Honeywell Total Connect 2.0 Tested

By: Brian Rhodes, Published on Aug 22, 2017

Honeywell is one of the biggest brands in security, with Total Connect 2.0 being the company's remote security and smarthome platform.

We bought and tested the system to see how well it actually works. For this test, we connected a Honeywell alarm panel, Total Connect cameras, and several Z-Wave devices together to see how well they integrate.

Our system included:

This joins our previous Alarm.com Test in our ongoing series. Also, look next week for Honeywell vs Alarm.com.

Inside, we detail our findings on how well the system operates, where it is weak, and how it compares to other connected systems.

********* ** *** ** *** biggest ****** ** ********, with ***** ******* *.* ***** *** *******'* ****** security *** ********* ********.

** ****** *** ****** the ****** ** *** how **** ** ******** works. *** **** ****, we ********* * ********* alarm *****, ***** ******* cameras, *** ******* *-**** devices ******** ** *** how **** **** *********.

*** ****** ********:

**** ***** *** ******** *****.*** **** ** *** ******* ******. Also, **** **** **** for ********* ** *****.***.

******, ** ****** *** findings ** *** **** the ****** ********, ***** it ** ****, *** how ** ******** ** other ********* *******.

[***************]

Key **** ********

*** **** ******* **** Honeywell's ********* ******* ** a **** ********* ** several *** ********, *********:

  • ******, ***** **** *********: ********** ** ******* on *** *** ** the *** ******, ***** Connect **** *** **** interface. ******** *** **** to ****, ******* *** big *** ** ******* spots, *** **** * few ******* ** *********** is ****** ****** ***** comfortable **** *** ******.
  • ** **** ************* ******: ***** *** ****** is ********* *********, ***** do *** **** ** configure ** **-********* ******* or ********* *******.  **** added, ******* **** ***** even ** *********** ********* or *****, ****** ***** 'smarthome ***' *******.
  • ** ****** ***** *** Event *************: *** **** ***** at *** **** ***** level, ***** ******* ** valuable ** ******** *** alerting ***** ********.  ** no ***** ** *** testing *** * ***** event **** ** ****** users '*** *** *****' by ***** ******* *.*'* app ** *******.

*******, *** **** ****** ******** weaknesses **** ***** ** big ******** *** *********** customers:

  • **** ***** ***********: *** ** *** biggest ********** ** ***** Connect *.* ** ****, low ********** ***** ******* and * *** ******* that **** *** **** live *****.  
  • ******** *** ***** ****** Commands: ******* ***** ******** issued **** *** *** or ******* ***** **** 10+ ******* ** ********, and ** **** ***** commands ******.  ******* ******** attempts ******, *** *** uncertainty ** ***** ******* is ***********.
  • ******* *-**** ********** *******: ****** *-**** ******* to *** ********/***** ** generally ********, *** *** process ********* **** *** the **** **** *** process ****** ******** ******* verify *******, ******* ** uncertainty *** *********.  *** default ***** *** ***** associated **** ******* *** generic, *** ***** ******* require *********** ****** ********.
  • ****** *******: *** ***** ** camera ****** ********* ** Total ******* *.* ** limited ** * *** basic ***** **** ******* VGA ********** *** ***** focal ******. **** ***** video '***' ******* **** provide ****** **********, ****** resolution *******.

Total ******* *.* ********

********* ***** ******* *.* ** * ****** ***** add-on ******* ** ********* systems, ******** **** ** be ******** ********** ** smartphones *** ***. *** platform ******** ****** ********** for ********* *** **** automation. *** *** ******** Total ******* *.* ****** is ******* ******* *** management ** ********* ******, video ************, *** **** automation **** *********** *** door *****.

*** ****** ******** *** available ****** ******* * web-based ****** ** ********** app *** ******, *** premise **********. *** ***** appearance ** *** ******** interface ** ***** ** the ***** *****:

***** ******* *.* ** not * ******* ******* monitoring ******. ******* ******* Monitoring ** ******* ********, but ********* ****** ** a ****** ********* ******. The ******* *** ***** of ********** *** *** prerogative ** *** ********** dealer. 

Uses **** ********* ******

***** ******* *.* ** only ********** **** ******* Honeywell ******. *** **** used *** ***********-******* ******** Lynx ***** *****, **** a **** **** ************ and *-**** **** ******.

**** ***** ** * combo-style *********, **** * touchscreen ****** *** ******** system ********** **** * wall ******* *********. *** sensors *** *-**** ******* are ********* ** **** panel *****, *** ********** by ***** ******* *** a **** ** ******** connection ******:

*** **** **** **** Z-Wave *** **** **** communicator ****** ******* **** slot ****** *** ******* of *** *****. **** the ***** ******* ******, the ***** ***** ** outward **** ** ********** in ***** '***** ******* 2.0' *******:

******* *** ***** ****** up **** ***** ******* is * ******-**** ******** and ******** * **** to *********'* ******** ** *** ***** ********.  Additionally, ********* *-**** ******* ******** a ******-**** '******' ********* panel **** *** ********* devices **** ******* *** doorbells *** ********** ****** in ********. *** **** Total ******* *****, ****** additional ******* *** *-**** devices, **** ***** ********* DIY, *** ******* * service **** ** ** integrated.

Other ********* ********* ******

***** *********** ** ********* limits *** ****** *** Total *******, *** * look ** ***** ************* shows *** ******** ****** the **** ***** ******* with *********** *** ***** commercial *******, ********* *** Lynx *****.  *********'* ****** residential ***** ***** *****, *** ***** ****, is **** ********** **** TC2.0:

*************, ****** ********* ****** ***** ******* *** ********* ** to *** *** **** models. ***** ***** ********** panels *** ******** *** large ********** *******, ***** Connect **** *** ******* many ** *** ******* configured ******** **** ************, ******* ***********, *** ****** ********** *******.

****** ********* ********* **** *** *** ****, ** ******** modules ** ******* *** non-Honeywell ****** *** *******.

Total ******* ***** ********

*** ** ***.*'* *** ******** is ****** ***** ****** access, ******** ***** ** see ****** ********* '** home' **** *** **** app *********** ***** ********* panels. *******, *** ******* ***** video ************ ** *** of *** ******* ***** of *** ********, *** poorer **** **** ***** DIY ****. ** **** at ***** *******'* ***** in *** ***** *****: 

** ***** ** ***** management, ********* ****** *** only ***** ** *** web ********* *** ** live ***** ***** *** available. ****** **********, ******* to ** ****** *****, can ** ********* *** stored ** *** '******' tab *** *** *** otherwise ********* ** **********.

********* ***** **** **** no **** ******* ***** is * *********** *****. The ******* **** ******* an HTML5 ***** ******* ******* to ******* ** ******* and ****** *******.  *******, until ****, **** ***** streaming ** *** *********.

****'* ** ******* ****, note *** ******* ********** and **** ***** *********** of *** ******:

Limited ****** *********

*** ******** ***** **** specific ***** ******* ******* **** cameras *** ********, ***** *** *** **** **** ** manufactured ** ******* ***********.

** ****** *** **** Indoor/Outdoor *** ** ****** Cube *******. ** ****** *** cameras ***** **** **** and ***** *********** ** our ***** ******, **** inside *** *******, ********* 20' - **' **** from * ***.**/*/* ****** passing ******* ******** *****. The ********* ******* ********* with ** ********** *********** in ****** *************.

************* ****, ***** ******* camera ********** ** ******* to *** (*** * 480 ******), *** *** display ** ****** ** low ** **** (*** X ***) *** ****** are *****. ***** *** Indoor **** ****** ******** IR ****, *********** ** poor *** ********* ******* 5' - *' **** the ****** *** **** on *** *** *****.  The ***** ***** ** an ******* ** ** performance:

HD ******* ******

***** *******'* **** ***** could ** *********, *******. As ***** ** * recent ********** '*** *********'* ***** ******* Cameras *** ****?', *** ******* *** announced * *** ** line ** ******* ******* to ** '****** ****'.

********* ***** ** *** not *** *** **** line **** ******* ****** supporting ** ** *****/ 2MP ** ** ***. IPVM **** **** *** compare ***** *** ****** once *** ****** *********.

App **. *******

* ******** ** ***** Connect ** *** ********** of ******** *** ********** of **** *** *** and *** *** ******.  Essentially ** * **** is ******** **** *** interface, **** **** **** other ******** *** ****, greatly *********** ****** **********. Screen ***** ** **** are ******** *****, ***** the ***** ***:

**** ************ *** ****** controls ** *** *** are *** **** ** the *** ******:

**** *** ***, ***** notifications *** ****** ** the *** ********** ** what ***** ******** *** user ** **********, ** even ** *** ***** is ****. *** **** image ***** ***** *** push ************* **** **** the **** ******, *** how ********* ***** ****** appear.  ** *** ****, all ***** ****** ************ sent ************* *** ** events **** ******:

*** ****** ****, ** event *** ******** * chronological ****** ** * window ** *** **** interface ******.  ***** ****** can ** **********, ** other ****** ********* ** available:

Z-Wave & ********** ***********

** **** *** '*********' connectivity, ** ********* * ** ******* *-**** **** *** ********* ** ** our ****** **** **********. The *********** *** ********** of *** ********** **** Total ******* *.* *** generally ********, ******** ******* a ******* ******** ***** was ************** ********, ********** after **** ******* ** inactivity:

*** ***** ***** ******** the ********* ** *** thermostat, *** ***** ********* devices, ** **** *** app *** *** ******. In *******, ********** *********** and *-**** ****** ******* of ****** *** ******** was spotty *** *****, *** our ***** ***** ******** typical ******** ** ***** issues:

Price *** ********** *********

**** * ********* **** perspective, ***** ******* *.* services *** ***** ***** to *********** *********.***, **** * ******* average **** ** $** - $** *** ***** including **** ********** *** TC2.0 *******.

*** **** ********** *** smaller *****, *** ******* cost **** ** ******* and ***** ** *** as $**/*****, ***** ******** connecting ******** ****** *** be $**/***** ** ****. In *******, ******** **** cloud ***** *** ******** support *** ** ***** plans, *** *** **** of *** ********* ********* system *** **** **** a ****** ** *** total ******* ****.

******** ************ ** ***** Connect *.* ******* *** common *******:

*****.***

**** * ************* ***** of ****, *** ***** similar *********** ** ***** Connect, ********* ******* ****** choices *** *-**** **** (not ******) **********.

*******, *** *** * distinct ******* **** ********* in **** ** ** not ****** ** ******* with **** *** ***** of ********* *****. **** a ***** ******** ***** of ****, *** *** operate **** *** *********** take **** * **** number ** ******* ******** to ***** *******. ***** connected ********** *** * growing ***** ** ****** every ***** ************, *** has *** ********* ** potentially ******* **** **** accounts.

**** (******** ***********)

** **** ********, *** dealers ***** ***** ******** competition **** ****.  ** part, **** ** ******* Moni ******* **** ******** of*** *** * *********** agreement**** ** **** ** their *** ******* ******* platform **** *********** ********** backend. ** ******** ** ADC, **** **** ******* also *** **** ***.*, especially ***** **** **** dealers **** *********** ********* companies ***** ** ******* or ***** ******** ** Moni.

**** ***, **** ******** with * ****** ** platforms, ********* *** **** 2Gig *** ****** ******, and ******** **** **** of *** **** *******, Z-wave *******, *** ******* cameras. **** ***, **** also ******** * ********** app ***** *******, ** aggressive ****** *** ******* channel, *** **** ***** fashionable ************ *** ********* with *** **** **** and ******.

