Home HelloTwist LED Bulbs w/Built in Speaker Good?

Discussion in 'HomeKit, HomePod, CarPlay, Home & Auto Technology' started by Starfyre, May 5, 2016.

  1. Starfyre, May 5, 2016
    Last edited: May 6, 2016

    Starfyre macrumors 68000

    Starfyre

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2010
    #1
    Anyone interested in these "Twist Bulbs"? www.hellotwist.com
    (P.S. if you do want to buy it, please use this referral link! http://twist.refr.cc/ZXT55XP)
    They are lightbulbs with a "high quality" bluetooth speaker. Anyone have experience with these or would recommend a product like or different than this?
    I like the idea of not having a standalone speaker like Sonos sitting in multiple places taking up space. A speaker built into the bulb that is just as bright sounds like a good idea for saving space.
    The four things that concern me a little bit are:

    1) Quality of the speakers - Is it really "higher" quality than others?
    2) Airplay Only? From what I've seen it looks like these work only with Airplay, and with the recent articles about the loss in marketshare, I'm not sure how long I would keep using an Apple iPhone.
    3) Plugin-ability to other home automation controllers, e.g. can I use a home automation hub to take advantage of the music playback capabilities?
    4) Looks like the speakers are "mesh networked", but can you make it so that it plays only in the rooms you are in?
     
  2. IHelpId10t5 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2014
    #2
    Honestly, why would anyone make such a ridiculous product? My head is really in a spinning right now trying to comprehend such a stupid combination of products. I had to check the date of the post to make sure it wasn't an April fools post.
     
  3. Starfyre thread starter macrumors 68000

    Starfyre

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2010
    #3
    I thought the same of the Philips Hues, why would anyone make overpriced lightbulbs that change color, with all the colors other than white being not as bright? Though my friends have been telling me all about how home automation is cool, motion sensors, wireless audio, connected home, light, etc. that I'm starting to take it a little bit more seriously.
     
  4. ericgtr12 macrumors 6502a

    ericgtr12

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2015
    #4
    ^ This. Dumbest smart home product I've seen yet.
     
  5. chuyn macrumors 6502

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    Nov 13, 2015
    #5
    Did you just give us a referral link to check it out so you could save yourself $25 each person rather than an actual link to the product?
     
  6. Starfyre, May 6, 2016
    Last edited: May 6, 2016

    Starfyre thread starter macrumors 68000

    Starfyre

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2010
    #6
    www.hellotwist.com is the actual site. If anyone would like to buy the product, would appreciate using the referral link, yes I would save $25, but so can you if you get your own referral link.

    Though judging by the posts so far, it seems like I should probably pass on this one unless others have other ideas.

    Given my wants of having a sound system around the home that uses home automation, I am open to other products or any other experiences others may have had with this sort of thing.

    The only "dumb" thing I see about it is the uneasyness of having a lightbulb and speaker together in one, but then again the speakers are being manufactured by the same people who makes speakers for sonos which sounds promising.
     
  7. Starfyre thread starter macrumors 68000

    Starfyre

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2010
  8. FreeState macrumors 68000

    FreeState

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2004
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #8

    I do, but only if the audio quality is as good as built in wall speakers. I think it probably has a way to go, but in the furtre it would make a lot of sense to use what you already have wired rather than install new hardware. I can see this being a great feature to have linked audio at a party through your home etc.
     
  9. chuyn macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    #9
    Personally, I don't think it's a good idea. You would need to have the lights switched on for the speakers to work. And I'm not really a fan of that because I like being able to use either app or physical switches. My Hues work fine because the room I have them in is only lit by lamps and I was able to install a dimmer switch. These would make me sacrifice colour, a physical switch, and (until I ever hear one in person) sound quality. Not to mention they're not hub connected so they won't link with anything or be able to have schedules/timers. That's too many cons for me. I've already got an ATV connected to my much better surround sound (that's basically on all day) for me to airplay if needed. For the other rooms, I'd rather go with Sonos. Yes, it'll be more expensive, but then it's more in line of what I want without the compromises I listed earlier. Even if I try to look at it from a money-saving perspective, still a no go. I'm already not really keen on replacing a $60 bulb if one of my Hues dies, let alone a $100 bulb.

    My opinion only of course. No one's stopping you from getting them if you really like the idea of them.
     
