Need recommendation for home alarm system

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Old 12-18-17, 11:15 AM
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Need recommendation for home alarm system

I am looking for recommendation for a security system that I could install on my own. The house had an older system before but it hasn't been used in years. I am just keeping wired window sensors out of that system that I would like to reconnect to the new one. I would also like to be able to add three motion detectors and water leak sensor. Would also prefer to have a keypad that's either wired or wireless with "brain" of the system to be in the basement (no all in one keypad/system boards).

What I also have in the house is Samsung SmartThings and Nest smoke/CO2 detectors. If the new system could work with that it would be a big plus as I already have door/motion sensors hooked up to that. There is internet connection to the house but future hookup to a cell connection as a backup would be preferred.

I am just clueless what hardware to pick. I just roughly know what I want which is outlined above. I am handy with electronics so hookup shouldn't be a problem.
 
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Old 12-18-17, 11:59 AM
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Some more description of what you currently have, maybe add some pictures as well, would be helpful. I am only familiar with the Honeywell/Ademco VISTA line, specifically the VISTA 15 P and VISTA 20 P. These are fairly straightforward wired systems that can also use wireless components if you add another module.
 
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Old 12-18-17, 12:09 PM
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I have the old Moose ZR1100 system but all I want to keep from it is the wired window sensors and actual metal box that's in the basement. I no longer have keypads (removed during remodeling) and the actual system is old and untested. Besides few wireless sensors (1 motion, 2 door and 1 water leak) for Samsung SmartThings, I have nothing else. I am fine with replacing SmartThings sensors with other ones if they are not compatible with the new security system. I just need generic information on what do I actually need and what's decent that's currently available.
 
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Old 12-18-17, 01:41 PM
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I don't know anything about the Samsung or Nest equipment. The door and window sensors (switches) from the Moose system are fully compatible with the VISTA systems as long as the installation did not place the EOL (End-Of-Line) resistors at the switches, which is not common on residential installations. Assuming the four-conductor cable from the original key pad location is still in place it is also compatible with the VISTA key pad and alarm mother board.

The Moose enclosure should be about 9 inches by 10 inches inside dimension and the VISTA enclosure is about 13 by 14. The VISTA motherboard will fit in the Moose enclosure but it leaves no room for expansion modules. The VISTA is standard with land-line telephone reporting. SOME VoIP telephone systems are compatible but not all. A cellular communicator module is available for the VISTA line.

Much of the VISTA line is available (new equipment) from ebay sellers for very competitive prices. Or you can purchase it from many other on-line sellers as well. There are lots of YouTube videos describing features, installation and programming of the VISTA line. The manuals are easily available through a Google search and download.


What I would suggest is to make a list of what zones you want monitored. Glass breaks and motion sensors should be on individual zones if at all possible. Once you know how many zones total you want you can then determine which model alarm panel best fits.

There are several alarm system technicians that frequent this forum and their suggestions should take precedence over mine.
 
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Old 12-18-17, 01:45 PM
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Thank you for providing more information. As far as I remember, there are resistors at the end of almost every wire connected to the board in the box. Would that make the sensors unusable with the new boards (i.e. Vista)? I will definitely update this thread with photos once I get back home.
 
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Old 12-18-17, 02:11 PM
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If the resistors are in the control box with the motherboard that is normal in residential installations. In commercial installations the resistors are normally connected at the sensors. The resistors are used to determine if there is a fault in the wiring. Having them at the motherboard now means they may be removed easily and replaced when the new control is installed. Different resistor values are used by different manufacturers so going from the Moose alarm to a different would require new resistors.

In short, resistors at the motherboard is good.
 
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Old 12-19-17, 01:11 PM
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I did more reading and it looks like Smartthings is not really good as a home security system. The Honeywell Vista system you have recommended looks like a lot more robust solution. If I decide to go with Vista, is there a way to build it so it has some home automation options? I.e. I would like to have tilt sensor on my garage door and ability to check its status on my phone and open/close garage door. Similar with a light or two in the house which I would like to be able to turn on/off remotely.
 
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Old 12-19-17, 07:39 PM
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Now you are moving away from my area of knowledge. Hopefully one of he real alarm technicians will respond to give you the latest information on the subject.
 
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Old 12-20-17, 09:12 AM
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I have decided on the Honeywell Vista system. Just doing some basic research if I should go with 20p + Envisalink or for 21ip. Not sure what the differences are but I have posted this question in a new thread.
 
 

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