Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 14

Thread: Newbie Compatibility question Homekit/Echo/Lutron App

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    14

    Newbie Compatibility question Homekit/Echo/Lutron App

    Mind= Blown right now trying to design a system for my Major Remodel. I am replacing all wires in my remodel, so it's not new construction, but all switches and light fixtures and much of the wiring will be replaced.

    I want some lighting control, cool app functionality and voice control via Alexa or Siri, and phone app control and the geofence option that the Lutron app offers. It seems that things are changing fairly quickly in this automation space, and the web has some dated info written prior to the latest product offerings, software upgrades etc. and so it's hard to sort it all out. I hope you guys can help

    I have not purchased any switches yet, but need to this week. I have several issues I'm tackling, so here is a multifaceted post.


    1. I understand there is Caseta switches and then Caseta pro. I can't figure out the difference in functionality other than the Lutron tech support says the Pro version uses a Neutral wire... Not sure why I should care.... HELP.

    2. Caseta works (as I understand it) with the Wink Hub, Homekit, Smart Bridge Pro hub and others.

    Siri works to control lights through the Lutron app ONLY if you use the Smart Bridge, Correct?

    Alexa will work ONLY if you use the Wink hub, Correct?

    Geofencing will work ONLY if you use Smart Bridge/Lutron app, correct?



    I don't need automated shades, I don't want to fuss with a bunch of hardware that patches various systems together, I don't want to have a professional come in and by "my guru" that I have to go back to every time I have an issue.


    I am looking for the best/cost effective, solution here and I am sick of reading biased reviews etc.


    On another note, I understand that Lutron doesn't sell a switch that has a motion detector on it that can also be controlled via voice/app. This seems silly that if I just want simple "old school" automation (ie: bathroom lights turn on when I walk into the bathroom) with a seeing eye type switch, then I can't itegrate that circuit of lights into the rest of the home automation scheme. Is this true?


    This may be an oversimplified question, and not intended to start a debate, but what is the best switch/hub/user-interface to use?

    -Chris in Tampa

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Posts
    147
    I spent a lot of time researching this space before committing to a Caseta system. I came to realize these important truths:

    1. Lighting control is a subset of home automation. While many lighting control systems blur the lines by offering more functionality than just lighting, true home automation will require an overarching whole-house system (i.e. Crestron, Control4, etc) to tie all of the pieces together. While Homekit aspires to simplify this, there's considerable debate in the pro world whether this will ever truly become a reality (though it will certainly raise the bar for most people).

    2. Compatibility. If you ever choose to go the whole-house automation route, all of the major automation systems are compatible with Caseta so you can just layer it on top. Caseta controls the lighting sub-system and the whole-house system controls it. In addition, Caseta works with many other systems. Make sure you get the Smart Bridge Pro. For the extra $50 it gives you a lot more integration options down the road.

    3. From a hardware standpoint the Caseta system is rock-solid and reliable. While some of the competing systems are flashier, when it comes to the fundamentals (i.e. dimming, switching, wireless connectivity, etc), you really can't beat Caseta.

    OK, on to your questions:

    1. There is no overlap between PRO devices--they are functionally different so only use them where you need them. Take the dimmer as an example: the PRO version supports a mechanical 3-way switch and 1,000W (vs. 600W for the regular dimmer). If you just need an on/off switch then your only option is the PRO switch.

    2. For best results you should use the Smart Bridge over Wink. To get Homekit functionality you would still need some other device/hub/etc, but honestly I'm not sure what your other options would be. It seems like the Smart Bridge checks all of your boxes, so that seems like a no-brainer to me. As to your other questions...

    For local control (i.e. not attached to an automation system) you can mix and match Maestro products. That's what I did in my bathrooms where I wanted to control my exhaust fans with a timer switch. Also, I didn't see a reason to spend the money to be able to control my exhaust fan light from Caseta. This seemed like a local control-only kind of light so Maestro was perfect. I also used a Maestro motion sensor dimmer switch in my powder room so the light come on when you enter the room. Again, I didn't see a reason to use Caseta here. You can see some finished pics from my installation at the thread linked below:

    https://forums.lutron.com/showthread...ation-COMPLETE!

    Hope this helps!

  3. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    14
    Quote Originally Posted by asherrick View Post
    Make sure you get the Smart Bridge Pro. For the extra $50 it gives you a lot more integration options down the road.


