Home (Cinema) Automation and Mycroft?

Hi there,
as my tech at home gets more and more complex I wondered if some of you may have been a bit further than me (regarding automation/integration).
What I have

  1. Home cinema: consisting of an Atmos AVR, beamer and 11 speaker
  2. Media Center: Intel NUC with 20TB NAS, running OpenMediaVault (Debian Core) and Plex.tv media server, a variety of Docker stuff (bittorrent, sickrage, radarr…)
  3. Media Client: Vero2 with OSMC (KODI fork)
  4. Different smart bulbs and plugs flashed with Sonoff/Tasmota controlled by MQTT
  5. Logitech Harmony Hub
  6. A new RasPi 4 for our dear friend Mycroft
    (7.) The upcoming NVIDIA SHIELD for AI Upscaling and Gesture based Control
    (8.) A Harmony Elite remote

What I try to achieve here with mycroft

  • Get rid of the remote controls (besides the not-yet-owned Harmony remote)
  • Activate “Settings”, e.g.: “Hey Mycroft, Cinema Night” --> plugs go on, beamer starts, lights get red, others get off, some fancy cinema music plays (for the lolz ;)… Or just the “I go to bed” command
  • Control the (ambient) lighting; not so easy without Hue stuff and only a mix of mqtt controlled bulbs and some proprietary IR-Bulbs (Harmony got them though)
  • Automate some stuff like “Pause” --> Movie pauses, light switches etc.

After a lot of reading and tinkering the state of things seem:

  • Need for a software plattform
  • Home Assistant: personal favourite but mycroft skill not under dev anymore
  • FHEM: Controllable by KODI but no mycroft integration
  • Openhab: Mycroft skill under actual development(?)

As I just attached more and more stuff the last 3 years it is now time for a software-infrastructure refresh. For this I need a starting point, and thus, to decide what plattform to use.

Maybe some of you are running similar setups and may share some helping thoughts about all this stuff. :slight_smile:


Impressive setup you have there. Regarding the FHEM integration you probably have missed the fhem-skill (disclaimer: i am the author of the fhem-skill)
Unfortunately Logitech Harmony does not provide a really open API. You might want to look in one of the “wifi ir blaster” projects, e.g. https://github.com/enc-X/mqtt-ir-transceiver which can be integrated with your favorite home automation system.

that’s about my setup. I use the FHEM logitech module. you only have to activate the old api again in the Harmony hub setup. I realized the complete automation under FHEM with dummy devices. There is also a well-functioning Kodi skill

Check out my kodi skill on github. It does quit a bit and always looking to add more functions. I also use osmc and run the cinemavision addon that permits some automation commands based on the what is happening in the movie. I will pass a “dim room lights silently” to mycroft message bus to perform that skill. I also use home assistant to monitor the running status of kodi and adjusts my lighting accordingly. Let me know what you think of the Kodi skill. Always looking for feedback.

Thanks for the replies guys…

Impressive setup you have there.

Thanks, my endless project “opensource smarthome” helps me to not get completely mad while unemployed in the winter season. =D

Unfortunately Logitech Harmony does not provide a really open API

Yeah, but with some workarounds like the “fake roku” adapters/moduls one can at least map certain functions within the harmony ecosystem.

You might want to look in one of the “wifi ir blaster” projects, e.g. https://github.com/enc-X/mqtt-ir-transceiver which can be integrated with your favorite home automation system.

Nice, that I was looking for. Helps to get the different bulbs into a canonical form. Besides having a mqtt server, are there any other dependencies? Though there is an openhab integration explained, are there any other reasons (from the IR Point-of-View) to chose this platform?

There is also a well-functioning Kodi skill

Afaik this should be used to control FHEM stuff within the KODI ecosystem. So my question here would be if it allows automating stuff that other vice versa solutions (e.g. openhab with KODI bindings) cant realize.

Check out my kodi skill on github.

Thanks, I will. Seems promising :slight_smile:

Nevertheless I got a pat again. FHEM, HA, OH2… and I forgot io.broker (played around a bit with this). IPS is not at the candidate list atm due to the external costs.

What would be a minimal setup to achieve my primary goals? As I only have a small flat and all tech is within one room, I dont have a full house of stuff. So more complex solutions are not needed.
Or in other words: I just started to reinstall OMV to get the NAS and Plex running. What would be a good next step from your experience/point-of-view?
And I forgot: For the mycroft integration, what are arguments in favour of/against FHEM/OH/HA? Still trying to get some ground here :-/

Grateful for any advice, I feel a bit “locked inside” and orientation is always preferable :wink:

PS: Some impressions

1 Like

Currently I have written some skills to control my lights in my mancave (Nanoleaf Aurora, Leviton Decora Dimmer, YeeLight WiFi RGB bulbs, Hyperion Ambilight). In each of these skills I have added an optional intent parameter “silently” I then call these through the messagebus using a simple python script executed from the Cinemavision addon on Kodi. It would be a pretty simple thing as well to have an application that monitors the kodi playing status and sets the lighting parameters in the skills based on this Kodi’s playing / paused status. How are your python skills?

Impressive set up. Love it!

BTW if you need some other challenge for your un-employed evenings. Try untangling all those cables… :smiley:

How are your python skills?

