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Now that ALC is dead...

gym4im

Member
I have had my Omni Pro II since 2004 and it has worked flawlessly and dependably. Now the peripherals are starting to go. When I renovated, I put outside floods lights on strategic peaks of the house to light up all around, for various reasons. I put the switches, for the floods, in the garage for each of the 5 locations. When I automated, we discovered while the new peak lights had a third wire, the original owners only put two wires out to the garage when the added it on to the house. That made using anything but ALC to control the lights, not possible...which was fine. About a year ago, I discovered the controller was not controlling the lights, and I could not control them at the original OmniTouches. I figured it was the ALC board, (BTW, my "installer" had vanished). So, I called around, and those who had an ALC board, were charging 3-6 times the original price...so getting a new board was not an option. Then one morning I noticed the outside lights were off. I left them on permanently (I know a waste). So I went to the OTouch, and I could control the lights. It seemed fixed. I then went to PCAccess 3.0 and noticed I had uploaded an old program the day before. So, I uploaded, to the controller, the correct automation program. Then the ALC lights did not work again. I scoured each program I had and, everything pertaining to the ALC connection was the same. I do not know what caused it to work. 
 
Anyway, does anyone have a suggestion as to what protocol I might use, for the outside lights, to replace the ALC? I started to replace them with Phillips HUE, with their motion sensor. I still have to hook up the motion sensor. I bought two bulbs, which wasn't cheap and I have 9 more to go, plus 2 or 3 Phillips motion sensors. Though it an expensive proposition, the thing is I do not have any way to tie those lights to my OPII which has the announcement board. if someone trips a motion I hear about it. 4 times I caught guys going through my car due to the announcement waking me up in the middle of the night. I asked Phillips if they plan on making a device that will make a sound or announcement (also wish one can add better sounding bells, gongs,etc. to the OPII), ...all though now that I think about it, Siri or Alexa could probably do that. But, I do not their listening feature. At least, the OPII board only informs. I could care less about talking to those "Assistants", who probably gossip more than do what we tell them or keep us informed! :).
 
Would appreciate any pointers one may give me toward fixing this.  Thank you.  Jim
 

pete_c

Guru
The Omni Pro talks X10, UPB, HLC, Z-Wave and Zigbee.  Here primarily use UPB for inwall switches.  If you utilize conduit its easy to add a neutral wire.  I also utilize X10, ZWave and Zigbee.
 

pete_c

Guru
For the Omni Pro you can really only use wired motion sensors. Here use Optex outdoor sensors.
 

BraveSirRobbin

Moderator
There are some Inovelli Z-Wave switches that I believe do not require a neutral, though I've had some trouble with their first generation (these are second generation switches though)
 

ano

Senior Member
pete_c said:
Hue is propietary wireless which doesn't speak to the Omni Pro panel.
Philips Hue bulbs uses two Zigbee standards that the Omni doesn't support, but they are not proprietary. Older Hue bulbs supported the Zigbee Light Link standard, which is a specialized Zigbee standard for light bulbs.  New Hues bulbs support Zigbee 3.0
 
Its good to know the whole history to understand it.  First "regular" Zigbee was released, which is what the Omni supports. Most Zigbee devices you buy today support that. You see something like "Supports Zigbee Home Automation 1.2" on the box.
 
Then came this idea that Zigbee would have sub-standards for specialized tasks called "Clusters."  For example, standard Zigbee supported lights on and off and dim, but what about colors?  So they introduced the sub-standard for lighting called Zigbee Light Link. There was as a sub-standard for Home Automation but it never really caught on. 
 
These sub-standards were a mess, and made things quite complex. We have the problem with all these standards floating around and many things not compatible with each other.  
 
Introduce Zigbee 3.0   What they have done is gone back to one standard which is compatible with most everything. The "clusters" are built-in also.  While Zigbee Light Link bulbs were NOT compatible with Zigbee Home Automation 1.2, Zigbee 3.0 should be. At least Zigbee Home Automation devices "should" work on a Zigbee 3.0 network. I'm not exactly sure on the other way around, will Zigbee 3.0 devices work on a Zigbee 1.2 network (Omni network)?  I will need to get a Zigbee 3.0 device and try it. 
 
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