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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Was in Wal Mart today and decided to pick up an official "HR.Com Security System and Intercom" - or as some people call it, a Baby Monitor.

As my wife and I talked it over we figured why not get two of them (they were only $17) so we could set them up as a two-way intercom as well as a security system. Our garage is about 100 feet from the house and she gets tired of coming out to yell or walking up the hill to get me when there is a phone call, meal, or other need to get my attention. I'll get them installed tomorrow and let you know how they work. We'll leave the unit from the garage to the house on at night as an alarm. We will also leave both receiver units on at all times. Then during the day we can turn the sending units on or off as we need them to communicate from the garage to the house or visa versa. (Now all we need to do is repackage these things with the HR.Com logo on them and sell them at all the car shows.) Hey, the Radio Shack intercom alone is like $25 - and it doesn't work very well. With the HR.Com unit - you also get a $600 security system. Can't beat that for $34.
 

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cboy said:
Oh, I forgot to mention, you ALSO get a "Bonus" baby thermometer with every unit - so you can also test your radiator every hour or so.....

Do you slip it up the tailpipe?.....................lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Update------

Security System not working so good. Just got everything plugged in and things didn't work so well. Heavy static on the receiver units at all times and from all the channels. Tried it in various rooms and sections of the garage but still no luck. Discovered in the troubleshooting guide that the units don't like fluorescent lights...which my shop is full of. But even with the lights all off, the units still had very loud static at any volume setting above "Off". So they are going back to Wally Mart.

For those of you who do use this set up - what brand is your monitor? The one I had was labeled "Crystal Clear" (which was about as far from reality as you can get.)

Dewey
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
iiibdsiil - The box says it can be used up to 400 feet. But it does the same thing if we set it up right here in the house with the transmitter just 20 feet away.

julmer - We tried it in every possible combo you can imagine. But we never had more than one "set" on, or even plugged in, at a time and we alway made sure that both transmitter and receiver were set at the same frequency. What we could NOT eliminate is the possibility that someone in our area might be using some sort of intense radio waves, like CB or Ham, and causing the interference. But no matter what frequency we used (and there are only 2 on these units) they would not stop putting out pure static.

The other possibility is that they are just inferior (read cheap) units. Maybe some other units will work fine. That's why I asked for the brand name from someone who is having success doing this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
It's not a lack of stuff. I just have lots of places to hide it, like the other half of the new garage (which I shrewdly didn't include in the pictures), a basement woodworking shop in our house, and a two car garage next door which belongs to my sister but she's only here about 6 weeks out of the year. So I've only been moving the stuff into the new shop that I really need. But once I get started on my newest project it will fill up fast.
 

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The one we had was a Fisher-Price. I don't remember having trouble with the lights interfering. I do remember that i didn't turn it off once while in the garage and the wife could hear every word we said. She didn't meet me at the door with a frying pan so its all good.

Edit: Try it without the lights on, you turn them off at the end of the night, that stops the interference. It still might work as security.

C
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I did try it without the lights on but still got total static. Also tried it in the house rather than the garage (no fluorescents) - still all static.

I think I might try the Fisher Price model like you have. The ones I got just might have been too cheap.
 

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As a recent past user of said baby monitor I have to go with fat50 on this one. Buy the brand name, Fisher Price is good, the one we had was made by The First Years and worked really well. I believe Playskool also makes them.
BTW, I think your idea is awesome. I wish we would have thought of that when we lived in the country. Would've saved me a whole lot of truckin' back and forth to relay messages and such.

Moral of the story: You get what you pay for :D :p

Chickie.
 

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Keep us posted, this is a great Christmas gift idea for a buddy of mine, his wifes' biggest gripe is getting him in the garage for phone messages. Dan
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Well, I got the Fisher Price monitors and they were only a slight improvement over the cheaper model. There is still way too much static to make them useful. Although to box says they can be used up to 400 feet - and where there are in the garage is about 150 feet from where the other units are in the house - my inclination is that the distance is the problem. I could take the receiver outside on battery power and it seemed to work pretty well up to about 100 feet from the sending unit (the monitor).

Anyhow, I'm taking these units back as well and, for the time being, giving up on the low cost security/intercom system. Too bad...it was a niffty idea.
 

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Kenneth Howard hates me...
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My daughter just got some of those 2way radios that are made by Motorola, $39.00 and have a 2 mile radius. They are as small as a pager and have a belt clip. The call button is pretty darn loud, can be heard over the cut-off wheel. I can be down at the neighbors garage helping him out and still hear "mama" call me in for diner.

They wont work for security, but if its just a matter of talking between the house and garage, Just another possibilty.......


C
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
The only problem I have with the walkie-talkies is the batteries. Unless you get rechargeable batteries and a charger, it would get pretty expensive buying batteries over the long run to keep two of those "on" all the time. I've looked for ones that can be plugged into an AC converter but haven't found any yet.
 
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