Review: Aeon Labs Aeotec Z-Wave Plus Multisensor 6

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Aeon Labs Aeotec Z-Wave Plus Multisensor 6

We’ve had an Aeon Labs Z-Wave MultiSensor 6 since the summer and with the recent addition of a SmartThings hub in the Automated Home we’re finally able to test it.

In contrast to so many smart home products over the years this unit looks good and a quick visit to the Aeon Labs website shows they care about design.

The sensor is an ideal size, small enough to be unobtrusive, big enough not to be fiddly or cheap looking.

In the Box

In addition to the unit itself there’s a USB power lead to run it from the mains. You’ll need to bring your own USB power supply and batteries (2 x CR123A) are not included either (Aeon labs claim up to 2 years battery life). When run on USB power the sensor operates in an advanced mode providing temperature, humidity and light readings in ‘real-time’.

Multisensor 6 MountedImportantly it also comes with its own mounting arm, something thats often omitted with similar sensors. It’s small and while not perfectly adjustable in all axis it will suffice for most. It’s light weight (74g) means it can be mounted with the included double sided sticky tape for convenience too.

There’s also an optional recessor accessory available to allow it to be mounted vertically into a ceiling.

In Use

There’s a little indentation on the rear or the plastic shell of the multisensor and at first it’s hard to understand how this can do anything. But it pushes on a button on the rear of the pcb to initiate the Z-Wave inclusion mode. Our SmartThings hub found the Multisensor 6 right away.

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So what can the Multisensor measure? Well it’s a talented little guy and it can provide the following six readings…

  1. Motion
  2. Temperature
  3. Humidity
  4. Light Level
  5. Vibration
  6. Ultraviolet

We decided to employ it in our kitchen, primarily to bring a light on when there’s motion (120° PIR) as well as monitor the temperature in there.

We have several temperature sensors in some rooms now and they’re generally within half a degree of each other. However the Multisensor 6 seems to read around 5°C  hotter than it should in the Automated Home. This only seems to happen when being powered by the USB lead though, not the batteries. Presumably something is heating up internally with the unit when using USB power and throwing it out of whack.

With the lux level reading you could create some more finely controlled lighting logic, rather than merely relying on a Dark or Light flag. The humidity value could add some logic to bathroom fans and dehumidifiers.

Aeon Labs Aeotec Z-Wave Plus Multisensor 6

It’s hard to know which controllers support the “Ultraviolet” sensor (but that’s a whole different story), and even what you’d really do with that UV Index data if you had it.

Vibrations are detected with the ‘seismic sensor’, and this is also employed to detect tamper.

The M6 uses the latest Z-Wave Plus 5th generation chip-set giving it improved battery life, wireless range, bandwidth and security.Aeotec say its signals now reach 50% further (up to 150 metres) and are 250% faster. It’s been totally reliable since we added it to our Z-Wave mesh network.
The M6 is IP20 rated and Aeotec say you can use it outdoors for 5 out of its 6 functions (the motion sensor is the one they don’t support for exterior applications).

The Aeon Labs Multisensor 6 is handsome, affordable and clever. A near-perfect Z-Wave PIR and temperature sensor, with the bonus of vibration, humidity and light level thrown in. It’s available now for around £55.

aeotec.com  :  Available from Amazon

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5 Responses to “Review: Aeon Labs Aeotec Z-Wave Plus Multisensor 6”

  1. One other useful feature – it acts as a Z-Wave repeater when running off USB power.

  2. Hopefully indigo 7 will support it.. I really want one to mount outdoor

  3. Can someone explain the reasoning behind the lack of support outside from the manufacturer? Is it just so they can’t guarantee the motion readout when the front panel is wet? Or is it that it will simply short circuit in matter of hours?

  4. How can something come to market that provides bad temperature data when it is plugged in? Device looks good otherwise but surely a massive oversight?

  5. Are they going to comment about the temperature difference on USB, sounds prefect if they fix that.