Napco P3200 firmware update options

Back in about '99 I installed a Napco Gemini P3200 panel with the GEM-
AUTO firmware upgrade for home automation. I used it with Cyberhouse
software for a while (remember Cyberhouse? Where'd it go?). I'm
currently doing some upgrades around the house and am revisiting what
I can do with my panel. I'm wondering what firmware upgrade options
might be available to me and if there's any benefit to upgrading. My
current EPROM version says V11HA. I know the HA is for the home
automation, but I'm not sure if it's V11C, V11D or other. I've seen
references to V20, V30, V40, etc. Are any of these compatible with my
earlier panel and also include the HA features? Is there any benefits
to the newer versions?
Can I use the quickloader PCD-Windows to identify the version? I
played around with it a bit, but didn't see any version information
loaded from the panel.
It seems that Napco dropped the HA support for the 3200 around 2003/4,
then added it back again around 2007/8 and now it doesn't seem to show
up as an option for the latest controllers. Anyone know what the
future holds for HA support on the 3200?
Thanks,
Todd
Reply to
thoug
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I do not think the older 3200 can use version V20 or above.
I have a panel with V10A and can not do Home Automation. I bought the GEN-AUTOMATION kit and came with V40C. Does not work in my old 3200 panel. I "think" the version V11D HA wll work but can not find it available. I do see version V11E available but do not know if it will do home automation. Does anyone know if V11E will work in my panel that has V10A to be able to use the RS-232 to control system or PC?
Reply to
Remote Enabled Home
There used to be an automation developers kit that had an automation chip, PCI-mini, and some software that worked to read data from a serial port. That's the chip you need. You will probably have to find a Napco dealer who is willing to work with you to see if Napco can produce that old automation chip for you. FYI: The 9600 was the preferred panel for automaters back then.
I never knew if the 3200 worked properly with the automation chip or not. I never sold one that anybody automated that I am aware of.
Remember that anybody who helps you is spending their time to do it, and remember that you don't work for free so they will not want to either.
Reply to
Bob La Londe
I've seen people try to use the HA chip with the 3200 but only some of the features work and it isn't reliable.
I don't know that much about the HA chip but if I wanted to know I'd have t o call tech support. I don't know how a DIY'er would find out but it's not worth my time and risking the possibility of opening up a can of worms to g et involved with it.
If I want to utilize the 9600 for automation I use the keypad bus relay pan els (3008 ? IIRC) partitioning and the extensive programing capabilities of the panel to initiate events. I've done some neat tricks with that panel. I don't know for sure but I have a feeling that the except for the HAI pane l(s) the 9600 has got the most intricate configuration capability over othe r panels.
Reply to
Jim
Bob & Jim,
Thanks for the replies!
I have the Home Automation Kit but it came with a newer firmware "V40C" than my (1st generation) GEM-P3200 will accept. I have the PCI-mini and can use the latest Quickloader with it to load to and from the old panel.
I am a registered dealer with NAPCO. But tech help from NAPCO is not easy to get. Maybe some of the bigger dealers have direct connections to tech help but all I have is the regional sales person who forwards my emails to tech help and sometimes I get a reply.
Last month I took a full day training session as a NAPCO registered dealer on using Quickloader Windows along with Home Automation at NAPCO's Headquarters on Long Island, NY, but it was mostly about them advertising for alarm dealers to sell the new NAPCO home automation solutions and monitoring service and how to configure these services in Quickloader Windows with their newer panels.
Technicians at NAPCO will not tell me if "V11E" will work as they only wants to answer questions about their "NEW" panels with THEIR "NEW" home automation solution. Their solution for me is to get their new panel and use their home automation product and their central station monitoring service.
I find it concerning that NAPCO does not support their older products or have documents about the different version firmware's capabilities are.
As per the following link to a February 2002 NAPCO document "GEM-P3200 & GEM-P9600 ADDENDUM Version 11D Software Changes" on the 2nd page bottom states "Version 11D has been enhanced for interface to a Crestron Home Automation system (V11D HA only)";
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Here is a link to NAPCO tech note about "V11E" superseding "V9", "V10", and "V11":
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I also have the NAPCO document "GEMINI Home / Building Automation Development Specifications" that explains the automation interface from NAPCO Gemini control panels.
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FAQ from NAPCO that states that GEM-P9600 and GEM-P3200 firmware are interchangable.
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I am hoping to get my control system to eventually be integrated to my old NAPCO GEM-P3200 but to get the correct NAPCO firmware in the old 1st generation panel is stoping me from doing it.
My search continues for "V11D HA" or IF "V11E" will work.
