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Future of Elk M1


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#1 icellama21

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 04:27 AM

Does anyone have information on the future of the Elk M1? I am considering installing a M1G for someone, but everywhere I look on the forums(here, AVS, worthington, software forums, etc), the conversation is mainly HAI. There are a few lingering threads around about elk vs HAI, and they seem to be balanced, but reading closely they usually conclude HAI unless you are a DIY and need active support. In the last year or so it seems the M1G releases/feature updates from elk have slowed to a trickle. Even the elk dealer site forum is looking pretty dead (anyone else noticed that the last M1 newsletter on the site is from March 2007?) . Has HAI won the battle with its critical mass of features/products?

My feeling is that the elk M1 was installed by a number of DIYers a year or two back, but there is not much attention focused on it now. Which brings me to the future. Is the M1G product line/support/manufacturing growing or heading the way of windows 2000? Is there an active product release schedule or new planned features and partners? I feel like the M1 family is at a minimum size right now(at least compared to HAI), and needs to keep growing to be successful. Thanks!

Edited by icellama21, 16 January 2009 - 04:30 AM.


#2 mustangcoupe

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 05:42 AM

Does anyone have information on the future of the Elk M1? I am considering installing a M1G for someone, but everywhere I look on the forums(here, AVS, worthington, software forums, etc), the conversation is mainly HAI. There are a few lingering threads around about elk vs HAI, and they seem to be balanced, but reading closely they usually conclude HAI unless you are a DIY and need active support. In the last year or so it seems the M1G releases/feature updates from elk have slowed to a trickle. Even the elk dealer site forum is looking pretty dead (anyone else noticed that the last M1 newsletter on the site is from March 2007?) . Has HAI won the battle with its critical mass of features/products?

My feeling is that the elk M1 was installed by a number of DIYers a year or two back, but there is not much attention focused on it now. Which brings me to the future. Is the M1G product line/support/manufacturing growing or heading the way of windows 2000? Is there an active product release schedule or new planned features and partners? I feel like the M1 family is at a minimum size right now(at least compared to HAI), and needs to keep growing to be successful. Thanks!



I know they have been working hard on the recently released ELKRM software update, and have been tight lipped on the M1 firmware upgrades they are working on. Spanky is always answering questions here, and Im sure he will chime in (as the new Heard Leader over at ELK he is the best one to answer questions as to roadmap) I would say that ELK is still here and here to stay, and I would still recommend ELK 100%.

#3 Lagerhead

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 08:23 AM

I would say that ELK is still here and here to stay

I don't think the Elk company is going to disappear, but I wonder about the M1. I bought my M1 a year ago, with some reservations that it was a dated product (e.g. the distinct focus on telephony, first-generation voice functionality, keypad-centric...). Some of this is necessary legacy in the alarm business. Certainly the M1's usefulness has been extended with add-ons and it interfaces well via Ethernet, ASCII etc. But have there been recent firmware upgrades of any real importance? Elk's commentary here on new features for the M1 are decidedly guarded -- usually hopeful, but equally non-committal. As we wait for requested and acknowledged features, you might imagine (purely my speculation) that resources are instead devoted to an "M2" getting ready for market.

I would still recommend ELK 100%.

Agreed. M1 is a solid product, abundantly flexible, and certainly no issues with the hardware.

Edited by Lagerhead, 16 January 2009 - 09:45 AM.


#4 jlehnert

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 08:35 AM

Competition is a GOOD thing.

A few years ago all the chatter was about Elk and they were coming out with all the new and exciting products. HAI finally realized that while their bread and butter was the large custom installers, the small installer and DIY market could not be ignored. They (supposedly) dropped the arrogant attitude, (hopefully) taught their convention staff some manners, and splurged on a couple of cases of Jolt cola for the R&D crew. I snorted a Pepsi the wrong way in surprise a few months ago when I returned to CT after a years absence, and found an active HAI presence on the board. Now HAIs effort is bearing fruit with new products and lots of positive buzz. I'm sure Spanky and crew are hard at work, and sometime in the future, their next product development cycle will complete and the shoe will be on the other foot.

Edited by jlehnert, 16 January 2009 - 08:36 AM.


#5 AndyW

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 10:09 AM

I would hope that ELK will be around for a while. Al though thay are a bit pricey in the Missouri market I would still prefer Installing the ELK over GE any day. And the tech support is a 100 times better then GE and programimg is very strate forward. I have only been installing elk for about three years and now the Boss wants to do GE because of $$ which I do understand but I stll prefer ELK.

I plan on installing a M1G In my house this year.

#6 icellama21

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 09:24 PM

I am definitely an elk fan. While hai may seem more refined, it's in a microsoft windows style of tinker-engineering. Elk has a pragmatic engineering-nerd at the core, perfecting what matters. And they seem to have the best people too.

That said, I know enough about the consumer electronics and computer hardware businesses to realize that the best course may be to pursue other opportunities. No one wants to be like adicon and milk an old ocelot into a crevace on the altiplano. I'm definitely looking for a reason to wait for the m2. I was just curious if the m1 was still hauling gear up the mountain or is being sent to the wool barn to be sheared.

#7 IVB

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 09:57 PM

this is a really funny thread given that the Elk just kicked HAI's butt in voting for product of the year.

#8 Digger

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 10:11 PM

Both the ELK product line and the HAI product line have their own uniqueness that makes one a better choice than the other depending on what you want to do, budget, and personal taste.

There is plenty of room in the industry for both companies to continue to grow and the products to evolve for many years to come. Both companies are not selling your "average" alarm system but more intergrated alarm/automation equipment that is the part of the industry that probably has the most room for growth.

Just my opinion.

#9 icellama21

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 10:16 PM

this is a really funny thread given that the Elk just kicked HAI's butt in voting for product of the year.



Just for the record, I've got an elk M1, it rocks(so well that it might as well be a rock, never needs any maintenance) ! The voting depends on the voters of course, and CT is a bit elk-biased anyway. But regardless of the voting, elk DOES kick butt. The issue isn't HAI being better, but elk's commitment to the m1. I'm sure elk has something up their sleeve, and in due time we will all find out. Usually good engineers don't stay with a sinking ship, so I believe in elk all the way. Just wanted to know if there were any official clues out there about the future of the M1.

#10 nexus99

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Posted 17 January 2009 - 03:19 AM

this is a really funny thread given that the Elk just kicked HAI's butt in voting for product of the year.


I voted for HAI :-)

#11 Spanky

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Posted 19 January 2009 - 09:12 AM

ELK is here and we are working our buns off on new software and products.

The future looks very bright! :)

#12 BryanE

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Posted 19 January 2009 - 09:40 AM

Thanks for chiming in Spanky. I've always been a huge fan of Elk and the M1. Glad to hear the future is looking bright and anxiously await future product announcements.

Edited by BryanE, 19 January 2009 - 09:41 AM.


#13 Work2Play

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Posted 19 January 2009 - 09:38 PM

My $.02 is that, if the system does what you need today, how important is the future? Or are you hoping to tweak on the system forever? I picked the M1 because I thought the keypads looked nicer, it came with high-marks from here, and it did what I needed. I'm sure they'll come out with some new things... I wish Spanky would leak a little more so we know what the future holds - before I would've said he may not have the flexibility to do so, but I'd imagine he does in his current role.

Either way, quite frankly, I hope to finish up my install 100% in the next couple months and never touch the thing again. When I buy the next house, I'll look at whatever is the newest best and make that decision again. But to me, this isn't a life-long hobby... this was like picking out the bathroom fixtures while redoing the bathroom... you pick from your best options, install it all right so it works the best, and live with it for as long as you can. If you're still in the house in 15 years, you'd probably redo the bathroom again - just as I might redo the alarm if there's a good enough reason.

About my only interest there is if they were to ever go completely away and I wouldn't be able to buy repair/replacement parts...

#14 CORT

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 04:59 AM

I am hoping that when Elk comes out with a replacement for the M1, it will just be a matter of unplugging the sensors from the old M1 or M1XIN and plugging them into the new. I know that a reprogram will likely be in order for the new system. The point is that "tried and true" is what you want in a home alarm system. The fact that Elk has been successfully doing it for so long should be a good indicator.

#15 Spanky

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 10:17 PM

The next M1 family hardware versions are completely compatible with existing hardware.




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