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  #1  
Old 10-13-2010, 08:52 AM
PLUCKYHD PLUCKYHD is offline
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What is everyone using for home automation?

Looking to increase mine at the house I am familiar with the expensive (integrator) stuff but more wanting to know what people here are using.

Requirements

1. Apple ipad/iphone application to control it (want to mount a couple of ipads in the house for touchscreen control)
2. Be able to control lighting,fans,A/c/heat, Alarm system, maybe some security cameras.
3. Open API so I can integrate it into sagetv addin
4. Control via software that can be remoted into from another location.
5. Not to big on plugin in adapter type dongles wanting something more built in or integrated with switches and stuff.
6. want 2 way communication that tells me if something is on or off regardless of where it was turned on/off from.

It doesn't have to be integrated with sagetv yet but sell me on what you are using. Once i pick something up I plan on integrating it with Sagetv and sharing my work so you could benefit as well. Really want to be able to turn Sagetv into a whole house integration control with the ipads/iphones.
working as backup control devices for when sagetv is off.

Thoughts?

cheers

pluckyhd
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  #2  
Old 10-13-2010, 09:14 AM
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gplasky gplasky is offline
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Haven't done it yet but was thinking of HomeSeer since LaManSoft came out with the InControl For Sage and HomeSeer Plugin. May not cover all of your requirements but I would definitely take a look at it.

Gerry
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  #3  
Old 10-13-2010, 09:18 AM
PLUCKYHD PLUCKYHD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gplasky View Post
Haven't done it yet but was thinking of HomeSeer since LaManSoft came out with the InControl For Sage and HomeSeer Plugin. May not cover all of your requirements but I would definitely take a look at it.

Gerry
Yeah I looked at that their stuff just seems more plugin type (plug their device into the wall and then your device into it) not very integrated and looking at the app store no one really has a nice ipad app for it.
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  #4  
Old 10-13-2010, 09:30 AM
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Fuzzy Fuzzy is offline
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I have a 4 year old that likes light switches.... so basically I've got a decently capable, wireless, voice activated HA system.
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  #5  
Old 10-13-2010, 09:33 AM
PLUCKYHD PLUCKYHD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzy View Post
I have a 4 year old that likes light switches.... so basically I've got a decently capable, wireless, voice activated HA system.
by who?
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  #6  
Old 10-13-2010, 09:34 AM
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bialio bialio is offline
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Same here - but I've learned not to ask for carbonated beverages from the fridge.
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  #7  
Old 10-13-2010, 09:36 AM
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Fuzzy Fuzzy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PLUCKYHD View Post
by who?
well, the wife keeps telling me she's mine...
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  #8  
Old 10-13-2010, 09:43 AM
PLUCKYHD PLUCKYHD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzy View Post
well, the wife keeps telling me she's mine...
SA!!!

I meant who makes the stuff you use I have a almost 3 year old daughter so I know how that goes I hope I wasn't so easily impressed with light switches at that age but probably was.
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  #9  
Old 10-13-2010, 09:47 AM
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Fuzzy Fuzzy is offline
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My daughters ARE the HA system... They scurry off to manipulate whatever switch I've asked them to do. Expensive if you're getting them just for this purpose, but if you've already got them laying around, they work quite well when re-purposed into this role.
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  #10  
Old 10-13-2010, 09:48 AM
lpitman lpitman is offline
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Been using HomeSeer for Home Automation for years.
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  #11  
Old 10-13-2010, 09:51 AM
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Fuzzy Fuzzy is offline
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Honestly, though, If I was going to go through the effort and cost to install a HA system, I'd probably actually build my own from scratch.. I mean, and DIY HA system is installed for the hobby of doing it, right? So why not do it ALL yourself?

I could probably run my entire house lighting system from a single arduino board, with another to control the HVAC.. maybe another for security... 3 arduino's would cost about $100, plus all the incedentals (relays, cabling, etc).
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Primary Client: HD-300 through XBoxOne in Living Room, Samsung HLT-6189S
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  #12  
Old 10-13-2010, 09:52 AM
PLUCKYHD PLUCKYHD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzy View Post
My daughters ARE the HA system... They scurry off to manipulate whatever switch I've asked them to do. Expensive if you're getting them just for this purpose, but if you've already got them laying around, they work quite well when re-purposed into this role.
Wow was I being dense

Quote:
Originally Posted by lpitman View Post
Been using HomeSeer for Home Automation for years.
I will look at them more the lack of apps turns me off as their touchscreens like everyone elses are way overpriced.
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  #13  
Old 10-13-2010, 10:31 AM
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JetreL JetreL is offline
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Fuzzy you and I are in the same boat.

