Reviews

Honeywell 950W - Wide Gap Commercial Contact

Great Wide Gap Contact Sensor
Submitted on 08/21/2019 Alarm Grid

We strongly recommend the Honeywell 950W as a wide gap hardwired door and window contact sensor. The sensor is great for use in commercial and industrial locations where a wider-than-average magnet spacing gap is needed. The sensor is easy to install and program, but you will need to run a wire from the sensor back to the panel. This is an extremely versatile sensor, and it serves its purpose well. That is why we give it a 5-Star rating.

Door and window contacts are some of the easiest sensors to understand. These devices consist of a sensor and a magnet. The sensor is mounted on the door or window frame, while the magnet is mounted on the moving portion of the door or window. For proper operation, the sensor and magnet should be as close as possible when the door or window is closed. In fact, many users will have the sensor and magnet in direct contact. This is how these sensors earned the nickname of "contacts".

With most door and window sensors, the magnet spacing gap is about one-half inch. But there are many doors and windows where achieving this small of a magnet spacing gap is simply not feasible. That is why they make wide-gap contact sensors. The 950W is one of these sensors, and it will still report that the door or window is closed when the sensor and magnet are slightly further away. With the Honeywell 950W, you can have a maximum magnet spacing gap of 2.25 inches and still expect the sensor to work reliably. Our technicians have tested this sensor and found that it works as advertised.

Please note that there are other industrial contacts that offer an even larger spacing gap. Also note that the Honeywell 950W is a Form A sensor, so you need to use a Normally Closed (NC) Series wiring configuration. But there are many users who will find that the 950W meets their needs perfectly. It is great for use in warehouses and other industrial locations where a large magnet spacing gap is needed. For that reason, we feel that it is worthy of 5-Stars.

Honeywell CELL-ANTHB - AlarmNet Cellular Antenna

Great for Small Signal Boosts
Submitted on 08/21/2019 Alarm Grid

We strongly recommend the Honeywell CELL-ANTHB as an indoor antenna for Honeywell VISTA System Cellular Communicators. The device is much easier to install than an outdoor antenna, and it will provide a noticeable boost in signal for many users. We give this product a 5-Star rating because it is effective in many situations.

A cellular antenna is designed to boost the signal strength for a cellular communicator. This can be very important for making sure the system can send and receive signals reliably. A cellular communicator will offer exceptional reliability, but only when the signal strength is adequate. If you live in a rural area, then you might need to add a cellular antenna or cellular amplifier to achieve a better signal.

The CELL-ANTHB is good for users when only a small boost in signal strength is needed. If you live very far away from any cell towers, then you might need to go with a stronger, outdoor antenna instead. An outdoor antenna will be more difficult to install, as it will need to go in your attic or on your roof. But for many users, the CELL-ANTHB is all that is needed. Just note that the antenna is only designed to provide a signal boost of 1 dB.

A great aspect of the CELL-ANTHB is that it works with the newer LTE communicators for VISTA Systems. These include the LTE-XA, LTE-XV, LTE-IA, and LTE-IV. The device can be mounted on the outside of the metal enclosure used to contain a Honeywell VISTA System. For stand-alone communicators, it can be mounted on or near the communicator itself. An end-user will have no trouble completing the installation themselves. It even comes with the Honeywell K14207LF Cable needed to complete the installation. Please note that the standalone cable is discontinued, so you will need to buy another CELL-ANTHB to get a new one if needed.

Bottom line, we think the Honeywell CELL-ANTHB works very well when only a small boost in signal strength is needed. It is easy to install, and it serves its purpose well. That is why we rate it 5-Stars.

Honeywell 995 - PIR Flush Mount Motion Detector

Great Flush-Mount Motion Sensor
Submitted on 08/21/2019 Alarm Grid

We think the Honeywell 995 is an excellent flush-mount PIR motion sensor. It is great for use in locations where a unique mounting option is desired. By installing the hardwired motion sensor into a single-gang box or recess-mounting it into the wall, you can better integrate the sensor with the building. The sensor works very reliably in this regard, which is why we give it a 5-Star rating.

