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Smart Lighting solutions

Discussion in 'Home and Garden' started by Hamish, 6 Aug 2019.

  1. Hamish


    Joined: 14 Apr 2003

    Posts: 4,955

    Location: Deepest Yorkshire

    I'm currently in the process of building a kitchen extension and rewiring my ground floor.
    As part of this having lots of different lighting circuits such as cabinet lights, wall lights, pendants etc. and rather than having umpteen dimmers to set I was looking into having a smart lighting system so I can just press a scene button or say "Alexa set my evening scene" and have one light set to 50% brightness and another off and so on. I have done a bit of research and there are a few different options, more so for me as this is a fresh install so I'm not stuck with retrofit options.

    So basically what I need is:
    • Smart lighting controlled by wall mounted scene controllers, app and Alexa/Google assistant/Siri
    • reliable and expandable
    • easy to set up
    Does anyone have any recommendations for what I'm looking for?

    Based on my research I've been looking at:

    Z-Wave Fibaro setup: using my existing SmartThings Hub as a hub and then buy Fibaro dimmers and switches installed in a cabinet. However this looks to be quite fiddly and can be unreliable?

    Lightwave RF. Looks promising and fairly reliable, but seems to have a lot of limitations and be fairly proprietary.

    Lutron: probably amazing but very expensive.
  2. Pho


    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 9,184

    Location: Derbyshire

    I'd go for Hue bulbs personally, I'd say it's probably the most supported one out there, with hundreds of different apps and accessories and I can't see them obsoleting it anytime soon. You can pair any Zigbee bulb to the Hue bridge and use them with any of the apps too which is a massive bonus and money saver - I have a load of the smart Ikea GU10s for example which are much cheaper.
  3. Squid Vicious

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 15 Feb 2015

    Posts: 1,053

    I have a combination of fibaro (replacing dimmer for living room ceiling), hue in lamps and single bulb ceiling lights and some other fairy lights on tp-link kasa smart plugs.

    Have used Alexa for basic scene management (turns on sets of lights defined in Alexa app at specified light levels).

    Need to experiment more with more advanced scene management and if or how that could work with quite a diverse collection of systems.
  4. Hamish


    Joined: 14 Apr 2003

    Posts: 4,955

    Location: Deepest Yorkshire

    Not too keen on the Hue bulbs as they seem to be about £20 each. When I have 12 downlighter in my kitchen it soon adds up and I still have the problem of wall switches etc to buy as well. You're also quite limited on smart devices I think.

    I've decided to go for the Fibaro dimmers in the end. They seem to be pretty flexible as you can mount them in the backbox of an existing switch or on a DIN rail in a plant room in a new installation. They can also be wired 2 way quite easily and work well with Smartthings which means that you can integrate loads of stuff from door sensors to IFTTT etc very easily.