Lets say as a Designer I have the ideas and prefer schemata over code. But I have friends who have these skills so I can involve them the better the more it can be done remote. :wink:

BTW if you need some other challenge for your un-employed evenings. Try untangling all those cables… :smiley:

If everything ever should work as intended… I will :stuck_out_tongue:

My actual ToDos:

  • Getting basic mycroft stuff done (just got my respeaker mic array)
  • Getting Docker to run OH/HA/FHEM (still not sure what I really need here)
  • Take a look at the IR/MQTT adapter for a genuine integration of all bulbs
1 Like

Hi guys,
I choose OpenHAB for the time being, as i simply got most of the stuff running. I thought it may have been a good idea to install it under the hood of mycroft at the RP4 (energy saving, dont need the whole NUC server the whole time). But of course errors are fastly arising. Are there any course of actions regarding installing stuff at the same plattform running Mycroft? Also installing in a venv-environment(?)

The respeaker 4-Mic-Array is working ootb, but the respeaker skill for the LEDs doenst. Will take a look at the logs laters.

For the whole IR-MQTT stuff I will ask some python friends for help, too much stuff I dont have any clues :-X
Found another promising approach, but steps are still unclear.


Short update
I spend most time for infrastructure work atm. After I discovered the esp8266_milight_hub and diyHue I bought some Milights for my ambient system as a good base. Getting into the Hue ecosystem with DIY solutions… why not? Hyperion also crossed my way, but this is for later stages.
There are Harmony, Openhab and Kodi APIs to diyHUE, so Mycroft will have a say, too. =D
My vision gets clearer, but until then I will spend more time reading error messages and wildly copy-pasting code I dont understand.

Yeah, I can turn my milight lights off/on with mycroft. The chain of command:

“Hey Mycroft, turn off the lights” --> Hue Skill --> diyHue --> Logitech Harmony Hub --> diyHue --> esp8266_milight_hub --> Milight Lights + esp plugs

So just as a side note, building controllable light systems via Mycroft does not only work for the expensive Hue lights but also for much more cheaper products.
Now I am working on an Openhab2 solution, as OH2 can emulate Hue devices and such integrate a lot more stuff into fake Hues controllable by the Harmony Hub.

I am still looking for a solution to get the harmony hub (i.e. triggering the activities) connected with mycroft. If anyone has an idea for this, feel free to share.

Milestone reached. Wanted this since I was a Kid =D

I am too poor to buy all the stuff I want, and I am to stupid to code something I want to exist. I spent 90% of the time googling error messages I dont understand and c&p code I cant read. But at least I have a lot of ideas and some time :wink:


  • Own AI Assistant, own Data – No Alexa, no Cloud
  • All Controlled by Voice, Automatons or one remote
  • A Fake Hue Ambient Lighting System designed from scratch
  • Cheap with (essential) Parts, easy to Build (no Coding, no Soldering)
  • Unlimited Possibilities regarding Customization, Integration and Extension (APIs…)
  • Connections to external ecosystems (Kodi, Hue,…)
  • Features and Software Evolving with its Communities


  • Voice Assistant: RasPi4 + ReSpeaker 4-mic-array with Mycroft.ai
  • Server and NAS: Intel NUC with OpenMediaVault and Home Assistant
  • Light: Fake Hues with Milights via diyHue and esp8266_milight_hub
  • Client: Vero4K with OSMC (Kodi Fork)
  • Plugs: Teckin SP21 flashed with Tasmota via Tuya-Convert
  • Remote: Harmony Hub + Harmony 950
  • Network: Asus RT-N66U with Merlin
  • AV Stuff, 13 Speaker and about 60 Cables :-X

Further Ideas:

  • A surround Ambient Lighting System with Hyperion
  • A NUI Gesture Control System with Nvidia Shield(?)
  • A Tablet based Interface for Playful Light Interaction
  • Build a Nice Robot Body for Mycroft :slight_smile:

Thanks, keep on Going!

1 Like

Sound like you have a plan!

Most if not all pieces and bits are there. Just needs some glue.

Just dive in. Start with googling 90% of the stuff and error associated with it. 90 will go down to 80, 70, 60, etc.

Believe me, it’s fun!

Sound like you have a plan!

Lets call it visionary stubbornness combined with strategic brutforce methods.

Believe me, it’s fun!

Lets talk again after you unsuccessfully spent 10 hours (again) to get a bluetooth card running on Linux that should work for every reason. :stuck_out_tongue:

Like I said; It will be fun! :laughing:

Either you succeed or you learn. What is the fun in it if everything goes as planned.

On Friday I unsuccessfully spent 6 hours to get a little python script running. It all ended just in more errors and confusion.
On Saturday I finally figured out that light transitions only work with colors what explained why my approaches didnt workout before. While working on the light system I broke the HA UI and (more or less) randomly deleted entities and config files until HA was up again.
On Sunday I broke the UI again and after hours stupid my found out that I easily could edit all the badges. Then my Vero suddenly didnt work and my whole opening scene I have worked on was broken. So I did all the reset- and config stuff again and it worked again for the time being.
Today my light system again made random stuff so I decided to take a day off to not break more.
Tomorrow I go to a workshop to solder Picroft because I tried to put a RasPi4 into a RasPi3 case what ended in a soldering break of the SD card slot.

Ten steps forward, nine back… thats my life.
At least I got something done at the weekend :slight_smile:


All I can say is; Been there, done that.:stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye::rofl:

Dare to say; we all been there, done that.

Speak out guys!:sunglasses:


Dare to say; we all been there, done that.

Thank you that lowers my pain by 1/10 :stuck_out_tongue:


In the meanwhile I built some easy-diy cloud lamps. I would really love to extension this further with a LED star light projector, but i fear most of them use proprietary systems. But I think I give it a try and check if at least the remotes can be emulated by my logitech harmony. In this case I could handle over the star light control to mycroft. :slight_smile: