• You've been granted Beta access to this site, allowing you to explore some of the new features while they're still under construction. More information can be found in the Beta forum.

Elk M1

Tombo

Member
I have my ACT USB working well with the Beta SDK from ControlThink. I use to think the hardware was a problem because Homeseer 2.0 would stop functioning with it. Maybe it was Homeseer all along.

As far as the Elk system. I am very interested in it and will probably look at buying it soon. Can someone tell me if there is some type of SDK for it to get information out of the serial port. Can I get monitoring status of the digital inputs/doorbell monitor etc. Also, where is the best place to buy it. What package is the most economical. (the one with the keypad and battery included?)

Thanks
Tom
 

Tombo

Member
Steve said:
As far as the Elk system. I am very interested in it and will probably look at buying it soon. Can someone tell me if there is some type of SDK for it to get information out of the serial port. Can I get monitoring status of the digital inputs/doorbell monitor etc. Also, where is the best place to buy it. What package is the most economical. (the one with the keypad and battery included?)
Hi Tom, Welcome to CocoonTech!

The serial protocol is published HERE so you can either write your own code, or use a 3rd party app like <clearing throat> HS</clearing throat>, HAL, CQC, MainLobby, etc. which all have plug ins/drivers to interface with the Elk. All the data is available.

Martin at Automated Outlet is a great source for all your gear. I would recommend the SYSG4 package. The price is going up in a week weeks, so hurry and you can probably save around $50.
Thanks for the info. How long has Elk been around? What is making them popular? Is it features/price? Also is the battery used for power failure only. Is it just a 12volt gell cell?
 

electron

Administrator
Staff member
Tombo,

Welcome to CocoonTech! I moved your posts to its own thread, so it's easier for people to respond, hope you don't mind. Elk does have a great SDK out there, but if you want to see what the protocol looks like, take a look at my.Elk in the download subforum here, it's written in VBscript, and shows how to interact with it. You can pretty much monitor anything you want. Don't hesitate to post any other questions you might have.
 

WayneW

Senior Member
Tombo said:
What is making them popular? Is it features/price?
They are popular for a couple reasons: value, performance, support

There aren't many good security & HA panels out there. Many do one or the other well, but few do both well. HAI has been the leader for many years in this arena, but the company didn't do much to foster a relationship with DIYers.
 

Tombo

Member
WayneW said:
Tombo said:
What is making them popular? Is it features/price?
They are popular for a couple reasons: value, performance, support

There aren't many good security & HA panels out there. Many do one or the other well, but few do both well. HAI has been the leader for many years in this arena, but the company didn't do much to foster a relationship with DIYers.
Ok so what impressed me is the I/O that you can hookup. I was looking at the doorbell/phone monitor and others. Is it more that an alarm system?
Can it do if then else type of programming. Can you assign tags to these inputs? Like assign tag frontdoorbellpressed to input 1 and then write logic to handle this event so you can fire off something like front door lights on etc. Or is it more alarm centric. I would have really liked something that would have been more z-wave based but the hardware for z-wave or zigbee is just not there yet. It would be nice to have z-wave Input and relay output units, doorbell, fire monitors which would cut down on wiring but it looks like you have to go halfway with zwave for lighting and elk or some other homeautomation for sensors.
 

electron

Administrator
Staff member
The Elk M1 is an alarm panel, but it is also a very flexible home automation controller. Turning a light on when the doorbell rings is very easy to do. The M1 supports many addtional hardware pieces (it's easy to expand using the serial port expanders), including a Z-wave interface :eek:
 

WayneW

Senior Member
Tombo said:
Ok so what impressed me is the I/O that you can hookup. I was looking at the doorbell/phone monitor and others. Is it more that an alarm system?
Can it do if then else type of programming. Can you assign tags to these inputs? Like assign tag frontdoorbellpressed to input 1 and then write logic to handle this event so you can fire off something like front door lights on etc. Or is it more alarm centric. I would have really liked something that would have been more z-wave based but the hardware for z-wave or zigbee is just not there yet. It would be nice to have z-wave Input and relay output units, doorbell, fire monitors which would cut down on wiring but it looks like you have to go halfway with zwave for lighting and elk or some other homeautomation for sensors.
Yes, it is MUCH more than a regular alarm system.

It does WHEN/AND/THEN style of programming. No ELSE, but that can be worked around. Yes, the inputs have names/tags, so it makes the logic easier to read/troubleshoot. The M1 DOES support a Z-wave interface, when ever you are ready to go in that direction. Download the ElkRP DEMO program and have a look at it. It is the real program, so what you see is what you get, it just doesn't connect to a panel for uploads/downloads. ElkRP is used by professionals to configure panels away from a customer site, so you still get the proper look and feel of the tool.
 

Tombo

Member
Ok,

I am sold! Does anybody use the voice stuff? How do you apply it? Like instead of a doorbell you announce "Someone is at the front door" or do you use it for "alarm activated exit now" or "pool ladder is down" etc. I have seen some model homes use it to say "garage door open" but it seem dumb since i just opened the door and I am standing next to it. I will probably go with the M1 Gold anyway because I want the serial port.

Thanks everyone.
 

WayneW

Senior Member
I use the voice a fair amount and I am still adding things. Announcing the garage door is open isn't as silly as it first sounds. It is nice to know when somebody opens a door (big or small) on the other side of the house. We don't have kids in the house, so YMMV as you may find the constant announcements more annoying than we do.

The EZ8 supports serial ports also, it is just that the EZ8 model doesn't have one built in like the M1. Both support up to 8 serial ports (for now).
 

Spanky

Senior Member
The M1SDK serial port software tool is available free. It helps write and test the ASCII strings that are available on the M1 to control other devices or other devices control the M1.

You can download the ASCII Serial Protocol from the ELK Website under the documents section.

www.elkproducts.com




Send a request for the M1SDK to [email protected]
 

gwww

Member
Does the SDK work with the Ethernet port? Does the SDK come with source code? Finally, what libraries (DLLs, etc) do you use for the SSL on the Ethernet port. I was trying to use stunnel (www.stunnel.org) to communicate with SSL over Ethernet and was not successful (yet!).

Thanks very much. Love your product and your support!

Cheers, Glenn.
 
Top