I thought it would be interesting to start a thread for smart home related discussions.
I have just moved to a new house in the last month so it’s a bit of a work in progress!
I have chosen the Google ecosystem as I am an Android user anyway.
- 2 x Google Mini - Office & bedroom
- 1 x Google Nest Hub - Living room
- 2 x Tuya smart plug - fish tank light & TV
- Philips hue - 3 RGB bulbs in the living room, 2 RGB bulbs in my bedroom, 2 White & Ambiance bulbs in my hallway and landing.
- Nest Hello doorbell
- Nest thermostat
- Nest outdoor cameras
- Undercounter lighting in the kitchen - controller on order, then ill get this installed!
Feel free to ask questions, give recommendations and post your setups!
Definitely interesting subject! I’ve chosen the Google ecosystem as well, predominantly because it’s the one that works best atm.
The stair lighting on both stairs is intentionally not connected to the internet but rather set on a schedule and are individually activated by (wired) sensors for emergency exit purposes.
A nest hub for the bedroom. And a thermostat if the furnace dies.
Nice - you’re going full commit to the Smart Home idea! I like it.
I have recently had some Hue compatible GLEDOPTO bulbs delivered and they’re fantastic. Not quite the same colour accuracy as official Hue bulbs but they are literally half the price. I wouldn’t put them in the same room as real Hue bulbs because you could probably tell the difference with the colours, but if you put a room with only these bulbs in you wouldn’t know. Full RGB, warm and cool white. They have an unofficial subreddit with some great resources - Gledopto Reddit community.
Also reformatted my post because it was horrendous and i preferred yours!
Those GLEDOPTO bulbs look great, price / performance wise. I’ve intentionally opted to go for WiFi only devices, as I dislike the concept of hubs, simply because it kinda forces you to use certain devices. I don’t want a dozen hubs for achieving my goals.
I (obviously) have a different SSID for home automation devices, of which all traffic ends up at a VLAN different than the guest and regular network. Local traffic is blocked on that VLAN, outbound traffic is only allowed for DNS, MQTT and HTTP.
Also forgot to mention the Raspberry I’ve mounted in the fuse box that tracks electricity / gas consumption with DSMR.
3 x Google Nest Mini (Upstairs, Kitchen, Office)
14 x Philips Hue Gen 3 RGB Bulbs (Everywhere)
1 x Raspberry Pi 4 4GB (Spare Room for 3D Printers)
3 x Roku Streaming Stick+ (Bedroom x 2, Living Room)
Planning on building a smart mirror in the near future, as well as getting motion sensors throughout the house.
Totally understand. I went for Hue because they seem to have the most mature smart lighting platform, but it still allows some flexibility as you can get a number of compatible bulbs and switches that work at less of a cost (i.e. those ones above). You probably know this, but you can set up a zigbee controller with HomeAssistant that removes the requirement to use the hub at all - such as this ConBee Overview. (obviously HomeAssistant is sort of a hub, but it would mean you had one hub to rule them all vs. multiple for each type of device).
This looks really cool - never heard of this before and unsure if it would work for me but I am going to look into it.
Mate, you’ve got more money than sense… Hahaha jokes
Black Friday last year, £70 for 3 bulbs
I love seeing other peoples setups - despite not having any interest in making my home “smart” lol (other than IP cams).
I have got a Pi for playing about with, but not done anything smart-home with it yet. Although an audio system is on the cards.
One thing I learned quickly, and it has nothing to do with how you feel about any company or your budget: Do not choose Apple over Google for home automation.
Too many dead ends without products to fill gaps, and homebridge isn’t the answer for production.
In our bedroom:
2x Boxlood floor lamps
1x Chromecast (the new one with Google TV)
1x Nest Hub
3x Wyze bulbs
1x motion sensor
1x SwitchBot thermometer
1x SwitchBot hub mini
1x smart plug with oil filled radiator plugged in
(Their room has no vent and gets cold this time of year)
1x Chromecast in living room
1x Chromecast in office
1x Chromecast in girls room
Cameras in every room but bathroom (though visitors question the motion sensor)
Cameras on front and back yard
Motion sensors in every room
Google home or mini in every room
Intentionally vague on the last parts
Could you write more about it? I am now looking for a smart home system and I would just like to choose something for HomeKit. I understand this is a bad idea?
From my experience Apple just haven’t invested the resources in really improving their smart home platform to compete with Google or Amazon yet.
Don’t get me wrong, it is quite possible to build your smart home setup with Apple as the main ecosystem for your home automation but the areas where I feel it is lacking are:
- Despite Siri being the first mainstream voice assistant it is now significantly behind Google assistant and Alexa in terms of functionality
- Smart home products that are more niche often work with Google assistant or Alexa but a number of them do not work with Apple HomeKit.
- Products that do work with HomeKit tend to be more expensive
Clearly this is only my experience. Others may have had a different one!
TLDR; HomeKit is a possibility but expect it to be less featured and more expensive than competing solutions.
Then what do you recommend? Do you have any favorite company that makes Smart Home devices?
I don’t have a favourite as such but I’d recommend either Google or Amazon for your voice assistants, but pick one and stick with it as if you have both it can get a bit repetitive to set everything up twice.
In terms of devices. I like Philips Hue for lighting related products, but it’s not cheap. In terms of smart plugs I would look at sonoff as they make a range of products and there is custom firmware that you can flash them with so you can use them outside of their cloud.
You’ll just start looking for pieces and they won’t be there. I needed a motion sensor so I got the only one I could find, and when it intermittently failed to trigger lights via homekit the dead end was “yeah that happens.” There were no more products for me to try for that role without bridging via homebridge, which would randomly fail to send signals and/or stop connecting to devices until I rebooted it.
Then I started looking for floor lamps that worked with homekit and they don’t exist at all. Would have to do bulbs, but I wanted lamps with built in lighting and a lighter profile.
The only thing I liked was picture in picture of cameras on Apple TV but those world freeze after a few hours and just sit on a still image. RTSP stream to Chromecast runs all night.
I’ve been on a smart home journey for a bit…
I am in the Amazon Alexa ecosystem…
I have an echo / dot or show in most rooms. All the lights are now smart using a combination of hue, sonoff and shelly. Around 20 or 30 smart plugs, wiser heating control, switch bot curtain openers…
I was going to buy a smart doorbell, but have settled on a smart delivery box instead (https://www.iparcelbox.com/)
I have charted my smart home journey here… Smart Home Blog – Michael Sage
Sure there is loads I have forgotten, but that’s my starter for ten… My next purchases will probably be some kind of smart coffee machine (mayber smarter.am), the parcel box and continuing my migration from ifttt (after subscription gate) to home assistant…
Me and my family have just started with making our home “smart”.
We are currently using a mixture of “Fritz!” and “Rademacher” products.
Mainly Fritz! for the lights and heater valves and Rademacher for outdoor stuff like lights outside or our automatic blinds.
We are probably gonna change over to Rademacher fully in the future.
Our main focus is to have no cloud. Everything should stay inside our network.
Good principle! I have just moved fully to home assistant with their cloud subscription for ease of use with Alexa.
With all the niche smart home manufacturers going bust, making sure you have local control is essential for especially with the small providers (or IFTTT suddenly charging suppliers and end users).
IFTTT subscription was the final push for me to take HA seriously!
I agree. I am still in clouds at the moment but I only buy devices that can be flashed with tasmota and used via home assistant so if any of them disappeared it’s a bit of hassle but I don’t have to throw perfectly good devices out