Reviews

Alarm.com ADC-W100 - Ethernet to WIFI Bridge

Great Ethernet to WIFI Converter!
Submitted on 12/13/2019 Alarm Grid

The Alarm.com ADC-W100 is an ethernet-to-WIFI bridge that is primarily used for providing power to Alarm.com Cameras that support power over ethernet (PoE). By using a device like the Alarm.com ADC-W100, you can provide power and network connectivity to your cameras, without needing to run an ethernet wire from the camera to your IP router. This can make it much easier to get your camera connected with a network. You can also use the ADC-W100 with any device that normally relies on a wired ethernet connection. The ADC-W100 will allow it to get connected to an IP network wirelessly across WIFI. Overall, we like the ADC-W100 a lot, and we think it works great. That is why we give it a 5-Star rating.

There are many things to like about the Alarm.com ADC-W100. For one, it is a very simple device to use. It does not require any special programming. You just plug it in to a standard electrical outlet and connect it with your network using a convenient WPS setup. Then run an ethernet wire from the ADC-W100 to whatever ethernet device you want to use with your WIFI network. If you have a PoE camera, then the ADC-W100 will provide power as well. This can make it very easy to set up your camera. You won't need to run a wire from the IP router to the camera, and you won't need to find a power source for the camera. Just make sure that your camera supports PoE. We also like the fact that the Alarm.com ADC-W100 features LED lights for displaying status.

There are not many downsides to the Alarm.com ADC-W100. The biggest is that the device has been discontinued, and it can no longer be found new. Alarm.com replaced the product with the Alarm.com ADC-W110 instead. Another negative aspect of the ADC-W100 is that it will not work with 5 GHz WIFI networks. It can only be used with 2.4 GHz networks. But these downsides are overshadowed by the positive aspects of the ADC-W100. We think that this is a great product, and we give it 5 Stars.

Good: No Special Programming, Provides IP and Power, Status LED Lights

Bad: Discontinued, 2.4 GHz Networks Only

Bottom Line: 5 Stars

DSC PG9945 - PowerG 915Mhz Wireless Door/Window Contact

Great PowerG Contact!
Submitted on 12/13/2019 Alarm Grid

The DSC PG9945 is a wireless PowerG Door and Window Contact. It is used to let a compatible security system know when a door or window has been opened and closed. The sensor is known for its extremely long wireless signal range and its encrypted communication. However, it does have a rather small magnet spacing gap allowance, and it is somewhat of a bulky sensor. But its strengths outweigh its weaknesses, and it is a good sensor all-around. We give it a 5-Star rating.

There are many things we like about the DSC PG9945. For one, it has a really impressive wireless signal, that can communicate from up to 2 km away from certain system types. This gives you great flexibility in choosing a location for the sensor. It is also quite useful if you are using the sensor in an area with many metal objects and other structures that could cause interference. Anyone needing a sensor for use in a warehouse, factory, or other area with a lot of interference will definitely want to consider PowerG Sensors if they have a compatible system. We also like the wireless encryption that PowerG Sensors like the PG9945 use. Like all PowerG Sensors, the PG9945 communicates using military-grade 128-bit AES encryption. This makes it virtually impossible for others to hack or take over wirelessly. Finally, we like the fact that the PG9945 has an auxiliary input for use with Normally Open, Normally Closed, and Single End-of-Line devices. The wired device will connect with the PG9945, and the sensor will communicate with the system on its behalf. This is great if you want to use a non-powered wired security device with your PowerG System.

But there are some downsides to the DSC PG9945. For one, it has a rather small magnet spacing gap allowance, as DSC states that the sensor should be within 1/4 of an inch from the magnet when the door or window is closed. Remember to test the sensor after installation so that you can be sure that the magnet and sensor are aligned properly. Another downside to the DSC PG9945 is that it is somewhat of a bulky door and window sensor. It is rather large when compared with another PowerG door and window contact, the DSC PG9303. However, the DSC PG9945 is less expensive than the PG9303, so if you don't mind the size, then this can be the better option. Also, only the PG9945 has the auxiliary input. There are certainly many situations where it is best to choose the PG9945 over the PG9303. But if you are looking for the thinnest sensor, then you should go with the PG9303 instead.

All things considered, we really like the DSC PG9945. It gets 5 Stars from Alarm Grid.

Good: PowerG Wireless Range, 128-Bit AES Encryption, Auxiliary Input

Bad: Small Magnet Spacing Gap, Somewhat Bulky

Bottom Line: 5 Stars

DSC AC-102 - Acuity® Glassbreak Detector w/ Tamper, Form C

Outstanding Glass Break Sensor
Submitted on 12/05/2019 Alarm Grid

The DSC AC-102 is a Form C hardwired glass break sensor. The device is used to monitor for broken glass. This usually includes windows and protective glass casings. However, you will need to make sure that the type of glass you are using is compatible with the DSC AC-102. We find that the DSC AC-102 works quite well, and we have no trouble recommending it as a wired glass break detector. We give it a 5 Star rating.

There are many things we like about the DSC AC-102. For one, it has an advanced microprocessor that helps it properly distinguish between true glass break events and potential false alarms. This is very important for users who may have had trouble with glass break sensors causing false alarms in the past. We also appreciate the omnidirectional microphone on the sensor that allows the device to listen for broken glass from any direction. The sensor can detect broken glass sounds from up to 25 feet away, which is a pretty nice distance for a glass break sensor. We also like that this device has a built-in tamper switch to let you know if someone is trying to open up or disable the sensor. Finally, the fact that this sensor is Form C is good, as you can choose between Normally Open (NO) and Normally Closed (NC) wiring.

We don't have many downsides to mention about the DSC AC-102. The device has an admittedly "dated" design, that some might even call ugly compared with more attractive glass break sensors. If that is important for you, then it may be a deal-breaker. This device also needs a direct line of sight to the glass, so make sure you position it accordingly. Overall, we really like the DSC AC-102, and we give it 5 Stars.

Good: Advanced Microprocessor, Omnidirectional Microphone, 25 Foot Detection Range, Tamper Switch, Form C

Bad: Unattractive Design, Needs Direct Line of Sight

Bottom Line: 5 Stars

Honeywell Lyric Verizon-CDMA 3-1 Kit - Alarm System, 3 Door/Window Sensors, 1 Motion, 8' Cable

Get a Lyric LTE Kit Instead!
Submitted on 12/05/2019 Alarm Grid

The Honeywell Lyric Verizon-CDMA 3-1 Kit is an old security system kit sold by Alarm Grid. The kit included a Honeywell Lyric Alarm System, three (3) VERSA-2GIG Contacts, a Honeywell SiXPIR Motion Sensor, a Verizon CDMA Communicator, and a Honeywell LT-Cable. Other than the Verizon CDMA Communicator, everything included in this kit is still top of the line and can be used very effectively. And if you already have the communicator activated, then it can continue to be used until Verizon eventually shuts down their CDMA Network. But since we really like the Lyric System and the included sensors, we can still give this 5 Stars.

The Lyric is a great system, and it offers pretty much everything you would expect out of a modern system. It has 128 wireless zones, built-in Z-Wave, integrated WIFI, and a beautiful touchscreen. The sensors included with this kit are simple, yet effective. They are all easy to enroll, and you can program them according to your unique needs. As an added bonus, the SiXPIR Motion Sensor utilizes 128-bit AES encryption for added wireless security. And the Honeywell LT-Cable is a nice addition, as it makes installing the system even easier. We also want to mention that even though the Verizon CDMA Communicator can no longer be activated, the Lyric System can still be used for IP-only with no added equipment.

The main downsides from this kit concern the fact that it has a very outdated communicator. The Verizon CDMA Communicator can no longer be activated for monitoring service. Making matters worse is that if you have one that is already activated, then it will stop working once Verizon shuts down their CDMA Network. You will want to upgrade to LTE as soon as you can. Fortunately, LTE modules are readily available. Overall, we are big fans of the Lyric System. If it weren't for the CDMA Communicator, we would strongly recommend this kit. But luckily, we have some Lyric Kits with LTE modules available for purchase instead. Still, this doesn't stop us from giving the Honeywell Lyric Verizon-CDMA 3-1 Kit a 5 Star rating.

Good: Excellent System, Nice Sensors, LT-Cable, Can Still Do IP Monitoring

Bad: CDMA Communicator Cannot Be Activated, Need to Upgrade to LTE

Bottom Line: 5 Stars

Honeywell IPCAM-WIPS - IPCAM-WI2 Power Supply 5VDC, 1A

Wonderful Power Supply!
Submitted on 12/05/2019 Alarm Grid

The Honeywell IPCAM-WIPS is the power supply for the Honeywell IPCAM-WI2. The Honeywell IPCAM-WI2 is a legacy IP camera that is no longer manufactured or sold in new condition. The same applies to the IPCAM-WIPS Power Supply. It's not that the Honeywell IPCAM-WI2 was a bad camera or anything. It just isn't as advanced as the newer Honeywell IP Cameras on the market. Likewise, the IPCAM-WIPS is a great power supply! If you ever needed a replacement power supply for a Honeywell IPCAM-WI2, then the Honeywell IPCAM-WIPS is the product to get. You may be able to find one somewhere on the used market if needed. For its ease of use and effectiveness, we give the Honeywell IPCAM-WIPS a 5 Star Rating.

There are many things we like about the Honeywell IPCAM-WIPS. For one, it has an easy connector cord. You just plug it right into the back of the Honeywell IPCAM-WI2 Camera. This is very easy to do, and even novice users will have no trouble. Many users appreciate that the cable is fixed to the transformer, You will not need to connect your own cable when using this power supply.

But there are some downsides to the Honeywell IPCAM-WIPS. The fact that the cable is hardwired to the transformer is a double-edged sword. This also means that you cannot easily replace the cable if it becomes damged. If that happens, you will need to buy a completely new Honeywell IPCAM-WIPS Power Supply. That is a major inconvenience. It also means that you will have trouble extending the cable if needed. Instead, you will need to use an extension cord. We must also mention the obvious fact that the power supply is discontinued and no longer available for new purchase. But these downsides aside, the Honeywell IPCAM-WIPS is still a great product. We give it 5 Stars.

Good: Easy Connection, No Need to Connect Cable

Bad: Cannot Replace Cable if Damaged, Cannot Easily Extend Cable, Discontinued

Bottom Line: 5 Stars

2GIG GCCDMV-A - Alarm.com Verizon Go!Control Cell Comm

Upgrade to LTE ASAP!
Submitted on 12/05/2019 Alarm Grid

The 2GIG GCCDMV-A is a Verizon CDMA Communicator for the 2GIG Go!Control GC2 Security System. This is a discontinued communicator that can no longer be activated for monitoring service. If you have one that is currently operational, then it will continue to work until Verizon shuts down their CDMA network. Once this happens this communicator can no longer be used in any manner. If you are currently using this communicator, then it is important that you upgrade to an LTE module as soon as you can. The go-to Verizon LTE module is the 2GIG LTEV1-A-GC2. As far as rating, the 2GIG GCCDMV-A, we give it 4 Stars, as it still works fine for the time being if it is already activated. But you really should switch to an LTE unit sooner rather than later.

If you have a 2GIG GCCCDMV-A Communicator that is already installed and activated then there is still quite a bit to like about it. You can use the module for reliable monitoring service across the Verizon CDMA Cellular Network. Cellular monitoring is known for its excellent reliability, and the 2GIG GCCDMV-A is no exception, provided that you have adequate cellular signals in your area. If you have this communicator activated with a compatible monitoring plan, then you can use Alarm.com with your GC2 System. This is a convenient platform for arming and disarming, checking current status, controlling Z-Wave devices, and more.

The downsides to the 2GIG GCCDMV-A are fairly obvious. The communicator is discontinued, and it can no longer be activated. If you are still using this communicator, then you are on a time-crunch. It will continue to work until Verizon shuts down their CDMA Network. As a result, upgrading sooner rather than later is advised. All things considered, we give this communicator a 4 Star rating. If you are currently using one, please understand that it only has a very limited product life remaining.

Good: Reliable Monitoing, Alarm.com Access

Bad: Can No Longer Be Activated, CDMA Network Being Shut Down

Bottom Line: 4 Stars

Leviton VRCZ1-1LZ - 1-Button Zone Dimming Z-Wave Controller

Great Z-Wave Dimmer!
Submitted on 12/04/2019 Alarm Grid

The Leviton VRCZ1-1LZ is a single button Z-Wave dimming module. The device can be used to control a Z-Wave scene, or it can be used to dim the lights and turn them on and off. However, the main appeal to the Leviton VRCZ1-1LZ over many other Z-Wave light switches is that it is possible to pair it with a dimmer in a 3-way or multi-pole setup without the use of a traveler wire. This is a key feature, as you would traditionally need to wire in a traveler wire for this type of setup. Some DIY users may find that to be difficult depending on the positioning of the switches. For that reason, we give the Leviton VRCZ1-1LZ a 5 Star rating.

Seriously, the single best aspect of the Leviton VRCZ1-1LZ is the fact that it can be used with other dimming modules in a 3-way or multi-pole configuration without using a traveler wire. That is very cool, and super convenient. Other than that, we like that this module is easy to pair. It is also easy to install. All you need to do is cut power at the breaker, remove your existing dimmer, and wire the Leviton LRCZ1-1LZ in its place. This is simple even for a DIY user!

However, there are some downsides to the Leviton VRCZ1-1LZ. It only uses standard Z-Wave. If you have a newer Z-Wave Plus controller, then you may want to find a Z-Wave Plus dimmer so that you can take advantage of the robust range that Z-Wave Plus offers. Also, the product is discontinued, and you can no longer buy it new. But despite these minor drawbacks, this is still an outstanding product. We give the Leviton VRCZ1-1LZ 5 Stars.

Good: 3-Way & Multi-Pole Wiring w/o Traveler Wire, Easy to Install & Pair

Bad: Standard Z-Wave, Discontinued

Bottom Line: 5 Stars

Honeywell 4209U - V-Plex Group Zoning Remote Point Module

Great V-Plex Expansion or Group Zoning Module!
Submitted on 12/04/2019 Alarm Grid

The Honeywell 4209U is a V-Plex Grouping Zone Module. Its main use is to provide additional zone inputs for 2-wire smoke detectors to be used with V-Plex Polling Loop Panels. This includes security panels from the Honeywell VISTA TURBO Series, like the VISTA 128BPT and the VISTA 250BPT. The Honeywell 4209U features four (4) individual zone inputs, and it can support up to 16 different 2-wire smoke detectors per zone. Overall, this product works very well in performing its intended tasks. We give it a perfect 5 Star rating.

The main thing to like about the Honeywell 4209U is that it increases the number of available 2-wire smoke detector zones. Zone 1 on the VISTA-128BPT and VISTA-250BPT panels can be used to support 2-wire smoke detectors. But if you need additional 2-wire smoke zone support, then this module is perfect for you. The module can be configured to uniquely identify four (4) supervised zones in non-grouped mode, or two (2) supervised zones in grouped mode. You can also choose between programming the module using Serial Number mode or Dip Switch mode. Dip Switch mode should only be used with older V-Plex Polling Loop Panels that don’t support the use of serial numbers.

There are some minor downsides to the Honeywell 4209U. For one, you need to use 2k EOL resistors with every protection zone. These resistors come included with the module, so that's convenient. But having to add them all is somewhat tedious. Still, this is a necessary evil to making sure no one is tampering with the life-safety zones on your expansion module. Additionally, you can only use the Honeywell 4209U with panels that support a V-Plex Polling Loop. This somewhat limits its versatility. But all things considered, these are minor drawbacks. We give the Honeywell 4209U 5 Stars.

