Where to buy

Discussion in 'Alarm & Security Systems' started by drew91101, Nov 30, 2016.

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  1. drew91101

    drew91101 Getting the hang of it

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    I've been browsing through the threads and really don't know where to start with home security systems. I just bought my house and installed multiple cameras and am looking for a security system that I can install.

    Any recommendations?
     
  2. zero-degrees

    zero-degrees Known around here

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    Personally I am a fan of the Honeywell/Ademco Vista Series 15p or 20p. These are tried and true systems that have been out for a long time and are simple to install and program if you have basic electronics understanding. However, since this isn't new construction you may not want to spend the time hard wiring all your sensors so you may want to consider wireless. Be aware both these systems do have wireless modules available but you still will need to install the main box/panel, battery, controller board etc somewhere and hardwire one panel at the very minimum.

    If you want to go with a wireless system look at the Honeywell/Ademco Lynx systems - it doesn't get more straight forward than these systems. The main unit/touch panel houses all the brains and the sensors simply link back to it. All you have to do is plug that touch panel in and you are ready to go. They have options for wifi adapters, GSM cell dialers, Ethernet comm modules all for monitoring if you want it monitored by an outside service (Alarm Relay is one of the more popular ones).

    Also note that the majority of Honeywell/Ademco hardware will support Alarmnet which is the remote access/app you can access remotly via internet/phone and setup rules/alerts - so if you do get a monitoring company make sure they are alarmnet supported/certified. Also assure any monitoring company you go with is UL listed and certified. You will not be able to access alarmnet yourself or use the app unless you pay for monitoring - just as FYI.

    Regardless don't get hung up on Sensors - some people go CRAZY with sensors.

    Assure you have 1 keypad at the main entry, consider a second for the bedroom or another door if you have two heavily used entries.
    Have contacts on your entry exit doors.
    Utilize a few motion sensors on the main floor and or basement to cover the majority of your main living areas or areas where a window may be used as an entry point. To many times I see people pay for 12 window sensors or something crazy, when 2 motion detectors will do the trick. Sure a window sensor will assure an alarm sounds as soon as the window is opened, but a motion sensor will get someone as soon as they poke there head into the window. This will also allow you to arm the system and leave some windows open during the summer with out having to go into a "bypass" for that sensor prior to arming.

    My personal opinion is glass breaks are over rated - I've seen to many false triggers with them, I'm not a fan.

    Even though you have smoke detectors already, consider getting at least 1 smoke/co2 combo units for each floor that connect to the alarm.

    Hope this helps some or at least will get you started in some research!
     
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  3. Jack B Nimble

    Jack B Nimble Pulling my weight

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    Guess I should have asked if you want
    'surveillance system" or "home security system" lol o well as I assume as you say I have installed several cameras meaning cameras are done with! Well perhaps some interest to someone out these since I wrote all this,
    I have seen a few discussions on here and you will get dozens of opinions I am sure from installers etc. Always will depend if you want monitored by a company and your budget and if you want monthly bill. For me I was pondering I believe the name was Kerui or at least a GSM model so my camp could call me as it has no phone lines and price and options seem very expandable. Anyway if your a DIY guy and can monitor yourself and buy from China as I do here are many examples. I have wireless in my house and batteries have been going now for 6 years no issues.

    Shop gsm alarm system online - Buy gsm alarm system for unbeatable low prices on AliExpress.com

    That Kerui line I am watching : just need to figure if we are 850 on our cell towers

    Shop kerui online - Buy kerui for unbeatable low prices on AliExpress.com

    Like I said though many local options and monitored will be your easiest which it best ? tough to know so many commercials I used to see when I watched regular TV lol. Have not seen a commercial really now in 8 years( love streaming ) Could ask @nayr he likes door to door home alarm salesman too !
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2016
  4. fenderman

    fenderman Staff Member

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    dont buy a noname alarm system direct from china - they are complete garbage. Take zero degrees advice..
     
  5. zero-degrees

    zero-degrees Known around here

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    I'm sorry Jack this stuff is crap! It may "function" but it is still sub par junk!!

    The China alarms have crap radio transmitters in them. This is why all the sensors are LARGE AND BULKY so they can include a freaking retractable antenna. Also the majority of all these work off open unsecured channels and if need be can easily be jammed (unlikely a common crook wil, be using a jammer but they can be)

    10 years ago professional alarm hardware was really hard or very expensive for a DIY person to access without knowing someone or having a connection. However when Ademco/Honeywell went more mainstream to the DIY market this changed things for the better. With quality reputable hardware accesable and very afordable there is no reason to buy imported AE crap for a home security system.
     
