Turning the door intercom into a smart intercom (and II)

Several months ago I proposed turning my door intercom into a smart intercom by using an Asterisk IP PBX installed on a Raspberry Pi, and with an I/O hat, according to what I explained in a previous post. I managed to progress up to the point I already could pick up and hang the intercom, and open the door remotely…

Unfortunately, I found two problems: audio transmission and reception, and incoming call detection. My zero knowledge about electronics didn’t help at all. I fixed the audio transmission/reception problem in a quirky way by buying a second-hand intercom, and setting it up with an analog speaker analog microphone connected to the Raspberry. But the volume levels never worked correctly and I couldn’t use the system.

And then I couldn’t fix the second problem either: the incoming call detection, as my intercom uses an electronic incoming call (not based on a buzzer).

Eventually, I discovered a product that could fix my problems: the Qvadis One. A gadget with a screen that basically did what I was looking for.

    Qvadis One

Its main problem, under my point of view, was its excessive price, maybe derived of including a capacitive screen that could turn the device into a home automation center… I was waiting for it to decrease its price, and finally I found a second-hand device in Wallapop, the most-used Spanish app to exchange used goods. After installing it, I cannot stop recommending it, if you can afford it. The product depends on the Qvadis cloud for its most advanced features, but it also includes webhooks for local control and usage. I’ve also read that Qvadis could be working on making it work as a SIP client against a local SIP PBX server, which would make the product keep working even in the case of future problems of the company behind it.

And, a few weeks ago, a serious competitor appeared from Amazon’s owned company Ring: the Ring Intercom, that only for half the price shares basic features with the Qvadis, but having a much bigger company behind.

Ring Intercom

The main differences between the Ring Intercom and the Qvadis one (and, for me, the greatest disadvantages for the Ring) is that the former doesn’t have a DC power supply, but it’s powered using rechargeable batteries (so it must be eventually recharged, no matter of its battery capacity), and that it depends exclusively on the Cloud (no local control for now, and I seriously doubt it will ever have it).

For now, I’m very happy with my Qvadis One. It works well. All the members of my family recieve incoming intercom calls in our mobile phone, and we can answer to them with no problems, opening the door as needed, or we can also do it from the device that is replacing our old intercom unit.

I only can encourage the Spanish company behind the Qvadis One to launch a budget version of its device, without a screen, and a cheaper price, closer to the Ring’s price, so it can compete against this latter device.

You can buy both products in Amazon:

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