The Honeywell 995 works like most other motion sensors. It uses passive infrared (PIR) technology to detect movement. This involves looking for the changes in infrared (IR) energy that occur when a person or object comes into the sensor's field of view. When a change in IR energy is detected, the sensor will alert the system to the activity. The system will then respond according to the Response Type for that zone. This allows you to be quite flexible in how you choose to use your Honeywell 995.

What makes the Honeywell 995 unique is its mounting options. The device is not mounted on the surface of a wall or "corner-mounted". Rather, this is a unique "recessed" motion sensor that actually integrates with the building itself. Our technicians admit that this makes the device more difficult for the average DIY user to install. But if you are looking for a flush-mount motion sensor, then this is a great device for you. Remember that you will need to run a wire from the panel to the Honeywell 995 to complete the installation.

As a motion sensor, the Honeywell 995 is perfectly serviceable. It doesn't offer the largest coverage area, but for many users this will not be a problem. Its coverage area is 40 feet by 56 feet, which is great for use in homes and small businesses. There is also an adjustable pulse count for increasing or decreasing device sensitivity, and horizontal and vertical detection adjustments are also available. Please note that pet immunity is not available for this sensor, so keep that in mind if you have pets in your home.

Bottom line, the Honeywell 995 is a great flush-mount motion sensor. It works as expected, and it makes a great addition to a hardwired system. That is why we recommend this product and give it 5-Stars.

Honeywell Lyric AT&T-3G 10-1 Kit - Wireless Alarm System, 10 Door/Window Sensors, Motion, 8' Cable

Upgrade to LTE
Submitted on 08/21/2019 Alarm Grid

NOTE: THIS PRODUCT IS DISCONTINUED AT THE TIME OF THIS WRITING.

We think the Honeywell Lyric AT&T-3G 10-1 Kit is an outstanding system kit. However, we strongly recommend that you purchase the Honeywell Lyric AT&T-LTE 10-1 Kit instead. This is the same kit, but it includes a newer AT&T LTE Communicator, instead of the older AT&T 3G Communicator. Anyone looking for a new system kit should make sure that it includes an LTE communicator. But since the Lyric AT&T-3G 10-1 Kit is still a good kit, we give it 5-Stars.

With this kit, you get a complete system with everything you need to get started for alarm monitoring service. The kit includes a Resideo Lyric Alarm System, ten (10) door and window contacts, an encrypted PIR motion sensor, a convenient power cable, a system transformer, and a 3G communicator. The Lyric is a great system with its support for 128 wireless zones and Apple HomeKit compatibility. It is easy to program, and it offers a simple user interface that is easy to understand. Our technicians believe that it is one of the best systems available on the market today.

You also get some nice sensors for the system. The VERSA-2GIG Door and Window Contacts are straightforward and effective. You can use these surface-mounted sensors to monitor virtually any door and window. They are simple to install, and they work great. The SiXPIR Motion Detecting Sensor that comes included with this kit is also quite nice. It works well in residential locations, and it offers pet-immunity for up to 80 pounds. You also get an LT-Cable and a transformer for powering the Lyric system.

The elephant in the room with this kit is the Honeywell LYRIC-3G Communicator. This device uses the AT&T 3G Network for cellular service. AT&T is expected to discontinue this network sometime in the next few years. As a result, it is no longer possible to activate this communicator for monitoring service. If you already have this communicator activated, then it will continue to work until AT&T shuts down their network. With that in mind, it is strongly recommended that you upgrade to an LTE communicator as soon as possible. You can choose between the LYRICLTE-A and the LYRICLTE-V. An LTE communicator will provide faster and more reliable connectivity when compared with a 3G communicator. Additionally, LTE networks are going to remain in service for a very long time. Getting an LTE communicator for your Lyric is a great long-term investment. Remember that the system also has a built-in WIFI card, so it will be dual-path ready once you add a communicator.

Bottom line, this is a great system and a great kit, so we give it 5-Stars. But you really should go with an LTE option instead.

2GIG FT6-345 - Wireless Flood and Temperature Detector

Excellent Flood and Temperature Sensor
Submitted on 08/21/2019 Alarm Grid

We strongly recommend the 2GIG FT6-345 as a flood sensor and temperature sensor. Our technicians have found that the sensor works reliably in all aspects. It can be easily enrolled with a compatible system, and it offers great versatility as a sensor. The fact that it can be used as a flood sensor without a probe makes it extremely easy to set up. That is why we give this product a 5-Star rating.

In order to achieve full functionality for the 2GIG FT6-345, you will need to program the sensor to three (3) separate zones on the system. Each zone will use a different Loop Number depending on the function for that zone. Loop 1 is for freeze detection. Loop 2 is for high temperature detection. Loop 3 is for flood detection. Please note that Loop 4 is not used with the sensor. Also note that high temperature detection should not be confused with heat detection for detecting fires.

To use the device as a flood sensor, you should have it placed in a location where a water leak is most likely to occur. This includes underneath a sink, near a water heater, next to a toilet, or by a bathtub or shower. With metal contacts on both the top and bottom, the sensor will respond to a water leak no matter how it is placed. We have tested this sensor for water detection, and we noted that it responds quickly and reliably to any flooding events.

As for temperature detection, the sensor also works quite reliability. It functions in a manner that will allow it to quickly respond to unusual temperatures, while also preventing any false alarms. In order to activate for low temperature (freeze) detection, the sensor must be exposed to a temperature of 41 degrees Fahrenheit or lower for three (3) consecutive minutes. Meanwhile, high temperature detection requires the sensor to be exposed to a temperature of 95 degrees Fahrenheit or higher for three (3) consecutive minutes.

We think the 2GIG FT6-345 is a great sensor for any Resideo Lyric Alarm System (Firmware MR3 or higher required), 2GIG GC2, 2GIG GC3, 2GIG GC2e, 2GIG GC3e, or Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus with 345 MHz daughtercard. For that reason, we give it 5-Stars.

Alarm.com ADC-SVR100 - Stream Video Recorder

Excellent Alarm.com SVR Device
Submitted on 08/21/2019 Alarm Grid

NOTE: THIS PRODUCT IS DISCONTINUED AT THE TIME OF THIS WRITING.

We strongly recommend the Alarm.com ADC-SVR100 Stream Video Recorder. This device is needed if you want to set up a recording schedule for your Alarm.com Security Cameras. As a result, using an SVR is the only way to achieve true, 24-hour continuous recording for your ADC Cameras. Although it has since been replaced by the ADC-SVR122, which offers similar functionality, the SVR100 is still an excellent device. In fact, it is even better than the newer SVR122 in certain aspects.

The ADC-SVR100 is a stream video recorder that allows you to store recorded footage for your Alarm.com Cameras. Although the Alarm.com cloud will store recorded video clips, it will not store continuous footage, unless you have a stream video recorder device set up with your account. With the ADC-SVR100, you are getting a robust and powerful device. Its ability to store up to 4TB (yes, TERABYTES) of footage through two 2TB hard drives is pretty incredible. Alarm.com cut back on this storage capacity, as the newer SVR122 can only store up to 1TB. But with the SVR100, you get up to 4TB of storage.

Now, there are some areas where the SVR100 is weaker than the SVR122. The SVR100 can only support up to four (4) ADC Cameras, while the SVR122 can support up to eight (8). The SVR100 lacks any HDMI port for viewing footage locally, which the SVR122 has. But you can still conveniently access stored footage for the SVR100 remotely through the Alarm.com Mobile App or Website. This is great if you are on the go, and you want to use your smartphone to check out stored footage on your SVR device. Another cool feature is that the SVR100 will still record and save footage to the local network if the internet is out. The footage will then be transferred to the Alarm.com Servers when the internet is restored. To do this, you must keep the IP router running with a backup power supply if the power is out.

Even though the SVR100 is discontinued, it is still an excellent product if you have one. It really offers some outstanding features, and it greatly improves the capabilities of your Alarm.com Cameras. For that reason, we give the ADC-SVR100 a 5-Star rating.

DSC PG9914 - PowerG 915MHz Wireless Motion Detector

Excellent PowerG Motion Sensor
Submitted on 08/12/2019 Alarm Grid

We think the DSC PG9914 is a great wireless motion detector. It is perfect for PowerG users in residential locations. You can use it indoors and expect it to detect movement very reliably. When properly configured it should not cause any false alarms. That is why we give the DSC PG9914 a 5 Star rating.

The DSC PG9914 is a PowerG Motion Sensor. As a PowerG device it offers an extremely impressive wireless range. Its advertised range is from up to 2 km away when used with a PowerSeries NEO Panel with direct line of sight. Our technicians have tested the sensor, and we are highly impressed with its range. Although we haven't gotten a chance to confirm the actual 2 km distance, we can confirm that the sensor works reliably from a very far distance.

Another benefit of this sensor is that it uses 128-bit AES encryption in its wireless communication. This makes the sensor virtually impossible for others to hack or takeover wirelessly. A non-encrypted sensor can be easily defeated using a process called RF jamming. A savvy intruder might employ these tactics and defeat a non-encrypted system. If you want the ultimate peace of mind in knowing that your home or business is always protected, then you should go with encrypted sensors like the PG9914.

The PG9914 offers a detection area of up to 39 feet. While this is somewhat small for a motion sensor, it is still perfectly suitable for residential use. If you need something a little more robust, then you might consider the DSC PG9904P, which offers a much larger coverage area of 90 feet. Both the PG9914 and the PG9904P offer pet immunity for animals weighing up to 85 pounds.

Our technicians have learned from customers the pet immunity function of the PG9914 works very effectively and that small animals should not set off the sensor. Just remember that mounting location is very important for achieving proper pet-immunity. Your pets may still set off the motion sensor if it is mounted in an area where they can get within the sensor's field of view.

Bottom line, the PG9914 is an excellent residential motion sensor. It offers an impressive wireless range, a decent coverage area, and reliable pet immunity when mounted properly. You can count on the DSC PG9914 to detect movement reliably in your home. We definitely recommend this sensor for any user with a PowerG-compatible System. These systems include any Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus, any DSC PowerSeries NEO, and the DSC Iotega.

Interlogix 600-1048-XT-ZX-VZ - Verizon CDMA Cellular Communicator for Simon XT, XTi & XTi-5

Do Not Buy! Get an LTE Communicator!
Submitted on 08/12/2019 Alarm Grid

We do not recommend the Interlogix 600-1048-XT-ZX-VZ. This is a CDMA communicator that can no longer be activated for alarm monitoring service. You will want to get an LTE communicator instead. Fortunately, we have LTE options available for the Interlogix Simon Series Alarm Panels. You should get one of those communicators instead.

LTE stands for Long Term Evolution. The LTE networks offer faster and more reliable service than their older networks. That is why cellular companies like Verizon invested tremendous amounts of money to develop the infrastructure necessary to make LTE communication possible. By going with LTE, you are ensuring that your security system works as reliably as possible. Additionally, these networks are not going away any time soon. By choosing an LTE communicator, you can keep your panel monitored well into the very distant future.

Cellular companies are already in the process of shutting down their older, non-LTE networks. This includes the Verizon CDMA Network used with the Interlogix 600-1048-XT-ZX-VZ. Once the associated network is shut down, then the communicator will no longer work. You should go ahead and get an LTE communicator, as non-LTE networks will eventually be shutdown anyway. It also doesn't hurt that an LTE communicator will provide faster and more reliable connectivity for alarm monitoring.

One thing that our technicians do like about the Interlogix 600-1048-XT-ZX-VZ is that it includes a built-in Z-Wave controller. This allows users to control smart home devices from Alarm.com. However, the newer LTE communicators can also do this. If you have strong service from Verizon, then the Interlogix 600-1048-XT-LTE-VZ is a great option. You might also consider upgrading to a dual-path communicator that uses both LTE and IP. If that is the case, then the Alarm.com XT-511-US-VZ is a great option.

Bottom line, do not purchase the Interlogix 600-1048-XT-ZX-VZ. Get an LTE communicator like the Interlogix 600-1048-XT-LTE-VZ or a dual-path LTE communicator like the Alarm.com XT-511-US-VZ instead. This will provide faster and more reliable connectivity with Alarm.com for monitoring service. And if you already have an Interlogix 600-1048-XT-ZX-VZ, then you should upgrade to an LTE communicator as soon as possible. Your Interlogix 600-1048-XT-ZX-VZ will no longer work once Verizon shuts down their CDMA Network in the coming years.

Honeywell CELL3DB25KT - AlarmNet 25’ Antenna Kit

Great Outdoor Antenna Kit!
Submitted on 08/12/2019 Alarm Grid

We strongly recommend the Honeywell CELL3DB25KT as a cellular antenna kit. This kit is great for anyone with a compatible Honeywell LYNX Touch Communicator or Honeywell VISTA Communicator who needs to strengthen their cellular reception. Some of the best communicators to use with this kit include the LTE-L57A, the LTE-L57V, the LTE-XA, the LTE-XV, the LTE-IV, and the LTE-IA.

The centerpiece of the Honeywell CELL3DB25KT is the Honeywell CELL-ANT3DB. This is an outdoor antenna that provides an average of 3 dB gain in cellular reception. This can be absolutely crucial for ensuring that your system communicates reliably. This is often the case for a user in a rural area who may not get the best cellular reception at their location. In addition to the CELL-ANT3DB, you also get the appropriate adapter cables, and a mounting bracket. Basically, you will have everything you need to get started.

Please note that a cellular antenna is usually not your only option for improving the cellular reception for your system. You might also consider using a cellular amplifier. The good thing about a cellular amplifier is that it will boost cellular signal for all devices that communicate across the same cellular network. This includes your smartphone. In other words, you will be improving cellular reception for every compatible device in the immediate area. With a cellular antenna, you are only improving the reception for your security system.

Having said that, the CELL3DB25KT works very effectively. Our technicians have found that customers who have the CELL-ANT3DB installed receive much stronger cellular signals than those who do not. We have seen customers go from having virtually no cellular signal to having some of the strongest signals we have ever seen. The antenna can be a little bit difficult to install since it needs to be mounted on the roof or in the attic. But it works very effectively once the installation is complete. Please note that another kit with a 50-foot extension cable called the CELL3DB50KT is also available.

Bottom line, if you decide that a cellular antenna is best for your needs, then the CELL3DB25KT will work great. Just remember that the CELL3DB50KT is also an option if you need a longer extension cable.

WBOX 0E-OUTDSIREN - 120 dB Wired, Outdoor Siren

Extremely Loud Siren
Submitted on 08/12/2019 Alarm Grid

The WBOX 0E-OUTDSIREN is one of the loudest sirens that we carry. This is a 120 dB siren that is suitable for use in virtually any environment. With a 120 decibel rating, this siren is capable of producing sounds that are about as loud as a jet plane at takeoff. This siren is so loud that anyone standing in its proximity will feel very uncomfortable and want to get away from it as soon as possible. Our technicians have confirmed that the siren is one of the loudest things they have ever heard. Testing this product was not enjoyable.

There are a few things we want to say about the WBOX 0E-OUTDSIREN. The first is that most users will not need a siren this loud. The average residential user will be happy with the internal sounder that comes built into their panel. If they need something a little louder, then they might consider a wireless Z-Wave siren like the Qolsys IQ Siren. Only users who really need something absurdly loud will want to consider the WBOX 0E-OUTDSIREN. This could include an industrial location that needs a loud siren that can be heard over heavy machinery.

The other thing to keep in mind is that the WBOX 0E-OUTDSIREN is a hardwired siren. This means that you will likely need extra equipment to use it, especially if you have a wireless panel. To use a wired siren, you often need an external power supply, backup battery, relay, and transformer. This is a lot of extra equipment just to add a single feature. Of course, it might be your only option if you absolutely need a very loud siren. You will also need to connect everything together, which can be difficult for a DIY user.

Bottom line, we understand that some users absolutely need the loudest sound option available. The WBOX 0E-OUTDSIREN meets that criteria. We do not think this is the best siren for the majority of end users. But if you are in a situation where only the loudest siren will do, then this is the one to go with. That is why we give it 5 Stars.