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Is the DSC Powerseries still the best for a new hardwire wireless combo system ?

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    Is the DSC Powerseries still the best for a new hardwire wireless combo system ?

    Greetings,
    It has been a few years since I purchased my DSC Power Series 64 zone (32Wireless/32Wired) system and while programming it is a bear, the system is quite satisfying. I opted for the 64 so that I would have lots of free zones for automation, interior lighting when doors open, motion activated lighting etc. Adding the Envisalink card and Spud's plug-in brought the system to life.

    There are a few downsides. My choice of the Resolution wireless motions was poor as they are optimized for battery life and pretty much useless for motion lighting. As mentioned the programming is not for everyone, the cost of the wireless sensors and the interface looks a bit dated. That's a pretty short list for a panel that has been on the market for a good many years....Oh and I forgot to mention the 300bps upload speed for the DLS software.

    If you just bought a new house with an alarm system pre-wire and would like to automate, what would be your system of choice ?

    What other split wired/wireless systems are worth considering?

    #2
    We are very happy with the Elk M1G, which has great support in HS and in other systems... We don't use that many wireless sensors, so I really can't speak much to that issue, but the system is attractive, and integrates well.

    Comment


      #3
      My DSC experience is similar, along with the challenge to program, it's truly an old school binary unit, ....Very High reliability so the WAF satisfaction level is great. Fast response thru SPUD's plugin Envisalink triggering HS4 events.

      All of my sensors are hardwired , however the new door replacement project WAF has in mind will require wireless sensors and I want the same performance

      I'm wondering on next steps as the wireless replacement sensor/hardware.


      Devoir

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        #4
        I bought our security system just a few (maybe 4) years ago and after a long search decided on the DSC Powerseries. I don't use any wireless modules so I can't comment on them. However, all wired sensors work perfectly. Not a single issue at all. With the Powerseries there is also no monthly charge, though you can sign up for monitoring service (which I don't do). I did some extensive research and while it is a basic system it does what it is supposed to do in a very reliable way. Configuring it is pretty old-style but once you did it you won't have to touch it again. The only issue I have with it is that with the HS DSC plugin you can't get updates when a zone is bypassed. That's a pretty important problem. HS said they will fix it but so far they didn't address the problem. Besides that I highly recommend DSC Powerseries.

        Edit: Btw, I have sensors in almost every door. So I know when the pantry door is opened, closets are opened, etc. I use this to control lights, fans, etc.

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          #5
          ...... love the hardwired sensor..... never go wrong...

          Comment


            #6
            Thanks for all of your replies. I guess as it stands the DSC PS can still hold it's own.

            I have friend who just purchased a new house and will want to automate in the future. He will want to DIY as much as possible so I think a smaller expandable system 16/32 would be appropriate but this will come down to how many home run zones included in the house.

            The downside to other systems is re-learning the programming, as I am likely going to help support it.


            Originally posted by devoir View Post
            My DSC experience is similar, along with the challenge to program, it's truly an old school binary unit, ....Very High reliability so the WAF satisfaction level is great. Fast response thru SPUD's plugin Envisalink triggering HS4 events.

            All of my sensors are hardwired , however the new door replacement project WAF has in mind will require wireless sensors and I want the same performance

            I'm wondering on next steps as the wireless replacement sensor/hardware.
            Devoir
            Depending on your panels age/capability/utilization you may be able to either swap a keypad for one of the RFK units that incorporate a wireless receiver, or add a wireless receiver to your panel.

            I have a variety of wireless sensors. motions, smokes, glass breaks, floods, door window, and key fobs. My favorite of these is the vanishing door/window sensors. They are very hard to see, so much so, that I have pressure washed the one on my back gate 2 times. It survived the first bath. The downside is, if you ever need to open them, the plastic tabs break very easily. Oh and it is not rated for outdoor use. I use larger wireless sensors on remote locations like a shed. My least favorite senors are the wireless motions. I have been spoiled by inexpensive wired motions. I have had extremely good battery life on all of the wireless sensors, most going on 6 years. Note to self, time to buy batteries.

            For the all-important WAF, the vanishing contacts might be an option, although Ion Plunger-D might be worth a look. I bought a few of them to use on closet doors and drawers, but after 6 years they are still new-in-box so I can't offer an opinion. Anyone who has experience with these please chime in.


