SystronicsRF
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So what is the consensus so far on SystronicsRF? Personally I am excited about the opportunity to keep my Gen 1 devices alive should Iris fold but I am concerned since many start ups tank too. I am just wondering if this will be too difficult to transition to for many and then add in the costs and most may just bail on older devices and start fresh. Based on what I am seeing it looks like you would be dropping $150-200 for hardware plus licensing of their software. I like that they are engaging the community to see how we use the system...I think that shows they are intent on making it function the way most use it then roll out other features that are nice to have not required.

Anyone picking up a 3b+ and USB dongles? If so what case and dongles are you going with? I am thinking about picking something up since I have a bunch of unpaired gen1 devices I could play with so I can run both in parallel.

What are you guys thinking on the pros and cons of this system? My immediate concern is if this will end up to different than the Iris interface and my wife will refuse to use it. She's a bit of a technophobe. 

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for the case i am getting

Raspberry Pi Case Aluminum Alloy – SunFounder Raspberry Pi 3B+,3, 2, B+ Enclosure Metal Case with Heat Dissipation Silica Pad

from amazon for 28.99

SD card

Samsung 256GB 100MB/s (U3) MicroSDXC EVO Select Memory Card with Adapter (MB-ME256GA/AM)

 

two DIGI XU-Z11 for iris ver 1 and 2

homeseer usb

My wife doen't even have the iris app on her phone.  All she cares about is that the alarm goes on automactically when she leaves and off when she returns.  Amazon Alexa control the lights with her voice which she likes so there should be little change for her going to the new system.

I have always wanted a Raspberry so if it doesn't work out I can use it for something else.  Just out the cost of the software and network adapters. I hate leasing software vs buying it outright so hopefully there will be a choice.  For me the cost is worth it to just go back to Iris v1 programing with modes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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26 minutes ago, paracanary said:

SD card

Samsung 256GB 100MB/s (U3) MicroSDXC EVO Select Memory Card with Adapter (MB-ME256GA/AM)

Fully installed, complete with operating system, full software suite, and ample data space, it will run on much less than 4GB.  We have used 8GB Class 10 SD cards for all of our testing.  They retail for less than $10.00, and are probably the smallest size that it’s sensible to buy today. The Pi 3B will support 256GB.

We will clarify this on our Hub Configuration page:

https://www.systronicsrf.com/installation/hub-configuration.html

We will add some response time / performance figures:

SystronicsRF

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I bought a Pi 3b+ with a case with dual cooling fans plus two 3A power supplies (one for a spare) and a 32GB micro SD card. I already have the HomeSeer USB stick so just need to get two sticks to handle the Iris Gen 1 and 2 devices.

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5 hours ago, paracanary said:

Samsung 256GB 100MB/s (U3) MicroSDXC EVO Select Memory Card with Adapter (MB-ME256GA/AM)

Any reason you are going with a U3 card? Are you planning on having the Pi record video from cameras too?

My wife hardly ever uses the app but I am sure once I switch it will be the next day she does.

But on the pro side I am really interested in having the ability to add any zigbee or zwave device. There are so many cool devices out there and honestly I could see this system saving money in the long run. Since we were pretty much locked to Iris devices they were often more $...my ST friends have often picked up sensors half the price I can get them for.

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I am planing on recording video from 4 cameras and it is the same card I use in my Cell phone. I do not know if continuous recording will slow down my network too much, but if it doesn't I don't want to run out of space because of an extra $50 for a larger capacity card.  Also, may want to backup the system to that card.

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In my case and probably many others, with three network interface USB sticks in close proximity to each other plugged into the Pi have you experienced any problems with interference between them. The two ZigBee sticks will be on the same frequency but using different protocols correct? I realize the hub can limit its transmissions to one or the other but with 60 or more devices in the field, some 1G and others 2G, there could be instances of packet collisions/interference between them requiring retries/resending information which will just slow the network down.

Or does having two ZigBee sticks allow them to operate on different frequencies and not interfere directly. But still there would be little separation between them in frequency or physical separation given how close the four USB ports are on the Pi board. If that is the case would it be of any benefit to use a short USB Type A M to FM extension cable to get some distance between the three transceivers. Also is using extension cables OK in instances where one may need to place the hub in a location that does not offer the best location for RF coverage. The hub could be placed out of the way and an USB extension cable run to a USB hub with one or more network adapters plugged into it at a location which gives better coverage, or separate cables used to get separation between the individual network adapters.

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Good question, I was wondering the same thing.  On their website they mention a xbee board with a high gain antenna connecting to the GPIO Raspberry interface (XB24CZ7WITB003).  I would like to know the differences in performance between this and the usb interface. 

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On ‎12‎/‎25‎/‎2018 at 1:18 PM, paracanary said:

I am planing on recording video from 4 cameras and it is the same card I use in my Cell phone. I do not know if continuous recording will slow down my network too much, but if it doesn't I don't want to run out of space because of an extra $50 for a larger capacity card.  Also, may want to backup the system to that card.

I would like to see support for the Wyze cameras which have a SD card onboard for continuous or event recording which can be remotely accessed. Wyze also gives you free 14 day storage of any alarm event video footage, but those are limited to 15 second clips with what appears to be about a 2 or 3 second pre-trigger capture so you get to see what caused the alarm to trigger. They can alarm on either movement or sound. They also have time lapse recording if you have an SD card installed and you can manually enable recording of video and sound remotely from the app and use the two-way audio feature too. For $20 they are hard to beat. But they are meant to be used indoors. You can buy housings to cove them for outdoor use from third parties but I have no idea how well they will hold up as the case is not fully weatherproof, it has some openings where moisture in the form of humidity will get inside and no doubt damage components. Wyze says they are working on an outdoor battery model which may appear this year.

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22 hours ago, sparc said:

In my case and probably many others, with three network interface USB sticks in close proximity to each other plugged into the Pi have you experienced any problems with interference between them. The two ZigBee sticks will be on the same frequency but using different protocols correct? I realize the hub can limit its transmissions to one or the other but with 60 or more devices in the field, some 1G and others 2G, there could be instances of packet collisions/interference between them requiring retries/resending information which will just slow the network down.

Or does having two ZigBee sticks allow them to operate on different frequencies and not interfere directly. But still there would be little separation between them in frequency or physical separation given how close the four USB ports are on the Pi board. If that is the case would it be of any benefit to use a short USB Type A M to FM extension cable to get some distance between the three transceivers. Also is using extension cables OK in instances where one may need to place the hub in a location that does not offer the best location for RF coverage. The hub could be placed out of the way and an USB extension cable run to a USB hub with one or more network adapters plugged into it at a location which gives better coverage, or separate cables used to get separation between the individual network adapters.

The two ZigBee sticks operate at different frequencies.  The 2.4GHz band is divided into 16 ZigBee channels.  Each channel is 5MHz wide, and the bandwidth of a ZigBee signal is only 2MHz, so there is no overlap or conflict, even when using two adjacent ZigBee channels.

WiFi also shares the 2.4GHz band.  It has a bandwidth of 20MHz, so it uses up the equivalent of 4 ZigBee channels.  Z-Wave operates at 908MHz, so it does not interfere with either the ZigBee or WiFi signals.

The system automatically chooses the quietest channels during the installation procedure.

Please bear in mind that your existing hub contains network chips and antennae for ZigBee, WiFi and Z-Wave, and they do not conflict.

The Digi XSticks embody the latest technology, and have a superior performance to these older devices. For this reason alone, these sticks will have a superior RF performance to that of your existing hub, even when plugged directly into the USB ports of the Pi.  The Pi can equally be placed in the same location as your existing hub, and for the same reason.

You can certainly use a good quality and modern USB hub and USB cable to connect to the Pi, if that’s a more convenient arrangement for you, but there is no need in terms of the RF performance.

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18 hours ago, paracanary said:

Good question, I was wondering the same thing.  On their website they mention a xbee board with a high gain antenna connecting to the GPIO Raspberry interface (XB24CZ7WITB003).  I would like to know the differences in performance between this and the usb interface. 

There is no difference in terms of network performance between the XBee board and the XStick.

The XBee board, in combination with the high gain antenna, enables us to monitor the RF activity at a much lower level, and with spectrum analysis software.

We will be adding a separate area to the website that explains the use of the 2.4GHz band, and the results of our own testing, for anyone who might be interested.

The USB XStick network adapters are much more convenient to use, because there is no wiring involved.  If you are interested in using these XBee modules instead, then you can also purchase a USB adapter for them.

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Speaking of monitoring RF activity, will you have any provision in the software for users to see a map of their devices and how they are connected to hubs (controllers) as in what slave devices are providing relay functions for each end device(slaves), signal levels, channel used, etc.

You mention that our current hubs have all three transceivers on board, but in that case they were designed to operate in close proximity to each other so any interference should have been taken into account. I don't know but they may be separated from each other physically on the board itself. When I look at a Raspberry Pi SBC, I notice that the BT and Wi-Fi chips/antennas are not immediately adjacent to each other as would be the condition when plugging three USB sticks into the Pi's USB ports which are clustered together. 

My concern was bringing three RF transceivers in close proximity to each other in a condition that they may not be adequately shielded or designed for. I realize these are milliwatt transmitters but still at less than an inch apart will their be any affects on the adjacent receivers? Are the digital signals used by the ZigBee and Z-Wave protocols subject to IMD or other types of adjacent channel interference? BT operates in the same band as ZigBee (2.4 to 2.483 GHz). I have a number of BT devices in my home such as speaker, soundbars for the TVs, and headphones to name just a few. How do ZigBee devices deal with this? Transmitting audio over BT is full time not intermittent packets of data, does this present a problem.

"The system automatically chooses the quietest channels during the installation procedure"

Will it also evaluate those links and change channels should performance/link quality degrade?
Will it track channel usage of nearby systems/devices that are not part of the SystronicsRF network and adjust for their presence?

"Z-Wave operates at 908MHz"

Yes, as do many other devices. Z-Wave AFAIK is limited to two frequencies in the USA, 908.40 and 916.00 MHz, how many devices from competing systems can be tolerated on just two channels before performance is affected? Do you use time slotting to co-exist with systems/devices operating on the same frequency and reduce packet collisions?

I know I have asked a lot here and most of it is generic meaning it concerns any HA system not just the SystronicsRF HA system. BTW, do you have a name for your HA system?

Maybe you should buy Iris from Lowes, but hold out for a price drop, Lowes is known to mark stuff down significantly after 90 days. :-)

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I've since done a little more digging to understand what SystronicsRF was talking about and found that BT and 2.4GHz Wi-Fi do not use the same channels. Wi-Fi uses channels 1 thru 11 and ZigBee uses the next 16 channels above that so they do not overlap. So both operate in the same band but do not use the same channels or frequencies.

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17 hours ago, sparc said:

I've since done a little more digging to understand what SystronicsRF was talking about and found that BT and 2.4GHz Wi-Fi do not use the same channels. Wi-Fi uses channels 1 thru 11 and ZigBee uses the next 16 channels above that so they do not overlap. So both operate in the same band but do not use the same channels or frequencies.

You are correct that ZigBee and WiFi don't use the same frequencies, but it is a bit more complicated.

The following diagram shows the relationships.  ZigBee channels are numbered 11 through 26, because channels 1 through 10 are allocated to the sub-gigahertz band.

The channel numbering for ZigBee and WiFi don't correspond. as shown in this diagram.  However, you can select different channels for each ZigBee network and for each Wi|Fi network, as shown.

Bluetooth is different, because it hops across all of the frequencies across the entire 2.4GHz band in a pseudo-random fashion.  It has the potential to interfere with both ZigBee and WiFi.  Fortunately, the transmissions on all networks are all very short pulses, so the likelihood of any interference is small.  For example, an average ZigBee frame takes just over 1 millisecond to be transmitted, and they occur relatively infrequently.  The relative strength of the Bluetooth signal, and its proximity to the devices, also determine the likelihood of any interference.

We will cover this in more detail in a separate area within the website.  Initially we had similar concerns, for now, we have been running multiple Raspberry Pi 3Bs stacked on top of one another, with multiple network adapters in each Pi, and each controlling a separate ZigBee or Z-Wave network, continuously for many months.  We have never encountered any interference between these networks.

Channels-04.png

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On 12/29/2018 at 11:12 PM, sparc said:

Thank you that puts my mind at ease with respect to interference problems between ZigBee and Wi-Fi.

 

There is no radio interference between the network adapters when they all plugged into the USB ports of the Pi, but they are a tight fit together.  It may be worth using a separate USB hub to avoid the strain that this puts on the USB connections of the Pi.  We have added a section entitled “USB Hubs” to the following page, which gives more detail, including our recommendation for a suitable USB hub. 

https://www.systronicsrf.com/installation/hub-configuration.html

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Anything new to report ? Sounds like we may be running out of time with Iris after that Iris is Shutdown that someone received the other day.

That just sounds like they are getting the web content loaded up and ready to switch over at a moments notice.

I wonder how much notice they will give us before shutting down. I would expect to get a month at least.

But still need to download the software for the Pi 3+ once it's available and get everything setup.

I have enough spare devices that I could get the new system running in parallel with Iris once SystronicsRF makes the software available.

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16 hours ago, sparc said:

Anything new to report ? Sounds like we may be running out of time with Iris after that Iris is Shutdown that someone received the other day.

That just sounds like they are getting the web content loaded up and ready to switch over at a moments notice.

I wonder how much notice they will give us before shutting down. I would expect to get a month at least.

But still need to download the software for the Pi 3+ once it's available and get everything setup.

I have enough spare devices that I could get the new system running in parallel with Iris once SystronicsRF makes the software available.

We are getting close to releasing a Beta version, and we will contact you directly by email this week with our suggestions for getting you started.

Following your prompt, we have only just looked at the “Iris Shutdown” thread.  It does seem that Lowes has much bigger problems than Iris within its core retail business, along with many others in the same sector.

The prospect of any sale, especially one that meets the needs of existing users, also seems fairly remote.  The notional benefit to any potential buyer must surely be more than offset by the implicit financial burdens and risks, and the need to commit precious management resources.  This must also be very evident to Lowes.

Lowes announcement may be no more than managing the expectations of existing users.  A non-sale is likely to result in a gradual run-down of the business, and the eventual disappearance of the brand.  Hopefully, they will try to minimise the impact on existing users, by extending support as long as possible, if only to avoid further damage to the Lowes brand.

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Is there any possibility of systronics interfacing with samsung smartthings at some point in the future? I think if something like that was possible you might could get a pretty large portion of iris users who have V1 devices to move those devices to systronics.

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12 hours ago, Smitho said:

Is there any possibility of systronics interfacing with samsung smartthings at some point in the future? I think if something like that was possible you might could get a pretty large portion of iris users who have V1 devices to move those devices to systronics.

We have given priority to the older ZigBee devices, which have either been abandoned by their suppliers, or are about to be abandoned.  

The more modern ZigBee devices, which are either Home Automation or Light Link, are much easier to handle.  The Z-Wave technology is fundamentally easier to handle, and the standards have not changed much over the years.

If you go to this page https://www.systronicsrf.com/devices, you will see that we have currently integrated with a range of devices from different suppliers, including Samsung.  

As we are interfacing directly with the devices, we don’t plan to integrate with any other home automation system.

We are also trying to gain a better picture of the devices that are in use, so that we can prioritize the addition of more devices.

If you would like to go to the https://www.systronicsrf.com website, and register, which just needs your name and email address, we will send you an email with your password, and a secure link.  These will give you registered user access to the website.  This includes your secure personal area. 

There is also a degree of commonality between products from different suppliers, because the electronics in many of them are manufactured by either Centralite or Computime.

Once you have logged in, or clicked on the secure link, please click on My Profile link adjacent to the search box in the header.  This will take you to your profile page.

There are two buttons lower down this page.  The first one takes you to a page where you can describe your use of the system.  The second one takes you to a selectable list of devices, from which you can pick the devices that you use.

If you would like to select, or add, your devices, then we can advise on compatibility.
 

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3 hours ago, SystronicsRF said:

We have given priority to the older ZigBee devices, which have either been abandoned by their suppliers, or are about to be abandoned.  

The more modern ZigBee devices, which are either Home Automation or Light Link, are much easier to handle.  The Z-Wave technology is fundamentally easier to handle, and the standards have not changed much over the years.

If you go to this page https://www.systronicsrf.com/devices, you will see that we have currently integrated with a range of devices from different suppliers, including Samsung.  

As we are interfacing directly with the devices, we don’t plan to integrate with any other home automation system.

We are also trying to gain a better picture of the devices that are in use, so that we can prioritize the addition of more devices.

If you would like to go to the https://www.systronicsrf.com website, and register, which just needs your name and email address, we will send you an email with your password, and a secure link.  These will give you registered user access to the website.  This includes your secure personal area. 

There is also a degree of commonality between products from different suppliers, because the electronics in many of them is manufactured by either Centralite or Computime.

Once you have logged in, or clicked on the secure link, please click on My Profile link adjacent to the search box in the header.  This will take you to your profile page.

There are two buttons lower down this page.  The first one takes you to a page where you can describe your use of the system.  The second one takes you to a selectable list of devices, from which you can pick the devices that you use.

If you would like to select, or add, your devices, then we can advise on compatibility.
 

Yes, I checked the devices page.... if iris was to fold at this moment my plan would be to move to smart things for my home automaton, and systronics for my security system due to device compatibility. Every light switch and fan control in my home is a GE/Jasco light switch which appears to currently work with smart things but not systronics. I have other items which are not yet compatible with systronics, but I understand it is in its infancy at the moment and compatibility will likely improve quickly after mass market release. There is also integration with harmony remotes and IFTTT with smart things. For my needs, I'm likely to need both systems for a while and I was hoping they would eventually communicate with each other.

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21 hours ago, SystronicsRF said:

The second one takes you to a selectable list of devices, from which you can pick the devices that you use.

If you would like to select, or add, your devices, then we can advise on compatibility.

I tried to do as you suggest, but the check boxes for the devices are grayed-out -- they won't allow me to select and save them.

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2 hours ago, pavalov said:

I tried to do as you suggest, but the check boxes for the devices are grayed-out -- they won't allow me to select and save them.

Our apologies.  Now fixed.

We had added a popup to encourage visitors to register, which was interfering with the device selections.

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