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insteon vs. UPB for primarily lighting
#1
I've been running UPB for my scheduled lighting and a few scenes. It's been pretty reliable (rock solid in some sense) until I started integrating my home theater equipment. I have 3 pieces of equipment that need to be controlled via serial; JVC projector, Sherbourn processor, Oppo player. These seem to hang my UPB driver. Even when I haven't touched the media room for a week, my UPB seems to be hit/miss of late, no matter the recentness of a full reboot.

I'm considering switching to Insteon in the hopes of a more robust system. I'm finding my lighting schedules are only about 80% accurate now, with some lights in the multiple light call activating, and some not. Control is through a 16 port usb to serial edge port which seems to be pretty solid.

Does anyone have an opinion on which of the two is more likely to be more accurate/robust (UPB vs. Insteon)? I would switch to Insteon if the consensus was that it's much more robust. I'm running a Cisco switch for all wired network connections and a Meraki for wifi. If Insteon, what is the recommended controller considering an Amazon Echo and Apple watch are in my near future (if that matters at all)?
Flamin' Noobie...
Warp speed now and don't give me any of that dilythium crystal crap!
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#2
Do you mean that the UPB itself becomes unreliable, separate from CQC? If you mean that having other serial drivers hangs up the driver itself, the only way I could think of that that could remotely happen is if one of those drivers is running wild and eating up the CPU. That's easily confirmed by just looking at the task manager.

If that's not happening, I can't see how it could be anything other than serial hardware issues because drivers are completely separate. They only way they could interfere with each other is by somehow eating up a necessary system resources that they share.
Dean Roddey
Software Geek Extraordinaire
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#3
Not sure about the UPB 'separate from CQC' question. I don't really run any scenes that I would be able to test that feature with. I just know that 1/3 of the time, one of my lights won't activate/deactivate from a timed sequence. I also had two scheduled events (for the same time) that seems to cause some issues. One is my normal landscape lighting, and the other is my Christmas lighting from my soffits. It doesn't like firing two events at the same time... Christmas lights rarely come on so I've shifted their time by 2 minutes and we'll see what happens tomorrow.

UPB used to be rock solid for general lighting. Then I tried using drivers for the media room and UPB would hang up in the morning, without fail almost. A reboot usually fixed the issue. I've resorted to the multiple remotes for now. Don't have time to debug. Hell, barely have time to do anything other than work/sleep these days.

My thought was that if I could get off of serial for lighting control, then at least it's even more unlikely to be some sort of port or driver interference between my three serial drivers for the media room and the serial driver for UPB.

I just want it all to work.... Wink Even if I have to through a little more money at it.
Flamin' Noobie...
Warp speed now and don't give me any of that dilythium crystal crap!
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#4
I was asking if the issue is apparent purely with in the UPB system, do switches fail to control things they are set up to control and that sort of thing? Or is it purely control from CQC that's failing?
Dean Roddey
Software Geek Extraordinaire
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#5
I have insteon, replaced every light switch. It is about 85% reliable. It was 75% but turns out when I replaced a less than a year old switch due to a failure a lot of issues went away in that area. I use the ISY as my controller, that I highly recommend with Insteon.

In order to get to the 85% reliability I have added a line filter to every device on the same circuit as my PLM, as well as anywhere I have a surgeprotector/UPS plugged in. I have also added dual band to about 50% of my house, and I have 4 repeaters plugged in in various places.

As a side note, I recommend if you go through replacing your switches that you use Wago wire nuts to make future replacements easier without damaging/twisting your wires.
Wuench
My Home Theater/Automation Website

[THREAD=5957]BlueGlass CQC Config[/THREAD]
[THREAD=10624]Wuench's CQC Drivers[/THREAD]
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#6
rtarver Wrote:I just want it all to work.... Wink Even if I have to through a little more money at it.

seriously, man. this is where im at. just start throwing money at the problem until shit works. i mean, money fixes all things, right?
do the needful ...
Hue | Sonos | Harmony | Elk M1G // Caseta / Netatmo / Brultech in testing
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#7
It can, if you want to spend the bucks. Go up to something like Radio RA2. At that level, it's no longer consumer level, DIY stuff. It's pro level and it works and it integrates well. It does make a difference when you buy something that's over-built and designed to be (usually) installed by pros who aren't going to mess with it if it's not very, very close to 100% all of the time.