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              #7
              I "was" using an Omni Panel with HS solely for voice control. However, after I recently moved I didn't have time to re-install the panel so I started recreating the programming in HS. I'm so happy with HS that I don't see the need to re-install the Omni, except for needing alarm capability. From what I'm reading here is that the two most popular alarm panels are the Elk and DSC. Do both of those communicate with HS via IP or serial? Given that a plugin is needed to interface with HS, the weight will be placed on the best supported plugin.

              Thanks all...

              P.S. If at all possible I really don't want a system that requires programming via the keypad. Software interface highly preferred.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by avpman View Post
                From what I'm reading here is that the two most popular alarm panels are the Elk and DSC. Do both of those communicate with HS via IP or serial? Given that a plugin is needed to interface with HS, the weight will be placed on the best supported plugin.
                P.S. If at all possible I really don't want a system that requires programming via the keypad. Software interface highly preferred.
                I recently installed a DSC Power Series panel and find it to be a sound choice that is well supported by Spud's Evisalink plug-in. The Envisalink board is what allows the panel to communicate by Ethernet, and I highly recommend it.
                That said, you still have to program the panel with a keypad. It's not difficult, but it is tedious, with inconsistent and non-intuitive command structures. A full text keypad is a huge help, but it's still an exercise from the 90's. Patience will be your friend if you go that route.

                Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
                HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548, NUC i3

                HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF | RFXCOM | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3 | EtherRain | Ubiquiti

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by Uncle Michael View Post
                  I recently installed a DSC Power Series panel and find it to be a sound choice that is well supported by Spud's Evisalink plug-in. The Envisalink board is what allows the panel to communicate by Ethernet, and I highly recommend it.
                  That said, you still have to program the panel with a keypad. It's not difficult, but it is tedious, with inconsistent and non-intuitive command structures. A full text keypad is a huge help, but it's still an exercise from the 90's. Patience will be your friend if you go that route.
                  Just been researching DSC this morning. I thought I saw there is software for programming it available to integrators? Where did you buy your unit?

                  Comment


                    #10
                    You have to register on the DSC website and then you will get access to the software. It is free. There is a bit of a learning curve to this software so if your system is relatively small then you might be better off just using the keypad. As for the plugin, I am using the IT-100 board and then the DSC plugin provided with HS. Rupp rjh It works reasonably well but my pretty SERIOUS issue with it is that you can't trigger events based on bypass/unbypass and HS has not addressed this problem for a very long time (I was just told today there is no update = nothing has been done). That means you can't track if a zone is bypassed or not. The Evisalink plugin I believe even creates a bypass/unbypass device for you.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by mulu View Post
                      You have to register on the DSC website and then you will get access to the software. It is free. There is a bit of a learning curve to this software so if your system is relatively small then you might be better off just using the keypad. As for the plugin, I am using the IT-100 board and then the DSC plugin provided with HS. Rupp rjh It works reasonably well but my pretty SERIOUS issue with it is that you can't trigger events based on bypass/unbypass and HS has not addressed this problem for a very long time (I was just told today there is no update = nothing has been done). That means you can't track if a zone is bypassed or not. The Evisalink plugin I believe even creates a bypass/unbypass device for you.
                      Do those issues exist with the Spud EnvisaLink DSC Software Plugin or just the HS branded plugin?


                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by avpman View Post

                        Do those issues exist with the Spud EnvisaLink DSC Software Plugin or just the HS branded plugin?

                        Blade also has a DSC plugin. Which to choose? 😵

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                          #13
                          Originally posted by avpman View Post
                          Do those issues exist with the Spud EnvisaLink DSC Software Plugin or just the HS branded plugin?
                          As far as I recall this is only an issue with the HS plugin. Note that the HS plugin uses the IT-100 interface board which has a serial connection. Spud's plugin uses the EnivsaLink interface board which has an Ethernet connection. I had both boards at one time (not used at the same time but owned at the same time) and I decided for the IT-100. I don't quite recall why I made the decision but it was probably because there was built-in support by HS. If I had to make the decision again, I probably would keep the EnvisaLink and sell the IT-100 just because the IT-100 doesn't tell me if a zone is bypassed or not. I consider this as very essential but HS hasn't done a thing about it since ages.

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