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Would Appreciate Any Insight, And Experience You Might Have Regarding Home Security Systems That You Use To Protect Your Audio Gear And Home


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I was just made aware of a situation that is almost certainly going to require me to get a home security system. I honestly never expected to need one, specially after moving to my current home, but the world, and situations change. I've been heavily researching the topic, but real world comments from people with these systems would be invaluable. The variations in cost and complexity are quite wide. 

 

Any assistance appreciated. Thanks.

 

JC

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...you may think I'm having you on, but I am not. I recall reading about the CEO of a high-level security firm, who, when asked what he had for security replied: dogs. 
 

I have an old security system and a dog. The dog hears everything. And is preventative as well. And good company.

 

Of course, a dog is not a solution for everyone. 
 

I have considered updating the old system which is tied into a service, with a newer online-based service, but I'm not a fan of "the internet of things." 


Sorry to read of your new need for security. I have a hifi friend who never turns up the volume much because he doesn't want neighbors to know he has gear. Sad. 

 

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I use Unifi cameras for my home. No subscription needed. Will notify you if any movement in your property. 
 

Also don’t forget to make sure you are properly insured. It doesn’t matter how good your security they’ll find a way in. 
 

Also few security stinkers on your windows. 

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Our son recently went through the process of researching home security systems. He ended up buying a DIY system from suretyhome.com   He bought the Qolsys equipment from one of their suppliers. He had gotten the SimpliSafe system but thought the quality of the units wasn't up yo what he wanted. He thinks the Qolsys system is better. Homework usually pays off.

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Simplisafe is terrific.  It may be that avta's son is correct that there are others with higher quality hardware, but I would not be so sure that translates into more security.

 

But the real issue to understand, before opining on what's right for you, is--what's "the situation"?  If it's just that there have been break ins nearby, I'd be OK with Simplisafe.  But if there is a personal aspect to this, I would go for something much more involved, with multiple tiers of alert/defense.  

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I have cameras and a Dog that would likely just assume any intruder is a new friend, but to be honest if they're coming in not much is going to stop them unless you turn your house into a fortress.

No electron left behind...

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A long time ago I worked in insurance. It was understood that you can't prevent intrusion - if people are determined enough to succeed they will. I think it boils down to two things:

1. Don't act like a victim - or make your home in any way an invitation to mischief. This means avoiding both ostentation and the appearance of neglect.

2. Take measures (insurance/defence) that are proportionate to the subjective inconvenience or distress you would suffer should the worst happen. In relation to insurance, check your terms and conditions - and make sure you have afforded full disclosure to your broker/underwriter. If in doubt, write (for the record) to the insurance company, telling them what coverage you want.

 

Oh ... nearly forgot (joke - don't shoot. We are not allowed them in the UK. I think we are supposed to be "measured" in our reactions to people wanting to take our belongings or harm us):

 

image.jpeg.1400532d9929aa609e007bd7e80a4184.jpeg

My digital system is wired ethernet (RedNet/Dante) but strictly offline. I don't download or stream music from the internet.

System here

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Before using a gun, make sure you know the laws in your state. Here in MN, even in our homes, we have a duty to retreat and only if that's impossible are we allowed to shoot... for example. A stereo can be replaced, a person can not and no life is worth material things. Also, the use of force is not allowed to protect property, only life in a lot of states as well.

No electron left behind...

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I‘ve just installed an entire system of both alarm sensors and surveillance cameras using Amazon’s Ring system, they had a really nice deal on Prime day.

 

It works really quite well, very modular, and is easy to install and to control via both dedicated keypad and app. You just shouldn’t be too paranoid about Amazon snooping on you (I’m pretty sure they could but still presume they have bigger fish to fry). 

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2 hours ago, AudioDoctor said:

Before using a gun, make sure you know the laws in your state. Here in MN, even in our homes, we have a duty to retreat and only if that's impossible are we allowed to shoot... for example. A stereo can be replaced, a person can not and no life is worth material things. Also, the use of force is not allowed to protect property, only life in a lot of states as well.

