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Home Automation

Discussion in 'General Gossip, Troll Wars & Game Development' started by luggage, Mar 12, 2018.

  1. luggage

    luggage Industry God One Of Us


    Anyone set about doing this here? I have a couple of Alexas dotted around and we've nearly redoing the living room. I wouldn't mind getting the lights voice controlled and dimmable. Ran into problems though. I have 10 lights, split into 2 chandelier type things of 5 each (math fans!). I need to get new dimmable bulbs anyway but it would be too expensive to put in 10 Phillips Hue lights, and also a bit of overkill.

    I was looking at LightwaveRF but it's confusing about what kind of dimmer I need. The lights all currently run off one switch. Looking around you've got to be careful with the load. If I get 10 x 5w LED bulbs that doesn't get classed as 50w, but instead 500w, so I need a 500w dimmer switch?

    Any advice? Or any other systems I should look at?

  2. TheDMan

    TheDMan Industry Vetran One Of Us

    @EvaUnit02 posted a thread about this a while back. It was in equal parts awesome and scary, sounds like he's all over this stuff.
    • Thank Thank x 1
  3. MaciejS

    MaciejS Industry God One Of Us

    • Thank Thank x 1
  4. ngine

    ngine Animation Professional More Equal Than Others

    You could also use candles and have fans installed that will blow the candles out at the push of a button.
    And then use one of those Tesla flamethrowers to lighten the candles again.
  5. luggage

    luggage Industry God One Of Us

    cheers! I think the Tesla flamethrowers might be cheaper.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. hexland

    hexland Industry God One Of Us

    I got a whole bunch of those IKEA ones - they’re miles cheaper than Philips Hue...

    They’re a pain in the arse to pair with the Hue hub though, and we had a power outage and now they’re all “unreachable” :(

    They are bloody cheap though!
  7. Kipper

    Kipper Hardcore Gamer One Of Us

    Is dynamically changing the hue of your lightbulbs something people actually use? I'm struggling to think of a non-gimmicky use. Dimming, I understand, but having just moved into a house where the lighting is truly awful my immediate thoughts are that I want to replace all the blue-hued spotlights with warmer bulbs, but as a one-off permanent change.

    Is it so you can adjust for different times of the day, maybe so they are bluer during the day when you've also got sunlight as an additional light source?
  8. Robert Swan

    Robert Swan Industry Professional One Of Us

    I've just wondered when someone will connect the TV to the lights, so you can get "surround lighting". That might actually be pretty cool.
  9. luggage

    luggage Industry God One Of Us

    I've seen some LED's that change the warmth as you dim, in the main I prefer a warm lighting as opposed to something that reminds me of a hospital.
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2018
  10. nic

    nic Hardcore Gamer One Of Us

    With our Hue lights we don't really use much of the colour, though it is nice to be able to add some colour to the lighting, especially if you want to make the room feel warmer or cooler. Other than special occaisions (e.g. Halloween), we never really go all-out with the colours. It's fun for a bit, but until i can tie it into my TV, it's just a fun gimmick.

    Hue have added the ability for apps to control the colours more specifically I think, and there are apps out there with 'colour scripts' you can run at the same time as a film to 'match' the screen... but nothing quite easy/just-works. For most of our house we're going to go with dimmable/warm lighting (cheaper than Hue I expect too).
  11. CaptainFuture

    CaptainFuture Man of Tomorrow One Of Us

    Can anyone recommend an intelligent Thermostat that doesn't rely on a cloud web service for control?
  12. lutas

    lutas raaagh One Of Us

    Raspberry pi zero w / wemos D1 mini and a colour sensor would prob achieve what you want if you've got the time / inclination to make something
  13. TheUmpteenth

    TheUmpteenth Dinosaur One Of Us

    I've got some TCP lights, because I am also cheap, and because they can do colour. I tend to use the colour instead of the dimming, because our lights have always reflected off the telly, so if you set them to blue or something they're less obvious.
    I've just got some pugs, too. Alexa can group things pretty well, so I have "the lights" and "the Christmas lights" and they're all in the "living room" along with the telly. I can tell Alexa to turn on or off the lights, the Christmas lights, the telly, the living room. It's all very funky.
    I actually think the hall needs a different strategy, I want to put in motion sensors and have the light come on automatically when you go through the hall and it's dark. No need for Alexa there, I think. It's a simple circuit.
    We're renting a flat the now, so I'm not really looking at heating or doorbells, but I would if the place was mine :D
  14. Arend101

    Arend101 Post-It™ Printer One Of Us

    ...how did you integrate the dogs with the home automation? Do they do tricks like jumping up and hitting light switches? Is the low-profile form factor of the breed not an inconvenience in that regard? Or did you pick them due to the ease of storage in between uses?
    • Funny Funny x 4
  15. TheUmpteenth

    TheUmpteenth Dinosaur One Of Us

    • Funny Funny x 1
  16. Arend101

    Arend101 Post-It™ Printer One Of Us

  17. TheDMan

    TheDMan Industry Vetran One Of Us

    I think you missed the Wallace and Gromit gag in there, I imagine @TheUmpteenth is talking about smart plugs?
    • Agree Agree x 1
  18. TheUmpteenth

    TheUmpteenth Dinosaur One Of Us

    yeh, I made a typo. I'll own up :embarassed: I was talking about smart plugs.

    I live in a first floor flat with an upstirs neighbour who tests hoovers for a living and downstairs neighbours who shout at the football even when there's none on at 3 am.

    I may be exaggerating, but not much
  19. Icabod66

    Icabod66 Maths geek One Of Us

    I bought a 4K Fire TV Cube last year in a black Friday deal (it's actually at the same price in this years sale £70).

    It's pretty cool and can automate control of a lot of devices.

    I have it controlling the TV, a surround sound amp, a Sky box and a Blu-Ray player.

    The automatic setup and test of the connected devices is very impressive, most it can control directly via the HDMI, but for older devices it uses an IR blaster.

    I hardly have to use the 4 remote controls anymore and it is nice to be able to tell Alexa to turn to a channel on satellite at which point if needed, it turns on the TV, the amp, the Sky box, switches all the inputs and changes the channel. Previously this required 3 separate remotes.

    Asking it to play Netflix and Amazon Prime content is equally easy, just say what you want to watch and it finds it for you.

    I have some Amazon sockets for a couple of floor lamps in the same room and the same device can control them as well.

    I bought it as a gimmick but now I can't imagine not having it.
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2020
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Informative Informative x 1
  20. gaggle

    gaggle Gaming God One Of Us

    I’ve opted for boring standard zigbee via Philips Bridge and have added a ceiling-dimmer to one room so far to experiment with how to get the ceiling lamps working in a way where they still have simple physical buttons but also allow remote controlling. It looks like it’ll work fine once I get an electrician to finalise some wiring. I just can’t deal w. solutions where a smartphone is required, I need me some good ol’ buttons.

    Actually my biggest trouble are our floor lamps, I don’t see a way out of cutting the buttons off and planting a smart button next to each.. sigh.