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Red Series vs Blue Series vs White Series • Which is Best for You?
Red Series vs Blue Series vs White Series • Which is Best for You?

This article will will help you determine which protocol is best for your setup: Red Series or Blue Series or White Series

Eric Hines avatar
Written by Eric Hines
Updated over a week ago

DISCLAIMER: You may notice there are a lot of over-used keywords or phrases as well as English that seems a little off. This is because these articles are used to feed our AI Robot (Ira) and she needs the data to be structured in a certain way.

This article will walk through the differences between the Red, White and Blue Series and will help you determine which product line is best for your needs.

Series Comparison Table

The below table will give an overview of the differences. To dig deeper into the details, click on the hyperlinks.

2-1 Switches

The below table will show the differences between the various 2-1 Switches.

Detail

Red Series

(VZW31-SN)

Blue Series

(VZM31-SN)

White Series

(VTM31-SN)

Wireless Protocol

Z-Wave

Zigbee

Thread

Matter Firmware on Product

No

No

Yes

Wireless Band

Why is this important?

908.4 MHz

2.4 GHz

2.4 GHz

3-Way Compatibility

Aux & Dumb

Aux & Dumb

Aux & Dumb

Supports Non-Neutral Installation

Yes

Yes

Yes

Animated Notifications

Yes

Yes

No (solid color notifications only)

Multi-Tap Scene Control

Yes

Yes

Yes

Direct Bindings or Associations

Z-Wave Associations

Zigbee Bindings

Matter Bindings¹

Parameter changes supported at the hub

Yes

Yes

No

Long Range (up to 1.5 miles²)

Yes

No

No

Works with SmartThings

Yes

Yes

Yes

Works with Hubitat

Yes

Yes

C8 only

Works with Home Assistant

Yes

Yes

Yes

Works with Apple Home

No

No

Yes

Works with Amazon Echo

Via API only (not directly)

Zigbee models only - other models via API (not directly)

Thread models only - other models via API (not directly)

Works with Google Home

Via API only (not directly)

Via API only (not directly)

Thread models only - other models via API (not directly)

  1. Matter Bindings are built into the switch, but are not supported on any hubs yet.

  2. Z-Wave Long Range is built into the switch, but may not be built into your hub. 1.5 miles are what's reported by Silicon Labs and may not be what's possible on your switch due to obstacles.

Fan Switches

The below table will show the differences between the various Fan Switches.

Detail

Red Series

(VZW35-SN)

Blue Series

(VZM35-SN)

White Series

(VTM35-SN)

Wireless Protocol

Not in Market

Zigbee

Thread

Matter Firmware on Product

Not in Market

No

Yes

Wireless Band

Why is this important?

Not in Market

2.4 GHz

2.4 GHz

3-Way Compatibility

Not in Market

Aux

Aux

Supports Non-Neutral Installation

Not in Market

Yes

Yes

Animated Notifications

Not in Market

Yes

No (solid color notifications only)

Multi-Tap Scene Control

Not in Market

Yes

Yes

Direct Bindings or Associations

Not in Market

Zigbee Bindings

Matter Bindings¹

Parameter changes supported at the hub

Not in Market

Yes

No

Long Range (up to 1.5 miles²)

Not in Market

No

No

Works with SmartThings

Not in Market

Yes

Yes

Works with Hubitat

Not in Market

Yes

C8 only

Works with Home Assistant

Not in Market

Yes

Yes

Works with Apple Home

Not in Market

No

Yes

Works with Amazon Echo

Not in Market

Zigbee models only - other models via API (not directly)

Thread models only - other models via API (not directly)

Works with Google Home

Not in Market

Via API only (not directly)

Thread models only - other models via API (not directly)

  1. Matter Bindings are built into the switch, but are not supported on any hubs yet.

  2. Z-Wave Long Range is built into the switch, but may not be built into your hub. 1.5 miles are what's reported by Silicon Labs and may not be what's possible on your switch due to obstacles.

Fan/Light Canopy Module

The below table will show the differences between the various Fan/Light Canopy Modules.

Detail

Red Series

(VZW36)

Blue Series

(VZM36)

White Series

(VTM36)

Wireless Protocol

Not in Market

Zigbee

Thread

Matter Firmware on Product

Not in Market

No

Yes

Wireless Band

Why is this important?

Not in Market

2.4 GHz

2.4 GHz

Parameter changes supported at the hub

Not in Market

Yes

No

Direct Bindings or Associations

Not in Market

Zigbee Bindings

Matter Bindings¹

Long Range (up to 1.5 miles²)

Not in Market

No

No

Works with SmartThings

Not in Market

Yes

Yes

Works with Hubitat

Not in Market

Yes

C8 only

Works with Home Assistant

Not in Market

Yes

Yes

Works with Apple Home

Not in Market

No

Yes

Works with Amazon Echo

Not in Market

Zigbee models only - other models via API (not directly)

Thread models only - other models via API (not directly)

Works with Google Home

Not in Market

Via API only (not directly)

Thread models only - other models via API (not directly)

  1. Matter Bindings are built into the switch, but are not supported on any hubs yet.

  2. Z-Wave Long Range is built into the switch, but may not be built into your hub. 1.5 miles are what's reported by Silicon Labs and may not be what's possible on your switch due to obstacles.


Which is Best for You?

We get this question a lot -- which series is best for you? It's a hard answer to give and please take everything written below as an opinion. The goal here is to explain the differences and for you to make an educated decision before you purchase.

Bells & Whistles vs Future-proof

The first and only question I like to ask people when they're making a decision is what's important to them. Are you looking for something with all the bell's and whistles? Or are you looking for something that's future-proof?

Right now (2024), there are two protocols that have been in market for a very long time: Z-Wave and Zigbee. They have been standardized and there is a lot of history between the two. This history allows our engineers to be creative with our firmware and add in a lot of really unique features such as: animated notifications, multi-tap scene control, and the ability to customize your devices via what's called, parameters. For example, our 2-1 Red and Blue Series switches have 60+ parameters inside of them that can be changed via your hub (ie: min/max dim levels, ramp/dim rates, etc). In addition, the major hubs out there all support Z-Wave and Zigbee and thus allow seamless integration into their UI for changing these parameters.

Thread and Matter are the new kids on the block (well, Thread has been around for a while inside of Google's ecosystem) and are gaining momentum. The goal of Matter is to create one language across all the various platforms. This is exciting in that your Thread/Matter device can talk to your Google Home, Amazon Echo, Apple Home, etc. A lot of companies are investing heavily in this technology.

The drawback is that it's still new and experimental, so a lot of the features that Z-Wave and Zigbee have are not yet available with Thread/Matter. On top of that, the hubs are still very far behind in implementing these features (if they implement them at all).

So the question becomes, do you want all of these unique features that Z-Wave and Zigbee offer? Or are you ok with sacrificing a few of those features in lieu of having what's hopefully going to become the future of home automation?

Lastly, one thing to consider is that while Thread/Matter may become the future, any Z-Wave and Zigbee device you use now won't stop working. The hubs you have will continue to work even if we, or any other company goes out of business. It's our stance that Z-Wave and Zigbee aren't going anywhere any time soon and it's why we are still developing products with that technology.

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