Combined IoT SmartHome topic

I’ve got the ecobee 3 as well, and I chose it almost entirely for the remote sensors. The thermostat in our house is above a HVAC vent and behind the best spot in the living room to put the TV, and with the old/dumb one we were always having to adjust the temp on the thermostat to maintain a constant house temp as a result. We’ve seen a huge improvement in both comfort and energy use with one remote sensor on each level of the house. I control it via their app and have no real complaints with that either. Very satisfied customer.

Second-hand impression: friend had a Nest 1st gen and went to an Ecobee 3 and says that it’s “better” for what that’s worth.

Just got that same anecdote from a coworker, @rei

It sounds like the way to go.

OK re-planning and diagramming my home network and its assorted ConnectedCrap™.

Home office:
Telco-supplied modem + router
-WAN-01: uplink - ADSL
-LAN-01: Sophos XG HE (8GB RAM, E-350)
-LAN-02: 5-port gigabit switch 1
-LAN-03: 8-port gigabit switch 1
-LAN-04: 8-port gigabit switch 2
8-port gigabit switch 2:
-LAN-01: uplink - telco-supplied modem + router
-LAN-02: PC 1 (gaming, video) (980Ti, 32GB RAM, i5-4670K)
-LAN-03: Playstation 4
-LAN-04: Buffalo LinkStation NAS
-LAN-05: Raspberry Pi2 (HomeAssistant)
-LAN-06: Foscam C1 camera
-LAN-08: Lexmark E-260DN laser printer
5-port gigabit switch 1:
-LAN-01: uplink - telco-supplied modem + router
-LAN-02: Server PC (750Ti, 24GB RAM, i7-930)
-LAN-03: Apple Mac Mini
-LAN-04: iHome iW2 AirPlay speaker
-LAN-05: Netgear R7000 AP (5.8 GHz)
Netgear Nighthawk R7000 AP (5.8 GHz):
-WAN-01: uplink - 5-port gigabit switch
-LAN-01: Belkin Crock-Pot Smart Slow Cooker
-LAN-02: Lenovo Yoga tablet (adapter)
-LAN-03: Apple MacBook Air (adapter)
-LAN-04: Foscam C1 camera
Living room:
8-port gigabit switch 1:
-LAN-01: uplink - telco-supplied modem + router
-LAN-02: Pioneer home theatre receiver
-LAN-03: PC 2 (video, gaming) (16GB RAM, i5-2400)
-LAN-04: Steam Link
-LAN-05: Apple TV (4th gen) HomeKit hub
-LAN-06: Philips Hue HomeKit hub
-LAN-07: Wii U (adapter)
-LAN-08: Netgear R7000 AP (2.4 GHz)
Netgear R7000 AP (2.4 GHz):
-WAN-01: uplink - 8-port gigabit switch 1
-LAN-01: Playstation 3
-LAN-02: Xbox 360
-LAN-03: Xbox One
-LAN-04: Foscam C1 camera
2.4GHz wifi:
-WLAN-01: WeMo Motion + Switch (lamp)
-WLAN-02: WeMo Switch 1 (lamp)
-WLAN-03: WeMo Switch 2 (lamp)
-WLAN-04: WeMo Switch 3 (Keurig coffee maker)
-WLAN-05: WeMo Switch 4 (iron)
-WLAN-06: Wink Hub v1
-WLAN-07: Pioneer A1 AirPlay speaker
-WLAN-08: iHome iSP5 SmartPlug for HomeKit
-WLAN-09: Koogeek Smart Plug for HomeKit
-WLAN-10: Philips Hue Dimmer Switch
-WLAN-11: Hue White Ambiance A19 bulb
-WLAN-12: Hue White A19 bulb 1
-WLAN-13: Hue White A19 bulb 2
-WLAN-14: Hue White A19 bulb 3
-WLAN-15: Leeo Smart Alert sensor
-WLAN-16: Brother DCP-L2520DW MFP
-WLAN-17: iHome IW2 AirPlay speaker
-WLAN-18: Drop kitchen scale
-WLAN-19: iHealth Vista scale
5.8GHz wifi:
-WLAN-01: Chromecast Video
-WLAN-02: Chromecast Audio
-WLAN-03: Nintendo 3DS XL
-WLAN-04: iPhone 5 1
-WLAN-05: iPhone 5 2
-WLAN-06: iPhone 6S Plus
-WLAN-07: iPad mini 4
-WLAN-08: OnePlus 3

Swimming in the wifi, my sperm are going to be sterile.