    For local control (i.e. not attached to an automation system) you can mix and match Maestro products. That's what I did in my bathrooms where I wanted to control my exhaust fans with a timer switch. Also, I didn't see a reason to spend the money to be able to control my exhaust fan light from Caseta. This seemed like a local control-only kind of light so Maestro was perfect. I also used a Maestro motion sensor dimmer switch in my powder room so the light come on when you enter the room. Again, I didn't see a reason to use Caseta here. You can see some finished pics from my installation at the thread linked below:

    https://forums.lutron.com/showthread...ation-COMPLETE!

    Hope this helps!
    Asherrick- thanks so much. What you did is basically what I want. Bathroom stuff controled there with a motion, dim, timer. Then other rooms automated. I'll definitely go for the Smart Bridge Pro.... I see that there is a PRO2 now, does anyone know what the difference is?

    Thanks for the tip on the Maestro switches as well. I'll check those out.

    So you were saying that Homekit and Casetta needs another piece of hardware besides the Smart Bridge? What is that, and am I going to have to choose to use Siri or the Luton App to control things or is it one or the other but not both?

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Posts
    147
    Glad I could help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Automate View Post
    I see that there is a PRO2 now, does anyone know what the difference is?
    The PRO2 has Homekit. You definitely want that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Automate View Post
    So you were saying that Homekit and Casetta needs another piece of hardware besides the Smart Bridge?
    No, I'm saying that if you didn't use the Smart Bridge you would need some kind of device or hub to give you Homekit functionality. With the Smart Bridge you can use both Siri and the Lutron app to control your lights.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Automate View Post
    Asherrick- thanks so much. What you did is basically what I want. Bathroom stuff controled there with a motion, dim, timer. Then other rooms automated. I'll definitely go for the Smart Bridge Pro.... I see that there is a PRO2 now, does anyone know what the difference is?

    Thanks for the tip on the Maestro switches as well. I'll check those out.

    So you were saying that Homekit and Casetta needs another piece of hardware besides the Smart Bridge? What is that, and am I going to have to choose to use Siri or the Luton App to control things or is it one or the other but not both?
    Here's my two cents. Something I learned recently when deciding to buy Smart Bridge over Wink. The Smart Bridge actually stores the devices/programs/scenes. Whereas, with Wink, it must remain internet connected, because your 'programming' is actually stored on their cloud, and the Wink Hub is just delivering instructions from the cloud server. Also, it was clear to me that both the Pico's and dimmer/switches could both be connected, which was mandatory for me. So ultimately I bought the Smart Bridge2 with HomeKit. The Smart Bridge2 now can handle Home Kit, and also Logitech Harmony and a few others so I saved a few bucks without the PRO2.
    Note the middle of the page on this link, and the ** footnote at the bottom. http://www.casetawireless.com/Pages/Alliances.aspx

  6. #6
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    14
    Thank you so much guys. It is really helpful to get some advice from people further down the road. I am quickly getting more comfortable with all this stuff, but of course with new knowledge comes more questions:

    I have decided to go with The Smart Bridge Pro 2. I Found a good deal on the Smart Bridge Pro on Ebay, but not even the Tech support guy at Lutron really knew the difference between the Pro and the Pro two, beyond "It has some updates inside" Anyone know a practical reason to go with the Pro 2 vs. the Pro?

    Now a few more questions:

    1. Asherrick mentioned using some Maestro switches in conjuction with the Caseta when he needed some motion sensors. I figured at the time that the Maestro was just a regular switch with a motion sensor, but now I see that the Maestro series is also wireless, and Pico compatible, and I assume works with the Smart Bridge Pro. Can someone break down the differences between Caseta and Maestro, and can you use both in the same system seamlessly integrated with the Lutron app and Homekit?

    2. The MLV vs ELD vs LED dimming is the hurdle of the day.... The Triangle bulbs I picked up on Amazon say dimmable, but not if they are leading edge or trailing edge, and the Brand isn't listed on the approved Lutron list at all. Is this ELV vs MLV a bulb thing or a fixture thing?

    3. The Pro in-wall light dimmer refers to 250 w dimmable LED/CFL 1000w incandescent/halogen as well as 1000VA MLV. So does that mean this dimmer can "do it all"? ie: CFL's and Leading edge and trailing edge bulbs on the same circuit?

