So if you’ve been to the Apple store looking for Apple Home devices, chances are you’ve seen Elgato’s Eve smart home lineup which includes the Eve Room, Eve Door & Window, Eve Weather, Eve Energy and Eve Motion. We’ve seen different smart home gadgets for Google Home, Amazon Alexa and Apple Home and we’re generally impressed with the overall lineup that Elgato has come up. However, there is one or two products that we’re not sure how useful they are in real life.
At SmartHome Reviews Eh!, we base our reviews and videos on actual usage. So we’ll leave it all the marketing fluff and focus on using the product in our own homes. And we’ll add the smart home gadgets to other smart home platforms such as Amazon Alexa and Google Home. We do all this to answer the question “How do we get the MOST out of our homes?”.
Elgato Eve App
In general, we are quite pleased with Elgato’s Eve app. Elgato has taken the time to develop their products past the basic Apple Home requirements. The Eve app isn’t just a regurgitation of the Apple Home protocols like Incipio and Koogeek do.
One of the standout features of the Eve App is the ability to view changes to your home over time. For example, both the Eve Room and iHome Home sensor track the temperature in a room but the iHome app doesn’t provide you with a graph that shows you the changes in temperature over time. Tracking changes over time is useful when you’re trying to maximize your comfort.
The same goes for power usage with the Eve Energy. Power consumption over time for us is a great indication to see if our Apple Home automations are actually working. Most smart plugs will offer power consumption but do not show the data in any useful manner.
Elgato Eve Motion
The Eve Motion will detect motion up to a distance of 9 m or 30 ft in a 120 degree arch. The Eve Motion sensor can be mounted outside since it has an IPx3 rating but that doesn’t mean it can handle a torrential downpour. You’re still going to need to mount under an overhang or somewhere with a bit of cover.
Like all Elgato Eve products, the Motion sensor is powered by two Double A’s which is a little annoying but it does allow it to be quite portable. We didn’t find the user to be useful indoors due to the large FOV. If you’re looking for a sensor to trigger on movement indoors, check out the D-Link Omna. The Omna is expensive but allows you to be specific with the areas you want motion to be detected in.
In our test homes, the only place we found a use for the Eve motion was outside, near the garage. We set up the Eve Motion to “watch” the garage and had an Apple Home automation turn on our lights when motion was detected. This automation is going to be useful for people who don’t like going into a dark home at night. If you need a bit more information on the different types of automations, check out our handy Apple Home Automation guide.
We will note that the sensor will not work behind a window you will need to find a place to mount it in the room or area that you want to track motion in.
The Elgato Eve app will track all the times the Eve Motion gets triggered which might be handy for some people (we’re not sure how to use that data).
Elgato Eve Weather
The Elgato Eve Weather is one of the sensors that we’re not sure is worth getting. The Eve Weather sensor provides environmental data on temperature, humidity and air pressure. When it comes to weather, we don’t pay attention to outdoor humidity or air pressure, only the the temperature. We’re very concerned about humidity in the house since it is something that we can manage but outdoor humidity is outside our control.
For the temperature readings, we found it easier to look outside at our $7 dollar thermometer then to check our Home App. Elgato’s Eve products are based on Bluetooth which means they are slower than other HomeKit devices. This lag is going to be noticeable when you’re in a hurry.
One of the standout features of Apple Home devices is the ability to check on the devices remotely. But with environmental sensors, we can’t find many reasons why we need to know about the temperature of our home when we’re not there.
The Eve Weather is powered by two double-A batteries and like the Eve Motion, has an water resistance rating of IPx3 which means it can’t handle heavy rains so again, put it somewhere protected.
Elgato Eve Door & Window
The Elgato Eve Door & Window is a wireless contact sensor that will tell you if something is closed or open. So put it on a door, on a sliding door, your pantry and window. This type of sensor is going to be situational as the cost of the sensor will most likely prevent you from buying many (~$40 dollars per unit).
The sensor is quite easy to setup and doesn’t need to be 100% lined up for the sensor to trigger. Elgato does include several extra plastic pieces to ensure that the sensors line up properly. The Eve door & Window isn’t powered by double A’s but rather a tiny 1/2 AA. Our sensor has been in use for 6 weeks now without any battery issues. We’re hoping it’s going to be a couple years before we need to replace the battery. Within the app, the Eve Door & Window sensor will tell you how many times it has been opened and closed.
One of the best reasons to use this type of sensor will be for people who are frequent vacationers. Placing a Eve Door & Window sensor on each door and turning on the notifications within your Apple Home app will give you an added sense of security while you’re gone.
This sensor can be used easily with Apple Home automations. It will be easier to use a door sensor than the Eve Motion sensor if you need to trigger lights when you come home at night.
Elgato Eve Room
The Eve Room sensor is one of our favourite sensors but is also one of the most expensive. However, once you figured out what’s ruining your indoor air quality, you might not have much use for it. Why do we say this? Because in our last Apple Home build, we didn’t notice that it was missing.
The standout feature of the Eve Room sensor is the ability to detect volatile organic compounds (VOC’s). Basically, the Eve Room will tell you how much indoor air pollution you’re inhaling. When we first setup the sensor in our office, we noticed that the air quality was extremely poor. We tried to improve the air quality by opening windows and doors but that didn’t help. The biggest culprit came from our laser printer that was always on.
Once we turned the printer off, the air quality in the room improved dramatically! Apparently your printer is killing you slowly!
The Eve Room sensor will also measure temperature and humidity. Indoor humidity is important because when it gets too dry, the wood in our homes shrink.
One of the features that is sorely missing from Apple Home is the inability to trigger connected HomeKit devices based on sensor data. For example, we are unable to turn on a heater in our office the moment the humidity or temperature reaches a certain level. Honestly, without this type of automation, what is the point being able to collect all this data?
Do you have any questions our Elgato Eve Room, Outdoor, Door & Window and Motion Review? Ask them below. If this post was helpful to you, consider getting your smart home gadgets through our links!