As a networking guy I’m going to commend you on your very nice connection documentation. Sadly, I’m going to need the TPS report, Visio diagram and associated OneNote share by Friday at the close of business. Friday is jean day, however, so if you want to wear jeans and a collared dress shirt, feel free to do so.

Edit: Also look in to a wireless AP setup that allow’s auto selection across bands. Similar to the top router/AP recommendations in the home router thread.

Anyone use TPLink smart plugs or bulbs before? I got a couple in a recent Amazon sale. They say you don’t need a hub to use them with an Echo, so that’s how I set them up. They all work fine at first, then after a day or so just stop. I have to manually powercycle them to get things going again, then a day or so later it’s the same thing again. A bit of Googling shows some other folks have had similar issues, but nothing that looks like a solution. Is TPLink the el-cheapo of smart home devices that should be avoided?

Yeah pretty sure I read that they’re crap, since I’ve been steering clear of them for a while now. Can’t recall anything particular anymore though.

One of the big downsides is that because they don’t use a hub they rely on your home wifi. Sounds like they’re losing connection (24 hour DHCP leases maybe?) and then can’t get back on the network.

Amazon was running a sale a couple days back on the Hue white+color bulbs so I finally picked one of those up to see if they’re worthwhile.

Yeah, that was one of my thoughts as well. I suppose a hub is probably a necessity, which kinda sucks since I only have one light that I actually care about having linked up. If I do try a hub at some point, I don’t think I’ll get a TPLink one. If they screwed up the non-hub stuff, seems silly to trust them to do the hub right.

My bulb arrived yesterday (thanks Prime)! So far, it’s a fun novelty that will probably wear off over time. The range of colors is good but a bit lacking in the deeper blues and purples – you can sort of ‘fix’ this by running at less than 100% brightness. The range of whites from warm yellowish incandescent to sickly office fluorescents is impressive but the ambiance bulb can do all that at around half the cost.

Cons: I have a Hue v1 bridge which can’t change colors directly via Alexa. It sounds like a v2 will, or you can create a bunch of scenes with the colors you want.
Pros: Bathing the living room in crimson so my neighbors think I’m starting a satanic murderhut. Easily justifies the purchase.

Next completely unneeded smarthome purchase will probably be an ecobee3 per the praise upthread as long as my apartment is wired for it.

The 4 has been announced, with added Alexa support.

Interesting hearing about the HUE + color. I’ve been wanting one myself.

Ooh, good to know. Will definitely hold off for now. Thanks!

IMO the hue’s are more useful than that ASSUMING you have enough to be useful and you tend to turn things on / off at specific times. If that’s the case then you can do a bunch of automation that can be very helpful. Even moreso if you add IFTT and other IOT devices.


Since my buy-the-cheap-version attempt went awry, let me ask if the hivemind has ideas for a straightforward solution. I want exactly one thing: to use my Echo to turn on/off a lamp in the corner of my living room. No funky stuff like colors or three-way switching or dimming or timers, just on and off. It’s plugged into the wall, not switched, so either a bulb or a plug will work. The TPLink stuff I tried earlier says it should do that, but didn’t deliver. Anyone have experience with a device that does work for this scenario? If I have to buy a hub for one device, screw it, I’ll just get up and walk over to the corner like a caveman.

Bulbs that need hubs:

Wink: GE, Cree, Sylvania, Hue

Bulbs that don’t: Wemo, TPLink, Sengled, Feit HomeBrite

The BT based bulbs don’t often need hubs. Or you could get a

Google home sucks.

It doesn’t even support adding reminders. It will read existing reminders you can add with a keyboard in the computer, thought.

I don’t understand why it can’t do stuff you could do on an android phone years ago.

I was surprised I can’t even email or text my shopping list, without resorting to some hackery with IFTTT. I am getting use out of it by playing music, using it as an additional timer in the kitchen and commanding Chromecasts, but shouldn’t I just be able to do more with it?

Once or twice a year I check in on Home’s capabilities. Still waiting to see much of anything that would convince me to spend $130 on one.

Google Home is a very nice device, but the integration with useful stuff is currently behind Amazon… and in some ways got worse.

Like, it used to add groceries to a list in Google Keep… Now it adds to some list in some kind google shopping thing, which SUCKS BALLS. Like seriously, it’s turbo shit. So bad that now using google home to maintain a shopping list (which was useful) is no longer feasible for me.

I assume this stuff will get better… the integration with Wink, for instance, got better…although is still weak compared to Amazon.