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Author Topic: Outside horn  (Read 28272 times)

delbert

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Outside horn
« on: February 19, 2009, 11:14:48 PM »

When I am outside and trigger an alarm I can barely hear the horn through the door even with the  powerhorn blaring away .  Does anyone know of an accessory I can buy to add an outside horn?  I don't mind running power to it  if I have to.
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x10dude

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2009, 01:16:33 AM »

This seems to be an ongoing question from a lot of newbies (including me.) I jumped into X10 last month. Now, I'm noticing all the challenges it has. I currently have 5 powerhorns, which even inside aren't really that loud. I guess it has to do with the size of the house too (mine is about 3000 sf.) Outside, they sound like loud crickets. Like you, I must have good insulation. Fortunately, I have an older alarm (wired into the house), which has a loud outside horn, so when I leave the house, I turn on two alarm systems.

Of course, I'd like to do away with that, so I'm looking for a way to have a outside horn that would be triggered by the X10 system, but that would also stay on for longer than the max 4 minutes that the console leaves them on for.

There was a recommendation on a different thread about how to modify a powerhorn to trigger another siren. Unfortunately, it only works with the older powerhorns. I took mine apart and didn't see what the mod was talking about. See the following topic: http://forums.x10.com/index.php?topic=17381.0

I've read about people using an "aftermarket" horn, but I still don't know which they're talking about.

Personally, I continue to look into this because of the investment I've made so far and the home automation part of X10. However, I was very disappointed when I found out that the console can't even flash the "security lamp" anymore because they've re-engineered the lamp modules to have a "soft start", which causes the lamp to light up slowly (from 0 dimming to 100), but never gets to 100 because the console sends on/off commands to close together.

If you do find something, please share it. I'm interested.

Thanks,

Frank
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originalevil

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2009, 09:42:06 AM »

I've got all the materials lying around for the project, but haven't made time to do it yet.

Siren:

http://www.coolsafetyproducts.com/site/898652/product/482%20052%2067

Controller (shop around for the best price, this is way over priced):

http://cache.smarthome.com/2207/X-10-Pro-20-Amp-Relay-Wall-Switch-XPS3-IW-WS13A/p.aspx

I'm going to wire the switch to a new breaker, which is the real reason I haven't gotten around to it. Since the switch responds to all lights on, you can have a fishy stick!!!! http://haveafishystick.ytmnd.com/

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steven r

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2009, 10:21:28 AM »

...I'm looking for a way to have a outside horn that would be triggered by the X10 system, but that would also stay on for longer than the max 4 minutes that the console leaves them on...

Tuicemen: Assuming he runs his X10 computer 24/7, could your program that detects the "All Lights On" & "All Units Off" commands help here?
I'm thinking of macro(s) that are triggered by the "All Lights On" and/or the "All Units Off" being used to do what he wants.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2009, 10:23:14 AM by steven r »
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HA Dave

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2009, 12:56:38 PM »

There was a recommendation on a different thread about how to modify a powerhorn to trigger another siren. Unfortunately, it only works with the older powerhorns. I took mine apart and didn't see what the mod was talking about.

Please correct me if I am wrong here... I have been considering the same thing for some time. The power horn and extra large power horn are both just siren/horn sound makers that then send that signal to a little [piezo] speaker. Couldn't you just run the speaker wires (that would have gone to the piezo) to an outside horn/speaker?
« Last Edit: February 20, 2009, 01:01:51 PM by Dave_x10_L »
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Tuicemen

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2009, 02:06:15 PM »

...I'm looking for a way to have a outside horn that would be triggered by the X10 system, but that would also stay on for longer than the max 4 minutes that the console leaves them on...

Tuicemen: Assuming he runs his X10 computer 24/7, could your program that detects the "All Lights On" & "All Units Off" commands help here?
I'm thinking of macro(s) that are triggered by the "All Lights On" and/or the "All Units Off" being used to do what he wants.
YES!!! good thinking steven r
X10SW doesn't send a X10 command with detection of the DS7000 alarm code.
Trying to send out another x10code in a flood of ON/Off codes would be hit and miss and more often then not miss!
For security you want it to be as close to 100% reliable as possible.
However :
It could be set to trigger a program like X10wavplayer to play a looping (Yelling and Screaming as Dave_x10_L  puts it) sound file or TTS threw outside speakers!
Of coarse you would need a CM15A connected to the PC to see the AllUnitsOff/AllLightsOn PLC signal!
 >!
« Last Edit: February 20, 2009, 02:09:17 PM by Tuicemen »
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Brian H