  10. Starfyre thread starter macrumors 68000

    Starfyre

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2010
    #10
    Based on the FAQ:
    Do the lights need to be turned on for the speaker to work?
    Nope. As long as the Twist Speaker has power, you’re free to rock out in the dark.

    This tells me that somehow, even if lights are switched off, power is getting to the bulb somehow to be able to play in speakers? Or maybe the dimmer turned all the way down turns off the lights, while keeping the power still flowing into the bulb.

    The sound quality is the biggest concern for me, they say Sonos quality speakers, though I agree that I would like to hear one in person before I make any judgement.

    I like the idea, but I think the negatives clearly outweigh the positives... that, and the # of "discounted units" appears to have gone up since my original posting as opposed to being truly limited, which to me seems a bit sketchy.
     
  11. chuyn macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    #11
    What I would worry about is this situation, a couple points down the FAQ:
    "Can I control my lights when I’m away from home?
    You certainly can. As long as the Twist Speaker has power (i.e. the light switch is on) you can control your lights from anywhere via the Twist app."

    It would be similar to Hues being able to be controlled by your old light switch or the app. Yes, the light switch will turn it on/off, but when off, the app can't make the light turn on. The switch needs to physically be on. Also, I'm sure an electrician can correct me if I'm wrong, but there shouldn't be any power going to the light if the switch is physically off. That just seems like improper wiring and dangerous.

    Probably best to wait for a review after they come out. Or maybe a local store will carry them to hear them in person.
     
  12. FreeState macrumors 68000

    FreeState

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2004
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #12
    If your lamp is plugged into a half hot (often used for light switches for table lamps etc.) there would be no power to it when the switch is turned off. The switch physically would need to be switched to make the power flow to the light.

    If your lamp is plugged into a non half hot there would be power to the lamp always and the lamp would control the flow (or in the case above dimming the bulb to 0% and the lamp left in the on position).
     
  13. Starfyre thread starter macrumors 68000

    Starfyre

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2010
    #13
    So I've decided.... to not pick these up. For one thing, it seems like its a marketing scam with the "limited quantities" appearing limitless for their current discount. The other is that there appears to be similar products that I can actually go to a mall and listen to! Unfortunately all of them appear to be bluetooth and non-Wifi, meaning no IFTTT support... if anyone knows of any good ones that are actually being sold in stores or have had experience with that sound really good, please tweet!
     
  14. NOITAIDAR macrumors member

    NOITAIDAR

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #14
    it does seem like an intriguing product, but even though the device creates an AirPlay speaker, it doesn't state whether the bulb itself is HomeKit compatible, which would mean that you'd need an additional homekit capable switch (which would negate the usefulness of the speaker... I get that the bulb can be controlled by Siri via the app, but with no physical interface, this is a non-starter for me. Too bad, as I'd love to be able to easily place an AirPlay speaker in each room.

    If they integrate with any kind of common bridge, like Hue, or Caseta, then I'd be more interested... if they ever release to retail, rather than in "batches"
     
  15. runner67, Jun 6, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017

    runner67 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2016
    #15
    Just got my shipment. I ordered them probably nearly 2 years ago before they started shipping them. I like Airplay, have purchased some great speakers (GGMM M3 for example I think is a great product, especially multi-room multi-channel control - i.e. setup L/R channel in a smaller size room. Same with JBL Flip-3, which also sound really good)

    The setup using the iPhone application was quick and easy, not a single issue there. I bought a 3 pack and they were all hooked up and going in less than 5 minutes.

    So, out of the box I'm disappointed in the sound quality. Yes, it was a gamble to purchase them, so win some lose some. The GGMM M3 completely blows them away. Think FM vs AM radio. Really. What's worse is when you listen to them at the same time. Because there is no L/R channel control, it's bad. echo bad. non-bass tinny sound bad. ewww.

    To answer some comments I saw above, they DO need constant power, but the light can be controlled from the IOS app (on, off, dim, color tone) over both local WiFi and over the internet. So, yea leave the switch on, but you can still turn off the light, no big deal.

    My goal was to use them in the deck lights of my cabin so, the remote light control aspect will be cool, so it's not a total loss for me.

    UPDATE, well maybe not over the internet. I had put my phone on LTE and could still control them thinking, OK this is online. But, apparently it is over bluetooth.
     
  16. jeyf macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2009
    #16
    speaker & LED light bulb:
    if it came with an additional microphone it could be used as a door bell replacement?
     

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