I received my order from X10 yesterday and am starting to get excited about installing them. I have discovered a few tidbits of information that I did not come across in my research prior to ordering that have me concerned/disappointed, however.
- CFL bulbs do not work with my WS467 wall switches.
- I am probably going to encounter noise interference from my home theater equipment and/or UPS units.
These are some fairly big “gotchas” that I did not think of prior to ordering. Considering my intended usage for the WS467 units, that may not be a problem. The ceiling fan light in the den uses only one bulb, so I’ll just put an incandescent back in there. However, our bedroom ceiling fan light uses three bulbs, so that sucks. I guess I’ll put some 40W bulbs back in there. At least we don’t use that light all that much and I did just put two nightstand lamps in there, so that will help. I’m glad the outlet units don’t care what’s plugged into them.
I ordered 8 of those wall switch units, so it looks as though the majority of them will be used for outdoor light switches. I don’t use CFLs out there, so that’s perfect. It’ll be good for the floodlights too. The rest can be used in closets, I guess. I think I have incandescents in those too. If not, I’ll put them back in. My wife leaves closet lights on all the time, so it’ll be good to be able to turn them off from work with the ActiveHome software.
A potential third issue is the software itself. I really wish I could get a hold of a decent Media Center plugin. I really don’t want to buy anything either…not that I would since I’ve not seen anything that was worth the money so far. It wouldn’t even need any advanced functionality – I’m simply looking for On/Off per device. I probably will have to do without, unfortunately. There is a limited free plugin provided by ExDomus, but I will only be able to use that on one Media Center without client/server interactivity.
Hopefully I’ll get to install something this evening so that I can start to fool around with things a little bit. It’ll probably only be a couple of outlets, but that’s better than nothing. So long as I can get that and the ActiveHome portion together, I can fool around with it at work tomorrow. It would have been nice to get it all working by the time my grandparents arrived though. While my home automation setup is extremely simple, to them it would be all 2099-like.
If anyone knows how to wire up a universal module to a garage door while still being able to use the wired in switch, please comment. I’m pretty sure I know how to do it, but the wiring is extremely inconvenient for me to screw up a time or two.