Posted by on 5/14/2021 to Articles
Home intercom systems come in two basic forms, wired and wireless. Wired systems are usually used for new construction homes since running wire in exiting walls is expensive. If you have an old system already in the walls, then a retrofit system that works with your current wire is probably what you need. You will need to look at the cable running to the system to see how many individual "conductors" or wires are in the cable and then choose a system that works with that cable.
Most wireless systems are short range of under 1000 feet, which is sufficient for most homes. If what you require is a gate intercom system then we recommend you check our systems here instead: gate intercom systems
Below are some of the most popular choices:
Wireless Home Intercom Systems
Hosmart Full-Duplex Wireless Intercom System Model - HY616
The nicest feature of this intercom is that it is full-duplex, which means that once you answer a call, both parties can speak without having to press a button. They work more like a cordless telephone and they use the same DECT 6.0 technology.
You can call individual units but you have to press two buttons to do that. You press Call first, then the number of the unit you want to call.
These are very flexible on power. They come with an AC adapter, you can use a standard USB battery pack, you can plug it into a computer, or you can use OPTIONAL, removable 18650 rechargeable batteries. These are the kind used in flashlights. The batteries will last approximately a week of normal operation before needing recharging or swapping with a charged battery.me
The range is up to 1000 feet, however that is in an open environment with no walls in between. Range will be lower with obstructions.
The best feature on this intercom is the channel feature. There are 6 channels and you can set the default channel on each intercom so that if a user leaves their channel to talk to someone else, it will default back to it's preprogrammed channel.
This button enables you to call all stations no matter what channel they are on, but it is limited to 4 stations.
To put a unit into monitor mode, press the Monitor button. The channel LED indicator will flash to show available channels on the master unit. Press the channel button that you want to monitor. The unit will be continuously monitored by other units. Press the Monitor button again to exit monitor mode. Sounds like continuous until you break the call.
- Multiple channels
- Full Duplex handsfree communication
- Uses DECT digital technology for secure commuication and clear sound
- Uses a standard 18650 rechargable battery that can be removed and recharged. Or if plugged in the battery will charge so it can be used for battery backup.
- Can monitor a room by pressing the Monitor button follwed by the room number
- Pressing the Group button will call all stations (up to four stations)
- Range will be limited by your environment
- Adding additional sub stations to the system is a little complex
- The maximum number of intercoms you can have is 6 (1 master and 5 substations)
To get more info on the Hosmart intercom feature just click the button below:
Wuloo Intercoms Wireless - WL666
This intercom system claims it can reach distances of a mile with crisp sound quality. You should definitely be skeptical of those kind of range claims, especially on a unit that uses FM frequencies. However, most users don't need anywhere near that range. And the range you get will be dependent on what sort of interference you have in your area. Some users complain that it wouldn't even cover a 1500 square foot house, or that they were awakened in the middle of the night with interference on their intercoms. If you live in a highly congested area, you will likely have problems.
That said this intercom has some really nice features.
It has voice activation (VOX)mode for handsfree transmitting, but like VOX on all intercoms, you have to be sitting right in fromt of it
There is a channel switch you can use in case your neighbors have the same unit. There are three channels available.
- Longer range than others
- Multiple channels allows private calling
- Monitor mode to listen in (turns off after 10 hours)
- Good volume
- Subject to whatever interference is in your neighborhood so you may get static or noise at all times of the day
- If you are on the same channel as a neighbor, they will hear you
- Sound quality is not great, tinny sounding
- Cannot talk to someone if their unit is in Monitor mode
- push to talk
- Usage can be a little complex for some people
To get more info on the Wuloo intercom feature just click the button below:
Dakota Alert MURS Long Range Wireless Intercom - DA1006
This long-range wireless intercom can communicate at distances of several miles under ideal conditions. It uses MURS (Multi Use Radio Service) frequencies which means it is compatible with any other MURS device on our website so there are handhelds, wireless outdoor intercoms, wireless PA system, doorbell intercom, front door intercom, gate intercom and other devices for home or office use.
This wireless intercom has 5 channels however you cannot set a default channel so if you make a change to the channel it will stay on that channel.
There are no features like monitor or voice activation, but the audio is nice and clear on this unit.
- Lots of other products that work with these, like outdoor intercoms and other commercial products
- Has the longest range of any other product
- The multiple channels do not work well for calling individual units. No calling individual units.
- More expensive than other options.
To get more info on the Dakota Alert intercom feature just click the button below:
Amazon Echo- DOT
If you have an Amazon account, there is another affordable solution, but it requires buying Amazon Echo Dots or any of their other Echo devices.
The "Drop In" feature has been added to Amazon's Echo devices that allows you to call other Echo Dots in your system.
This capability enables you to call any Echo device that is set up to receive calls. So you name each Echo device something that's appropriate for the location, like Kitchen, Office, or Master Bedroom and when you are near one of the Echo devices, like the Office, you can simply say "Alexa, drop in Kitchen" and you will be instantly connected. Anyone in the kitchen can just reply to your call without touching anything. When done you just say "Alexa, hang up." So you never have to touch anything.
You can also use the Alexa app on your smartphone to drop in on any of the devices no matter where you are. Not only can you use this to call your spouse or family members while you are at the office or traveling, this capability could also be used to check in on aging relatives where ever they are as long as you're approved to drop in on their Echo.
So not only do you get the benefits of an intercom system, but there are lots of other benefits to the Amazon Echo system, like playing music, setting calendar reminders, and asking Alexa for the answers to all life's questions (although she isn't as smart as Google yet).
- The best sound quality of any other device
- You can be anywhere you have data service on your phone and still be able to talk to someone at home
- Hands free operation
- Lots of other uses for the device other than communication
- You require an Amazon account to be able to use these
- These may be a little too complex for non-techy people to set up
Wired Intercom Systems
If you have an existing intercom system that needs to be replaced, then you will need a retrofit intercom system. If you are building a house and running new wire you can install any system. We will cover the retrofit system here.
Instrasonic Retro Music & Intercom System
This is a good choice (and one of the few choices left) for replacing an old intercom system mounted in your home. It uses your existing wiring (assuming the wires are still good).
Since your room stations will be a different size than these Intrasonic stations, you need to choose a kit that has either horizontal or vertical adapter trim plates. If your room stations are wider than they are tall, choose a horizontal kit. The vertical kit is for stations that are more tall than wide.
You will also need to measure your current master station and make sure the trim plate included in the kit is large enough to cover the hole in your wall.
Once you have all the system components, you will replace all components of your current system, including the power supply.
The system provides a nice upgrade since it has Bluetooth, which allows you to stream music from your smartphone.
- Easy installation since wire is already in place.
- Nice feature set
- Bluetooth streaming to play music throughout the house
- You can attach optional ceiling speakers to the system as well
- This system can be used for new construction too using a minimum 3-conductor, 22 to 24 gauge cable
- You may need to use adapter plates to cover the old intercom holes and these are larger than your old intercom stations
- The system only supports up to 13 rooms/patio/door stations
- Requires 110 volts to the master so it may need an electrician to install a power outlet by it