We have now taken some stock of the new Theben Luxor Living Building Automation System.
Luxor Living is a very simple system very similar to KNX that is perfect for homes, apartments and commercial buildings like bars, restaurants, small offices, industrial units.
Unlike KNX, the software to program is free from the Theben subsite https://luxorliving.co.uk/ . There is also free apps to control your building from your phone or tablet on the google play and apple store.
The system is very simple to install and below are the basics you need to know
Rules for Luxor Living
There are some rules to follow with Theben’s Luxor Living.
- There is a max of 64 devices on the system
- There can be no more than 8 Outboard Binary Inputs (switch interfaces, but if you exceed 8 switches, they can be wired back to the Distribution Board)
- Keep the Bus Cable (KNX Cable) under 350 meters from PSU to Luxor Component
- Keep the Bus Cable under 700 meters from Luxor Component to Luxor Component
- Total of 1 Kilometre of cable in the entire system
Do not create a loop in the cable structure as telegrams with continually move in the loop and block up the system, which will require a restart by shutting power off and on again.
The majority of the components go onto the distribution board.
Every system starts with the “System Centre” which also acts as an IP Gateway allowing you access with you mobile or table once it is on a network.
The next component is a Power Supply Unit (PSU). This will power all items that are on the bus.
Next is to count up all switching circuits, dimming circuits, blinds, heating zones or individual radiators, switches that you want on the system. The actuators can then be totalled up (eg, 8 switching circuits (1 X S8 Actuator), 4 dimming circuits (1 X D4 Actuator), 7 Electric Blinds (1 X J8 Actuator) and 4 Zones of heating (1 X H6 Actuator).
All of those devices will go into your distribution board and control the relevant circuits and devices. We also recommend adding an Input on the DB so we can add various controls on the system such as a panic alarm.
We now look at the field devices.
These are the devices around the building or home such as switches, thermostats, weather stations etc.
For each switch we need to install a Push Button Interface (limited to 8 in a system) or the switch must feed back to the Binary Input (B6) on the DB (the example shown will operate up to 8 switches and count only as 1 PBI). These PBI’s go behind switches and allows the end user to choose a range of switches they like rather than be stuck with a proprietary switch on the wall that may not match the sockets etc.
Thermostats are also available. By using the Luxor Thermostat, you can then control the temperature settings later with your phone.
An outdoor weather station is also available so you can get Information back onto the system. There is wind detection, lux detection to switch on outdoor lighting and feedback if raining.
The setup is really quite simple.
Download the free software (Luxor Plug available here: https://luxorliving.co.uk/luxorplug/ ) and install. There are a number of ways to connect to the system but we just connected an RJ45 to the System Centre and the laptop was on the WIFI.
Set up the rooms in your home building very quickly in Luxorplug.
Luxorplug finds all the devices on the bus pretty quickly, so no need to address. You can flash the units to ensure you know where each device is. Then simply drag and drop devices into the rooms you have set up on the software and they are connect.
You can also set up groups such as a central off, which is a great feature to turn off all circuits on 1 switch if you are walking out the door. The panic function will turn on all lighting in the building/home and will not allow anything turn off until the function is deactivated. Connecting this to the relay of an alarm can interrupt an intruder.
There is also a holiday function that can be activated and which will follow your commands from the previous weeks, turning on and off the lighting to simulate presence.
Luxorplay app is free from the apple store and google play.
During the intial setup of Luxorplug, you will actually have already created your own app.
When you open the app, and put in your password, the program will connect to the System Centre, download the software you have installed and the app will be ready to go.
During the setup of a display board, I was actually surprised as I sat down with a 46 page manual and actually didn’t need to read one page of it to get a system from box – working display on my phone.
OK, many of the staff in IK are KNX Partners but we are not installers and only use it as a tool to understand what we sell. We understand the wiring rules but it was deliberate to not open the manual to see how far we could get without reading the it and it has to be said, Theben have made a product so simple and intuitive that anyone with basic knowledge of electrics and basic knowledge of a PC will actually get quite far, if not all the way into an install without being stuck.
After reading through the manual, which is picture heavy and therefore only a short read, it is well laid out and shows different ways to connect to the System Centre, little tips in the naming devices, how to troubleshoot etc. If you follow the guide step by step, you really only need to look at 15-20 pages.
The display in the picture is being cleaned up and will be available to our clients for any interesting projects. We will also add and electric blind and some heating drives.