    The non pro verson of the in-wall dimmer doesn't mention MLV. I can't even figure out if I need MLV or ELV, and is that different from LED which seems to be grouped with CFL.... WTF? From my googling I gather that MLV is low voltage, but aren't all LED lights low voltage? HELP!

    3. Anyone have a hot tip on great prices if I was going to throw down on a bunch of this stuff at once?

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Posts
    147
    Quote Originally Posted by Automate View Post
    Anyone know a practical reason to go with the Pro 2 vs. the Pro?
    As I said, v2 adds Homekit. So, if you want Homekit, you need to get v2 of the Smart Bridge.

    Quote Originally Posted by Automate View Post
    I figured at the time that the Maestro was just a regular switch with a motion sensor, but now I see that the Maestro series is also wireless, and Pico compatible, and I assume works with the Smart Bridge Pro. Can someone break down the differences between Caseta and Maestro, and can you use both in the same system seamlessly integrated with the Lutron app and Homekit?
    Some Maestro devices are wireless, but they are not compatible with the Smart Bridge. You can pair some of the wireless Maestro devices to Picos, but then those Picos cannot be used with the Smart Bridge. Maestro is completely standalone.

    Quote Originally Posted by Automate View Post
    3. The Pro in-wall light dimmer refers to 250 w dimmable LED/CFL 1000w incandescent/halogen as well as 1000VA MLV. So does that mean this dimmer can "do it all"? ie: CFL's and Leading edge and trailing edge bulbs on the same circuit?
    The dimmers have load sensing so that they can work with different bulb types. Different bulbs within the same circuit is fine but not within the same fixture. For fun I replaced one incandescent candelabra bulb in a 5-light chandelier with an LED bulb; the result was that the incandescent bulbs dimmed but the LED remained nearly constant in its brightness.

    Quote Originally Posted by Automate View Post
    3. Anyone have a hot tip on great prices if I was going to throw down on a bunch of this stuff at once?
    The pricing on Caseta seems to be fixed, and the margins probably aren't great either, so don't expect to find deals in new stuff unless it's on eBay. You can buy used stuff there as well, but just be careful.

  8. #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    14
    Got it now Pro vs Pro2. Thanks. Your original post was suggesting to get the Pro vs. standard to get Homekit, so I was confused.

    What Maestro motion sensor dimmer switch did you end up with?

    I bought a really cool LED light fixture and the supplier just said that I need a 1-10v dimmer and suggested the DVSTV 0-10v dimmer.... do you know the Caseta version of this?

    Does anyone know the best way to get color changing LED light strip control? I saw a strip on the Apple Store that is called "Friend of Hue" which is a Phillips product, and works with Homekit if you buy the new Square Hue Homebridge.

    I would rather not add another bridge, but I have to, is the PHillips a good choice to open up another range of products, or is there an alternate that is a clear winner?

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Posts
    147
    Quote Originally Posted by Automate View Post
    What Maestro motion sensor dimmer switch did you end up with?


    I got the Maestro
    MSCL-OP153.

    Quote Originally Posted by Automate View Post
    I bought a really cool LED light fixture and the supplier just said that I need a 1-10v dimmer and suggested the DVSTV 0-10v dimmer.... do you know the Caseta version of this?
    I would think the regular Caseta dimmer would be fine for this.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by asherrick View Post


    I got the Maestro
    MSCL-OP153.



    I would think the regular Caseta dimmer would be fine for this.
    Personally, I went with Amazon to buy stuff. Specifically, either the vendor was Amazon LLC or Fulfilled by Amazon. I contacted a couple of the other Marketplace vendors and their return policies were terrible. Amazon directly does not have those issues.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. amazon echo support?
    By wkearney99 in forum 3rd-party Integration - RA2
    Replies: 87
    Last Post: 04-03-2017, 03:21 PM
  2. Seeking 3-way design assistance - newbie question
    By BlackKnight in forum Design Assistance - CAS
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 10-05-2015, 08:13 AM
  3. Homekit Question
    By darkhelmet in forum General Discussion - CAS
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 08-14-2015, 09:37 PM
  4. Newbie with a few basic questions
    By OC_Carl in forum Design Assistance - Shades
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 07-01-2015, 08:28 AM
  5. Lutron PD-6WCL-WH In Wall Dimmer compatibility with outlet
    By Jaybrones in forum General Discussion - CAS
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-09-2015, 11:29 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •