I’m installing the blue series as part of a renovation, and my place has a mix of: smart bulbs, HUE led strips (plug into regular electrical outlets), and dumb bulbs (generally lights with integrated leds).
My understanding is that the blue series 2-1 switches don’t (or shouldn’t) control an outlet, and I have one room where I’d like one switch to both control an hue led strip and a dumb bulb. Just to clarify, can I have the blue series both turn on and off a regular bulb (by turning off the power to the bulb) and send a zigbee signal to turn on and off my hue bulb (which will be always powered in the electrical outlet)? In other words, can it both be an on/off switch and a smart switch at the same time?
That was my understanding from reading the manual, but it’s hard to be sure my understanding is right until I’ve actually set it up!
“Zigbee signal” can mean a couple things. It depends on how you intend upon controlling your Hue bulb/strip. If you are controlling it via a scene, then the Blue can physically switch the power to the dumb bulb and control the Hue bulb/strip via a multi-tap scene.
If you’re planning on binding to the Hue device, someone else will have to comment on that.
I haven’t really decided if I’m going to bind directly to it or not. My main concern was that the manual notes two different modes, an on/off mode and a smart bulb mode. Mostly I’ve been looking at smart bulb mode.
But, it wasn’t clear to me what happens in on/off mode. It sounds like I can, at minimum, perform various smart functions while the switch is also controlling the power to the dumb light. That’s the most important part, thanks!
The Smart Bulb Mode only applies to when a smart bulb is PHYSICALLY wired to the switch, which isn’t the case for you. It’s purpose is to provide constant power to a SMART bulb, which should never be powered off.
But in your case, you have PHYSICALLY wired a dumb bulb to the switch, and you do want the switch to make and break power to it.
The On/Off mode also pertains to the physically wired bulb. If your dumb bulb is dimmable, then you can put the switch into the Dimmer mode and it will work like a dimmer, allowing you to adjust the intensity of the bulb. But if you want you bulb to be either on at full brightness, or off (like if you have a dumb switch controlling it), or if your bulb is not dimmable, then you can use the On/Off mode, and the Inovelli will mimic a dumb on/off switch.
Regardless of whether or not you choose to use the On/Off mode, you can still send scene commands using multi-presses, which will control your Hue device.
Yes, a single Blue switch can simultaneously control both directly-wired dumb bulbs and wireless smart bulbs. You can do this either with Zigbee binding (in which case it will work even when the hub is down), or via automations running on your hub. I’ve tested this exact setup using Home Assistant and Z2M to setup Zigbee group bindings.
As Bry says, you won’t be using Smart Bulb Mode in this case - that only applies when the smart bulb is directly powered by the switch and you want the switch to always supply power to the bulb (even when it is “off”). SBM just keeps power applied to the load continuously - it doesn’t change any other behavior on the switch, so you can still directly bind to smart bulbs even without enabling SBM.
Note that if you put the switch into On/Off mode instead of Dimmer mode, you probably won’t be able to dim the smart bulbs via direct Zigbee binding. But you could still do whatever you want via automations, as the switch will always send all button press events to the hub regardless of its operating mode.
I do find the current Zigbee binding setup to be a bit limiting with Hue bulbs. It can only turn the bulbs on and off, and adjust their brightness. It can’t change their color or activate any group scenes. Turning off Hue bulbs via binding also seems to ignore transition times (the bulbs turn off immediately without the customary fade) - I suspect this may be a bug in the switch firmware, but haven’t investigated further yet.
Currently, I’m controlling my Hue bulbs via automations so I can have different button presses on the switch activate different scenes. Most of my bulbs are still connected to the Hue hub (HA talks to it via the Hue integration). Despite the convoluted path (Blue switch → HA hub → Hue hub → Hue bulbs), the latency is incredibly low (effectively instant, and I’m super sensitive to latency) - it actually feels faster than a Blue switch directly controlling dumb bulbs (the dumb bulbs take a moment to start up, while the Hue bulbs are always powered so they can respond instantly).