Alarm Panels that have multiple Alarm states

Old 03-27-12, 04:35 PM
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Alarm Panels that have multiple Alarm states

I first wanted to thank everyone that is participating in this forum and helping out others that are trying to better protect their homes and families.

I'm currently looking at purchasing an alarm system that has ->

Exterior Door sensors
3 Interior Motion sensors...1 in the garage
3 Exterior motion sensors
2 remote keypads
3 external cameras, 1 internal
Main panel (hidden deep within house) with GSM

The purpose of the alarm is to help better protect our family while we are there. I work from home, so we are actually home most all of the time. My wife has a personality "quirk" I guess you could say that small noises at night still freak her out.

Anyway...this will be a self-monitored system ( I don't want to pay for monitored service since we are nearly always at home), but will still have a GSM module so we will get a call when we are away (a few weeks a year).

On to the real question....I want a panel (and I can afford to spend $$$) that has multiple alarm "states" without having to do bypass modes all the time.

For example...most panels have Off, Stay, and Armed. I would like at least 1 more mode.

My mode preferences would be ->

0 - off mode....most everything off except door open beeps (like, my exterior motions off when we are outside playing with the kids).

1 - notification mode....the keypads just beep out and say "front door - open" or "patio motion", "garage motion"

2. sleep mode....doors armed, garage motion armed, but interior motion off (my kids walk around at night or early morning so I can't have those armed...too young to turn off system too)

3. armed mode...everything armed (exterior motions never trigger an alarm...they are just there for "early notification" if someone is on the property)

Is there a panel that allows you to program and store another arming mode like I'm talking about?

Ideally, the panel would also have a vocabulary for things like "patio motion", and have voice notifications of what triggered.

It would be Awesome if they allow different triggering noises as well...for example, during the day, I want my exterior motions to just be in "notification" mode.......they trip, and the keypads say "patio motion" and then won't trip again for like 10 minutes or something. But at night when we are sleeping, I want my exterior motions to not trigger a full on alarm, but maybe beep louder at the keypads...make sense?

As for interior motions....I would love to arm those at night at well.....but will a 5 or 7 year old trip pet friendly motion sensors?

Last question....with the having a camera system that encrypts the video worth the added cost? Or will encrypted video still be likely to be thrown out by the police or court for possible tampering?

I know that this is a lot of questions, ...I'm just surprised that alarm panels are not more customizable (even entry model ones)...routers, even very cheap ones, frequently are extremely robust with how you want them setup (even run differnet software like dd-wrt and tomato to increase robustness)...surprised that panels aren't the same way (and easy to customize via web interfaces like routers too....)
Old 03-27-12, 07:04 PM
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You are actually looking for two different things. Intrusion alarms and CCTV video systems can be integrated together in various ways, but until you get into very high end hardware, it's not a single package (and for various reasons, it's good for them to be individual systems).

Nearly all modern intrusion alarms have some variation on the multi-level arming. For what you are after, one of the Vista models with their Night/stay mode in addition to chime, arm/away arm/stay, etc, and one of the voice model keypads is probably what you want.

Yes, a child will probably trip the typical motion.

The alarm industry is _very_ slow to change. Remember, any changes that are made usually have to pass UL testing and certification, which is time consuming and expensive. That's why alarm hardware is usually a generation back, technologically...
Old 03-27-12, 07:20 PM
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Thank you for your reply.

You are right...the intrusion and CCTV system are two separate packages....I should have made that distinction in my original post. I wasn't planning on having the two 'integrated'....though alarm companies like frontpoint do that (though I don't want their system since their products do seem like on the cheap end).

So you are saying that you would recommend like the vista 20p? I'll have to look at the manual to see what the different states it can do and how many voice announcements/combos it can handle. You would recommend it over like the Elk m1?
Old 03-27-12, 11:41 PM
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You are getting very specific and I am curious that you did not mention anything about smoke detectors.

If you want a good system with a large vocabulary, you might look into a Concord IV [or its latest iteration].

...but will still have a GSM module so we will get a call...
don't know that you can get a GSM radio to call you when there is an alarm.

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