Needing help with SMART recessed lights / switch setup

I’m looking to install 10 recessed lights on my 2nd floor bed rooms (2). I will buy the stuff and have someone install it. I have no clue about home improvement.

My requirement is I must be able to turn it on/off with the switch on the wall and be able to control it with my phone. Dimming is a nice to have. I do not need any color. Was told Canless is better. 6in more common? My rooms are about 100sqft and 130sqft. so i’d have 4 and 6 in each room.

I need help with selection.
My understanding is I can either buy a bunch of SMART recessed lights and get standard cheap dimmable switch or I can get a Lutron or similar dimmable switch and the corresponding hub along w the cheap dimmable recessed lights??

Is this right?
I see many options and I’m not sure which is the right one to get
I guess Lutron’s model is pay more up front, overall cost is lower the more lights you install? Whereas if you go the SMART light option, the more you install the higher overall cost?

Are there cheaper options on amazon? I’m not looking for non name stuff. I was looking to get my stuff either at HD or Lowes. HD has their Halo or Commercial electric?

Choosing Lutron Caseta will be the best decision you make. I have had mine for 5 or 6 years and it simply works all the time. I would urge you to spend a little more and get the Pro model of the Lutron hub. I should point out that Lutron Caseta would be a cloud to cloud integration with ST so you would not get local execution.


Hi and welcome

Mixing smart lights with dumb switches is not a good idea. Smart lights must have power at all times, even if they’re off.

Your best choices are to:

  1. Get something like Lutron with smart bulbs and switches that are specifically made to run them. I’ve got no experience with Lutron.

  2. Get regular dumb bulbs/fixtures and use smart switches and/or dimmers.

Smart switches/dimmers may need a hub depending on how they communicate. Z-wave, Zigbee, and Matter devices will need a hub, WiFi devices will not. Most smart switches will require that a neutral wire is available at the switch so your electrician needs to know that.

These days most ceiling fixtures are canless where the bulb and fixture trim are all one piece. That’s different from the old can lights where the bulb was separate from the fixture. Now that LEDs are standard, replacing bulbs is no longer necessary.

I will say that having the ability to dim almost any light will be useful! I have canless LED fixtures all over the house and they all have smart dimmers.

Knowing what country you are in would be helpful as choices vary depending on your location.

I’m in SF bay area.
So I think i’d go w option 2. Getting smart bulbs and switches sound expensive.
For the Zwave, zigbee that you mentioned are these any different than Lutron or just cheaper alternatives? Could you direct me to the specific lutron items to get?

What’s the difference between
why is one signfincatly more expensive.

Is Caseta a premium Lutron option?

Different but not “cheaper alternatives.” Just alternatives. Like the difference between Honda and Tesla cars. Z wave and Zigbee are independent third-party standards For home automation adopted by many device manufacturers. Lutron is a lighting company which has its own proprietary, standard and a lot of patents. :sunglasses:

DVRF (The more expensive one) is a radio frequency (that’s the RF) smart switch. It is intentionally made to match the look of the DVCL, which is a dumb switch. No radio.

Is Caseta a premium Lutron option?

Caseta is Lutron’s least expensive smart switch line, intended for DIY projects. It integrates well with smartthings.


The caseta is more than enough for my requirements.
I’d need this along w additional switches? (I just need two dimmable switches for my 2 rooms)

How would I know which recessed lights would be compatible? Any or just ones that are Dimmable?

If I go with this set up what happens during a power failure, would I need to reconfigure everything?

You can get the kit if you can use the switches, that’s up to you.

You must have one Caseta smart hub (formally called the Smart bridge) to get integration with any other platform, including SmartThings, or voice assistant.

The one that’s easiest to find is the regular model

But many of us prefer the “pro“ model (L-BDGPRO2-WH ) because it opens up some additional integrations. You don’t need the pro model if all you’re going to use it with is smartthings, so that’s up to you.

You can sometimes find it from a third-party on Amazon. Read the return policy carefully.

A lot of us shop at energy Avenue. It’s a bare bones, warehouse site, but it’s been a reliable retailer with good prices. I’ve ordered three or four times from them.

How would I know which recessed lights would be compatible? Any or just ones that are Dimmable?

Luton does extensive tests on which bulbs work well with their devices. Contact their support and they’ll direct you to a list of specific models.

If I go with this set up what happens during a power failure, would I need to reconfigure everything?