*******, ** ***** ** existing ***********, *** *** a **** *********** ******** base *** *********** ** financially ******* ****** ******* new ***********, ******* **** more ********** ** ******* players *** *** ****** away ********* ********* *** dealers.

Upcoming *****.*** ** ***** ******* ********

* ****** ****** **** specifically ******* *** ******** Total ******* *.* **** Alarm.com, **** **** *********** and ********/******* ************. **** for **** **** ** the ****** *****.

Comments (14)

The fact that Honeywell can't (won't) figure out 2nd partition accessibility remotely is a joke. Bosch can, and it is a free secondary service.

A couple of observations;

1. Pretty sure Honeywell does not charge for doorbell integration. ADC charges a couple of $$ per month for doorbell.

2. IME, ADC is a fair bit pricier on a monthly basis than TC2

3. TC2 actually supports network connectivity, whereas I think ADC can only be done over cellular, which I think is dumb and shortsighted.

4. Like Jeremy said, how is it that Honeywell can't sort out a second partition, when ADC has a module that wires up to a Honeywell panel that DOES? SMDH...

Good feedback, thanks.

Given that monthly monitoring is required with TC and is not with ADC, the monthly bill trends higher with TC. On a services-equal basis, ADC is higher, as noted in the report.

We'll examine ADC vs TC2.0 in depth in our upcoming 'shootout' post.

Meant to reply earlier; TC doesn't require monitoring, it just requires a central station and account number. Most CS will just let the dealer create a non-monitored account and not bill for monitoring, since they make a little margin on passing through TC billing.

That's informative. Thanks!

Do you have a sense of how common 'free, non-monitored, pass-thru' TC monitor station accounts are?

I've spoken recently with two different TC dealers who say they have not seen this option before.

It's not common, but I think it will become more common as dealers find ways to compete with self-monitored systems.

It's not advertised by Honeywell at all, and of course the Central Stations would rather we use them to monitor the systems, but it is an accomodation they've made. I've heard anecdotally that some Centrals won't support non-monitored TC accounts.

Hope that clarifies.

In response to your #3 Point. Actually ADC does support network connectivity if you have a device that uses it. For example with 2GIG, if you use a GC2 (CP21), You can use a Go!Bridge Communicator to do this. And now with the new GC3 firmware update, it also does this as well.

It utilizes dual path connectivity in which the backend (ADC) will accept whichever "signal" it receives the quickest between celullar and network internet.

This can sometimes greatly improve your alarm reporting and zwave device performance when you have a weak cell signal at the install site.

Thanks, Sean, did not know that. It's good to have options for areas with little or no cel coverage.

According to install and programming documents packed with the AlarmNet radios, the larger Vista 250BPT is compatible with Total Connect 2.0.

The larger Honeywell panel, Vista-250, appears to be compatible with both Total Connect 2.0 and Compass 2.0. The inability of Total Connect 2.0 to work with more than one partition, whether it's a Vista-20P or Vista-250BPT, is disappointing. I've been asking about multi-partition features in Total Connect for 3 to 4 years and they still have no idea when that will happen. You can use the "keypad icon" in Total Connect 2.0 to manually change to another partition to control that partition, but events and notifications only work with partition 1.

Moni or Monitronics is not a competitor to Alarm.com. Moni is a dealer for both Alarm.com and Honeywell Totalconnect.

Thanks for bringing that up. I'll edit the text above to reflect this. To your point, ADC sells 'connected home' software features to Moni, who then substantially rebrands and modifies those parts into their own platform. The monitoring backend is proprietary to Moni.

However, ADC does not offer support to 'MyMoni' accounts, nor do customers purchase 'alarm.com' from Moni. Likewise, a Moni dealer sells more than Honeywell and may not chose to sell TC2.0 at all.

So, a Honeywell dealer, an Alarm.com dealer, and a Moni dealer may fundamentally compete for the same customer and represent their own offerings.

It seems that new HD cameras have "Dahua" written all over.

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