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2009, 04:18:14 PM »

piezo transducers are a very high impedance and the voltage driving them is fairly high. My meter actually loads down the voltage on my Large PowerHorns transducers when I try to measure it. Not that you could not get some and use them in an external enclosure.
Unless X10s new Large ones are completely different. They should have a power transformer for the power supply so the AC would be isolated from the drivers circuit. The small one is a different story. Mine use a power line derived supply and the transducers are not isolated so a shock could be there on the transducer. I would not try to extend a small models.
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HA Dave

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2009, 04:29:17 PM »

.....My meter actually loads down the voltage on my Large PowerHorns transducers when I try to measure it. Not that you could not get some and use them in an external enclosure.
Unless X10s new Large ones are completely different. They should have a power transformer for the power supply so the AC would be isolated from the drivers circuit.

Sorry Brian H thats over my head... does that mean the large power could work connected to an outddoor speaker horn?
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x10dude

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #8 on: February 20, 2009, 05:17:42 PM »

originalevil:

I looked at the siren you point to, but I can't figure out whether to turn it on would simply be a matter of giving it "juice". If that's the case, wouldn't it be simpler to get one of those 12v sirens (could even have a backup battery attached to it in case power goes out) and use an X10 module to turn it on? - something like a "universal module"?

This would be much cheaper, and more portable - no need for new breaker, no need for more wiring (possibly a new outlet for the universal module though.)

Thanks,

Frank
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x10dude

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2009, 05:22:27 PM »

Steven/Tuicemen:

Is the "all lights on" command ONLY sent when the alarm is tripped? If I were to go this route, what would happen if say, my son presses the "all lights on" from one of my remotes (maxi, keychain?)

Is an "all lights on" command the same across the board - regardless of where it comes from?

Thanks,

Frank
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x10dude

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #10 on: February 20, 2009, 05:30:54 PM »

Dave, Brian:

I am talking about the large powerhorn. I try to refer to the smaller one as "mini powerhorn". Yes, Brian, the new ones do come with a transformer inside. I haven't measured the voltage output to the piezzos, but I would imagine it might fry a "regular" alarm siren.

Dave, the link that I pointed to in my first reply did have a way of having an external siren turned on by the powerhorn. It seemed like a great solution. Unfortunately, it doesn't apply to the newer powerhorns since the boards have been modified to not include that capability, which apparently was going to be part of the original design, but never saw the light of day. The only missing parts were the actual components, which I already purchased and was going to solder them onto the board. :(

Thanks,

Frank
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HA Dave

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #11 on: February 20, 2009, 05:41:56 PM »

I haven't measured the voltage output to the piezzos, but I would imagine it might fry a "regular" alarm siren...........
Dave, the link that I pointed to in my first reply did have a way of having an external siren turned on by the powerhorn.

I am not talking about "turning on" an external siren. I am asking: can't the piezo be replaced with a outdoor speaker horn... that could be wired (using speaker wire) to the outside.
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JMac

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #12 on: February 20, 2009, 06:04:15 PM »

I have been waiting for a long time to see a solution to the "external siren problem".  Even if you had one of the older Power Horns that earlier circuit board mod doesn't look electrically sound (in my opinion).  I have a very nice Elk "horn", which I would love to use in this DS7000, but I haven't discovered a way to use it yet.
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x10dude

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #13 on: February 20, 2009, 06:35:33 PM »

hey Dave,

I understood what you were trying to say. I was simply saying that the other solution looked more appealing to me. I don't know whether rewiring the powerhorn audio output wires to an outside siren would work. I might give it a try though. I''ve ordered a 12v siren, which I'm supposed to get any day now. I'll try measuring the output of the powerhorn audio leads to see what they put out and take it from there.

thanks,

Frank
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Tuicemen

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Re: Outside horn
« Reply #14 on: February 20, 2009, 09:17:22 PM »

x10dude
X10SW was designed with this in mind the AllLightsOFF/AllUnitsOff housecode would have to match the housecode of the DS7000 also it would have to be pressed consecutively 4-5 times without any other x10 activity to trigger. Not impossible I suppose but if you keep your Security address separate from the rest of your x10 setup the risk would be even smaller! ;)
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