Homeworks vs RadioRA for the DIY'er or low-maintenance dude(eh, me) - Page 3 - AVS Forum
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Home A/V Distribution > Homeworks vs RadioRA for the DIY'er or low-maintenance dude(eh, me)
rbroders's Avatar rbroders 11:07 PM 09-11-2006
I don't know if Homeworks or RadioRA has this problem, but *most* lighting systems don't report load status changes correctly when you use native scenes. If you want to use fancy touchpanels to show the status of loads then you need to emulate scenes using individual load commands (preferably using the very reliable security controller). Sometimes you can get around the problem using polling - yech.

--Bob
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Andrew Wolfe's Avatar Andrew Wolfe 03:04 PM 09-12-2006
I'm not sure we have anwered the original question...

If you are a DIY'er - is there really a choice? Can a DIY'er get Homeworks components and the required software?
bbetz's Avatar bbetz 05:17 PM 09-12-2006
No you must be certified to buy homeworks
QQQ's Avatar QQQ 05:25 PM 09-12-2006
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Wolfe
I'm not sure we have anwered the original question...

If you are a DIY'er - is there really a choice? Can a DIY'er get Homeworks components and the required software?
That is the norm but I do not consider it accurate. Just as with AMX and Crestron products, there are dealers that will work with consumers who wish to be more actively involved in the process. And will also supply the end user with the software.

To clarify, I guess it depends on what Andrew meant by his question. A DIY CANNOT purchase Homeworks through an electrical distributor. They would need to purchase it through a certified Homeworks dealer. That means they would need to find a dealer willing to work with them in whatever capacity they were looking for, which could cover the gamut from little involvement to partial involement to a lot of involvement.
IVB's Avatar IVB 05:43 PM 09-12-2006
Technically the OP subject was:

"Homeworks vs RadioRA for the DIY'er or low-maintenance dude".

I.E., I may opt to pay someone to come in and install it if they're willing to give me the software & source code so I can make modifications myself later [obviously absolving them of any and all liability in the process].
Andrew Wolfe's Avatar Andrew Wolfe 08:36 PM 09-12-2006
Which once again begs the question:

What is the best RF lighting option for DIY? I have a separate controller and I don't want to pull wire to each switch. Are there other good choices besides these two?
QQQ's Avatar QQQ 09:17 PM 09-12-2006
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Wolfe
Which once again begs the question:

What is the best RF lighting option for DIY?
Just to play devils advocate here, as a dealer I fail to see the difference. What makes something qualify as a "DIY" product. If there are dealers that will sell Lutron Homeworks to DIY and provide them with the software, doesn't that make it "DIY".

I am very much a "DIY" type of guy myself in some regards. Sometimes that means purchasing through a more specialized authorized dealer, or sometimes at Home Depot. I don't see what the difference is as long as I can purchase it from someone that is happy to sell it to me.

As for your question, the best wireless lighting options are from Lutron, Vantage, and Crestron, all of which require an "authorized" dealer. Lower end options would be UPB based products which communicate over the power line. I guess you would call those "DIY" since I assume you can order them over the Internet.
Andrew Wolfe's Avatar Andrew Wolfe 01:48 PM 09-13-2006
Good point. A product can still be "DIY" if you buy from a dealer - but from my perspective that is only a practical solution if the dealer is actually allowed to sell to you in a DYI fashion. If I buy a Universal Remote from a dealer - I know that I am allowed to have the programming software and some level of access to online support. If I buy a Crestron, my understanding is that the dealer is never "authorized" to sell or give me the programming tools.

Which category does Homeworks fall into?
AnthemAVM's Avatar AnthemAVM 12:29 PM 10-08-2006
So in reading this thread, if I want to controll my lights by my computer, I need Homeworks. If I wanted all done by remote R/A is my answer.

What does a Homeworks system run for lets say 32 controlls?

Michael
Andrew Wolfe's Avatar Andrew Wolfe 12:43 PM 10-08-2006
I don't think so. RA has a serial-port based controller that can be run by a computer as well.
IVB's Avatar IVB 01:53 PM 10-08-2006
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Wolfe
I don't think so. RA has a serial-port based controller that can be run by a computer as well.
Yep. CQC has a driver for RadioRA, and RadioRA is a much more appropriate DIY solution for smaller installs.
AnthemAVM's Avatar AnthemAVM 05:24 PM 10-08-2006
I have a question, have been looking at the Radio RA site, I have a home built in 1963, so there is just a black ( Hot) and White wire leading to my recessed lights, can I make this work?

Thanks

Michael
Andrew Wolfe's Avatar Andrew Wolfe 06:48 PM 10-08-2006
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnthemAVM
I have a question, have been looking at the Radio RA site, I have a home built in 1963, so there is just a black ( Hot) and White wire leading to my recessed lights, can I make this work?

Thanks

Michael
I have a home built in 1998. There is just a "black ( Hot) and White wire leading to my recessed lights." This is the way 99.9% of all homes are. I'm sure RadioRA will work fine in that environment.

Now, it is unclear as to whether the switch box needs a ground wire. The installation instructions recommend contacting an electrician if you do not have one. Is this a code issue? Anybody know for sure?
audiblesolutions's Avatar audiblesolutions 11:51 PM 10-08-2006
Radio Ra dimmers are 2 wire so having a neutral in the box is not relavant except if you need an interface ( ie., you have an electronic load or need a power booster. ) Failure to have a ground in an electrical box is a major violation of NEC. If you have BX, or jacketed electrical wire the metal jacket is considered a machanical safety ground and you do not need a separate ground wire. If it's romex you sure had better have a ground in that box. How do you know if you have BX? One clue is to check if you have a metal or plastic box installed. While some electricians use romex with metal boxes most use plastic boxes with romex. The sure way is to look at the wire. Kind of hard to mass the metal jacket on a BX cable. It has been a while since I installed a Radio Ra switch but I believe all switches require a neutral in the box. Dimmers do not.

Alan
focusontheworld's Avatar focusontheworld 02:55 AM 10-09-2006
I've just read this thread and especially the previous thread from a couple of years ago. Does anyone have any comments on the new lighting products from Crestron that have come out since the earlier thread vis-a-vis the Lutron products that have been discussed here? I'm thinking of the relative appeal of the new Cameo keypads versus the Lutron keypads and also the new wireless lighting controls using infiNET versus the 2 Lutron wireless options discussed here.
robertmee's Avatar robertmee 10:30 AM 10-09-2006
IVB,

Have you looked at Centralite's starlite system? About the price of Radio RA but has a built in controller with astronomical clock and does 2 way feedback.

Any pro's installed a starlite system?
IVB's Avatar IVB 11:51 AM 10-09-2006
I have not checked that out. It now looks like I cannot cash out the investment that I was using to pay for this until Q1. The Dow may have hit a record, but my dang stock picks certainly didn't. Hence, i'm focusing on getting the rest of my stuff cleaned up so I can focus on this exclusively at that point.
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