GE, Networx, Interlogix Caddx NX8 security System Integration?

Can the SmartThings interface to the GE, Networx, Interlogix Caddx NX8 (or other model variations) via the RS232 or Ethernet connections?

I’ve searched around and have not found that it can. Being new to SmartThings I cannot say that I have sufficiently tracked down the available options. I’m also a little surprised if it cannot interface given the popularity of the Caddx panels offered under various names which makes me think I missed something. And thus the request here.

I am in process of deciding between SmartTHings and Vera. I was leaning towards SmartThings but the lack of a Caddx NX8 interface is a big deal.

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I am looking at the same question: GE Interlogix, Tyco DSC or Ademco Honeywell control panel? There are multiple levels to the integration question:

  1. SS communicates directly with the RF sensors which also talk to the burglar alarm controller - Interlogix seems definitely not to work as they use different frequencies, Honeywell might work, DSC, don’t know
  2. SS communicates only via the ethernet connecter to the alarm panel - the alarm panel talks with the sensors - DSC seems to work best with SS, Honeywell uncertain, Interlogix, no info
  3. SS communicates with Alarm provider - they all say Z-Wave, but what does that mean? Honeywell supports Alarmgrid which seems to be the original self-management alarm provider. So you can go sensor => alarm panel => GSM module => cell phone connection => Alarm provider => cellphone. But could this last leg be SS instead? Don’t know. Alarmgrid has spawned Alarm.com to handle the non-Honeywell/Ademco devices. Seems to be the same pricing but has the usual, objectionable hard sell of all these providers, which alarm grid refreshingly lacks. So there is a substantial mistrust factor that you’ll be on a continuous upsell cycle.

Can anyone fill in the substantial gaps in my knowledge please?

I’m actually one of the owners of Alarm Grid and would be happy to share some insight.

As far as we’ve seen (and I’m certainly no SmartThings expert) the SmartThings system can’t be directly interfaced into the NX8 system. Also, the Z-Wave sensors that can activate the ST system won’t interface back to activate the NX8 alarm system as alarm systems need to be approved by UL and UL would not approve an alarm activation from a Z-Wave device as Z-Wave isn’t nearly as reliable as the proprietary RF type wireless sensors that do work to initiate an alarm on the NX8 system.

I haven’t ever heard of anyway to interface these twp systems together.

However, if you had an alarm system (such as the Honeywell VISTA-20P or VISTA-21iP) that supported a Z-Wave controller (the Tuxedo Touch WIFI or VAM from Honeywell) you could use the Secondary Controller feature on the VAM or Tux to send any included Z-Wave devices on the Tux/VAM over to the ST system so that you have control of the Z-Wave control devices (lights, locks, thermostats, etc) from the ST and from the security system Z-Wave controller as well.

Actually, Z-Wave is the only standard wireless protocol to have UL component recognition, and that is because Z-Wave is secure and it is two-way.

I have the GE NX-6v2 and I’ve done a little digging into this.
It seems that there’s an addon card for the NX v2 series that adds an RS232 serial port (and the NX-8E already includes the RS232 port), and the RS232 protocol for communication with the device is well documented, so it seems like it should be relatively easy for a developer (such as myself) to write some software for an embedded device (like a Particle Photon, Raspberry Pi, or ESP device) to communicate between this and SmartThings.
I’ll work on this in my “spare” time (I’ll either get the interface board, or switch out the NX6 with an NX-8E … which might be preferrable, so that I can work on the interface before replacing my existing alarm panel).
I’m guessing this will likely take a few months (since my time is very limited), but I will get this working at some point :slight_smile:

So, I have this fully up and running :smiley:

I can arm the system from SmartThings (or Amazon Alexa using some extra setup), can see the alarm status, can see the status of all zones (live) and can drive automations from them. (e.g.: Flash all exterior lights when the alarm is triggered, or use the alarm’s wired motion detector zone to trigger a scene).

I also have support for triggering the alarm from SmartThings (so, for example, I can trigger the alarm if any light switch is turned on manually while the alarm is in ‘away’ mode … since if nobody’s home there shouldn’t be anyone to use the light switch, or I can add wireless SmartThings motion detectors and use those to trigger the alarm)

I have not (yet) added support for multiple partitions (since this seems like a niche use-case, but if there’s enough interest then I’ll consider adding support)

I’m doing a bit more cleanup before sharing what I have thus far.
Let me know via this thread if anyone is interested, just so I can gauge interest levels.
You will need some extra hardware etc for this of course.

  • Unless you have an NX-8E panel you’ll need to buy the NX-584 comms addon module ($55-$65 on ebay)
  • You’ll need to know the programming code (this is NOT normally the master PIN code) for your panel (assuming it’s not set to defaults)
  • I’ll be supplying hardware kits to make this easier for folks. Info will be added in another post.

You’ll need to be comfortable with some basic wiring, and I can provide detailed instructions.

If folks are interested I may consider providing kits with all hardware and pre-programmed devices, but would need to work out the cost for these, and would be dependent on interest level. (let me know whether you’re interested in using this setup, and whether you’d prefer to get the parts and program the device yourself, or whether you’d be interested in a pre-programmed kit, with all the parts and cables included)

I would be very interested in such a kit. Please let me know your thoughts on pricing/availability/etc…

Ok, what panel do you have ? (e.g.: NX8E or NX6v2 etc)

Availability (and pricing) should be good for a system that already has a serial port. The unknown that I need to look into is availability and pricing of the serial port module for panels other than the NX8-E

I’ll put together some instructions over the next few days to a week or so, and work out pricing too (dependent on whether your panel already has a comms port)

I have it working so you get a SmartThings device where you can arm the alarm in either ‘exit’ or ‘stay’ mode (I haven’t enabled ‘disarm’ since that seems a little lacking in security, but can add it if desired), and you can see the status of all zones.

You also get child devices for all alarm zones (which update even when bypassed) which can be used to drive smartthings automations. (e.g.: turn on a light when the motion sensor is triggered, etc).

I’ve also set it up so that you can trigger an unused alarm zone (if you have one) to be triggered via smartthings (e.g.: so that you can use smartthings devices, or a WebCoRE script etc, to trigger an alarm zone). I have it set so that turning on or off any lights via Z-wave switches, while the alarm is set in Away/Exit mode will trigger a zone.

Using WebCoRE to react to alarm status I have it set so that some exterior house lights will flash when the alarm is triggered (flashing them every second may wear out the relays in the switches, but that’s a small price to pay for drawing attention to the fact that someone broke into the house)

I also have Alexa integration working so that, for example, I can say “Alexa, Set House Alarm Exit” before I leave the house for it to set the alarm, rather than having to walk to the keypad.

Hi!
I’d be interested in this as well. I have a NX-8E that already has the RS232 cable.
The system was installed as part of a new home build and wired to the HOA contracted automation provider. I’ve moved away from other automation provider except for the home alarm system.
They have the NX-8E->RS232->USB cable->Clare Control unit.
I can just disconnect the RS232 from the RS232<->USB adapter. In particular if this can be adapted to either Smartthings or Openhab that would be fantastic.

I’ve replied to your IM with a few questions on your specific system, since that would help to ensure that I include everything that you’d need (and not any more)

Hello,
I would also be interested. I have an NX-8V2 with an nx584 attached to it.
Thank you for your work on this

Hey guys. Sorry for delay with getting back to you. I’ve just been crazy busy with work :frowning:
I haven’t forgotten about this, and am working to try to get something together by the weekend sometime.

I’m also trying to make sure that I can get a consistent supply of the parts needed, and that I have some decent instructions for installation and setup (it takes some time to keep following my own instructions, acting as someone unfamiliar with the setup :wink: )

Add one more to the group, this is fantastic stuff. Mine is an NX8v2, so I’d need to add the RS232 board.

Can’t wait!

I’m very interested as well. I also have the interlogix nx8v2.

Hey guys, sorry for the delay. I’ve done some initial pricing up (based on low volume orders), and the following prices will include everything needed to have your GE/Caddx/Interlogix Networx alarm interfaced to SmartThings: -

  • Kit for all panels except NX8-E that already have an NX584e interface board - $75
    (now includes serial extender cable)

  • Kit for NX8-E (includes different cable needed from above) - $75

  • Kit for all panels except NX8-E (including NX-584e board required) - $150
    Note that the lead time on obtaining the NX-584e board is longer than I’d like, so may add up to a week to delivery time. (Unfortunately cheaper suppliers of the board have been unreliable)
    You are of course welcome to obtain the NX-584e board yourself.

  • Add-on kit to allow you to trigger a spare/unused alarm zone via SmartThings
    (e.g.: using Z-wave motion sensors, or a lightswitch being changed etc) - $15 (if ordered with above kits)
    Note that you must have a spare/unused alarm zone available, OR be familiar with wiring an extra contact into an existing zone.