Lutron? No, that’s no problem. A power outage is just a power outage. When the power is restored, everything will work the way it did before, with the exception, as I mentioned, previously, that your smartthings hub may get confused and run a bunch of stuff that it had pending, including sending out notifications.

Do you have any need for three-way switching (where two different switches/dimmers control one set of lights)?

I am planning on having 1 switch in each bedroom. Each switch will control the lights in its respective rooms. However I also want my app to be able to control these lights.
It seems like I need 1 of this

and another switch for my 2nd room.

I do prefer a switch where i can slide the press it up and down.
My usage will be to be able to control it at the wall, turn it on/off, dim. along w being able to do the same via app. I don’t need it to change color.

I see diva, Sunnata, maestro switches are these compatible?
i’m getting confused by the many options.


I hate to keep giving you the same links, so have you looked at any of the Lutron links I’ve given you? Because they have all the information.

The sonata and maestro lines are both dumb switches. Not smart switches.

Some of the diva switches are smart, and some are dumb. But the smart ones will also say Caseta.

Caseta switches come in two different styles: the originals and the diva. The diva style has a slide dimmer.

The originals have a unique style:

And the Caseta diva line look like regular “rocker“ switches. Plus the slide dimmer.

For your purposes, I think it’s going to be easiest for you if you only look at models that say Caseta.

The specific starter kit you linked to has a switch of the original style, and it sounds like you will be happier if you find one with the diva style, but still in the caseta line. Like this:


It’s the same bridge, but the other style of caseta switch. See where it says “Caseta” at the top of the box?


I’m sorry for making you repeat. Some of the previous links did not apply as I wasn’t going as complex. The smart hub link is what got me started :slight_smile:

I was going for the Caseta model that was recommended as it provides more than I need. The amazon link of the Diva smart dimmer and remote for 105.88 doesn’t come with a hub? I’d need to shell out 193.85?

The title seems to be misleading or selection description as it states it includes a hub but the selection doesn’t include that text while the more expensive one leads me to think it does include it

The diva caseta dimmer itself costs 70 (10 more than the original)??? Why is it 20% more expensive?

I will not have a need to have two different dimmers/switches controlling one set of lights. Just strait up one dimmer one room of lights.

I don’t get why they don’t make things more compatible w one another, sounds like they making them incompatible to make it harder to upgrade and all.

I’m not sure why you’re looking at the kit with the Pico remote. That is made to add three-way operation to another Lutron device without needing any wiring at all.

While it would be useful as a bedside switch, you’ve specifically said you have no need beyond a single switch for each room.

To be fair, I think the OP is just following links either from the Lutron site, or that other community members have posted.

I’m not sure Lutron even offers a kit anymore without the included remote, but they might. They’ve had a lot of different bundle variations over the years. :thinking:

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Are you asking about Lutron or about Home Automation in general?

Lutron as a company has been pretty transparent over the years, and I would consider them fair dealing. When you dig down into the engineering details, there’s almost always a reason why some devices are compatible or not, and there’s typically a white paper or two on their site explaining what the variations are. But that’s way more research than your typical DIY customer is interested in.

As far as product descriptions, it can get confusing at Amazon, because they will list “variations“ on a page which may differ from the original product description. But if you look carefully, you can find the differences.

With regard to your specific question about the Amazon listings, that’s in both the model number and the product description. Plus, if you look carefully, you can see the difference in the photos.

The “deluxe kit“ includes two wall switches, a remote, and a bridge. (The Luton Caseta model numbers with BDG In them include bridges.)

Model number DVRF-BDG-2D, which means diva model line, RF (smart switch) capability, with a bridge, two dimmer switches.

Includes (2) Diva smart dimmer switches for Caseta smart lighting, (1) Pico smart remote, (1) Pedestal for Pico remotes, and (1) smart hub;

The regular kit has one wall switch, a remote, and a bridge.
Model number DVRF-BDG-1D, which means diva model line, RF (smart switch) capability, with a bridge, one dimmer switch.

  • Includes (1) Diva smart dimmer switch for Caséta smart lighting, (1) Pico smart remote, (1) Pedestal for Pico remotes, and (1) smart hub;

Same devices in both, you’re just getting one more of them in the “deluxe”. On their own site, they call the version with two switches a “two pack,” which I think is clearer. Obviously some marketing person got hold of the promotion for the starter kits. :wink:

If you’re asking why the diva style is more expensive than the original style, the diva style smart switches are new and have some additional upgraded engineering but mostly I think it’s just so people will continue to consider buying the originals. :man_shrugging:t2: