At the beginning you need:
Control unit (controller) - it controls and manages all the other Z-Wave devices. It is the brain of your intelligent household. For example you can set the automatic switch-off or switch-on of the sockets by using it.
Why do we deal with the Fibaro control units?
How to connect and set the control unit?
Use an Ethernet cable and connect the control unit into the home network, similarly connect also the supply cable. After the connection of the control unit it is necessary to set the local access and the remote access into the control unit.
Local access – this means that you must log into the control unit using the same network in which the control unit is connected in, so you are connected in the home or work network that has the same name.
Remote access – this means that you must log into the control unit from a different network. The control unit is connected into the home network and you connect into it from an outer network, e.g. a mobile network.
You cannot decide between the Fibaro Home Center 2 and Home Center Lite control units. Here you can find a brief comparison that may help you to choose the correct unit for you.
Basic differences between Home Center 2 and Home Center Lite
In general, Home Center 2 is similar to Home Center Lite. When comparing the output of the connection of the Z-Wave devices and the number of devices that you can connect in your house, there are no differences.
We may say that Home Center 2 is designed for commercial solutions or larger spaces where you need to interconnect more units together in the network for the control of a large area: commercial buildings, large offices, factory warehouses etc. Home Center Lite is perfect if you want to automatize your flat or house.
From a technical point of view, there is a list of improvements that cannot be found in Home Center Lite, but they are available in Home Center 2. And you can see these in the table:
Moreover, Home Center Lite can work as an independent home center or as a secondary control unit subordinate to Home Center 2.
The most important feature of the Home Center Lite unit are its small dimensions. Thanks to them it can be placed in any place or it can be hidden.
Comparison of control units:
What happens during a power failure? Does the automatization fail too?
The Fibaro Home Center 2 control unit, as any other electric appliance, stops fulfilling its function. When there is electricity again, the Home Center 2 switches on, it remembers its settings and continues to fulfil its function.
For the Fibaro Home Center Lite control unit the company Fibaro is preparing a backup battery and a GSM module that will enable to send notification SMS during a power failure.
Where to place the Home Center control unit?
The recommended placement of the Home Center unit is its cetral placement in your house. But it is not required because FIBARO uses the Z-Wave technology in a different way than Wi-Fi.
Z-Wave uses mesh technology, which means that each device can work as a recevier as well as a transmitter. The devices receive and send out commands and they do not always communicate with the control unit. With each added device the range of the Z-Wave network increases.
Do I need to interconnect the FIBARO and Z-Wave devices using cables?
FIBARO is wireless, it does not function as a C-Bus system so it does not need any additional cables. FIBARO is a so-called "Do It Yourself" system, so you do not need any home automatization specialists to configure and install the system.