The above will include ground shipping within the continental US. Please IM me for shipping options outside of the US, or expedited shipping costs (I can likely get some discounted shipping rates, and generally prefer UPS).
I’ll setup a paypal for orders, and will try to setup a storefront too.
If anyone wants to place an early order, then just IM me, and I’ll start ordering the parts etc.

I’m still working on the documentation to ensure that you all have a painless and easy setup. I should have that online in the next couple of days, I’m just wanting to get a dedicated webpage setup for it.

Please remember the following requirements: -

  • You MUST know the ‘Program code’ for your alarm panel. This is normally NOT the same as your master code
  • You MUST have a 2.4GHz wifi network, on the same local network as your SmartThings hub, with a good signal at your alarm panel. (Need to get a WiFi signal inside the metal alarm enclosure, but the enclosure doesn’t cause too much of a problem)
  • You MUST be ok with setting up custom device handlers in the SmartThings API (though I will provide very detailed step-by-step instructions)

There are some really nice things that you can do, automation-wise, once you’ve got this setup.
A few examples of a couple of the automations that I have setup are: -

  • Flash porch and exterior lights if the alarm is triggered, to help draw attention to the house. (This will cause wear to the relays in smart switches, but who cares about a switch if your house is being robbed)
  • Automatically set SmartThings to Away mode when the house alarm is set to ‘exit’
  • Automatically set SmartThings to Night mode when the house alarm is set to ‘stay’
  • Trigger lights based on an existing alarm motion sensor - based on the Smarthings night/away mode
  • Integrate with Amazon Echo/Alexa so I can say “Alexa - Set House Alarm Stay” to set the alarm at night (or similar for ‘exit’ mode). The phrase is entirely customizable by you.
  • Automatically turn on the exterior lights at dusk if the house alarm is set to Exit/Away mode.

(many of the above I’ve setup using WebCoRe)

Hopefully some of you will find this as useful as I have.

IM me if you want to place an early order, or just register interest so that I can ping you once all the instructions are up online.

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So, I finally have the documentation approaching completion (I’ve had far less time available to work on this than I’d hoped, and I’m fairly slow at writing documentation, since I’m a perfectionist).
There are still a few sections to be completed, and a few extra screenshots to be added, but it should give you all a good idea of what to expect.

I’ll start taking orders as soon as I’ve finished the documentation, but if one or two people want to jump the queue, by agreeing to be test-subjects (finding any issues in the instructions etc) then I’ll take pre-orders from one person with an NX8-E system, and one from someone with an NX-584e system. (I should be able to ship kits to those test-subjects within a week).

@jtbarrera - Are you interested ? You were one of the first to contact me with an NX8E
@John_Holbrook - Are you interested ? You were one of the first to contact me with an NX584e

If you want to go ahead, then we can proceed via IM

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This looks like it might be exactly what I am looking for. Our house came with an NX6V2 installed, which we don’t use. Currently we have LiveWatch monitoring with a Quolsys IQ panel, which can use the same wirelsss door sensors as the NX6V2. We want to drop the monitoring because it’s quite expensive, but we want to be able to use the existing security sensors for automation. (That was one of the appealing points of the IQ Panel - security and automation rolled into one.) We do not currently own SmartThings, but we are strongly considering it for our new automation controller. Will I be able to use this project to see a history of when the doors were opened and to automatically turn off a z-wave thermostat connected to ST if a door or window is left open longer than a user-defined time? If so, I’m interested.

If you are still looking for an NX8E early adopter/tester please let me know.

Hi Ken, @kosmicken
I haven’t tested with wireless door sensors (most are wired sensors, embedded within the door frame), and if you’re sensors are wireless they may be mapped to a higher zone numbers then I’ve currently setup to handle (let me know if you have any info on what zones your door sensors are mapped to), but if they are mapped to a higher zone number then that’s something that I’d like to add support for.
Yes, you can see a history of the activity of any sensor, and yes you could use this system, along with the SmartThings WebCoRE extension to easily do what you want (if sensor A is in a certain state, and stays in that state for longer than B time, then change the state of z-wave device C)
I would definitely recommend SmartThings since it’s the most advanced and flexible of the home automation hubs, and with an excellent support framework (both SmartThings tech support, and most importantly the community)

Hi @Thomas.mahoney

@John_Holbrook is being my first tester for a system with the NX584e interface board.
If I don’t hear back from @jtbarrera within the next day or two, then you’re welcome to be my first tester for the NX-8E (the same system that I have, but I just want someone else to go through the installation steps).

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