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What's the Point of an IN Wall Control Panel?

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    What's the Point of an IN Wall Control Panel?


    #2
    Living in a 100+ year old house I agree... WiFi based devices sitting on a table make much more sense than trying to run wires inside the wall. Also more flexible when you rearrange a room. That said, some folks just prefer less clutter and want everything built in.

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      #3
      There are probably a couple of reasons but one that springs to mind is that they are on 24x7, if you have it on a tablet or smartphone then you are going to have to unlock it, load the app, wait for it to connect and finish loading to then press a button vs just walking up to the screen and pressing it if the client is already powered and loaded.

      I don't have in wall devices but I do have devices connected 24x7 that are table mounted. I can have a glance at the main screen and it will show me temperature/weather/power use/media player status without having to load up the client on my tablet that could take 20 seconds or so.

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        #4
        Originally posted by mrhappy View Post
        There are probably a couple of reasons but one that springs to mind is that they are on 24x7,................
        Are they happy being run 24/7?
        sigpic
        A founder member of "The HA Pioneer Group" otherwise known as the "Old farts club!"

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          #5
          Originally posted by Gogs View Post
          Are they happy being run 24/7?
          I left it probably unclear but it is my O2 Jogglers that I have had running 24x7 connected to HSTouch. Been running two of them non stop for a couple of years now (possibly 2010? I can't remember) and they have not broken.

          I expect the LCD backlight will be the first thing to go, who knows I might be able to replace the screen if it comes to it but I have another two spares anyway.

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            #6
            Originally posted by Gogs View Post
            Are they happy being run 24/7?
            I have a Kindle Fire acting as a 24/7 IP camera viewer and it is perfectly happy.

            Several iPads doing the same thing or acting as Sonos controllers and they all lock up the touch screen after a few days and require a power cycle.

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              #7
              I'm not a fan of the idea of in-wall controllers (more specifically, my wife has made it clear that she won't allow it), but I can see why someone might want it.

              For our house, we have three Android tablets that are on 24x7 with HStouch. All are sitting on a flat surface in a stand, so they are sitting at an nearing upright angle. One is on the kitchen counter, one is in the family room, and one is on the dresser in our Master BR. Aside from periodically disconnecting from HS (wasn't as bad until the most recent Android client), they all work fine 24x7.

              Steve

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                #8
                I think it not only depends on the house but also on what you plan to show on it. Is it something that is of value to more than just you? Is it functional enough for family and guests to operate, does it actually have value as a wall mounted device?

                In my case I decided it didn't meet any of those criteria. I initially went in whole hog for HSTouch with the intention of putting a screen in each of the rooms we use most, mostly as a link to my audio/video server and player plus whatever I needed to operate from HomeSeer. I bought 4 EEE tops at the time to put around the house, at the time there was only a PC client for HSTouch. I worked for months at it without really coming to a level of function that I wanted.

                Most of my troubles worked out to being control and information for audio/video. While I did get control going with IR it was working on a wing and a prayer and often I had to push the button again. The biggest problem I ran into was the lack of a good player plug-in that I could use in HSTouch. All that I looked at and I have them all pretty much made you make and delete playlists to get even a few songs going or keep them going. Changes on the fly were just out of the question, and it was impossible for guests. Now this may have been solved since, I don't know I re-purposed the EEE tops to run the A/V system and just let HomeSeer run in the background doing what it does with no credit at all.

                I have 8 button UPB keypads in all the rooms entryways and in some areas an extra keypad as needed for convenience, so I didn't need HSTouch for anything to do with lighting. I admit that it would be nice to use it for things like weather forecasts, which i can do, and for other things like leaving messages for my wife or a shopping list that can email that list when we're ready to go. Now I'm sure if you're a good enough programmer and good with scripts these things can be done. Unfortunately I'm not and have little time these days to learn a new skill, maybe when I retire. For now I have HomeSeer just pause the music and speak important messages as needed.

                The only HSTouch clients I use these days are one PC client for testing things and an Iphone/Ipad and an android tablet. These only connect as necessary but work well enough. I've kept the screens pretty simple and only what I need for ease of modification and use.

