Alarm System

Good morning everyone,

I’m about to organise a new alarm system for a house we are moving into. The house is pre-wired for window contacts, door sensors and PIR in most of the rooms. I’m not looking to install a smart alarm, but a more standard alarm installation, which I can get events from - triggering scenes in my home automation.

Before I make my purchase, can I double check with this UK and Ireland group - the only current alarm system which works ‘out of the box’ and has good integration appears to be the DSC Power Series, with a Envisalink card. The newer Neo series is not supported to my understanding.

A lot of the posts I’ve seen are at least a year old, so I’m trying to make sure my understanding is up to date before we start installing.


A number of us have had a lot of success with Give it a whirl.

Thanks Andy,

That looks really interesting, I remember seeing the Kickstarter campaign. For the moment I’m going to stick with a ‘dumb’ alarm system which provides me events for ST, from which I can drive automations. I guess from the lack of replies, the Power DSC remains the only real viable option in the UK?? (Their newer Neo range comes with IP interfaces, but the only automation platform they have support for is Control4 and I don’t want to go anywhere near that system!)

Kind regards,

There are quite a lot of options actually, but you’re right that with wired sensors it limits the options significantly. Given you already have them them maybe it’s worth going down that route, but I do know some of the wireless systems support wired sensors if you buy an expander board. Depends how many zones you have as to whether one expander board would cover it…

For using existing wired sensors with a mostly traditional alarm panel your only options seem to be the DSC PowerSeries with Envisalink or DSC PowerSeries with the board.

The former approach at least in theory would allow your DSC PowerSeries to be professional monitored the later makes it just a slave to the in this case Smartthings Hub.

Most of the more modern and smarter systems are purely wireless e.g. the Yale system, the DSC Iotega and the Honeywell Lyric. Also many of these smarter systems are only available in the US and none would be supported by monitoring firms in the UK.

ADT have a smart system (again Wireless only) which does a great job of integrating with Smartthings but is US only. The ADT stuff in the UK is sadly traditional dumb stuff with at best their own app and unable to talk to anything else.

I am not yet ready to get a system myself but at the moment would lean towards the DSC PowerSeries with Envisalink and a mixture of wired and wireless sensors. I am interested in the HoneyWell Lyric alarm system but sadly do not expect it to ever become available in the UK. (It even supports Apple’s HomeKit!)

As a reminder you need to a run some software e.g. on a Raspberry Pi to act as the software link between Smartthings and the Envisalink board.

Thats great feedback, thank you John. I will take your advice on board and try and find an installer I can work with.