A good customer of mine purchased a new home. The new house is a huge home and has a control 4 system installed. I believe it is the OS2 version. I am not a Control 4 guys; I actually hate it. The problem with the home is that I do not have the username and password and the lighting system is on about 75% of home and manual switches everywhere else. Also there is a Control 4 audio system throughout the home.
My thoughts are to remove the switches and replace them with a Lutron Caseta (new switches). There are about 100 switches in the home but I will us dumb motions in the powder rooms, furnace room and storage rooms. I will also put in wired 3 ways which will not count towards the 75 limit. I will use Zigbee switches for timer only lights. Sell all of the Control 4 switches and use control 4 for audio only. I will put in a Hubitat in this installation.
The other option is that I bring in a Control 4 guy and program the system the way the customer will like and replace the remaining manual switches with control 4 switches.
I would suggest just getting a second Caseta (Pro) Hub, in the big scheme of things, it's not that much more $$.
I probably will. I will use the second hub for keypads (picos) and such. I keep all lighting on one hub because Alexa integration will be easier.
Did the customer like the automation in their previous house? If so, I would stick with something that is Hubitat-compatible. What about a Lutron RA2 system?
Agree this sounds like a reasonable house to consider RadioRA 2.
Meant for bigger systems than Caseta, and the keypads are much more customizable than Picos. Technically Picos can be custom ordered with silkscreened labels just like RA 2 keypads, but the cost of that is built into the RA2 keypads.
The customer had a RA2/Caseta Hub Pro/Hubitat combo and loved it. All my customers love my simple setup. The house has these Control 4 dashboards throughout so I was thinking about having them reprogrammed for only music. I would then put in the new Caseta switches and hopefully the Clara accessory switch if it is released. Though there are more than 100 switches there are less than 75 that actually control lights. The other 25 are 3 way and 4 way switches.
A funny story about this house. So I was meeting with original owner who paid $150K for this Control 4 system that did not even control every switch in the house but had a lot of audio. So I noticed an old school dimmer in the middle of some Control 4 switches and I asked him why there is a dimmer there. He told me "I need to dim these lights so I removed a control 4 switch". I then showed him that most of his control 4 switches were dimmers and he simply had to hold them down or up to dim. He was shocked.
I met with the new owners of the original home and showed them how to use everything and transferred over everything to them within an hour. Everything is on it own email address and the house has its own iPad. They look to be a new customer in the future. Simple actually works.....Control 4 is not simple.
I was a big RA2 select guy until the new Caseta Diva and Clara switches showed up. They are cleaner and easier for customers to use. Once the companion switch is available I will be going this route in the future.
I was going to suggest a hybrid approach.
You can use Caseta Pro for the switches/dimmers, but use an RA2 main repeater for the Picos. The reason is that you can put the Picos on a different frequency than the Caseta Pro devices. This removes an issue with radio contention that causes a 1 second lag when using a Pico through Hubitat on another Caseta device.
That is good idea. I will do that.
To me Control 4 looks like a system designed to drain the customer and keep you dependent on the installer.
I believe that is the ultimate model, yes...
My son just bought a home with Control 4 and it's a pain. He had to get the tech out as it's proprietary - just to get TV to talk to the in-wall speakers - no more surround sound. His ST stuff is mostly useless as all the switches do random things for the former owner.
He has Hue running with bulbs left permanently on on C4 and Kiwkset locks but no real useful automation anymore.
C4 did say they were going to have an ST module but who know if that ever happened.
I would agree. Control 4 has issues and I will push for the more simple solution; Lutron.
My house came with a Savant server to run the Lutron Homeworks QS system as well as the rack system (located in the garage) with the home theater systems for the Family Room and Master Bedroom. This was installed by two owners ago, but essentially de-nutted and dumbed down for the previous owner, since they were technophobes. The integrators that installed the system (and then dumbed it down) were out of business, so I had to do a ton of legwork to figure out who to contact just to be able to get into the system (and a lot of it is locked down). Once I did, the guy was pretty cool, but he also wanted me to upgrade the Savant system in the house. I naively asked the price and nearly ■■■■ a brick when he said $5000 to start. And then every time I'd need something changed, they'd happily charge me $185/hr to make the updates (plus travel time). No way.
I then found Roomie Remote, which in conjunction with Global Cache IP2IR/IP2SL hardware, was able to control all the components in the rack. I added Hubitat in order to control aspects of the lighting. Except for the hard-wired motion sensors that link directly with the Homeworks (argh!) I have almost total control now.
Lutron Homeworks can be a beast.
I have a house with both Control4 and Hubitat. And Home Assistant and Apple Home. It's totally DIY, which may or may not be what your customer is willing to deal with.
C4 OS2 is ancient. If the devices are HC250 or HC800, over 10 years old, they cannot be upgraded to the most recent release. Core (current) and EA (previous generation) controllers can run the current versions of the controller software.
Control4 is actually very good overall. It exceeds Hubitat's capabilities in AV control (the TV remote controls are great, better than Harmony ever was. The new Halo remotes look great) and manual control (native panels). C4 and Hubitat are fairly similar in automation control capabilities, but Hubitat is moving up while C4 is static. Hubitat definitely has more apps that can speed a deployment.
One major area with lots of options is audio. Do you have/want an audio matrix receiver and amp? Or do you want Sonos. The breakeven price point is about 5-6 zones, more zones make C4 cheaper. For a matrix C4 is great. C4 also works with Sonos, yet Sonos works well without a C4 controller. On the video side, are the receiver and cable/streaming boxes remote from the TV? If so there aren't really many good options cheaper than C4.
C4 lighting is also good. With lots of capabilities in C4, naturally. For an existing C4 customer there are few reasons to rip and replace. Certainly not Caséta, even with the new form factor.
C4 costs are high on the install. But are reasonable on the maintenance. There are plenty of remote programmers available at reasonable rates.
You have to work with the customer what is the best course of action for them. What capabilities would adding Hubitat add? If not much then you should figure out your value. It's OK to turn down jobs.
If you have a house with HomeWorks and Savant then you can afford whatever the dealer charges. That's how they figure what the market will bear. Both of those systems are super high end. My in laws got talked into a Savant/HomeWorks system because they could afford it even as a RadioRA 2 and C4 system would have worked as well. They, like your previous occupants, don't use much of the capabilities They're now looking at a C4 system for their other house. If you have a racked system I'd recommend you at least understand what a C4 system can do. The new Halo remotes are going to far exceed any phone app especially if you use Xfinity and/or Apple TV.
Yeah, that's how they figure it, but not how I figure it (I want to do this all on my own, anyway). My house is a single story, only about 2200 sq ft, and the systems installed were complete overkill for both the house and this area, so the guy who dumped all the money into these renovations didn't get much back on his investment. This was his "weekend house" from what I understand.
For what it's worth, I'm completely happy with Roomie Remote as a remote control solution. Works well for minimal cost. The biggest drawback most people have with it is the lack of a hard-button remote, which I don't really care about.