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Insteon Hub? Anyone check this thing out yet?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I am at the beginning stages of implementing an Insteon network at my home and just saw this new Insteon Hub that Smarthome is advertising. I was excited to see this on their website and hope it is not too good to be true. I'm intrigued at what it claims it can do but am looking to see if anyone else has tried it yet. I'm guessing the ISY-99 would still be more capable but if this would be comparable and easier to use it would be worth considering.

Anyone have any feedback on this yet?
post #2 of 13
Check the Smarthome forum. There are people posting about it there.
post #3 of 13
Im testing it and have seen the complains from other people, so far Im not that thrill, one big thing I did not like is that I have keypads link to an LED buld, if I turn it on by keypad and turn it off by Smart HUB it those not sync, it leavs the keypad button on
post #4 of 13
I had a chance to play with one for a few days but I found it very lacking compared to the ISY99 -- The ISY is pretty easy to use if you dedicate a few hours to it.

In general I find the Insteon Hub software making an attempt at being pretty but lacking a lot of functionality.
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the help guys! I was afraid it would be too good to be true. I think I will stick with my original plan to go with the ISY-99.
post #6 of 13
I bought a Hub as soon as it came out. Long-time Smarthome guy (~ 7yrs) with about 20 switches.

I was hoping SH would get it right this time (unlike the flaky 2412N) and the verdict is not good. It's half baked. The app used to control/program the Hub is buggy, and missing a lot. They really need to invest in a UI designer. I can still live with that. The worst part is the sunset and sunrise timers NEVER work for me. Very disappointing obviously. Others have complained about the same issue.

The silver lining is that the Hub works well with the (now free) Houselinc software. So now I'm using that to control all my Insteon switches via the Hub. Unfortunately it requires me to leave the PC on 7/24. I hope SH gets some software updates out soon. As crappy as my experience has been so far -- and this is consistent with QC at Smarthome given that I had to replace all my 1.0 switches a few years back when they all died -- I'm holding out hope for the Hub. After all, I've come this far, and lived to tell!
post #7 of 13
Hey Folks, take a look at CastleOS, it's a new home automation software I wrote that just launched last week. Like Houselinc you need to leave the PC on 24/7, but you'll get the best UI in the industry, and functionality to match the ISY and then some. www.CastleOS.com

Here's a sample screenshot:

post #8 of 13
We sell Insteon products including the Hub and ISY994 (new ISY99) in Canada and my initial feedback and advice is that they are two different products aimed at very different markets. The Insteon Hub is meant to be for somewhat simple installations and to make the process as easy as humanly possible. If the router supports UPNP and it's turned on, one can install the app on their iphone/android device and it will find the hub and you can add devices, create scenes, add cameras, set up basic schedules, set up alerts, all from the phone. It's actually pretty slick. My basic testing with Android is that it works quite well. I admit I haven't tried sunrise/sunset times. Will have to look at that.

Yes, definitely had/has some bugs and they are working on fixes (all owners received an email a couple weeks ago giving an update on the plans and progress). I honestly believe for the target market it's leaps and bounds better than the SmartLinc in this regard. Definitely not a perfect product but it's OK in the current state and definitely getting better as they move forward. They are actively adding new features and fixing bugs.

To jpclement - who had the keypad linked to another device and when controlling the devices with the hub the keypad didn't respond... this is the nature of the set up of Insteon. What I mean is that unlike X10 back in the day, when you control 1 end device you are NOT controlling anything else including scene controllers. If you want to have the keypad button also respond you need to tell the Hub to toggle the SCENE not the DEVICE. If the hub doesn't know about the scene (eg. it was a link/scene created manually) it won't be able to do it.

The ISY994 shines when it comes to more advanced installs and programming. The ISY994 can do ALL the linking, set on levels, ramp rates, create scenes. You can do it in the ISY or you can get the ISY to spider to find/learn about devices and scenes. You can program it with basic on/off times or complex schedules. You can add conditional logic. (if the front door opens, and it's between 8pm and 11pm on Monday-Friday and the light isn't already on, turn it on). You can also expand it with other software modules for network controlled devices, turn it in to a mini web server, add a weather module to expand the logic, etc. You can look for extras like double tapped switches to execute programs too.

So I think one needs to figure out if they're looking for quick and simple or more advanced. All of this of course is simply my 2 cents as some feedback and to use in the decision making process. Hopefully it helps.

Aartech Canada
post #9 of 13
Hello Robert,

I am new to the Insteon game... I recently bought two 2477-D switches to address a specific issue I had and it worked perfectly. However, what it did was allow my mind to race with the possibilities of all the crazy things one can do with Insteon products... I am up to an insane amount of money that I want to spend (thousands of dollars) to automate my house... I had not thought about the concept you mentioned above in which the system could trigger when the front door is opened to automatically turn on the lights... That is just a fantastic idea...

So, my question is what is the trigger point? I do have a complete alarm system throughout the house and there is a separate contact and wire from each door to the alarm panel. Now, that panel is a very basic one that in affect has zero automation... I am not a fan of using motion sensors all over the place (we have 7 doors)... However, if there were some way to link the alarm system to the Insteon system, that would be fantastic... I was considering the ISY994i as the primary controller... Do you know if I can accomplish what I want and if so, what would be the method? Thanks in advance.

post #10 of 13
What alarm system do you have? I know there are (future) plans to add support for DSC and they have excellent support for Elk M1 Gold as a software module for the Isy.

Side note for the comments about the original Hub - the new dual band version is shipping and hopefully has the bugs worked out. Original owners should qualify for an exchange.
post #11 of 13
My alarm is a fairly old (probably 12 years now) DSC panel... I was considering updating to the Elk M1 Gold and the ISY994i to go with it... Any idea how Elk compares to the DSC? My DSC has been pretty much bullet proof...

post #12 of 13
Sorry, it was just brought to my attention that I never replied to the last forum post question. Sorry but I didn't get any notification and don't regularly monitor all the forums. To answer your question, Elk is a UL listed, professional alarm system. It's solid but with way more automation features & friendliness.
post #13 of 13

I went ahead and got a nice set of Insteon equipment for a house I'm moving into (alone) in a few weeks.  Once I get it all setup I'll post some good review-esque info for future readers.  My setup will involve dimmer outlets (2), lamp modules (4), motion sensors (2), water sensor for water heater (1), wifi IR camera (1) plus the 8-button wireless remote.  Once I move in and know which hard-wired lights I want to control I'll probably get 4-6 switches for FULL control.  Looking forward to a fully-automated house (well, at least as close as I'll probably ever get).


Edit: Yes, I also got the Insteon Hub.  That was probably assumed, but figured I'd say so.

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