Also, just think about how much it's going to suck if you shoot a person, even the "right" person.  Best case--you're in the police station a few hours, the news a few days, the lawyers $50-100K....Worst case--you've killed a disadvantaged kid who happens to be photogenic....You'd be so much better off if he had just taken your stereo.

 

BTW, an audiophile system would be about the stupidest thing in the world to steal.  It's damn heavy, it's going to be hard to unload discreetly, and pretty much nobody wants one.

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27 minutes ago, PeterG said:

Also, just think about how much it's going to suck if you shoot a person, even the "right" person.  Best case--you're in the police station a few hours, the news a few days, the lawyers $50-100K....Worst case--you've killed a disadvantaged kid who happens to be photogenic....You'd be so much better off if he had just taken your stereo.

 

BTW, an audiophile system would be about the stupidest thing in the world to steal.  It's damn heavy, it's going to be hard to unload discreetly, and pretty much nobody wants one.

 

As I have said before, if someone were to try and steal my McIntosh amp, I'd make some popcorn and sit down to watch them try and carry it up from the basement...

No electron left behind...

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Thanks for all of your thoughts on this. I never before was even concerned about the possibility of needing an alarm system. In fact, last October, I moved out into the country, on a bucolic street filled with nice homes and scenery. The very last place I was expecting any crime issues. 

 

Jump to two days ago. My next door neighbor, a police 911 dispatcher, came over to inform me that the street adjacent to us (granted it is a more traveled road) had experienced eight break ins in the past two weeks. The thieves were teenage meth heads from further out in the country who were targeting the first area of significant housing that they came to. The township police chief strongly suggested that she and her husband, and their neighbors (me) invest in a good alarm system, specifically recommending ADT and Vivint, both of which aare seriously pricey. The reason he did not recommend SimpliSafe, while it's clearly otherwise a good system, is that it contacts you directly, not the police, and you are left to do that. He felt hat delay could be costly.

 

He also stated that once this behavior starts, it never stops, and will likely only increase. And for that reason, we should be prepared. 

 

JC

 

 

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3 hours ago, TubeLover said:

The reason he did not recommend SimpliSafe, while it's clearly otherwise a good system, is that it contacts you directly, not the police, and you are left to do that. He felt hat delay could be costly.

 

I've had ADT 3X, and currently have SimpliSafe.  I am almost certain SimpliSafe calls the police in the same way that ADT does.  Check their website to confirm for yourself.

 

On other attributes--SimpliSafe is far cheaper, it sets up in less time than the ADT guys will spend on their sales pitch (I did a 3000 sq ft house in less than an hour), it is easier to maintain, and the hardware is of approximately the same quality.

 

I'd get motion sensor lights too

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Alarm companies make their real money with the monthly monitoring fees.  They normally contract out the actual monitoring service.  So the alarm company gets a monthly income stream from each sale of an alarm system.  One can switch to other monitoring services which are cheaper, but inertia typically keeps you with the same service.  (Similar to keeping auto or home insurance with the same carrier and not price shopping every so often.)

 

Larry

Analog-VPIClas3,3DArm,SoundsmithZephyrII+MiyajimaZeromono,Herron VTPH2APhono,2AmpexATR-102+Doshi3.0+MerrillTridentMaster TapePreamp  Dig Rip-Pyramix,IzotopeRX3Adv,MykerinosCard,PacificMicrosonicsModel2; Dig Play-Lampi Pacific, mch NADAC, Roon-HQPlayer,Oppo105  Electronics-DoshiPre,CJ MET1mchPre,Cary2A3monoamps Speakers-AvantgardeDuosLR,3SolosC,LR,RR

Other-2x512EngineerMarutaniSymmetrical Power+Cables Music-15KRecs(90%classical),1.3KR2Rtapes,1.5KCD's,500SACDs,50TBripped files

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10 hours ago, AudioDoctor said:

Before using a gun, make sure you know the laws in your state. Here in MN, even in our homes, we have a duty to retreat and only if that's impossible are we allowed to shoot... for example. A stereo can be replaced, a person can not and no life is worth material things. Also, the use of force is not allowed to protect property, only life in a lot of states as well.

 

Phew, glad I live in TX, at least in this regard (though we did enjoy living in MN for 3 years for post-graduate training).

