Originally Posted by mborner
Does anyone know how iRule compares with Crestron Mobil Pro G?
I have some experience to share with you. My home automation system is about 5 years old and includes a Crestron CP2E, PAD8 and PVID8 for theater control and whole house audio. An HAI OmniPro II does security, lights thermostats.
A couple of months ago, I contacted my original installer about some minor upgrades. He is no longer a Crestron dealer and told me to checkout iRule, which I did. His proposal was to replace the crestron equipment with shinybow audio and video matrix switches and to go with an iRule on ipads.
I did purchase the irule licence and played around with it a lot, especially my Directv and Roku devices, which are ip controllable.
In the end, I found a Crestron programmer, who made some changes to my setup and got me rolling on the Crestron Mobile program. I didn't want to just throw away all that I had invested.
There are actually 4 Crestron idevice products, Mobile, Mobile G, Mobile Pro and Mobile G Pro. The Pro programs are $99 and the others are free. My programmer told me to just get the free version. Mobile G and Mobile G Pro are for the Ipad only, while Mobile and Mobile Pro will work on the iphone, ipod touch and ipad.
My programmer also said that the CP2e only has enough memory to serve up about 10 pages to the iphone, so I could not get all the same pages that I have on my TPMC-8x's (the crestron touchpad remotes). The Crestron Pro II processor has more memory, so if you have that processor, you can get more pages onto your iPad.
So if you have a setup like mine and you want an extra remote, you could get an ipad for around $500 and pay a couple hundred to a programmer and have a partial solution. Or you can now get a new TPMC-8x for about $700 on ebay, pay a programmer to hook it up and get a complete new remote. Of course with the ipad, you can do all kinds of other stuff besides just control your home. The ipad's batterys probably last a lot longer, too.
With iRule you would be moving to a more "open" platform where there is much less vendor lockin. It is more of a DIY system, although I am sure there are or will be professional installers. Irule is currently one-way control, although 2 way control is in beta testing. Irule does not currently support my HAI Omnipro II system, but they told me that they will in the future.
If you are looking for a new system, I would definitely skip Crestron, AMX, elan, etc. The trend is certainly towards more open systems. If you are reluctant to give up an existing Crestron, the mobile products can be part of the solution.
Another option is a product called Command Fusion. This is similar to iRule but is more expensive and you are supposed to use a professional designer and installer. CF, like iRule can use the Global Cache iTach devices to do IP to serial/IR. CF has 2 way communication and has modules for Crestron and AMX. According to their website, you can get a lot more pages of control on your iPad compared to the Crestron Mobile because of the way their technology works. Crestron "serves" the pages from the controller, while commandfussion pages are are stored on you ipad and only the button press command is transmitted. So you can get many more pages and much better graphics. I didn't go this route, because my Crestron installer has never used CF and I didn't want to pay him to learn this new program.