I won a Honeywell MyChime wireless doorbell a few months ago, but I didn’t have time to write about it until now. I’m writing the review here on my geek dad blog instead of my more general dad blog because MyChime is a little geeky. Instead of a regular door bell sound, it plays one of several chimes. You can purchase additional pre-recorded sound cards (holiday, sports, Christmas, and Halloween themes), or even record your own tunes with their software and blank soundcard. I always wanted a programmable doorbell like this. Now I have one. Unfortunately, I’m not completely happy with it.
What I like about the Honeywell MyChime
- The unit comes with twelve tunes (seven in the chime unit and five in the included holiday soundcard). They also sent me a Christmas sound card with an additional five tunes.
- You can record your own sounds. Note: the unit I won did not include the software or USB adapter card to record my own tunes.
- It’s wireless so it’s relatively easy to install.
- According to the product literature, the unit has a range of up 150 feet. Wow, if I want to drive myself crazy, I could place the chime in my home and the button in the neighbor’s house. Note: silly things like walls can reduce the range of MyChime.
- There are four volume levels (up to 75 decibels at three feet).
- The push button is rain proof.
What I didn’t like about the Honeywell MyChime
- You need their software to convert .MIDI, .WAV, and .MP3 sound files to playable chimes tunes.
- The unit doesn’t have a USB port, so you need their proprietary soundcard to play converted sound files.
- Most homes are already wired for a doorbell. If I install MyChime in my house, then I’ll have two sets of doorbells and buttons (unless I remove the old set and patch up the holes). It would’ve been nice if there was an option to wire MyChime directly into the existing doorbell circuitry.
- You need two AAA batteries for the push button and three C batteries for the chime unit.
- The doorbell won’t work if the batteries in the chime or push button are dead. As far as I can tell, there isn’t a low battery warning indicator so you won’t know unless someone tells you your doorbell doesn’t work.
In summary, I like the Honeywell MyChime, but I would not recommend the version I received. If you are going to buy a custom doorbell, I would suggest the Honeywell MyChime RCWL2200A1004. It is priced at $43 and includes software and a blank soundcard. Or better yet, spend a little extra and get a chime that plays mp3 directly from a memory card.