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Zigbee motion sensor or hardwire?


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Hi all


I have one last round of laying cables in my home before permanent flooring goes down.  I'm looking to add motion sensors across the entire house (approx 18 sensors), so I can control lighting and other bits and pieces.


I was planning on hardwiring these which is still going to cause some major agro, hence got thinking about zigbee solutions.  Have checked online and see there are a couple of options - quick search shows Card Access and NYCE do units.


Anyone able to suggest whether any of these are any good?  Brand?

Or do I go down the hardwire route?


Note in a moment of panic, I bought a job lot of everyday motion sensors off eBay, but now unsure whether they will work with C4 anyway... :/



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Almost any 'generic'  wired motion sensor can be tied to a C4 system.


As for wireless options,


There's Card Access (now owned by Control4) Nyce (needs to be bought via Control4, other versions will not work) and Axxess Industries (buy through authorized dealers/distributors).


In addition there is/was the Card Access Security bridge that allows you to integrate GE/Interlogix wireless motions into C4 - that is EoL I believe though.


Last but not least - you could get a security pnel (Concord4 or DSC PowerPC series come to mind as reasonable priced ujnits) that integrate well with C4 - and read the motions through that. Downside of that route is that there CAN be a bit of a delay (generally less than a second, probably less than 500 ms), so if instant response is a must this may not be the best route for you.


As for being 'good':

-Card Access unit visually looks outdated but works perfectly fine

-Nyce - I've not had much experience with, but the one motion we tried didn't work well - not enough to judge on fthough

-Axxess: nicer slimmer modern design compared to Card Access, more options and abilities, more tweaking - works fantastic


Hardwired of course always works as well - but sometimes the option just isnt there.


Security system works very well to but note the delay (timing it is hard but I'd say in my house it's less than 500ms, maybe half that - but you do notice it (time between seeing rel light on motion and light turning on).

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Firstly - apologies for the dual posts on the same topic... my fault... that's what happens when you try to post something just before entering the underground and not knowing if the post succeeded.

Yup, reliability and timing were my concerns really, plus constant changing of batteries. With 18'ish units all wearing away at different speeds, it could get messy.

My mind is going towards just hardwiring, given I've already bought the sensors and generic ones can be used. I have already dragged one cable run and used 4 core mains flex. Do I really need to use this grade or given it's going to a patch box (I assume), I could get away with, say, 4 core alarm wire? And it's 4 core I would typically need?

Re security panel, I have had a quote for a panel Texecom panel (which I believe has good integration with C4?). The installer wasn't keen on me using the sensors for any others purposes saying it broke some rules around certification of the 'closed-circuit'ness of it all. That works for me though to... whilst I'd like integration between the panel and C4, I'm happy to keep the security as standalone as possible.


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Depending on the unit, motion batteries can last for years indeed.


Alarm wire 4 conductor will do fine - it's what security installs tend to use ;)


Yes you need 4 wires - two for signal, two to power the device (technically you could get away with 3 i know, before people start arguing me :P )

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  • 2 years later...

Dragging this one up again three years later.. 😕

This fell off the radar but back on. I have just had an EA-5 installed and have wired motion sensors in the ceilings. 

Problem is the EA-5 only has 8(?) dry contact inputs and I have around 18 sensors already across the house. How can I connect all these?

I know C4 do the I/O expansion unit, but at £440 each it's really steep given I already know I won't be using any of the other additional inputs or outputs.

What are the other solutions? Surely there will be many others out there where they have lots of sensors all online waiting for things to happen?

Thanks vm..

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1 hour ago, Pounce said:

Cool. I'd add a multichannel optoisolator to protect the arduino. 

I would have to be REALLY bored to do that but seems like a good idea.  Not sure if its necessary as the Control4 IO Extenders seem to be protected ok?  Not sure how they've managed to achieve that.  Interested in your input.

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