Thanks from
REH
Reply to
Remote Enabled Home
On Wednesday, March 11, 2015 at 9:43:17 AM UTC-4, Remote Enabled Home wrote :
han my (1st generation) GEM-P3200 will accept. I have the PCI-mini and can use the latest Quickloader with it to load to and from the old panel.
y to get. Maybe some of the bigger dealers have direct connections to tech help but all I have is the regional sales person who forwards my emails to tech help and sometimes I get a reply.
r on using Quickloader Windows along with Home Automation at NAPCO's Headqu arters on Long Island, NY, but it was mostly about them advertising for ala rm dealers to sell the new NAPCO home automation solutions and monitoring s ervice and how to configure these services in Quickloader Windows with thei r newer panels.
nts to answer questions about their "NEW" panels with THEIR "NEW" home auto mation solution. Their solution for me is to get their new panel and use t heir home automation product and their central station monitoring service.
have documents about the different version firmware's capabilities are.
GEM-P9600 ADDENDUM Version 11D Software Changes" on the 2nd page bottom st ates "Version 11D has been enhanced for interface to a Crestron Home Automa tion system (V11D HA only)";
faq_category_id=13
ment Specifications" that explains the automation interface from NAPCO Gemi ni control panels.
faq_category_id=13
d NAPCO GEM-P3200 but to get the correct NAPCO firmware in the old 1st gene ration panel is stoping me from doing it.
I don't understand why you have to go through your local rep to contact Nap co Tech support. Just call their 800 number and push #1 and talk to the tec h who picks up the phone. If he doesn't know the answer ask to speak to som eone who does. 800 645 9445. If that doesn't work. Call 800 645 9445 and te ll the operator that you are having a problem with a product and you can't seem to get the techs to help you and that you would like to speak to someo ne either in management (not the sales rep) or someone in engineering. If t hat doesn't work ask to speak to someone in customer service and explain th e whole thing to them and that you don't want to speak to tech support unle ss it's with someone who can give you the right answers.
BUT If you're trying to use the HA chip with a 3200 it's not likely to work .... regardless of what they say. Besides.... you can buy a new "board onl y" for less than a $100.00.
Reply to
Jim
If you are a dealer (as in licensed in the trade) you can call Napco Tech Support directly. If the first tier guys can't help you then they will have one of theolder more experiecnced guys call you back. I'm a very small dealer, and I get one on one service when I need it.
Reply to
Bob La Londe
Bob & Jim,
Thanks again for your support. I called NAPCO Tech Support. The tech has no clue about old "V11D HA" or "V11HA" firmware revisions for the old GEM-P3200. The tech guy forwarded me to sales to see if it was in the system and "V11D HA" or "V11HA" or even "V11D" is not on their system. They go from "V11A" to "V11E". No one knows if "V11E" will do the HA. I am sick of dealing with NAPCO as they do not have very good record for their older products. Will they have records of the current products to be able to support them in the future say 10 to 20 years from now? I do not want to take that chance now. They think people have the money to just buy new systems every few years?
I guess I just got to buy "V11E" and try it for myself or get someone elses alarm panel to integrate with my control system. Note that in my weeks of investigating this I found out that the OLD FIRST GENERATION GEM-P3200 DOES support home automation as is said in the NAPCO document "WI987B" found here:
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Specifically for "Crestron Home Automation system" noted at the bottom of page 2. But NAPCO has no "V11D HA" or even record of it anymore. If they did then people would have no reason to use the "new" NAPCO home automation systems at a monitoring cost per month. NAPCO is all about the Recuring Monthly Revenue.
The NEW generation NAPCO GEM-P3200 panel which uses firmware V20+ do NOT do home automation. Home automation is available for only the NAPCO GEM-P9600 for the NEW generation boards and or firmware. ALL NAPCO tech knows is THEIR NEW home automation which again requires their central station at a cost per month. Looking over Crestron's NAPCO first generation control software from 2002 I will be able to do everything the "new" NAPCO home automation does and much more at no cost per month. Yes Crestron is expensive upfront and complicated to program for the inexperienced but I know Crestron very well.
I can get a firmware that supports home automation for my old NAPCO GEM-P3200 and then I will be set. Getting the firmware should have been the easy part. The Crestron system is all programmed and waiting to talk to the GEM-P3200 now.
Thanks again from,
REH
Reply to
Remote Enabled Home
Now I have been in direct contact with the Crestron Engineer who wrote the Crestron side of the code back in the late 1990s to control and monitor the NAPCO GEM-P3200. He said all I need is the specific version V11 HA firmware for the NAPCO panel and I should be good to go. He will be looking to see if the NAPCO panel they used for testing this is still available in the Crestron warehouse.
At least Crestron has tech support for older products that is not even theirs but can be integrated with Crestron. Now that's tech support!
Reply to
Remote Enabled Home
easy to get. Maybe some of the bigger dealers have direct connections to tech help but all I have is the regional sales person who forwards my emails to tech help and sometimes I get a reply.
I've never had problems in the past with support, but it's a damn shame they don't treat the current dealers with a modicum of respect. I've ripped out more Napco panels than I've serviced almost. If there wasn't someone at the office to connect to it, or failed to connect... it was a goner.
Back then (1990's mostly), there were limited options for HA. Now there is no reason to mess with them since better HA panels are almost ubiquitous now.
Reply to
G. Morgan
has no clue about old "V11D HA" or "V11HA" firmware revisions for the old GEM-P3200. The tech guy forwarded me to sales to see if it was in the system and "V11D HA" or "V11HA" or even "V11D" is not on their system. They go from "V11A" to "V11E". No one knows if "V11E" will do the HA. I am sick of dealing with NAPCO as they do not have very good record for their older products. Will they have records of the current products to be able to support them in the future say 10 to 20 years from now? I do not want to take that chance now. They think people have the money to just buy new systems every few years?
I never understood their versioning system. I'm partial to Honeywell lines, and they have a consistent versioning system. They also maintain backwards compatibility (to a reasonable point) unlike Napco. I just never "got" the reason some dealers swore by Napco products. For everything a Napco panel could do, Ademco could do simpler. In the alarm business, simple is always better as long as you're not compromising.
Did you choose Napco? If so - why? I talked an employer out of using them when he had a couple hundred in the field. It helped that he was switching CS numbers and didn't have the forethought to use his own toll-free dialer number. I told him this would be a perfect opportunity to get rid of them. He kept the ones that were only a couple of years old and could connect via Quickloader to change the CS#. I'm sure the rest were culled when Texas mandated SIA programming defaults, I was long gone by then.
Reply to
G. Morgan
theirs but can be integrated with Crestron. Now that's tech support!
That's kinda what they do as their business model.
Reply to
G. Morgan
I chose NAPCO back in the mid to late 1990s because they had some home automation features like X-10. Then I learned about Crestron in about 2000 and that Crestron can integrate with NAPCO but never did get that working back then. Now I'm too late as NAPCO must have forgotten about their older systems to support it's home automation capabilities. NAPCO must have a big empolyee turn around and those that knew must have left. But Crestron remembers!
Reply to
Remote Enabled Home
I personally find the Napco Gemini Panels easier to program than the Ademco panels. That may be a function of my preference for knowing and controlling the details of an installation. If you want simple and easy, there isn't much that beats a P801 for simplicity.
The current version are all SIA capable. I admit I hated the Magnum Alert panels. My biggest thing though is I get personal service from people at Napco at any level from senior techs to regional managers. I can even have the really busy guys make an appointment to call me on site so I am not wasting my time on site waiting for the senior guys to have time to work with me. I also like the Napco is not a BORG or part of a BORG. Without supporting independent manufacturers there is nothing to stop BORG like entities from just forcing you to be part of the collective, and only support the BORGs vision of the way things should be. I used to be an FBII dealer back before FBII was assimilated. I tried to keep using them afterwards, but some of the "new" wonderful stuff just left me hanging. Ultimately I started treating FBII panels sup[ported by Ademco like I treat a DMP XR20 after it start acting flakey. An upgrade or a cancellation.
I don't know why the OP didn't get good support from the first level tech he spoke with, but he really doesn't sound like a dealer either. If I didn't get good help I would have requested some second level support of dropped an email to Dave Sheffy, Bill Kensler or Maury Wolk. No offense, but you come off like a user with one panel you want to do something with.
Reply to
Bob La Londe
I am not an alarm installer. I am in Home Automation who would like to simply connect to an older alarm panel. I was into CCTV installations many years back and was just starting into security. Then family got in the way. Now with more time I am restarting back up into IP cameras first. This is just a side job for me as I do have a full time position as an engineer at an AV / lighting / HVAC / etc... control company. We do not do security equipment at my full time job. In the past I also worked as an engineer in the CCTV industry.
One has to start some place and this happens to be were I am starting back at integrating a home control with an alarm panel. Next time I will just go with another companies panel or not integrate the security into the home control. So far I can now setup a home system to control lights /
HVAC / Audio / Video (including security cameras) / door locks / etc from any smartphone or internet connection without any addtional monthly expence. Any event can trigger a text message also. It would just be nice to offer others to be able to conrol their alarm system as a bonus and use the alarm motions to turn on/off lights and adjust temperatures.
I am hope to be getting the old "V11D HA" NAPCO firmware tomorow I need from a home automation company who said they have some in their warehouse. This is without any help from NAPCO.
Reply to
Remote Enabled Home

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