Philips Hue Dimmer Switches

Discussion in 'HomeKit, HomePod, CarPlay, Home & Auto Technology' started by johngordon, Feb 15, 2018.

  1. johngordon macrumors 68000

    Apr 19, 2004
    OK - so I've bitten the bullet and replaced three ceiling spotlights in the hall with Hue bulbs. Really impressed with how easy its being to set them up with switches without dealing with the wiring.

    I just have a question on setting up the dimmer switches - as far as I can tell you can do it in the Hue app, or in the Homekit app, but seems to be slightly different in each.

    In the Hue app, it looks like you can specify actions / scenes depending on the number of presses, up to a max of 5. So for example, the on button: one press - nightlight, two presses - dimmed, three presses - bright.

    Doing it in HomeKit however, doesn't seem to let you specify the different options for multiple presses, but does let you configure the four buttons to do different things, eg

    On button - night light
    Dim up button - dimmed
    Dim down button - bright
    Off button - off

    Is that all correct, or am I missing anything?

    What method have people found is better, more flexible?

    I'm thinking the Hue option with the multiple presses, but would be good to hear other people's experience before setting these things up.

    Thank you!
  2. Release macrumors member


    Feb 28, 2012
    Never tried HomeKit but using the Hue app is really easy. I love having the 5 options.
  3. madeirabhoy macrumors 6502a

    Oct 26, 2012
    mine are set up in the hue app, although I have set up my lightbulbs in homekit I never use it. either the dimmer switch, sensors or google home
  4. johngordon, Feb 15, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2018

    johngordon thread starter macrumors 68000

    Apr 19, 2004
    Thanks - it all seems to be pretty good with the multiple presses set up for the on button, so that will do.

    Something I am trying to set up but haven't yet, is the ability for it to switch on different bulbs, depending on the number of presses.

    For example:

    One press - switches on hall light
    Two presses - switches on hall light + landing light

    Is that possible?

    I have created a scene in the Hue app which switches the lounge lights off, and the hall lights on. But when I change the settings for the dimmer switch it doesn't list that custom scene in the list of scenes I can select.
  5. groovyf macrumors 6502

    Dec 15, 2010
    Halifax, UK
    You can add a max of two devices to the dimmer, but having just checked now, it seems both have to be controlled at once.
    "First Press" shows both bulbs, but there is not an option to "do nothing" on one of them.
  6. johngordon thread starter macrumors 68000

    Apr 19, 2004
    I mentioned this in another post, as I've had a couple of questions about all of this.

    Apparently you can do it using scenes:

    First, make sure you’re on the first tab and tap on the room you want to setup the sequences for.

    This takes you to a list of the lights in that room, at the top of the screen is a segmented control with “Lights” and “Scenes”. You want to tap on Scenes here.

    Now tap the + button in the bottom right of the screen to add a new Scene. Choose the Picture option and then any old image you want, doesn’t really matter.

    Tap at the top of the screen where it says “New Scene” to give it a personalised name which makes sense for the lights you’ll be using. Then tap the segmented control to select “Lights”.

    Here switch on any of the lights you’d like to be on for this scene (which will ultimately be one of your button presses).
    Use the sliders to set how bright you want them to be.
    Off to the left side of each light listing there’s a circle with a picture of a bulb or LED strip. Tap on that to set the colour or hue of white you want the light to be then press done to go back to the previous page.

    Tap on save and that’s one configuration done.

    Repeat all of that for each configuration of lights you’d like to be available.

    Once you have all of your lighting configurations set up as Scenes, tap on the last tab (Settings) and select Accessory Setup. Then tap on your Dimmer Switch.

    Only the On button is configurable but you do get 5 configurations to set.
    All you need to do in here is tap on the appropriate listing in the table for the number of presses you wish to change and in the list presented to you on the next screen, select the corresponding Scene you set up earlier.
  7. TrueBlou macrumors 68040


    Sep 16, 2014
    If you’re only wanting to use a single dimmer switch. Then the first thing that defines what lights can be controlled together is how they are organised in the first tab of the Hue app.

    So if there you have one group of lights that constitutes the hall lights.
    Then you have another group that contains the lights in the living room. It’s going to be difficult to impossible to achieve what you want with one dimmer switch.

    If all of those lights were contained together in a single group, for instance, downstairs. Then you can certainly do what you want.

    The trouble is that with more than one grouping, each has to be added to the dimmer switch, which although can control two separate groups (or rooms if you prefer) it has to do so at the same time on each button press.

    If all of the lights are contained within one “room” in the Hue app you can do what you like with them by using the scenes.

    For instance with mine, there are 4 lights in the living room “group”

    My first click of the dimmer switches on the main light, the table light, the display cabinet light and the tv light.

    Second click switches off the main light but leaves the rest on.

    Third. Switches off the table light, leaves the other two.

    Fourth. Switches off the cabinet, leaving just the tv on.

    The fifth click switches the TV light off and the main light back on.

    Now if you imagine my table light was the hall lights and I had that set as a separate “hallway group” in the first tab of the app, yet still wanted it controlled with the dimmer switch. That is possible.
    But for every click I make for the other lights, the hallway one would be at best using the last state condition, which generally means it’s on like it or not.

    So long story short, if you want complete mastery of all of those lights. Put them in a single group together in the first tab. Then you can do what you like with them.

    .... blimey, I think I’m confusing myself now :D
  8. J. Edmonds, Feb 16, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2018

    J. Edmonds macrumors newbie

    J. Edmonds

    Feb 16, 2018
    I never used this on HomeKit; I was an Android guy then. Could have been a headache for me if I still hade them but fortunately, I switched to Lifx after I bumped into this website that compared it to Lifx ( It has the important features just like Hue and its price is cheaper!But then, Lifx is for those who want a simple Smart bulb but if you have an existing Smart home, Hue reigns.
  9. johngordon thread starter macrumors 68000

    Apr 19, 2004
    It does get a bit like that!

    I'd only be looking to use it within a single room. So either all the lights in the lounge, eg:

    Ceiling + floor lamp + shelf lamp
    Ceiling + floor lamp
    Floor lamp + shelf lamp
    Floor lamp only
    Shelf lamp only

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8 February 15, 2018