HomeKit New partment... time to upgrade my tech and discard the old X10 gear

Discussion in 'HomeKit, HomePod, CarPlay, Home & Auto Technology' started by iVoid, Jul 23, 2018.

  1. iVoid macrumors 65816

    Jan 9, 2007
    So, I've been using X10 for my light control for... ever, it seems.

    With a new apartment, I've decided some upgrades may be needed. Here's my wishlist:

    Homekit compatible so I can control everything from my iPhone and Mac (once Mohave is out).

    Is there a web interface for Homekit so you can control via any browser?

    I have an iPad I can probably use for my hub.

    Or is there another solution i should look at?

    Smart door lock:
    I've already decided my door lock will be the August SmartLock Pro + Connect.
    Seems the best choice.

    Smart doorbell camera:
    I'd like a August Smart Doorbell camera, but I don't have existing 12-24v doorbell system (it's just a mechanical bell on the door). Is there a way to add an external 24v power supply to use this?

    Or is there another doorbell camera I should look at?

    Light control:
    For the lights, I'd probably need to control the following. Any suggestions for brands?

    5 light switches (at least 2 with dimming) to replace the existing wall switches with smart switches.

    1 motion detect light (plugin module) or just motion detector that I can then use to have the system turn on a particular light automatically.

    7-8 plugin lamp modules to control them individually (don't want to replace that many wall outlets, so plugin modules are fine.

    Web cameras:
    I do have some web cameras now, but not Homekit compatible ones. Any suggestions on good ones? Basically, just want to use the for security and keeping track of my cats. Probably 3-4. Night vision would be needed and 720P/1080P. Some kind of motion detection that notifies me or emails me some pictures when triggered. Not really concerned about keeping video for long periods of time and I'd rather not have t opay a lot of money for storing it on cloud services.

    Security sensors:
    I have two windows and two doors (regular and a sliding patio door) that I'd like to put senors on to detect them being opened/closed. Any recommendations for brand of device?

    Temperature sensor:
    I'd like to be able to tell what the internal temperature is. Any Homekit compatible thermometers?

    I don't need a Nest or anything like that. Just the thermometer that I can check remotely.

    IR control:
    And finally. Any homekit devices that allow you to send IR codes to devices?

    I have a IR remote controlled Air Conditioner that'd I'd like to be able to send codes remotely to (hence why I don't need a Nest since it won't control the wall mounted Air Conditioner anyway).

    And I have some AV gear that I might want to control as well.

    Logitech Harmony Hub seems to do what I want, but I don't think it integrates with Home Kit.

    I have a Harmony 650 now and except for it not being web controllable it does everything I need.

    I already have a IR repeater system with emitters for the equipment, so don't need anything else for that (probably).

    Any other suggestions or info on resources would be appreciated.
  2. Coffee50 macrumors 6502

    Apr 23, 2015
    I can't provide info / recommendations on all of your potential Homekit setup options, but I currently have the August lock pro + connect & I really like it! Door sense is great.

    For lights, most would probably suggest Hue or Lifx. I use Hue & for the most part, I like them. I believe LIFX is a bit cheaper, but both brands will provide what you're looking for. Technically you won't need to replace the wall switches, as the dimmer switches don't require any hard wiring.

    For thermostats, there are a few HomeKit enabled models. Ecobee is a highly rated brand & the Ecobee Light is the "cheaper version", but it's Homekit enabled & provides most of the functions that that its big brother has.

    Enjoy your new smart home!
  3. bbednarz macrumors 6502a


    Nov 16, 2017
    For your light control I think Hue would work well for you. They have switches with dimmers and motion sensors that can control individual lights or a group of lights. I think it would eliminate the need for smart outlets for you too. You also mentioned wanting to be able to monitor the temperature in certain areas. The Hue motion sensor has that built in. It will show the temperature of every area that you have a motion sensor placed. The bulbs can be a bit on the expensive end, but it depends on what you want. You can get Hue bulbs as cheap as $15 or as expensive at $50. Another idea is to check out ebay for bulbs. When they run their 20% off sitewide coupons you can get a goot deal. Last month I got a 3rd generation starter kit (4 bulbs and the bridge) for $100 shipped.

    I also have the Harmony remotes. If you want voice control for that I think you would need to get an Alexa/Google Home device. There are ways to setup Harmony in HomeKit through HomeBridge, but thats a whole ordeal getting setup.
  4. jetsam macrumors 6502

    Jul 28, 2015
    The Ring Video Doorbell comes with a rechargeable Li-ion battery. Ring claims the battery lasts six months to a year.
    You can buy an extra battery pack for quick swaps.
  5. iVoid thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jan 9, 2007
    Well, I'm narrowing down my choices.

    I'm actually thinking the Lutron Caseda switches and outlets may be what I go with. Seems to be a good ecosystem, even if you need a hub to connect to homekit.

    iHome and iDevices seem good too.

    One big question, are there any Homekit wireless remotes that have multiple buttons to control devices (on/off/dimming).

    The Lutron has a single switch that has on/off/dimming, but I'd end up having to have 3-4 in a couple of my locations to control individual lights like I want to. That would take up a lot of room. I rather not rely on my iPhone/Mac to turn lights on.

    I'm used to X10 multi button remotes and haven't quite found what I'm used to. Like:
    iHome has a 4 button remote, but it seems to be just an on/off switch, no dimming.

    Everything else seems to be single buttons.
  6. bbednarz macrumors 6502a


    Nov 16, 2017
  7. kylew1212 macrumors regular

    Oct 17, 2017
    Huntsville, AL
    I have 5 Leviton Decora Smart switches. I've had very good luck with them, and they are easy to install (I have only installed on Single Pole).

    They get moderate review, but recently there was a firmware update and they became a lot more stable on their wifi connection.

    For the doors /windows, I know that Koogeek and Eve both make door sensors. I do not have either so I cannot say what the quality might be like. I have a koogeek wall socket that works great though.
    --- Post Merged, Aug 2, 2018 ---
    Also, for the thermostat I have 2 Ecoboee 3 lite's. I'm not sure if I would recommend them or not, their wifi is not the greatest, they struggle with signal.

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