  6. Jack B Nimble

    Jack B Nimble Pulling my weight

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    Ya wasn't too confident myself but I bet the alarm in my house that I pay big for every month is from China with a pretty name sticker on it.
     
  7. zero-degrees

    zero-degrees Known around here

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    Crap sold on AE is not crap because it is made in China. It IS crap because it uses uncertified, sub par, and unregulated components. It is produced in leased warehouse space in the manufacturing district with little to no regulations or oversight.

    A company like Honeywell/Ademco for example may produce hardware outside the US (doing consumer electronics is NOT cost effect in the US). However, they are produced in company owned manufacturing facilities that hold several ISO or UL certifications. The components are from reputable manufactures and also hold certifications. They are then assembled and pass through a more traiditional QC process. These facilities also are going to use higher quality solder for example on the components instead of some crap unregulated solder that connects the components of your AE crap for $50.

    My final advice - It's one thing to recomend CRAP from AE if you have personally used it and thihnk it was okay, but to even more so blindly recomend it like you did above when you have no experience with it - you are seriously doing this community a disservice as you are the OP as well. I'm having flashbacks to some of your earlier threads. Stick to speaking about what you know, don't try to blindly assist or make recomendations.
     
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  8. drew91101

    drew91101 Getting the hang of it

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    Thank you for all of the advice! Zero, thanks again for your ongoing advice on the forum and helping me out!
    I have looked alot into the 15p/20p systems and think that is the direction I am going to go. On a side note, i'm surprised programming these systems isn't easier. I figured there would be some sort of GUI available to just configure everything on a laptop and then push the config to the system. Not a complaint, just an observation.
     
  9. zero-degrees

    zero-degrees Known around here

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    No worries @drew91101

    If you are going the 15p/20p route make sure you get alpha numeric keypads. If you want to save a few bucks the 6150 keypad is fine but it will not allow you to program everything on the unit - well, technically it will but i do NOT advise it. Basically if you have a mis key or do anything wrong you won't be able to tell since there is no screen and you can royally screw things up. So just assure you get 6160 alpha keypads at the minimum as it will make programming life so much easier!

    Good Luck!!
     
  10. drew91101

    drew91101 Getting the hang of it

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    Thats exactly what I found. I'm going to get Honeywell Vista 20P 6160RF alarm system kit with the 6160rf so I can throw the wireless sensors all over with minimal wiring.
     
  11. zero-degrees

    zero-degrees Known around here

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    I tried finding this youtube account yesterday but it had been so long since I'd seen it last I couldn't find it. I just tried a few more search terms and came across it again. This guy did like a 20 part video all about the 20P, programming sensors, codes, controls, etc. I've never watched it all the way though, but I did use his panel and sensor section several months ago when I was at my grand parents and needed to make some zones changes but didn't have my tablet with the manuals on it.

    I have a feeling this guys tutorial/videos would allow a random guy off the street to do a full 15p/20p install with almost no experience at all. Again, I've never followed everything he did or even watched his videos but the few items i used to reference a few months ago were spot on perfect.

     
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  12. drew91101

    drew91101 Getting the hang of it

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    That is EXACTLY what I have been watching and getting most of my info from!
     
  13. zero-degrees

    zero-degrees Known around here

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    May want to shop around - that's a little $$$. Don't get me wrong it isn't to bad, but there are surely better "values" available. If that company is going to provide support or technical help that might add value, but eBay and amazon will offer some great starter kits. I did a quick look at this is one that I saw right off the back. Regardless it sounds like you are well on your way and doing your research to cover your bases so nice work

    This is a good "starter" kit with most everything you may need. One nice thing is this kit comes with the 5800mini sensors. These things are great, darn near flat and really disappear on windows and doors. The 5816 sensors aren't bad, but the 5800's are truly worth the few extra bucks!
    Honeywell Vista 20P, 6160RF, 3-5800MINI D/W Senors, 5800PIR, 5834 Batt-Siren-J/C | eBay
     
  14. mycoma

    mycoma BIT Beta Team

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    I want to buy a wireless security system also and see the Honeywell lynx 5210 and Lyric wireless system, what does the vista 20p do that the 5210system can't? Is there an advantage over one of theses? And how do cameras interface to these alarm systems? Are there Any fees to control the alarm over the internet?

