I am still new with ST, but so far I am enjoying. I only have 3 devices connected (3 bulbs in 2 different rooms, and door lock) I am also enjoying Alexa’s voice control features. So now, I am looking for a tv/sound/gaming control system compatible with both ST and Alexa. Any recommendations that won’t break the bank?
If you only need 8 entertainment devices then any harmony hub product will do, latest firmware makes all the hubs exactly the same. If you need more than 8 devices you will need a touch remote with the harmony hub, this supports upto 15 (smartthings is a home device so it is separate).
Personally I have a refurb harmony home kit from ebay for $70 and bought a harmony touch remote for $70 which was cheaper than the ultimate remote combo which is over $200. Really depends on how many devices you need. Don’t be afraid of refurbs here, all my harmony products are refurbs and work great.
All you need for echo integration is the “harmony home hub” which generally sells for about $99. There’s no physical button remote with that. If you want a physical button remote as well, there is a package with the “harmony home companion” which usually sells for about $130. This remote doesn’t have a screen, but it does have four extra home automation buttons that you can use to toggle lights on and off.
If you’re willing to be patient and wait for a sale, you can often get the two device package for $110 or even a little less. Best Buy sometimes has these on sale in store.
If you want one of the fancier remotes with the screen you will have to pay considerably more.
We really like our harmony and use both the button remote and voice control with it.
As @dshokouhi mentioned, harmony divides devices into “entertainment devices” and “home control” devices. You could have as many home control devices on one hub as you want, so you don’t have to go around counting the number of smart bulbs or anything.
“Entertainment devices” include all the obvious ones like televisions, streaming boxes, Game consoles, sound bars, etc. but also include anything which is controlled with an IR remote including some air-conditioners.
The harmony hub is the same in both cases, But you need a more expensive remote if you will have more than eight entertainment devices.
I would say I am a simple guy, we have 2 TVs, 1 cable box + 1 extra receiver, 1 PS4, 1 PS3, and 1 sound bar which makes it 7 devices exactly.
Can you elaborate exactly the systems integrate?
I trully appreciate the feedback. OT, I few days ago I asked about lihgting, and I took your adivce since I have no neutral, I am using multiple bulbs and grouping for light fixtures that require multiple bulbs.
I second @JDRoberts/@dshokouhi . Don’t bother with the fancy touch screen jobs, but get the simple remote. I planned on using a dedicated tablet, but the simplicity of the remote I was reaching for it more often.
I have purchased 2 refurbs from logitech, and both have been solid. One has been running for over 5 years.
If you have a TV with ARC, you don’t even need to set up your soundbar in Logitech, just use the TV commands to control it.
I started researching this because my dog decided to eat my sound bar’s remote. LOL. Now, everytime i need to change the source on the soundbar or turn volume up or down I have to do it manually. I thought I would spend the money on a universal system rather than spending $20-30 on a replacement remote just for my sound bar.
Best buy has it for 99.99, and there is groupon refurbished one for 79.99
Looking at Groupon/Best Buy, the remote they have (simple) does not have the dedicated light buttons. I rarely use them, mostly motion activated/Alexa in my house. Amazon has it new for $89.
Can’t find any “Harmony Home Companion” for under $130
There is a refurb on Amazon for $82 but ships in 2-5 weeks. In my experience it is usually on the shorter end.
edit: They have the white one in stock. It is what I have. I like the white, cause it is easier to find, but it does show some color on the backside from grime.
$76.95 on good ol’ ebay
$77 is a good deal on the remote. I have not regretted purchasing mine.
We ended up getting 2. Kinda need one for each room due to the way activities work.
I also like having the touch remote since it has a IR window for TV’s in other rooms where the blaster can’t reach. It is also nice to control more than 4 lights and see the status of sensors etc…