In-Wall Scene Controller for Nursery Room?

Hi. I’m new with smart things. I’m trying to do something for the nursery room of my baby. I’ve bought a couple of “LIFX Color 1000” light bulbs for a floor lamp that I have in the room. I now want to have an in-wall switch controller that my wife can use to select different scenes. As right now I only have the smart bulbs there I’m thinking the scenes to be something like: 1. Pink Color, 2. Green Color, 3. Yellow Color 50% dim, 4. White color. I’d like she is able to control the ON/OFF and dimmer. Is it possible to have something like this? I’ve been looking for scene controllers but I’ve not been able to figure out which one can do what I need or if in addition to the controller I also need to buy smart outlets or lamp dimmers.

I’d also like to be able to control the smart devices in the room even if the hub is off.

In future I’d like to add to the controller some smart blind and fan.

I appreciate any help/guidance here.

Thanks.

Maybe you can get a small tablet with SmartTiles and just have it display the items that you want.

The advantage is that the setup would be extensible, so you can add other items in the future.

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@viguera, I have a Windows Phone that don’t use anymore. Would the SmartTitles app work there too? How do you use it? Do you have your tablet wall-mounted? How did you do it?

Thank you!

The enerwave button controller is about 99% reliable.

@codytruscott, could you add a link of the product?

SmartTiles is very popular in the community, in part because it can run in any browser so it will work on the windows phone as well. There’s a whole topic where people post pictures and project reports on how they do mountings (this is a clickable link) lots of good ideas there:

And here’s the publisher site:

Just remember that one will only work when your Internet and SmartThings cloud account are up, so you’ll probably also want to have some kind of regular switch in the room just to turn at least one light on and off if the Internet goes down.

At our house, we do use a tablet controller, but we leave the regular switch in place and put a child lock on it. That way it’s available for emergencies but it reminds people not to use that switch most of the time.

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I’m thinking on using something like this http://www.amazon.com/Pass-Seymour-TM83USBWCC6-Charger-Single/dp/B008SBQZWU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1448674676&sr=8-1&keywords=Single+Pole+Switch+and+usb+port to still be able to control the lights manually, in case WiFi or SmartThings goes down, and have the USB port to connect the phone/tablet there too. Has anyone used this or similar?

You are making things too complicated. Stick to a zwave dimmer.

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@cesar.vinas I agree with @codytruscott about the zwave dimmer. It still operated even if the network or smartthings are down. It works all of the time and it’s simple.

@bamarayne/@codytruscott, but would I be able to control the colors with the dimmer? Is there a way to configure it to change colors instead of dimming the lights? If not, would it at least maintain the last color after turning lights back on or would it always default to white?

Also, what zwave dimmer would you recommend?

None of the zwave dimmer switches I’m aware of do color changes except for the controllers for LED strips like the Fibaro RGBW controller which requires buying two separate devices anyway.

Personally, I like your tablet/phone idea the best. :sunglasses: It gives you the most flexibility in controls. And let you easily change the colors on demand as desired. Depending on the device you use and its placement, you could also put a Baby Monitor app on the tablet which could be useful for a nursery.

(Some people prefer that wall mount tablets that control lighting always look exactly the same, while others are fine with it switching from one app to another. I think this is just a personal preference and also depends on the use case. You should choose whatever your wife likes the best. :wink:

At our house, we use some inexpensive nonnetworked motion detector night lights that bring up a soft light, and then it’s easy to see the home automation control tablet and do whatever you want with it.)

I also looked at the switch you linked to. That’s from Legrand, who are a good company. That particular P&S brand is for their combo USB charging stations, which I agree is a good approach. You have to read the wiring instructions carefully, but they can be set up so the USB always has power while the button switch controls the load to the lights for emergencies.

The Enerwave SC7 is a seven button controller that goes on the wall, quite a few people have it, but my understanding is that the current models do not have any load control, which means they won’t control the lights if SmartThings or the Internet is down. So you still have to have a separate load control switch with that.

That’s fine for some situations, I think it’s definitely an option I would consider for a family room, for example.

