Long story short, I'm struggling to find good recommendations for setting up a few simple smart home items and integrations. When using the search, I couldn't find current suggestions for some hardware, so I thought I'd just ask.
I have a few Philips Hue bulbs and a Hub, about a dozen Slyvania bulbs and light strips, and about 5 Govee light strips, all used in my basement streaming studio for work. I've got a couple Elgato Stream Decks that I'd like to use for easy powering up certain lights and setting colors/scenes.
I'd like to expand the smart home into the rest of the house, but I'm at a standstill on what hardware to get. I'd like to have more bulbs and light strips used for closets and hallways with some motion sensors, along with some bulbs and light switches/dimmers, because if the Wife can't figure how how to turn on and off lights, the whole system isn't going to be implemented.
So, really it all comes down to; What are the best/recommended
- Light Switch/Dimmers
- Motion Sensors
- Door Sensors
that integrate with both Hubitat and each other and an Elgato Stream Deck?
I'm not interested in getting hardcore deep into coding and running several selfhosted servers just to make some lights work, and I'm just kinda stuck in a rut of trying to figure out if I should just go uniform with my hardware or if there is any hardware that works with the everything. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Hello and Welcome.
I will try and start at the beginning, so please excuse my slow nature.
First of all, where you live is an important consideration in deciding if you want to go Zwave or Zigbee or Other. If you're in Europe you probably want to stick with Zigbee all the way, and if you're in North America perhaps Zwave or Lutron devices might be preferred.
Since I mentioned Lutron, please be aware that Lutron devices are very dependable and reliable, and expensive (perhaps twice as expensive as a Zigbee switch). Also, you would need an additional Hub (pro -2) if you go with Lutron. (By the way, their Pico button devices are among the best button devices you can buy).
Once you decide on that first step - the rest will fall into place.
I would start by reviewing the List of Compatible Devices | Hubitat Documentation
My advice is smart switches or smart dimmers wherever you can. For the most part they look and act like normal switches that guests and other family members know how to use. If you start with smart bulbs and dumb switches, people are going to flip the switch, and shut off the power to the smart bulb, and it won't behave as desired.
I also would automate whatever you can. Things like bathrooms, kitchens, and hallways are great with motion sensors controlling things. I use dimmers in all rooms so for example you go into the bathroom at night, it automatically turns on at 20% brightness, and turns off automatically after a minute of inactivity. During the day the bathroom lights come on full brightness and the delay to turn off is longer. Even my outdoor lights and garage lights are dimmers.
RGB gets a little trickier, there aren't a lot of good remote devices with color wheels to run RGB bulbs. That is the one use case I have for dashboards. I do have some remote buttons to cycle through colors which is OK, but not optimal.
I am a big advocate of Lutron Pico remotes, they work terrific and inexpensive. I just wish their switches (which admittedly are durable as heck) were more inline with the pricing of other smart switches. The premium for their switches/dimmers is absurd. For Lutron you will need a separate hub, which is another downside, but the inexpensive Pico with the somewhat expensive Bridge Pro cost balances out after about 10 Pico compared to using other button remotes.
Some very general advice I would offer, alongside what has already been provided, is to aim for devices that are flexible in how you can use them into the future. So that could include:
- The range of automation platforms that you can use them with, e.g. Hubitat, Home Assistant, HomeKit
- Whether the devices can be operated through a proprietary platform or control options, such as Philips Hue's bridge, Bond bridge, etc
- What voice assistant platforms can the devices be integrated with, Google Home, Alexa, etc
- Physical control options that can be used as a fallback for control when IT-based systems are not available, such as physical remotes for shades, etc
There are probably other examples, but hopefully you get the idea of trying to give yourself options, both immediately when you purchase the device and need to have backup options available for control, but also if you (or others decide for you) that you can't use the platform you intend on using today. And that's not to say you would be moving away from Hubitat. For me I have been able to move my Hue lights from my Hue bridge across to paired directly with Hubitat and then back again, each with there own advantages, but choosing that product line provided me with those options and I could adjust my setup as I needed / wanted.
This isn't a firm rule to follow, obviously there are always compromises we need to make, so it's just something to consider and explore as you start to look at different devices you may want to purchase.
I wasn't sure from your post if you have already found that there is a Govee community integration that runs locally for most of their devices as well as a Steam Deck plug in for Hubitat. I use both and work great so far although I don't rely on the Stream Deck much with Hubitat. The SD uses Hubitat's Maker API to control devices.
Oh, I didn't know that there was a Stream Deck plug in for Hubitat, thanks!
I might have said that backwards. There is a Hubitat plug in that you can install on the Stream Deck. Sorry.