    I would like a reccomendation for a good alarm monitoring company over a cellular interface that works with the Honeywell alarmnet, I see alarm club.com are they ok?
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2016
  15. randytsuch

    randytsuch Pulling my weight

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    If you get a 20p system, have a look at this
    AD2PI, The AlarmDecoder Store

    It basically turns a pi into another control panel, to monitor and arm/disarm your alarm with.

    I plan to add it to my alarm one of these days.
     
  16. blake

    blake Getting the hang of it

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    If your interested in a simpler system, you can look into an all-in-one like the Honeywell Lynx Touch System or 2GIG.
     
  17. drew91101

    drew91101 Getting the hang of it

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    Thanks all! I ended up getting the 20p system that @zero-degrees recommended from ebay with the 6160rf.
    that AD2PI looks pretty cool but at over $100 with the pi, I'd just get a second keypad.
     
  18. blake

    blake Getting the hang of it

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    The Vista 20P is an excellent system with lots of potential. I still have my original 20P Hybrid system sitting in a box.
     
  19. blake

    blake Getting the hang of it

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    The Lynx and Lyric systems are all-in-one wireless systems where as the Vista 20P is a hardwired system that can also do wireless (hybrid). Both systems have the ability to do cameras, it just takes extra hardware and a monitoring station that can handle it.
     
  20. blake

    blake Getting the hang of it

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    I've been working with my monitoring company to integrate BI with my monthly monitoring that I offer my customers instead of using crappy cams so that in the event of an alarm, they can view the cameras for video verification while on the line with dispatch.
     
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  21. drew91101

    drew91101 Getting the hang of it

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    Anyone know anything about Honeywell's Total Connect? I opened my 20P system and saw a little flyer saying my 20P will work with total connect but can't find anything at all on how to set it up or enable it. I'm assuming I need an IP module to attach to the 20P but other than that, I'm lost
     
  22. zero-degrees

    zero-degrees Known around here

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    Total connect is the smart phone/internet app to remote controll the unit. Arm/disarm, see sensors statuses, get alerts, emails, etc. This will require the unit be connected to a monitoring service via GSM dialer, wifi module, rj45 network module. This also can only be enabled by a monitoring company. There is no way for you to self monitor and access total connect for free.

    It also will log all activity so you can go back and see when sensors were tripped even when the alarm isn't on. In one of the recent upgrades to the iphone app to they enabled some geofencing functions so if you leave the house for example but tc see's the alarm isn't active and the phone is out of the neighborhood it will alert you.

    I don't have total connect at home (it's normally around $10 more a month ontop of your standard monitoring) but I have it on one of our business buildings so I get an email when the last person locks up and arms it for the night. If I don't see that email by 11 or midnight is when I start hitting cameras up to see what's going on. For home, the wife and I are both so good about arming it it's not really needed, and it's so easy to set user codes I have two extra codes programmed so if someone ever needs in the home I can give them one of those and just delete it once I get home.

    See some screen shots below off my iPhone
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Dec 9, 2016
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  23. drew91101

    drew91101 Getting the hang of it

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    G
    Got ya!! I'll just stick with the basic panel since I'm going to do the monitoring myself. I also saw the Envisalink 4 which looked pretty promising too. Its set up by the end user with no monthly fees. I'm going to look at some more reviews/videos but I guess I could start with just setting up my 20P first :)
     
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  24. zero-degrees

    zero-degrees Known around here

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    I had looked at the EVL3 awhile back when the 4 was just being released. The concept looks great, but the web interface seemed very rudimentary and I wasn't sure about it. I never really did a lot of research, if you end up pulling the trigger on the EVL4 deffinitly let me know how it turns out!
     
  25. drew91101

    drew91101 Getting the hang of it

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  26. randytsuch

    randytsuch Pulling my weight

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    The reason to get ad2pi is not to replace the keypad, at least not for me. It would be to give you total connect type features with no monthly fee. If I ever do it, my plan was to be able to access the pi from anywhere from my phone, so you could remotely arm/disarm and get status.
    With openVPN, I would have secure access to it, so it would be safe.
     
  27. zero-degrees

    zero-degrees Known around here

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    The EVL3 or EVL4 is a similar solution without having to put a "computer" in play to use as a middle man.
     
  28. randytsuch

    randytsuch Pulling my weight

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    Thanks, I never saw that before, looks very cool. The EVL4 looks relatively easy to install, and the instructions look very good, they even have the programming instructions, which is one thing I was worried about.
     
  29. zero-degrees

    zero-degrees Known around here

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  30. drew91101

    drew91101 Getting the hang of it

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    I wish I could say well but Christmas lights and holiday stuff have taken priority :(. I'm hoping to get to it the first two weekends in Jan.