My concern with the nursery is that this is exactly the room Where you want quick intuitive control with excellent reliability, at least for one button on/off switch to cover both major and minor emergencies. If SmartThings is acting up, I still want a switch that works in the baby’s room.

Some of it also depends on the baby. Some families could probably combine the SC7 with a nonnetworked motion sensitive nightlight and cover pretty much all situations. The motion sensor light would come on when the adult came in the room and go off again a few minutes later. So as long as you had power, you would have your emergency light. And the seven buttons give you a lot of scene choices.

Other babies might wake up every time a night light comes on, making it trickier to check on a baby who was napping.

So as always, different things work for different families.

FWIW…

Thanks, @JDRoberts. That’s what I thought. Also, the project may sound complicated right now because it is about controlling the lights only but in future I’d like to add a fan and blinds too for which a tablet would give me the most flexibility. However, I have to allow my wife to at least be able to turn on/off the lights with a switch in cases the tablet approach doesn’t work. Otherwise, she probably wouldn’t accept the change :smile:. After reading other posts this is what I’m going to do:

  1. I’m going to replace the electrical box of current switch with this recessed one: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002W6ZOR4/ref=as_li_ss_tl?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o04_s00&linkCode=sl1&tag=smart0abd-20&linkId=ebbc798ca0e1b9e2a5cc7ed278b999ef

  2. I’m going to replace the switch with this switch/USB combo: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00OTLT37C?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s00

  3. I’m going to mount the table on top of the recessed box with this: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BFIAB82?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00 so I don’t have to make holes in the drywall (which my wife doesn’t allow). This will also make easy to take the tablet off to use the switch in cases of emergency

  4. I’m going to connect the tablet to the USB charging port with this cable: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00ENZDQ8G?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s01 that has the micro USB side in a down angle which I think will help hide the cable better

  5. I’m going to use an old HP Touchpad with Android 5.1.1 as it’ll give me more flexibility from apps perspective

  6. I’ll use this app https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.procoit.kioskbrowser to put the tablet in kiosk mode

  7. For the part of turning on the tablet with a motion sensor, I was thinking about using this app instead https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.motion.detector&hl=en as I’ve read other people have had good experiences with it

How does it sound?

A tablet will drive you bonkers on a daily basis. Use the enerwave button controller. If you are using zigbee bulbs, then you shouldn’t be using a locally controlled switch anyhow.

It will drive some people bonkers. Other people are very happy with them. (See the hardware mounting thread.) Choice is good. :sunglasses:

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I finally was able to set up my SmartThings hub and also the Smarttiles. Now, what I’ve not been able to figure out is how to add the following tiles to Smarttiles:

  • A tile to turn on the 2 LIFX bulbs in blue and 80% dim
  • A tile to turn on the 2 LIFX bulbs in pink and 50% dim
  • A title to turn on only 1 LIFX bulb in yellow and 20% dim

So far I’ve only been able to add the two bulbs as dim lights to Smarttiles but that only allows my to turn on/off the lights and dim them. I cannot control any color. Is there something else that I have to install that can then create the tiles I want?

Thank you

Tagging @tgauchat

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Hi Ceasar … welcome to SmartThings and SmartTiles.

For pre-programmed settings (like the 3 you listed), SmartTiles works perfectly if linked to a Virtual Switch.

Virtual Switches should really be an official part of SmartThings because they have so many uses – for example Amazon Echo / Alexa and IFTTT can’t interact directly with Routines and several common Device Types, but if linked to a Virtual Switch, then these 3rd party services (like SmartTiles) can integrate no problem.


I just have to look up if there is a FAQ for the easiest way to add 3 (or more) Virtual Switches and link them to your those LIFX settings; it’s not super hard, but … well, much harder to “write” than “do”, actually!

@JDRoberts is familiar with a lot of the material on here, so maybe he can suggest a Virtual Switch FAQ, while I’m doing some digging.

Here’s the FAQ for creating one virtual switch at a time. It goes pretty fast.

I haven’t worked with LIFX, I’m not sure where you set those colors.

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