                Maybe after HomeSeer 3 is out and stable HomeSeer Tech will put the time into getting HSTouch where it should be for a 5 year old program. From what I see Main Lobby makes it look like an amateur endeavor with most any add on you could want. One of these days maybe I'll make the jump. Had I saved my money on Maestro and then HSTouch plus associated add-ons I could have bought the thing.
                Marty
                ------
                XPpro SP3 /w HS Standard 2.5.0.80, HSTouch Server - 1.0.0.70, HSTouch Client 1.0.0.73 HSTouch Android - 1.0.0.2, HSTouch iPhone - 1.0.0.2
                Playing with HS3 a bit but it's just play at this point.

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                  #9
                  We have 3 countertop Androids scattered around that get used quite a bit. My wife has become addicted to the morning weather display. I have them all setup with Tasker to turn off at 11p and on at 6a.

                  I would really love to wall-mount a kindle fire in a picture frame, so that it is somewhat subdued. My wife has said she doesnt want something protruding from the wall much more than a frame and I will not cut a massive hole for mounting. I would be fine with a small nickel-sized hole that is hidden behind a tablet for the power cable.
                  HS4Pro Running on a Raspberry Pi4
                  68 Z-Wave Nodes, 175 Events, 359 Devices
                  UPB modules via OMNI plugin/panel
                  Plugins: Z-Wave, OMNI, HSTouch, weatherXML, EasyTrigger
                  HSTouch Clients: 3 Android, 1 Joggler

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                    #10
                    I might argue that "what is the need for a light switch when a remote would do fine". The great part of a light switch is that it never gets stuck in the sofa. I always know right where it is. Same for the in wall touch screen. I like it for extra control for my blinds. I use a 8 button Insteon switch that has one button dedicated for all blinds but the touch screen lets me individually set each one. Also, I can glance at the screen and know which zones of the alarm are secure and arm or disarm the alarm. If I ever get it working, caller id info will pop up and the in wall touch screens are located where they are visible to the majority of each room. These are features that need to be always available and visible. A phone or tablet that wanders off doesn't provide the reliable point of control that I think good automation should.

                    At the end of the day, setting one blind to half way up should be as intuitive of an operation as turning a light off. My touchscreens go in the same places as good lighting controls - where we enter/exit rooms or where we spend time.

                    Sorry for the rant. Just my feeling on it.

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                      #11
                      You don't have kids do you? Ever leave your tablet on a table with them around? When something is in the wall, you know where it is 24/7.

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                        #12
                        I'm fairly new to HS, but have used wall mounted LCD keypads with my Stargate system for the last 5+ years. My family is familiar with the in-wall thing and we use them for all the functionality of the Stargate system that we installed. They are particularly useful when located near the entry doors where you can quickly access the alarm functions, garage doors and outdoor lights. One of the reasons I moved to HS was to get TS fucntionality since it never existed with SG. Table mounted tablets are nice and our 2 iPads and Kindle have that functionality with HS. However, we have to obvioulsy keep them charged and handy in order to use them. I have a Davis weather station integrated into HS now (couldn't do that with SG) and the main screens on the iPads and Kindle display the outside weather and two day forecast.

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                          #13
                          Originally posted by GatorEye View Post
                          You don't have kids do you? Ever leave your tablet on a table with them around? When something is in the wall, you know where it is 24/7.

                          You got me there, it's just me and the wife. However, most kids seem to have better phone retention rates then adults.

                          The whole reason i started this project was for here, she has bad arthritis, fibromyalgia and migraines. I wanted her to be able to control the lights, ac, alarm and doors without having to get up if necessary.

                          A wall screen seemed to take that option away.

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                            #14
                            I have a friend interested in automation and using wall mounted touchscreens as an interface alternative to touchpads. Him and his wife do have tablets today.

                            In a round about way he did mention falling asleep or stepping on tablets and I wonder why?
                            - Pete

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                              #15
                              Originally posted by Boba Debt View Post
                              You got me there, it's just me and the wife. However, most kids seem to have better phone retention rates then adults.

                              The whole reason i started this project was for here, she has bad arthritis, fibromyalgia and migraines. I wanted her to be able to control the lights, ac, alarm and doors without having to get up if necessary.

                              A wall screen seemed to take that option away.
                              Or do what I do, have both (in wall and lying around). I have 2 kids and one of them is always moving my tablet from room to room pretty much every so often that I never know where it is when I need it. Have 3 mounted inwall around the house resolves that issue

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