ST and Harmony Elite Hub - Switching Input on Shutdown

Hey everyone… I have a pretty good ST + Echo Dot + Harmony Elite Hub setup but I’ve found that the Harmony will not allow me to change the input of my receiver upon shutdown commands (in order for the Echo Dot to always use the speakers).

To get around this, I was thinking of creating a SmartApp that just changes my input for me on the receiver once an hour to ensure that it is in the right mode for the Echo Dot to be able to use the speakers. The biggest issue I see here is that I need to NOT perform that recurring action whenever the receiver is actually being used.

I see on my Smart Thing Harmony Hub that when an activity is On, it sends out a status code as opposed to ‘----’. I am thinking that I could probably use this as a way to stop my recurring action from occurring.

Does anyone know if this is possible? Am I missing a much easier solution? Any help is appreciated…


You should be able to customize the shut down commands in the Harmony app. From inside the app, go to menu, Harmony setup, add/edit devices & activities, activities, then select an activity. Go to edit end sequence, edit entertainment devices, add a step, then select the appropriate device and input. You have to do this for each activity but it should work.

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Thought about the shut down commands and not sure that will work (will check into it though). There is no “Change Input” option (at least with my receiver)

Another option is not to use off at all. Just set up an activity to switch to the Dot, and when moving away from TV (or whatever) it should shut everything else down.

On top of that I would look at creating a rule that when Harmony goes “Off” trigger the Dot activity. You can set that up using Logitech Harmony Trigger (under other in Marketplace). Chose “Off” for all the activities to watch for, then what activity to trigger is the Dot one.

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You’re right. I just tried to edit one of my shutdown sequences and there’s no choice for Input under my receiver commands.

Thanks for the quick responses!

The customization of the shutdown command doesn’t include ‘inputs’ so that won’t work.

I looked at the Harmony Trigger Smart App but unfortunately it doesn’t look like you can use All Off as an input to that and instead can only trigger it as an action.

This will depend on your receiver I think, but for mine on shutdown I can do things like Option, down, select, up, up, select… My receiver has an on-screen display menu and I can use that to change inputs, so I think I could work around the lack of a direct input command. Might check to see if yours can do that also. Not efficient by any means, but better than nothing I guess.

CoRE is another option…I’m going to try and build a piston to do this. Will post again shortly…

Good thought! I tried the same and my receiver doesn’t have the menu structure to allow it :frowning:

Interesting. I don’t know much about Core. Interested to learn more. Keep me updated! Thanks!

Ok here’s what I came up with. There’s a relatively long delay from when an activity powers off to when the ST switch updates (mine was about 3 minutes), so this may or may not work for you depending on how responsive you need it to be, but it does work eventually.

I have all of my activities EXCEPT for Bluetooth (which is the one that connects to Echo) as triggers. When any of them turn off, and all of them are off, it turns Bluetooth back on and connects to Echo. Minus the 3 minute delay, this worked for me. One nice extra about this is it gives you a way to “overrride” the auto-on if desired. If you manually launch the Bluetooth activity and then power it off, the piston will not turn it back on because it’s not a trigger.

A possible workaround for the delay could be to set up a virtual switch, add as a home automation/lighting device to Harmony, then have Harmony turn it off when shutting down (you’d also have to edit each of your activities to turn the virtual switch on when starting). This should update much faster in ST, and you could use that switch turning off as a trigger to turn on your Echo input rather than all of the individual activity switches like I did.

The delay doesn’t bother me so your concept sounds perfect. I’ll take a look at installing Core later today. Thanks for the help!!

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I think I’m messing up on the Then statements. ‘Alexa’ is a Harmony Activity showing up as a switch in ST that just switches my input of my receiver to the Echo. I would think this would work but I’m not having any luck. Any advice?

Whats it doing with that piston?

I thought the Then statement is what the Piston does. Alexa there is a virtual switch in ST that’s an activity in Harmony that just changes the input to allow for the Echo to send audio to the speakers. Am I missing something with the piston?

If you turn everything off using your Harmony remote then turn on the Alexa switch in Smartthings app, does the receiver do what you want?

Yes it does so I know the virtual switch and activity is working. It’s the piston part that I’m not sure I’m doing right.

For example, the second screenshot I provided, it is written with the intent that it’s a recurring check. Do the pistons run cyclically? Or do they need a trigger such as in the first screenshot? Either way, both pistons appear to not be triggering the activity the way I’d like it to.

I don’t think they run continuously…that’s been one of my learning curves with core. The first one should work though, it looks like it’s set up exactly like mine. You can try to turn on debugging and watch the live logging in IDE and see if that tells you anything. I’m on vacation and out of town until late Sunday night now, so I can’t do any testing on my side until then unfortunately.

Thanks. I’ll give debugging a shot this afternoon. I really like the concept of Core because it essentially streamlines the ability to build custom apps. I was going to write my own smart app until you mentioned core. Very much appreciated (assuming I can get it to work hah.)

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Figured you can just check all you activities switches to off. Never tried it thoug.

Core can for sure do this.