 

I was going to reply to the question "dog and firearms," but that sounded too cavalier.

 

I would never do anyone harm over material things.  Never.  They can have it.  Unfortunately, I don't want people on meth (or others uninvited with ill intent) in my house when my family is home.  Too unpredictable, too dangerous.  I have too many crazy stories from the ER.  The police would not respond in time in the country where I live.  The intruders would be at grave risk, I'm afraid.  We are not required to retreat.

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14 minutes ago, Bill Brown said:

 

Phew, glad I live in TX, at least in this regard (though we did enjoy living in MN for 3 years for post-graduate training).

 

I was going to reply to the question "dog and firearms," but that sounded too cavalier.

 

I would never do anyone harm over material things.  Never.  They can have it.  Unfortunately, I don't want people on meth (or others uninvited with ill intent) in my house when my family is home.  Too unpredictable, too dangerous.  I have too many crazy stories from the ER.  The police would not respond in time in the country where I live.  The intruders would be at grave risk, I'm afraid.  We are not required to retreat.

 

In practice, I have seen that law bent a bit by prosecutors in certain situations. However, it's best to not rely on that happening and follow the law as it's written. Second, if I am in my house, and someone breaks in, I am within my rights to use deadly force. If I walk into my house knowing they are in there and shoot them, I am in the wrong If I walk in and they run out, I am not allowed to chase them down the street and shoot them in the back. Deadly force can only be used to protect life against a deadly threat.

 

This actually played into the layout of my new home. I wanted all bedrooms on the top floor so there won't be any ambiguity if the worst case scenario were to ever happen. This normally would not have been a consideration for me, however two friends of mine who live very close by in a posh area of St Paul both had people break in at night while they were sleeping, and one of them was awakened by one of the intruders holding the homeowners shotgun over him and his wife... I don't care one bit if they want to try and carry a 100lb amplifier out the door. I do care if one of them decides they want to get even friskier and attack my family.

 

edit: If you have a gun, get a gun safe. They make some that can be accessed instantly with a fingerprint rather than a code. Don't wake up to the intruder holding your own firearm.

No electron left behind...

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I completely agree with your thinking, @AudioDoctor :).

 

Re. the legal part, it differs in that in TX, if they are shot in your house (even if you walk in to do it), you won't be prosecuted.  Again, though, that wouldn't be my idea of a good plan if we were all outside and safe.  No one is dying over "stuff" if me or my family would be the ones doing the shooting.

 

Bill

Labels assigned by CA members: "Cogley's ML sock-puppet," "weaponizer of psychology," "ethically-challenged," "professionally dubious," "machismo," "lover of old westerns," "shill," "expert on ducks and imposters," "Janitor in Chief," "expert in Karate," "ML fanboi or employee," "Alabama Trump supporter with an NRA decal on the windshield of his car," sycophant

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2 minutes ago, Bill Brown said:

I completely agree with your thinking, @AudioDoctor :).

 

Re. the legal part, it differs in that in TX, if they are shot in your house (even if you walk in to do it), you won't be prosecuted.  Again, though, that wouldn't be my idea of a good plan if we were all outside and safe.  No one is dying over "stuff" if me or my family would be the ones doing the shooting.

 

Bill

 

Thats why I pay for insurance and that's exactly what it's for.

No electron left behind...

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Amen to that.

Labels assigned by CA members: "Cogley's ML sock-puppet," "weaponizer of psychology," "ethically-challenged," "professionally dubious," "machismo," "lover of old westerns," "shill," "expert on ducks and imposters," "Janitor in Chief," "expert in Karate," "ML fanboi or employee," "Alabama Trump supporter with an NRA decal on the windshield of his car," sycophant

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1. Good locks on all doors and windows so they have to break something to get both in and out. Stereos are hard to fit through a broken window. If they are pros then they'll just smash the door. 

2. Good insurance.

3. A security system that notifies you and sets off an alarm—and neighbours who are friendly and aware of noises, or you can spend a lot of money on a monitoring system that notifies the police. Be aware that false positives can be expensive.

4. Weapons as a last resort to protect life. (We have a "home is a castle" doctrine here—South Australia—but guns are very rare and not available for home/self protection.) 

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