How to Choose the Best Wireless Intercom System For Your Home Or Business

When deciding to add a new wireless intercom system to the ever increasing portfolio of wireless devices in your home or business, you need to first think about the compatibility with the products you already have (or your close neighbors have). You also need to consider the range and features you need.

Wireless Intercom Frequencies

In the United States there are several frequency ranges for wireless products for unlicensed consumer use. They are 49MHz, 900MHz, 2.4GHz, 5.8GHz, and Family Radio Service (FRS) band. Most recently the FCC added the Multi-Use Radio (MURS) service. Radio frequencies for devices are similar in Canada, but MURS cannot be used there.

Back when consumer wireless products were first introduced, these wireless products used the 49MHz frequency spectrum. Early cordless telephones used this spectrum and it is still used by cheap baby monitors and other low-end wireless units. It has a short range and is prone to lots of interference. You won’t likely find wireless intercom systems that use this spectrum anymore, or if you do, you won’t want them.

Later, 900 MHz products using analog transmission technology arrived on the market. Neither the 49MHz or these early 900Mhz products have any form of security. Anyone with a device in the same frequency can listen in to conversations. Newer digital spread spectrum 900MHz products divide digital transmission across a range of frequencies so other devices can’t eavesdrop on your conversations. Digital spread spectrum intercoms also have a greater range than the analog 900Mhz units. There are at least two wireless intercoms currently on the market, but only one of them uses digital spread spectrum. The wireless intercom system that uses spread spectrum can communicate up to 1000 feet.

2.4GHz devices were next to market. There are a growing number of cordless telephones and other devices in this range. As far as intercom systems, video intercom systems are the primary users of this range although the only wireless video intercom on the market was recently discontinued. 2.4GHz is also the frequency range used by WiFi wireless data networks (802.11B/G) in homes and businesses so products in this range can interfere with each other.

The Family Radio Service (462-467MHz) is in the Ultra High Frequency (UHF) band and is basically an improvement to the old walkie talkies of long ago. These handheld radios are sold everywhere and used heavily so any intercom systems in this range would have to compete with these handheld radios (and anyone can listen in to your conversations). There are no known wireless intercoms systems that use FRS.

Now 5.8GHz products are starting to make their appearance in the cordless phone arena. No compatibility issues exist between 5.8GHz and 2.4GHz devices so no problems should be experienced in mixing them. However, there are currently no known wireless intercom systems in this range.

You’ll also see some intercom systems that claim to be wireless but they really use the power wiring in your home or business to send and receive transmissions from the intercom. These are frequently called “FM wireless intercoms” even though they often transmit over your house wiring in the AM band. To use them, you just plug an AC adapter into the wall. These systems are very prone to humming or buzzing and are not recommended unless you are prepared to live with this possibility. Since house wiring comes in as 240 volts and is split in two phases of 120, you’ll also experience problems with the signal trying to cross the phases. One part of your house or business may work fine, where the other half doesn’t. These intercoms are typically the least expensive intercoms of the bunch.

Long Range Wireless Intercoms

The most recent addition to the wireless intercom market are products in the MURS frequency range. MURS is a service in the VHF (Very High Frequency) 150 MHz radio spectrum. MURS has a power increase of four times that of FRS radio. And unlike FRS, you can add a larger or external antenna to improve range. If you want to put an antenna on top of your house, you can do it with MURS. Some antenna manufacturers claim an external antenna can increase the effective radiated power of a transmitter by a factor of 4. These MURS intercoms can transmit up to four miles, and perhaps more with an external antenna.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in the United States does not require you obtain a license to use MURS frequencies so you will not have to go through that process.

There are 5 MURS channels and 38 interference eliminator or “quiet codes” that can be used on each of these channels. These quiet codes keep your radios quiet unless another radio is programmed on the same channel and quiet code. Chances are you won’t have to worry about these codes since MURS usage is extremely light. There are only a few makers of MURS radios, so traffic on these frequencies is hard to find in most areas.

The MURS Intercom system is the wireless intercom you need if you have a large property or you need to talk between buildings. You can use a MURS to not only communicate within a home, but to neighboring homes as well. You can even add a handheld unit to your MURS intercom system so you can stay in touch away from your home.

Long Range Wireless Outdoor Intercoms

You can also get commercial-grade wireless call boxes that communicate with two way radios and base station intercoms. These wireless callboxes are water resistant and designed for outdoor use. They can open gates or doors remotely if you have a model with a gate relay. Callboxes also come in vandal-proof housings with stainless steel front panels. The range on these is up to a mile or more if you use an external antenna. These wireless call boxes can be battery powered, powered with a AC-DC converter, or by solar power. Callboxes are available in UHF and VHF frequencies so you can match them with your existing two way radios if you have them. You can get call boxes that work in the un-licensed MURS frequencies so you can use them with your MURS intercoms or radios.

The benefit of a wireless callbox is that you save money by not having to do trenching and running expensive cable to the unit. You also don’t have to pay any air-time or telephone service fees with these wireless systems. Another benefit is that since the unit is wireless, people monitoring the units can carry handheld radios that communicate with the callbox. That allows your monitoring people to be mobile.

Wireless Intercom Features

Another thing to consider is what features you need for your particular application. Commercial applications often have needs for a wider variety of features. The MURS wireless system for instance has a wide variety of products that can be used with it. Not only can you get military-grade two-way radios with lots of headset options, but you can get base station intercoms, wireless call boxes with solar power option, wireless public address systems, customer service call boxes, wireless remote switches, and motion detector devices. For less commercial or residential use, a 900MHz intercom system has outdoor intercoms and doorbell intercoms you can use with your indoor intercoms.

So the wireless intercom system you choose depends on the application you have, the wireless devices already in your home or business, the range you need to cover, as well as your budget. But, once you choose the right system, you’ll be able to enjoy the convenience a wireless intercom system provides for years to come.

How to Find the Best Home Security Systems

In these days, homeowners certainly have a lot of expenses to think about, especially new homeowners.  It is best to prioritize what expense should be put up first in the list.  The maintenance of the house, maintenance of the garden, Homeowners Association dues and various other expenses are just some of the monthly expenditure a homeowner must consider.

There is yet another thing threatening to eat up your hard-earned income.  Home intruders, robbers, thieves or burglars or whatever you want to call them.  Statistics says one out of six homes will be burglarized in a year.  This is because people tend to make it easier for burglars to intrude their homes.  About sixty percent (60%) of all home burglaries happened through an unlocked door or window.  Burglars are aware that most homeowners don’t lock their home.

Here are some steps to avoid your home from being a target to these burglars.  Basically, burglars look for hiding places within your home, and one way to make it difficult for them to intrude your home is to get rid of some shrubs that might be used as hiding places, especially those homes with lower-level doors or windows.  You may likewise consider joining a neighborhood watch program, an effective and free way to prevent burglars.  And also, the most basic and obvious way in preventing intruders is to start locking your doors and windows even when your home.

To be sure, installation of home security systems for your home such as a security camera system should be considered.  Presence of security cameras in your home generally send a message to would-be burglars that you are watching.  And if this kind of system does not appeal to them and they still try and break into your house, chances are, they will get caught.

Visit nearby convenience stores and notice the number of surveillance cameras installed around.  Often times, these stores are swamped with security cameras.  The reason is simple.  Surveillance cameras eliminate crimes!

Attempting to come up with a decision of installing a home security alarm in your property?  Whatever the situation you are in, when it comes to safeguarding and defending not only your possessions but likewise members of your family or loved ones, there is no other answer but “yes.”  Owning a home security system may be one of the most important investments you will ever make.  This is an investment not only to your health, contentment and happiness, and well-being but most especially to your safety.  Choosing the appropriate product for your requirements and needs will be of extreme importance.  This matter should be afforded a vast deal of attention.  For instance, a lot good quality doors and windows with locks, conk off due to error in usage.  What a standard homeowner needs is a mechanism which does not only bar entry from intruders but also discourages any criminal from even trying to think about targeting your home.  With a home intruded by thieves in US once every 10 to 15 seconds on average, security of one’s home should be taken seriously.

Two types of home security consist of the outdoor and indoor installation.  A system installed outside the house includes an assortment of motion detector products, such as, alarms on the garage or around the boundary or perimeter of the house, motion detector cameras or lightings connected to video surveillance systems.  On the other hand, an indoor installation or that which is installed inside the house includes a sensor for doors and windows, shatter or glass break sensors, or a home security system which is monitored and which mechanically dispatches law enforcements and security officers right at your doorstep.  Both kinds are equally vital to one’s home, and a standard homeowner should contemplate into installing a combination of both systems for best home security.

Evidently, most homeowners do not have a home security device installed in their homes because of its high cost.  Nearly everyone does not consider security as not an urgent ‘need’ and consequently expenses for home security devices are usually absent in the list of home requirements budget.  Certainly, anyone who experienced break-ins would usually prioritize home security devices on their list.  However, the delayed decision of prioritizing this did not spare them the fear, pain, grief, insecurity, anguish and despair of being victims of such incidents.  The best approach to cut off a great deal from the price tag of security devices is to have the system installed piece by piece.  Secondary costs and expenses should likewise be considered in planning a home security budget.  These secondary costs consist of monthly electric bill, video tapes for surveillance cameras, batteries, light bulbs, among many others.

It is likewise prudent to take into account other safety precautions like fire alarms, smoke detectors, carbon monoxide sensors, and flood detectors.  If you are residing in vicinity with cold weather, consider installing frozen pipe detectors.  Set the detector to an automatic dialer which would alert and signal you of the imminent danger or trouble wherever you may be.  In any case, always bear in mind that a home security system, whether a ‘Do-It-Yourself’ system or a professional system, will help safeguard your home from intruders and burglars.

Beef Up Your Home Security With an Intercom System

In many areas of the world home and personal security is simply not just something that is taken for granted. The sharp increase over the years of crimes committed against people in their own homes would attest to that. It is becoming more and more important to ensure that both your home and yourself and your family has adequate protection against these types of crimes happening at home.

Naturally your first line of defense is your front door and any other externally opening door. To minimize the chances of a break in you should have these doors fitted with a quality deadlock. The old barrel style locks, while they are good for easy access to and from the premises they are not known for their strength or resistance to tampering. The external doors should also be of solid construction.

As a safeguard against opening the door to a potential intruder a home intercom system is a good idea. How many times do you hear of a person being tricked into opening a door only to find that the visitor is there for means other than a nice chat. By installing an audio or video intercom system you have that chance to persuade your visitor to leave without opening the door first.

If the visitor or intruder is not in direct contact with you then chances are once they are refused entry they will leave. Obviously the best choice for an intercom system for this situation is a video system that enables you to see the visitor while communicating with them. The video systems available today are relatively easily installed and many have bright led lights incorporated in the camera housing which eliminates the need for setting up of bright lighting outside your door.

If you are happy with the audio only systems then you have a wide range of choices and installing them can be as easy as mounting the two units in your chosen locations, testing them out and then your intercom system is up and ready to go. Wireless technology makes this possible and for ease of installation you really can’t go past them.

Having said that, if a video system is really what you are after you can buy systems that run off existing telephone wiring which is handy where it is impossible to run new cabling without having to pull down the sheeting of entire walls. There is a number of wireless video intercom systems coming on to the market but from the feedback received from users they are still a tad unreliable and the picture quality certainly could be improved upon.

The features that can be optioned into these basic systems is almost endless. There are options for almost any number of inside intercom stations, the option of having music piped through all stations and even automatic door openers that can be operated from any intercom station in the home. From simple two way communication to entertainment to a complete home alarm system, a home intercom system can be the starting point for all of those.