Good: Increases Available 2-wire Smoke zones, Configurable for Grouped or Non-Grouped Settings, Choose Serial Number or Zone Number (Dip Switch) Programming

Bad: Requires 2k EOL Resistors at Each Protection Zone, For V-Plex Polling Loop Panels Only

Bottom Line: 5 Stars

Jonard JIC-1022 - Wire Stripper Tool

Awesome Wire Stripper!
Submitted on 12/04/2019 Alarm Grid

The Jonard JIC-1022 is a convenient wire stripping tool. It is used for preparing electrical wire and making it suitable for practical use. The device is great for new and experienced users alike, and it is ideal for anyone needing to strip and prepare some electrical wiring. The Jonard JIC-1022 really offers some convenient features that help make it the go-to wire-stripping tool for many DIYers. We have no problem giving this outstanding product a 5 Star rating.

There are indeed many aspects to appreciate about the Jonard JIC-1022. For one, the device has an integrated spring coil to prevent fatigue when preparing cable. Its wire looping and bending slots are built-in for added convenience. We appreciate its black oxide finish which adds a nice touch to the tool. A locking mechanism provides safety in case children manage to access this device. The cutting surface is hardened for superb performance. It can support wire gauges ranging from 10 AWG to 22 AWG. This makes it suitable for nearly any wire-stripping application.

It's very hard to find any negative aspects about the Jonard JIC-1022. Really, the only negative we can come up with is that it will not actually strip and cut wires for you. Even with this convenient and easy to use tool, you still need to actually strip the wires yourself! But all joking aside, our technicians really like the Jonard JIC-1022 Wire Stripping Tool. This is our go-to tool whenever we need to prepare some wires. We give this product 5 Stars, and we wholeheartedly recommend it for anyone in need of a new wire stripping tool. It gets the Alarm Grid Seal of Approval!

Good: Integrated Spring Coil, Built-In Wire Looping & Bending Slots, Black Oxide Finish, Locking Mechanism for Safety, Hardened Cutting Surfaces, Supports 10 AWG to 22 AWG Wires

Bad: Doesn't Actually Strip/Cut Wires For You

Bottom Line: 5 Stars

Honeywell 4959SN - V-Plex Overhead Door Contact

Great Industrial Contact Sensor!
Submitted on 12/04/2019 Alarm Grid

The Honeywell 4959SN is a hardwired overhead door contact designed for use with V-Plex Polling Loop Panels. This includes Honeywell VISTA TURBO Series Panels like the VISTA 128BPT and the VISTA 250BPT. It can only be used with Honeywell Panels that support V-Plex Polling Loop devices. The Honeywell 4959SN is notable for its 2 inch magnetic spacing gap that makes it suitable for use with industrial overhead doors and garage doors. This is an excellent door contact if you are looking for something that meets industrial grade standards. We give it a perfect 5 Star rating.

There are several things to like about the Honeywell 4959SN. The biggest advantage to the sensor is its 2-inch maximum magnet spacing gap. This lets it be used nicely with nearly any industrial overhead door or with a garage door. Our technicians have found that this sensor is extremely versatile and can be used with many different applications. We also like the fact that this sensor comes with an aluminum L-bracket for easy installation.

However, there are still some downsides to the Honeywell 4959SN that should be discussed. The biggest limitation is the fact that it is for Honeywell V-Plex Polling Loop Panels only. You cannot use this device with non-polling loop panels. Unfortunately, this puts a major restriction on the systems that it can be used with. This sensor is also usually considered overkill for standard door and windows. It is really only used with industrial overhead doors or garage doors. But if you have a compatible system and need an industrial grade contact, then this is an excellent device to consider. We give it 5 Stars because it fulfills its role very well. It is an ideal sensor if you have a VISTA Polling Looping Panel and you need an industrial contact.

Good: 2 Inch Magnet Spacing Gap, Aluminum L-Bracket

Bad: V-Plex Polling Loop Only, Overkill for Most Doors/Windows

Bottom Line: 5 Stars