Or maybe Centralite as a less expensive alternative. The Centralite driver isn't V2 yet, but I've offered to do it if someone has one to make available. It shouldn't be much trouble to do it. At least I'm assuming that it's less expensive, though I don't know for sure. It's Zigbee based, so as non-proprietary systems go, it is supposed to be very reliable from reports I've heard. Do your own confirmation though of course.
Dean Roddey
Software Geek Extraordinaire
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#8
rtarver Wrote:I've been running UPB for my scheduled lighting and a few scenes. It's been pretty reliable (rock solid in some sense) until I started integrating my home theater equipment. I have 3 pieces of equipment that need to be controlled via serial; JVC projector, Sherbourn processor, Oppo player. These seem to hang my UPB driver. Even when I haven't touched the media room for a week, my UPB seems to be hit/miss of late, no matter the recentness of a full reboot.

I'm considering switching to Insteon in the hopes of a more robust system. I'm finding my lighting schedules are only about 80% accurate now, with some lights in the multiple light call activating, and some not. Control is through a 16 port usb to serial edge port which seems to be pretty solid.

Does anyone have an opinion on which of the two is more likely to be more accurate/robust (UPB vs. Insteon)? I would switch to Insteon if the consensus was that it's much more robust. I'm running a Cisco switch for all wired network connections and a Meraki for wifi. If Insteon, what is the recommended controller considering an Amazon Echo and Apple watch are in my near future (if that matters at all)?
I have an ISY 994i pro and about 100 Insteon devices in the house, green house, and outside electrical to the (constructed, landscape) stream and ponds. Right now the system is at about 80% reliability but we have a major remodel under way with disruption of electrical lines, removal of switches etc. Before all the remodel started, it was very reliable to the point that I was surprised if a scene or program didn't function properly. That being said, there is a lot of work involved in setting it up and the devices will sometimes fail and need replacement. I think in the last year I've had 2 of my older switches fail as well as a PLM. I keep an extra PLM around since it's critical for a functioning ISY system.

I have friends who went the expensive route in a new house--about a $65k investment overall, professionally installed. Very cool gear but they can't modify what it does themselves and they have had a number of issues which required visits from their professional installer. As a hobbyist, I'm happy to fiddle but if I just wanted a rock solid system that I wouldn't have to touch, I'd do something else.
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#9
In my last house i ran Insteon, and UPB and i liked both, but what i liked the most was the ease of configuration with UPB. In our current house we have only Insteon with a ISY 994i hub and it works great...our only problem is with the apps, which are sporadic (shows a light as off when it is on, and sometimes app won't work at all). I still need to get mine setup with CQC like i used to have.
tia, Ron

My Go Big or Go Home Retirement HT...
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#10
Have never used UPB. I have roughly 40 light switches and plug in modules. (6 Dual band), an ISY/PLM for CQC and old PLC with the Elk M1. The ISY has been a good addition so would also recommend. Makes things easier to manage.

I find reliability is not an issue as far as software goes. Very rare that something doesn't fire in my experience. The house is less than 10 years old so wiring is pretty clean.

My beef with the Inseton product has been the hardware reliability. I have RMA'd at least 10 devices since 2008. A lot of those were earlier on when the product was new, but I still have to replace about 1 device every year/year and a half. Just did one this month.

Thankfully, Smarthome has been excellent with replacing devices under warranty or recalls, but if the failures continue on now that warranty is out it will get a bit annoying for sure. I think you get what you pay for to some extent and I do like that I saved some money. It almost seems their prices are climbing a bit though.
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