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Old DSC Security System - DIY upgrade?

awahl101

Young grasshopper
We have a bunch of clients that run elk in their homes, also quite a few that run honeywell.

Not sure what automation you plan on using

Cant help much further than that haha

Sent from my SM-J727P using Tapatalk
 

Revlus

Getting the hang of it
Ok, so i've pretty much decided to go with the DSC 1832 with the Envisalink EVL-4, and Smartserver running on a Pi or even my BlueIris/OpenVPN Win10 server.... so I can integrate it with Smartthings.

Smarthings integration link is here

Feeling good about this, thank you everyone for the input/advice!
 

actran

Pulling my weight
@Revlus I have DSC1832 as well, with older EVL3. My home automation is Vera and all DSC sensors appear as motion devices on Vera and thus be used as triggers /conditions for home automation scenes.

As such, I can have certain DSC sensors trigger Vera to turn on some zWave light, or for BI to record on certain cameras when DSC sensors are tripped.

Also, each camera in BI is also represented a "virtual" motion device in Vera and they can also be used in home automation scenes like turning on the lights, playing a voice alert when BI detects motion with a camera.
 

Revlus

Getting the hang of it
@Revlus You're lucky to have alot of existing wired sensors.

But what is nice about DSC is they have a really small wireless sensor if you need to augment your situation with additional sensors.

DSC EV DW4975 Vanishing Wireless Door Window Transmitter
Yes, good point, and is exactly what I'll need to do. The wired sensors were installed in 2005, and aren't really enough to cover everything that "should" be covered. I'll need more glass break detectors, some impact detectors (someone trying to kick open a door), more motion detectors, etc.... So I'm off to a great start with all the windows/doors being wired... and will augment with wired where I can.. and wireless as needed.

Thanks for the link to that vanishing transmitter... I hadn't seen that one yet... very small!
 

tangent

IPCT Contributor

tangent

IPCT Contributor
Yes, good point, and is exactly what I'll need to do. The wired sensors were installed in 2005, and aren't really enough to cover everything that "should" be covered. I'll need more glass break detectors, some impact detectors (someone trying to kick open a door), more motion detectors, etc.... So I'm off to a great start with all the windows/doors being wired... and will augment with wired where I can.. and wireless as needed.

Thanks for the link to that vanishing transmitter... I hadn't seen that one yet... very small!
Acoustic glass breaks can be a little tricky. Kids toys, barking dogs, putting away the dishes, jingling keys, etc can sometimes set them off as will breaking a plate or glass . Don't go crazy and only use newer DSP based sensors.

Impact sensors, don't bother. You'll go into alarm every time there's thunder.

I also wouldn't bother with pressure mats. I would add some more motion detectors inside and a couple strategic ones outside.

If you go DSC, the 1864 isn't much more and you'll need to pay close attention to your power budget there's only 500mA for all your keypads, wireless receiver, glass breaks, motion sensors, evk-4, etc. You could end up needing an aux power supply.
 

tangent

IPCT Contributor
With DSC you don't really have many ways to tell your automation system to do anything from the dsc keypads. You can use your sensors for automation and do things when the alarm changes state armed/disarmed/alarm but the ability to walk up the the DSC keypad and make your automation system do something is very limited. There's nothing wrong with this approach, I just want to make sure you're clear on this.
 

smiticans

Pulling my weight
Acoustic glass breaks can be a little tricky. Kids toys, barking dogs, putting away the dishes, jingling keys, etc can sometimes set them off as will breaking a plate or glass . Don't go crazy and only use newer DSP based sensors.

Impact sensors, don't bother. You'll go into alarm every time there's thunder.

I also wouldn't bother with pressure mats. I would add some more motion detectors inside and a couple strategic ones outside.

If you go DSC, the 1864 isn't much more and you'll need to pay close attention to your power budget there's only 500mA for all your keypads, wireless receiver, glass breaks, motion sensors, evk-4, etc. You could end up needing an aux power supply.
I've had good experiences with the Honeywell hardwired FG-1625 line of glassbreaks and the wireless 5853 GB. The glassbreaks only false if you drop heavy objects within a close proximity to them or I've found they can false if you're loading up a dishwasher and clanking dishes together. Either way you would be home so the system would most likely be disarmed, or if it was armed you would be able to verify with the central station it was a false alarm before they dispatched the police.

I've never had one false from my dog or jingling keys.

Back in 1998 when my original alarm was installed (old style Ademco Vista 50p), the alarm company used Terminus Litton SP3237 shock sensors to protect windows and glass sliding doors. To this day I still have them active on my new system. I have NEVER experienced a false alarm from any of the shock sensors and we get plenty of thunderstorms during the summer months. I occasionally test them so I know that they work.
 

tangent

IPCT Contributor
I've had good experiences with the Honeywell hardwired FG-1625 line of glassbreaks and the wireless 5853 GB. The glassbreaks only false if you drop heavy objects within a close proximity to them or I've found they can false if you're loading up a dishwasher and clanking dishes together. Either way you would be home so the system would most likely be disarmed, or if it was armed you would be able to verify with the central station it was a false alarm before they dispatched the police.

