Few Newbie questions

Hey all!

I’m new here, and new to the Zigbee world. It all started a few weeks ago, since I have LED strips under my stairs. I now have them turning on and off automatically with 220V PIR sensors, but one of them broke down and I started looking at better solutions.

So here I am, reading into Zigbee.

From what I understand, Zigbee is a general protocoll, but (all) manufacturers of zigbee products apply their own ‘sauce’ over it, so that basicly nothing is compatible. This is all solved by applying Zigbe2mqtt, right?

  • What apps can u use to controll all sensors? Is it any app (like for instance Smart Life) or it is a specific one?
  • Somewhere I read that connecting the sensors to Zigbee2mqtt is not that difficult, but getting the connection up and running over longer periods is more difficult. I suppose that the compatibility list does not have any problems whatsoever?
  • I have a 3 story (+ basement) house. I think I’ll need to mesh the network. All power supplied zigbee devices act as a mesh instance as well and I can add 25 devices to every mesh unit?

Well, Zigbee is a standard, it’s just historically not a universal one (it’s getting better), but no manufacturer is required to support other manufacturer’s devices.

Zigbee2MQTT is one of the options for allowing you to use devices from multiple manufacturers.

  • It needs to be something that can use MQTT, and either is supported by Zigbee2MQTT with one of the documented integrations (Home Assistant, NodeRed, Domoticx, Mozilla IoT WebThings Gateway, Majordomo), or is able to be configured to support Zigbee2MQTT
  • I’ve had no real issues - mesh networks sometimes require a little trial and error if you’re not used to how radio communications work. The biggest problem I have is a light that’s in a terrible location for getting a reliable signal, and that I can solve by adding another mains powered Zigbee device to act as a router.
  • Zigbee, like Z-Wave, is a mesh setup, so other than really small closely located setups, you need the mesh. The numbers are more complicated than that, and also depend on the stick and firmware.