• Zigbee became cool this year with major brands like Google, Apple etc coming together with Zigbee Alliance to create a unified standard.
  • This means (for me at least) that zigbee as the primary standard for smart home communications. See more on comparison of Zigbee to Zwave and other standards. 
  • Home Assistant never had a shortage of zigbee controllers but a new one from Sonoff has really hit the mark
  • This article reviews why Sonoff ZBBridge is our top pick for best zigbee controller

Finding the best bridge is key for using any protocols in Home Assistant. It has to be reliable, fast, easy to intergrate and cheap. Our top pick hits it all.

Our Pick

Best Zigbee Bridge for Home Assistant

Sonoff ZBBridge

Best Zigbee Bridge for Home Assistant

Great new bridge to connect all your zigbee devices. Now with tasmota firmware to live cloud-free life for ever. Stability and quality at the very reasonable price.

$22.99 on Amazon

Options for Zigbee controller for Home Assistant.

There is no shortage of Zigbee Hardware for Home Assistant. Those include: 

While good overall, they come with the single biggest disadvantage – price.

We also have a number of ways how to integrate those Zigbee gateway hubs with Home Assistant: 

So when Sonoff presented their hub we were not sure it will work. Surprisingly it does. Here is our full review.

Best Zigbee Controller for Home Assistant: Sonoff Zigbee Bridge

Amazon Reviews:
    • Controls Zigbee and Wifi devices
    • Compact
    • supports up to 32 devices
    • Tasmota can be installed

WHAT WE LIKED

  • Stable and powerful
  • Good range
  • Easy to integrate

WHAT WE DIDN’T LIKE

  • Require separate power supply
  • Some limitation on the amount of nodes (resolved in the latest update)

Tips  on using Zigbee with Home Assistant: 

  • Choose the least busy channel. The devices usually use channel 15, but you can play with it. Or choose a different WiFi channel
  • If you decided to use some sort of stick try to use the extension cable to avoid interference
  • Have your coordinator in a central location so it can have a good connection with the other devices 
  • Look into the Zigbee map of devices and make sure that your end devices use the nearest Zigbee router
  • Watch the LQI and RSSI through the network.
  • Look at Link Quality Indicator score. If it low, you might be losing packets. Aim for 135 or above.
  • For ZHA install zha-network-card to monitor these values

For ZHA you can also install zha-map to visualize your network

Which Zigbee devices are best to work with Home Assistant

  • GE Link Bulbs (x2) $25.99 are ok, but do not have good reception. If you bridge is not too far from them, you can use in many modes for any room.
  • The IKEA plugs $11.73 also weak reception, but not overall bad solution for plugs.

Last update on 2021-10-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API