Anyone else using zwave?
  • After playing around with a few bits of technology, I've bitten the bullet and am going with SecuritySpy.

    I decided that trying to detect motion with cameras was a mugs' game, and that PIRs were the way to go. My solution involves zwave sensors that talk to a node.js app (using openzwave) which sends AppleScript messages to SecuritySpy.
    I also have a little website in PHP that manages the files that SS uploads to my hosting account.

    As I came from this via Indigo6, I haven't even looked to see what PIR triggering technology SS supports...
  • Great to hear you're going with SecuritySpy!

    PIR sensors will certainly give you very reliable motion detection, and there are a few ways to hook these up to SecuritySpy. One is by AppleScript as you describe, another is by HTTP message from the home automation system to SecuritySpy. Also, SecuritySpy supports triggering recording from the digital input ports of Axis, Canon and D-Link cameras. So you simply hook up the switched output from the PIR sensor to the input port of the camera, and tell SecuritySpy to trigger recording from the port (this setting is in the Setup section of the Camera Settings window).

    Let us know how you get on.
  • I have a few zwave devices and am waiting for the new PIR from Aeon Labs to be released later this month and integrate that in with my Security Spy and a few other things. I have looked at openzwave and been a little frustrated with it from performance standpoint. To that end I wrote my own code in python to talk to the zwave network and take actions. It doesn't support everything under the sun like openzwave but I am able to customize it for my few devices and get the actions I want. I also have some old X10 PIR devices that I've integrated in to do some simple things like turn on the lights in the kitchen and hallway at a dimmed level when I get up... I was able to integrate both X10 and zwave devices by rolling my own application and tying in bits and pieces.

    My biggest issue with openzwave was the amount of time it took to actually startup in regards to all its polling and status requests. I wanted something quicker. I run all my home automation software on a raspberry pi.
  • Oh yes, that IS slow - about 90s, I'd say.
    I don't intend to be restarting it very often, but it makes the development process somewhat slow.
    BTW, I have an Everspring PIR (outdoors capable) that doesn't seem to like OpenZwave, so will be looking forward to Aeon. However, getting in some cheap PIRs connecting to a binary sensor (such as the Fibaro) is quite a bit cheaper if you're of the zonal mentality.

    By the way, Ben, apropos nothing much, it would be nice if your software had more "test it now" type buttons (as Indigo6 does) eg. for checking that one's got email or ftp upload settings in correctly without resorting to an integration test.
  • I have the older Aeon sensor... it eats batteries. The battery type that they are going to in the new one coming should alleviate some of that as well as the new design. What are you using for your zWave controller?
  • Me? a z-stick, so no batteries.
  • I've got several "old" Aeon PIR detectors, and they work great as triggers for cameras. I also have some Axis cameras with the PIR built in, which can be useful. Battery life on the Aeons is around 4 months (I chart it.) Integration with SS is pretty easy if you have Indigo6. It's well worth the money - lots of bells and whistles and you won't lose days of your life trying to get a bunch of stuff working with each other.
  • Hi guys, I have a home automation system set up with Indigo, and have 4 Swann NHD-820 1080P cameras running in security spy. I was planning to use the cameras to detect motion and turn lights on using the cynical plugin in indigo (which created triggers in indigo for camera events in security spy), however I am finding the motion detection does not work all that well, especially at night. I am also findning that I have camera defects that look like spiderwebs on some cameras at night when their infrareds are on. These 'spiderwebs' seem to move between cameras which is strange. Anyway, I'd've keen to hear from anyone else who may be successfully using security spy and cameras to trigger motion events in indigo. Cheers
  • Hi @gpbell - spider webs (and spiders themselves) can certainly be the cause of false-positive motion detection events. Sometimes thin strands of web can be difficult to see in daylight, but they illuminate very brightly at night from the camera's built-in LED lights. There are a few solutions to this:

    - Clean cameras regularly to remove all traces of web.

    - Turn off the cameras' built-in LEDs (put then in day mode permanently), and use other sources of light instead. In general this will give you a much better image and more reliable motion detection.

    - Try a commercial product that you apply to the cameras to prevent web formation. These are basically slippery pastes that you apply around the camera (not the lens) that makes it difficult for spiders to spin webs.

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