The newest entry in the Qolsys "One Platform" lineup is the Qolsys IQ4 NS. This is basically an IQ4 Hub minus the touchscreen and a microphone. Qolsys is marketing this lineup as a Good, Better, Best offering with the IQ4 NS, IQ4 Hub, and IQ Panel 4 respectively filling each of those roles.
The "NS" in IQ4 NS stands for "No Screen." As a touchless panel, the IQ4 NS does not need to be installed in a visible location. It can be installed tucked away in a closet in the middle of the home or business. By installing in this way, the panel is protected from attack by intruders, and being centrally located it can provide the best range for Z-Wave and other RF devices.
In this world where seemingly everything has a touchscreen, you may be wondering how you control the IQ4 NS. There are a couple of options, actually. First, you can perform any tasks such as arming, disarming, checking status, and controlling automation devices using the Alarm.com mobile app. This app is available in both iOS and Android versions and is available as a free download from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.
If you're looking for a more traditional security system experience, meaning you'd like to use a keypad, you have options there as well. The IQ Remote is compatible with all panel versions, and the IQ Remote-PG and some of the push-button PowerG keypads are compatible with the IQ4 NS when a PowerG daughter card is installed. Qolsys also plans to roll out a low-cost, battery-powered keypad called the IQ Keypad PowerG at the end of 2023. This is a basic, numerical keypad. It has an estimated three (3) year battery life and up to five (5) keypads can be used per system. It will work with all of the IQ4 panel lineup, as long as the panel supports PowerG.
To program the IQ4 NS locally, the IQ Installer Interface app is used. In addition, dealers can program the panel through the Alarm.com dealer portal. To program at the panel, simply download and install the free IQ Installer Interface app, open it, scan the QR code for the panel, located on the back of the unit, and follow a few onscreen prompts. You'll be programming the panel within minutes. The UI for the installer interface app is very similar to programming the IQ Panel 4 and IQ4 Hub through the panel touchscreen.
Qolsys has made the IQ4 NS a very modular system. Users can purchase a system with only the Z-Wave card installed, for example. This system can then be used as an automation hub only, perhaps in a newly constructed home, for demonstration purposes. When someone buys the home, they may then want to add security sensors. They can purchase a PowerG, 319.5MHz, 345MHz, or 433MHz daughter card to be installed into the panel. Now the same IQ4 NS is a full security system.
|Feature||IQ4 NS||IQ4 Hub||IQ Panel 4|
|Built-in LTE & WIFI Comms||YES||YES||YES|
|Dual SRF (PowerG + 1)||NO||NO||YES|
|Z-Wave Plus (800-Series)||YES||YES||YES|
|Microphones||0||1||3, with echo cancellation|
|8MP Panel Camera (w/Flextilt)||NO||NO||YES|
|Built-in Panel Glass Break||NO||NO||YES|
|Built-in Panel Motion Detector||NO||NO||YES|
|24-Hour LiPo Backup Battery||YES||YES||YES|
|Smart Mount Installation||YES||YES||YES|
|Compatible with IQ Base||NO||NO||YES|
|Available in Black Housing||NO||NO||YES|
|Live View, Live Answer Doorbell & Cameras||NO||YES||YES|
|Weather on Home Screen||NO||YES||YES|
|Photo Frame Screensaver||NO||YES||YES|
|Full Alarm.com Integration||YES||YES||YES|
|4-Watt Speakers||YES, 1||YES, 1||YES, 4|
|Support for 128 Zones||YES||YES||YES|
|Support for Partitioning||YES, 4||YES, 4||YES, 4|
|242 User Codes||YES||YES||YES|
|Encrypted Sensor Support||YES (with PowerG or 319.5 MHz SRF)||YES (with PowerG or 319.5 MHz SRF)||YES|
|Support for Hardwired Zones||YES (SRF will determine how)||YES (SRF will determine how)||YES (via PG9WLSHW8 or other SRF)|
|Residential Certification||YES, (UL1023, UL985)||YES, (UL1023, UL985)||YES, (UL1023, UL985)|
|Commercial Certification||YES, (UL2610)||YES, (UL2610)||YES, (UL2610)|
Because the IQ4 NS has no screen with which to relay information to the user, it has two (2) LEDs on the front of the panel that provide some information. The left LED indicates power and the right LED indicates security system status.
The table below shows the various LED states and their respective meanings:
|Solid Green||AC is present.|
|Flashing Green||System running on battery, AC power is down|
|LED OFF||System is Powered Down|
|Solid Green||Disarmed, Ready to Arm|
|Flashing Green||Ready to Arm, with Zones Open|
|Solid Orange||System Trouble Present|
|Flashing Orange||RF Jam is Present|
|Solid Red||System Armed|
|Flashing Red||An Alarm has Occurred|
|Flashing Red (Rapidly)||Active Fire Alarm, Bell Silenced|
|Flashing Blue||Rebooting After an Update|
|Solid Blue||IQ Installer Pairing Mode|
With no touchscreen interface on the panel, the power button also has some additional functionality on the IQ4 NS. See the chart below for details:
|Press and Hold, 3 Seconds||Panel Powers On, if Currently Off.|
|Press and Release, While Disarmed||Announces Alarms, Troubles, and any other Status.
Alarms and Troubles can be Cleared by Pressing and Releasing again, after Annunciation Ends.
|Press Twice within 3-Seconds, While Disarmed||Initiates a Pairing Window for the IQ Installer App.
If Enabled in Programming, May Also Initiate a Cell Test.
|Press and Hold for 30-Seconds||Initiates a Hard Reboot.|
Links for the various versions of the IQ4 NS can be found below:
|IQ4 NS with Verizon LTE and PowerG||IQPK048|
|IQ4 NS with AT&T LTE and PowerG||IQPK047|
|IQ4 NS with Telus LTE (Canada) and PowerG||IQPK062|
|IQ4 NS with Verizon LTE||IQPK071|
|IQ4 NS with AT&T LTE||IQPK072|
|IQ4 NS with Telus LTE (Canada)||IQPK0AA|
|IQ4 NS with Verizon LTE and 319.5MHz||IQPK082|
|IQ4 NS with AT&T LTE and 319.5MHz||IQPK083|
|IQ4 NS with Telus LTE (Canada) and 319.5MHz||IQPK097|
|IQ4 NS with Verizon LTE and 433MHz||IQPK086|
|IQ4 NS with AT&T LTE and 433MHz||IQPK087|
|IQ4 NS with Telus LTE (Canada) and 433MHz||IQPK098|
|IQ4 NS with Verizon LTE and 345MHz||IQPK084|
|IQ4 NS with AT&T LTE and 345MHz||IQPK085|
|IQ4 NS with Telus LTE (Canada) and 345MHz||IQPK099|
|Daughter Cards and Accessories|
|319.5 MHz IQ-Card||QC0001-840|
|433 MHz IQ-Card||QC0004-840|
|345 MHz IQ-Card||QC0005-840|
|915 MHz IQ-Card||QC0008-840|
|IQ4 NS Table Stand||IQ4NSTAND|
Not all versions of the IQ4 NS are available just yet, but as they roll out, we'll add links to those panels in the chart above. We've been, frankly, unimpressed with prior manufacturers' all-in-one panels with no touchscreen, but the Qolsys IQ4 NS seems to have been well thought out. We'll see how popular it is with our customers.
What do you think about this type of screenless panel? Would you consider purchasing one? Leave a comment below and let us know what you think. It seems that every manufacturer of all-in-one, professional-grade security panels decides to try a screenless panel at some point. It will be interesting to see if Qolsys can succeed where others have failed.