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Posted - 01/15/2020 :  10:48:33 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi folks -

No home automation yet, but I need help getting up in the mornings. I may as well get some help getting to sleep (I have problems with both ). Brighter lights in the bathroom, master bath used almost exclusively in the morning. All of my now-dumb lights are controlled by dumb switches. No dimmers. I have no desire to talk to my system, nor do I need screens. I don't trust the system enough to use it for my wake-up alarm. So. What I want to control, brightness and hue, follows:

- I want to have my central bedroom ceiling light come on gradually in the morning, starting with a sunrise hue, 30 minutes before my alarm goes off. When the alarm sounds it should be at full intensity, daylight colors. Then turned off by dumb switch. This light will be turned on later to help me dress, after work to change, then not be on until the next weekday morning. Available via switch during days off.

- The bathroom is easy, I have already installed brighter dumb bulbs.

- I go down the hall, down the stairs, then down the hall to get my glass of juice. I want all of these bulbs to be bright white. The stairs are on a 3-way circuit. Kitchen hall is a single dumb switch, two bulbs.

- Back upstairs, turning off the lights behind me. Into the office and 45 minutes on the computer - where I occasionally fall asleep. Two light fixtures, a normal desk lamp and a very bright SAD light. I forget to turn on the SAD light 2/3 of the time. I'm thinking of a smart wall switch to turn it on then off. Turning on the desk light is part of my morning routine.

- Back to the bedroom to dress, light of by dumb switch again, then down the hallway, stairs, into the kitchen, dumb switches all the way.

- Home from work, bright works. One stand light in the living room. As the evening progresses the lights will grow dimmer and more of an evening shade.

- This will happen every day, bright in the morning and dim in the evening.

- Wi-Fi distance is OK, small home and I could send Amazon Prime movies to my TV, farther than any of my lights.


- Do I need a hub? I think my use of the router (comcast) is now light. PC is on and awake 24/7. (I restart regularly and power off and back on every so often.

- I would much rather operate the system from my PC. My smartphone is just a phone. "Data has been disabled." I can download an app to my PC, then transfer it to my phone. But no internet or such. I hear that there is a program that lets you run one of the apps on your PC. Very few power flickers in my area.

- I read that dumb switches make the controlled lights go dumb.

- I can spend more money, I just don't want to!



4094 Posts

Posted - 01/16/2020 :  03:46:12 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have not used every device on the market. I use the ISYx994 hub with insteon and zwave devices, along with some hue devices for when I want some color. I have used apple homekit devices, but do not currently have any in my house. Any suggestions I make beyond this would be theoretical.

Bright white bulbs are easy. I wont attempt to address this.

For bulbs that can be configured for different colors, warm white, cool white...hue are pretty good. Lifx probably work just as well. There are likely others. Yes, installing these on a switched fixture then turning them off would make them pretty dumb.

My guess is that a majority of smart devices do NOT coummunicate via wifi. I would guess that you would find plans to use your wifi system for your smart devices to be too limiting.

Yes, you will need a “hub” of some kind. Whether you choose to use your PC or a dedicated hardware device is up to you, but something needs to initiate the automation that you describe.

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