Newbie needs help picking lighting controls

New to this forum, and migrating from X-10 to Z-Wave. My intent is to start with lighting modules, and a thermostat, ultimately adding security.

With so many lighting options out there, GE, ACT, Cooper, Intermatic, Leviton, etc. what brand would this forum recommend that I deploy? What I’m looking for is reliability, robustness, and cost effectivness as a 3rd criteria. Not necessarily looking for the cheapest modules, but I would rather not spend $80.00 per module, scene or zone controller.

Thermostats are more limited in terms of brands, so what is the recommendation there as well?

If I’m missing something please let me know. Any and all feedback is welcome and appreciated. BTW I’ve got a Vera 2 on the way.

Thanks - Samer

i’m using the GE from radio shack, works and was cheap check online and in the stores(if they have any left)

I was told by a rep that Cooper is made by Leviton


In the US, it looks to me like there are two camps of vendors:

[ul][li]Camp A: Intermatic, GE, ACT, …
These vendors products are cheaper and more consumer oriented (e.g. packaging, sales channel, fixed configurations, …)[/li]
[li]Camp B: Leviton, Cooper, …
These vendors products are more expensive, more professional oriented, support more z-wave options (scenes, associations, …) and come in a wider variety (e.g. color choices, dimmer varieties, available engraved controller buttons, …)[/li][/ul]

Most of my gear is Leviton. It’s the at the lower end cost-wise in Camp B. I’ve also got a smattering of Camp A gear (outdoor modules for christmas lights, etc).

I’m not wild about Vera’s Leviton support in the current UI4 release. They claim that Leviton support has improved in newer beta firmware versions.

Work it backwards. First pick out your scene or zone controllers and then stick with the brand for dimmers. GE, for example, should not be used with Leviton Scene controllers.
Tim Alls
AllSeas yachts

Thanks for the replies so far. Please keep them coming.

@TimAlls: it sounds like what you’re saying is that not all z-wave components will “play nice” together. Is that right?

Also I haven’t seen any recommendations on T-stat yet. What do you guys think about the Trane? Or is tere one better out there?

Tranes are good. 2Gig’s will serve as well - additional benefits include touch screen and a web module for non-zwave control using the web or smart phone.

I like my 2Gig, no problems with it as of yet. I needed a battery operated one as I have no C wire and can’t really run my own as I rent an apartment with the cheapest heat pump they could find. Not sure how long batteries will last but I didn’t have a choice and it definitely can run off a C wire if you have it.