so we can play music, adjust lights, or just turn the TV and games off when the kids are refusing to come to the dinner table :)





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  Reply # 1127072 12-Sep-2014 10:44
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Fair enough - did you see the new announcements from Fibaro overnight (http://forum.fibaro.com/viewtopic.php?t=5019)? 

You could put a nice shiny red button on your kitchen bench which activates the "KIDS COME TO THE DINNER TABLE" scene ;).



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  Reply # 1127085 12-Sep-2014 10:51
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Haha, no I didn't see that. That button is quite funny :)

Man I wish they'd concentrate on their dimmer so it would working with trailing edge LED's and have generally better compatibility. You'd think this would be one of the biggest sellers.


BTW: Have you thought of importing the Vera 3 and do you have any zwave wall plugs for sale?


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