I've never had one false from my dog or jingling keys.
Hence the suggestion to only use the newer DSP ones. I like the FG-1625 too. Some of the older models are basically a band pass filter and aren't precise enough. I've had relatives who have had false alarms like I mentioned, but the dsp ones only trip if break a plate or glass or rarely if you clang dishes or pans together. If you have old acoustic glass breaks you may want to replace them.
Back in 1998 when my original alarm was installed (old style Ademco Vista 50p), the alarm company used Terminus Litton SP3237 shock sensors to protect windows and glass sliding doors. To this day I still have them active on my new system. I have NEVER experienced a false alarm from any of the shock sensors and we get plenty of thunderstorms during the summer months. I occasionally test them so I know that they work.
Shock sensors run a wide gamut. I know some are pretty reliable especially if they're installed properly. However some are far less reliable. When I was a kid we had a neighbor who's alarm company would call us if they couldn't reach them and I know first hand how many false alarms they generated. We either be telling them there was a thunderstorm or go look and tell them a neighbor kicked a soccer ball at the house. Point is you probably don't need them, do other stuff first. If you use shock sensors it probably best in a cross zone setup to minimize false alarms (multiple zones must trip before dispatch). They are at least preferable to window foil.
 

smiticans

Pulling my weight
If I were to start from scratch I would only use the Terminus shock sensors where it would be absolutely necessary (bathroom with a lot of moisture from the shower etc). I added a 5853 to my sliding glass doors because I'm not too sure how well the shock sensors will detect a break-in if they used a window punch. You have to hit the glass pretty hard to activate these sensors.
 

tangent

IPCT Contributor
Those are awesome..... any other great links to cool stuff??? I need impact sensors... glass break detectors... water sensors... thinking of even doing some sensor mats for a couple strategic locations. (maybe not)
Start with the basics for a DSC system since that what you said you wanted, get that working then expand as you desire:
  • DSC PC1832 or PC 1864 (the 64 can be expanded to more zones and has more onboard outputs)
  • 2 Keypads, choose between PK5500, RFK5564 (up to 64 wireless zones), and RFK5500 (up to 32 wireless zones). RFK's contain a wireless recevier. I suggest only 'full message' keypads
  • If no RFK, a rf receiver RF5132-433 or TR5164-433 2 way tranceiver (enables wireless keypads, but encryption is lacking and you seem the type to install wires if needed)
  • larger aux power supply if needed, you probably won't need it but should pay attention to mA.
  • PC5108 8 Zone Expander
  • wireless sensors you want to add
  • keychain remotes if desired
  • transformer, battery, cabinet, siren, rj31x, if required. Often some combination of these is included in basic kits.
  • buy or make a pc link cable (optional)
  • EVL4 or other monitoring device like a CBAT if you want to monitor the alarm.
  • 2 wire smoke detectors

There are lots of different vendors you can buy from. Some sell things more piece mail others mostly in kits, many of the kits are actually assembled by the mfg. eBay sellers are usually cheapest, but are less likely to provide support. Some retailers will provide you more support / help setting things up, you pay a bit more as a result.

After a cursory look, the best value might actually come in the from of a DSC-KIT64219SE which you can find for $216 on ebay and $231 on homesecuritystore. This kit includes: PC1864, (1) RFK5564, (1) keyfob, siren, battery, transformer.
 

Revlus

Getting the hang of it
You can use your sensors for automation and do things when the alarm changes state armed/disarmed/alarm.
This is exactly the thing I want to do. Not the other way around...

Just finally ordered everything just now.... Need to get this sucker installed and working.
 

tangent

IPCT Contributor
This is exactly the thing I want to do. Not the other way around...

Just finally ordered everything just now.... Need to get this sucker installed and working.
What'd you end up ordering the 1832 or the 1864 kit? Did you order the pc link cable?

Start by making a detailed zone list that includes the models of all powered sensors (smoke, heat, motion, glass, water...)
You'll need this to figure out your power budget (which also includes modules, sirens, and keypads) and for keeping track of your zones / splitting some apart.
 
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Revlus

Getting the hang of it
Went with the 1864 kit, same one you mentioned above. Got the PC-Link cable and two extra fobs, and an expansion board.

Appreciate all your help @tangent I'll certainly be making that zone list. Right now only have 6 wired zones. Going to get things working as they are (and learn)... then expand where needed after I'm comfortable with the system.

Any thoughts on Central Monitoring? I see options from Alarm System Store - DIY Security Equipment for Home & Business for only $8.95/month.... but then $150/year for GSM/IP monitoring add-on, which I'd want/need.
 

tangent

IPCT Contributor
Any thoughts on Central Monitoring?
AlarmRelay and GeoArm are two of the cheapest I usually recommend. AlarmRelay does have cellular monitoring, they just don't advertise it or their pricing.

Cellular monitoring is going to be more reliable than internet based monitoring, but it does drive the cost up some. Cellular monitoring starts around $15-20/mo depending on the monitoring company and choice of communicator.

Some communicators are universal and will work with anything, others only work with specific brands of alarm panel. Cellular communicators pretty much only talk to the servers of the company that made them then info is sent to your alarm company this way the companies that make the communicators get a piece of the pie. Some communicators may not be able to remotely program your panel. If you want 'interactive' features (eg. the ability to arm and disarm through their app) they generally charge you more.
 
Hello,

I am living in the UK

I am looking to do basically the same and install a DSC 1864 in place of and old system and use the existing wired sensors.

In researching if have come across a few things that are causing confusion that you may be able to help resolve.

Ebay seems to have a cheap WS4975W sensors that I would like to install on all the windows on my house as they are not wired.

But I am seeing issues that new keypads are only compatible with new EZ encrypted sensors, is this true?

If I get a RFK5564 or RFK5500 can I use it with the WS4975W?

I know I need a V4.6 motherboard to get 64 wireless zones, but if I get a V4.5 I know I can only have 32 zones, but does it give me any other issues.
 
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