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September 16, 2022 | Niels Laan | Fibaro, Controllers, Fibaro

Fibaro Home Center 3 Lite

If you get the HC3 Lite, you get the opportunity to make your home really smart. In addition to being able to turn a lamp on and off with the APP, it has the ability to make smart rules. For example, you can ensure that the heating, all lights and the alarm are switched on automatically when you are away. You can easily make these rules with the built-in blocks/drag and drop system. This way of working is easy to follow for novice users.

For the more advanced users there is a possibility to program in LUA. This is a programming language where the possibilities are almost endless. So you can really let loose.

The HC3L uses the Z-Wave Plus protocol to control your devices. Many different types of devices are available for this protocol. There are motion sensors, door contacts, smoke detectors, etc., etc. In addition to the own Fibaro devices, other brands can also be used. In the devices we tested, this all works as it should and adding is not very complicated.

A full list of supported devices can be found on the Fibaro website: https://compatibility.fibaro.com.

Adding the "panels" to control your alarm, heating and irrigation system is a nice addition. With this you can easily automate the whole thing. With other controllers you often have to click it all together yourself.

Also a nice addition is the energy dashboard, where you can monitor the consumption of the devices very extensively. Here also other controllers can take an example.

The HC3 Lite has the voice control in order. This works via Alexa and Google home. You can easily ask to switch on your lighting and this is easy to arrange.

This hub can work in the Cloud as well as stand alone/local. It should be mentioned here that if you want to use the speech that you have to use the Cloud. The same goes for the APP if you use it outdoors (there are some ways around it).

Speaking of the APP, it is quite basic but does what it is supposed to do. This way you can of course operate your devices, start up scenes and control your alarm/climate. Not being able to add devices or manage users is a missed opportunity. You would expect a bit more for such a developed system.

The price of this controller is € 143.00, which of course makes it favorably priced. Especially if you compare this with, for example, a Homey (€399.00) or with the HC3 which costs €599.00.

There are some drawbacks to this cheap price. Fibaro has cut in the functionalities. For example, you cannot create more than 40 scenes, but connect 1 camera, install 6 plugins and 5 quick apps and approximately 40 devices that you can connect.

The hardware has also been cut back because it has no UTP, a single core processor and 4 GB of memory compared to the HC3. It is doubtful whether you will notice much of this in practice. I noticed little difference with the HC3. With regard to the UTP, you do have the option of using an adapter such as the UGreen ethernet adapter.


Who is this controller for?

Perhaps a good question is who this controller is intended for. Let me say that if you want to get serious about making your home smart, it's better not to choose the HC3 Lite. The main reason is that you will quickly run into the 20 scenes limitation. Now there are some detours to expand this, but that is all good.

But for whom? I think this controller is especially suitable if you want to start with a Smart Home and if you don't want to do things too wild. So some basic scenes and not too complicated.

This controller is also suitable if you have a mega house or a garden house. You can then use the HC3 Lite as an intermediate station to increase your range.


So if you are looking for a well-assembled system to start with your Smart Home, the HC3 Lite is a great solution.

Create scenes/rules for both the starter and the Pro
Standard Alarm/climate/water system for garden

No support for other protocols (like Zigbee)
Up to 20 scenes
WiFi connection (no UTP)
1 camera to connect
6 plugins and 5 quick apps to install
Connecting 40 devices is recommended

This review was made with the firmware: 5.080.20


Special thanks go to JDK Benelux (importer FIBARO / https://shop.jdkbenelux.com/en/) for making a test device available.

This product is for sale for:

€ 143

Niels Laan

Founder of this blog and passionate home automation nerd. All articles from Niels

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