Assembled MQTT Lightswitch – version 1


Really quick post showing latest progress of the fancy light switch.

What do you think? A bit too colourful? It is a bit colourful for my liking. On the other hand the colours do add meaning to the buttons:

blue = presets (obvious)
red = all off (haven’t added this to display yet, you can see below there’s a nice space for the words ALL OFF)
green = cycle modes (light, music, heating, weather forecast, electric blanket mode, etc.)

So yes – useful to tell the babysitter “just press green button to change music”.

Lots of revisions to make to the design. I’ll keep you updated!

(Of course, the whole thing fits in a 47mm wall box with fancy screwless brushed chrome metal faceplate on top of it!)



23 Responses

  1. Creagan

    May 28, 2015 6:25 pm

    Keeping an eye on this every day – cannot wait until you have finished – already saving up. What a brilliant idea! Love the home made PCB and stuff!

  2. James Mc Bride

    May 28, 2015 7:18 pm

    Looking really really good Mat! So Impressed that you’ve managed to cram so much into a 47mm backbox.

    I’ve been working on my own relay controller shield this week, had it all neatly soldered up, connected it all up… BANG… that’s two transistors blown… so thank you for the inspiration to crack-on further!

  3. admin

    May 28, 2015 7:28 pm

    Ouch! Crazy to think that my original plan was to include all of that plus 4 channels of triac dimming in a double wall socket! Clearly that was *never* going to happen… 😉

  4. Ben Jones

    May 28, 2015 10:26 pm

    Love everything about this project – hurry up with the demo video!! Looking forward to seeing the finished product mate – awesome work.

  5. Jon A

    May 29, 2015 10:53 am

    Been watching your progress for a while, alongside the building of my own system. I really like what you have done, integrating the music control with the lighting control etc.
    Good work!

  6. Lewis

    May 29, 2015 6:28 pm

    It is looking fantastic, I would love to see a video of it in action and more pictures of it. I am trying to do a similar light switch, would you be able to share any of the code used as I am quite new to programming the arduino and could do with a few pointers.

    I assume you are powering it with POE still, I was looking into the way LightwaveRF switches work by drawing some power from the lighting circuit. I seem to keep coming up with problems with it so might go down the POE route.

  7. Tom

    June 4, 2015 10:27 pm

    Looking good.
    Couple of questions.
    Are they standard LED’s in the switches or are you useing RGB LED’s? Dimmable?
    If only a few of the presets are defined will just the corisponding switches light up?

  8. Jason Lewis

    June 5, 2015 12:29 am

    Hi Mat,

    Have you considered the long term reliability of the switches soldered onto the circuit board? I just wonder if over time the pressure of pressing the buttons might cause cracks in the solder joints?

  9. admin

    June 23, 2015 6:39 pm

    Sorry for delay responding to your comment! The switches have LEDs built-in, separate pins for the LEDs which means technically they can be dimmed using PWM from an Arduino. I haven’t implemented PWM dimming on the switch LEDs myself as I have a series of timeouts that dims the OLED display, turns the switch LEDs off, then turns the OLED off in that order.

    To answer your question about whether corresponding switches light up, basically yes. They are all individually controllable. That said I haven’t implemented any controls in code, and all the LEDs come on when you touch / control the device. I’ve been thinking of an intuitive way that I could have only one of them come on (e.g. the currently selected preset is lit up and the others aren’t) but don’t like anything I’ve thought of yet! I’d be interested to hear other ideas!

  10. John

    July 3, 2015 6:34 pm

    Fantastic work Mat!

    May I ask where you got those switches from? They look perfect for one of my projects!

  11. Pat R

    July 10, 2015 9:46 am

    Well done on a superb project! I’m in the middle of a HA project (Z-Wave) and would love to have a few of these around my house. I had considered using wall-mounted Android tablets, but they are too complicated when all I want is a few lighting presets and the ability to control Squeezeplay.
    One suggestion I would make is to consider including an IR receiver for remote control. I use a Logitech Harmony to activate various scenes using an IR to TCP/IP converter, saves me getting up off the couch to change the lighting!
    Also, I bit the bullet and bought proper PoE switches, they have really dropped in price recently. Look at some of the TP-Link range.

  12. admin

    July 10, 2015 10:44 am

    Hi Pat. I considered wall-mounted tablets too, but I prefer to have tactile feedback (clicky button, a knob that you can turn, etc.) Agree re proper PoE, I bought a second-hand 48 port Dell switch, nice bit of kit but I can’t use it with my current setup as I’m doing poor-man’s PoE implementation…

  13. Noel

    December 30, 2015 2:35 pm

    Quite simply….I’m IN!

    You’ve no idea how much I want something like this! If you need a beta tester, assembler, tea boy or anything then let me know!

  14. Huw

    January 23, 2017 9:17 pm

    Hi Mat.

    Could you let me know where you got the brushed steel face plate done?

    I’m having a hard dime finding somewhere that’s reasonable priced.


  15. Sepp Spenlinhauer

    August 21, 2018 9:27 am

    Hey Mat,

    Great ideas and love your approach to ‘instant’ access without menu hell.
    Wondering if your still using it and if there were any further updates?

    I also read some of your waterproofing / basement problems… and can relate.
    We have an underground stream and the prior owners didn’t maintain the drain system…
    and being an industrial building for a printing press, the foundation is 24″ thick!

    Anyway, it will be a new home soon, and I want a better way to control the house than the crap controls on the market today.


  16. Sepp Spenlinhauer

    August 17, 2020 6:01 pm

    Hey, we’re are in parallel worlds – been working on a building renovation – STILL – with lots of concrete work…
    Anyway I’m just writing because I’ve wanted to hack these devices to do what I want, and I thought you’d like the design of them.
    BSS audio had no interest in expanding the interface on their platform, so I bought a unit and I hope to either hack the ethernet communications or go directly to the hardware.

    If you have any interest, I’d be down to collaborate.


  17. Daniel Sallros

    October 9, 2021 3:35 pm

    Any chance to see more of this project? Still using it some 7 years later? 🙂

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