My kids, it's a pretty expensive option but boy do I love the system. Not to mention the manufacture is someone I know and can trust. I'm a little concerned about the future upgrade cost, Car V1.0, .1, .2, .3 V2.0 and College V1[-4].0[-3] but I guess if you want cutting edge you have to go with what you know.

The only real downside is it isn't always easily configured (seem to have a mind of it's own from time to time) and I have heard there is a huge period of it completely quiting working once it get's past 10 or 11 years old. (I'm not planning on upgrading then..)

Hope this helps you decide on a system!!
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  #14  
Old 10-13-2010, 11:15 AM
JerryB JerryB is offline
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I installed and have been using a Smarthome (www.smarthome.com) system for the past 3 years. The switches are expensive but, at least on paper, it should fulfill, most if not all of your requirements including the Apple interface. I'm not an Apple user so I haven't tried this interface. I use their windows-based program (HouseLinc) for setup and control instead. However, once everything is setup, I find that I rarely need to go into this program, since almost everything can be controled by the switches themselves. With respect to your specific requirements, I started with dongles for some of my devices since that was all they had for outlet control when I setup my system but approximately 18 months ago they added programable electrical outlets to their product line and I quickly bought these outlets to replace the dongles. It's a much nicer appearance since, with the exception of a small programming/control button between the 2 electrical outlets, they look exactly like any other electrical outlet.

Please be aware that, no matter what, you will end up with 2 dongle's in your system since the 240 v line coming into your house is split into 2 120 volt lines and you need to couple these lines (one dongle wireless transmitter/receiver) connected to each so that instructions originating on 1 of the 120 v lines can get passed to devices on the other line. However, I didn't find it difficult to hide these dongles, eg one is plugged into the unused electric outlet behind the headboard in the guest bedroom.

Let me know if you have any additional questions.
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  #15  
Old 10-13-2010, 11:16 AM
Suntan Suntan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzy View Post
I could probably run my entire house lighting system from a single arduino board...
I was thinking exactly about the arduino when you suggested DIY. The only issue I see is in the tricky area of no UL certification for any of the line voltage relays or anything.

Might be a little sticky for code/insurance reasons.

-Suntan
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  #16  
Old 10-13-2010, 11:30 AM
PLUCKYHD PLUCKYHD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JerryB View Post
I installed and have been using a Smarthome (www.smarthome.com) system for the past 3 years.
Thanks Jerry that does look nice and reasonably priced.
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  #17  
Old 10-13-2010, 11:32 AM
jbbtex jbbtex is offline
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I've been running PowerHome for several years.

You can control it via the web or it's socket server and a user has written an iPhone/iPad app.

www.power-home.com

It is very flexible and the developer is open to user suggestions.
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  #18  
Old 10-13-2010, 11:32 AM
cncb cncb is offline
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Z-Wave

I am using several Z-wave (wireless) switches. They offer both plug-in and wired in modules/switches. I jumped on this when Controlthink offered the SDK with USB stick controller. But Controlthink was bought out by Leviton and now seems to have been abandoned so now I just use the Intermatic handheld programmable controllers instead of the PC which work fine. Melloware offers an iPad app based on the Controlthink SDK. There is also apparently an open source project called OpenZWave (or something like that) which may be worth a look.
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  #19  
Old 10-13-2010, 11:42 AM
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keepersg keepersg is offline
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Insteon devices with ISY 99, Elk M1G, Panasonic phone system, CQC and Powerhome (yes,it's a hobby--if I just didn't have to work, I'd have enough time for it)

Added: Recent thread from the CQC forum re controlling CQC from Sage.

Last edited by keepersg; 10-13-2010 at 02:30 PM.
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  #20  
Old 10-13-2010, 12:50 PM
monetteboy monetteboy is offline
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I am using CQC for all of my home automation. I have a mix of iphones/ipad/touchscreens around the house that can do just about everything.

I use an ELK M1 alarm panel, EDT I-Line lighting control system (which was a pretty good system but they went out of business so I will probably have to rip it out one day as I have only a few spare switches), neothings 8x8 video matrix, 2 Nuvo essentia whole home audio units, rain8 sprinkler control, global cache for IR blasting, and two denon receivers (one for theater, one for living room), Panasonic AE4000 projector, plus a few plasma/LCD tv's that I control via IR with the global cache. About the only thing that I use that I don't have working with CQC is Sage...just for the fact that I haven't had the time or really a major need to set it up.

CQC controls it all and has been rock solid. I can't tell you how much I would love to be able to control CQC from Sage though ;-)
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