Doorbell chime?

My house didn’t have a doorbell system when I bought it. Weird, I know - but it is what it is.

So I ran some doorbell wire, got a doorbell transformer, and mounted some Ubiquiti video doorbells.

What I’m looking for now is a chime. I have three doors, so a regular “old school” chime just won’t do. At best, they can play only 2 different sounds, indicating 2 doors. I need three.

In my googling, I ran across some people who claim to have used wireless doorbell chimes, and triggered them using the Sonoff RF bridge. I’m learning as I go, and this is a new one for me - so I figured I’d come ask. The specific doorbell that was linked in the article I read is discontinued and no longer available, so I’m uncertain if any wireless doorbell chime would work? I’m sure someone here has done something similar to this.

I do not have Google Nest or Amazon Alexa - but I also do not want them at this time. Further, a buddy is using Alexa for his doorbell chime with the same doorbells I have, and there is a noticeable delay while the notifications make the round trip to the cloud. Additionally, I would like my doorbell chime to work if I were to lose internet connectivity. :slight_smile:

If anyone cares to share how they’ve accomplished this, I haven’t purchased anything yet (except the doorbells) - so I’m open to other solutions as well. My requirements are that the chime be able to play a minimum of 3 different notification sounds, that it be loud enough to be heard throughout at least the first floor of a 4000sf house, and that I’m able to trigger the chimes from within HA. I’ve also not used ESP, or flashed anything, and I’m not at all handy with a soldering iron, so if we could avoid those things unless absolutely necessary, that would be fantastic. Lastly, I am somewhat concerned with appearances of the chime, and do not have a 3d printer, so any of the “use an RPI with a speaker attached”-type solutions likely would have my wife strangling me when I hung that on the wall.

Thanks in advance!!!

I’m using the internal soundcard of my HA machine with VLC player and VLC Telnet for all announcements of this kind. Works flawlessly and no delay’s.

All is documented within HA manuals.

For the sound just a set of PC speakers with extended cables. Child can do that…

Most excellent. Perhaps you can get that same child to come to my house and pull the wiring from my finished basement up to the entry foyer for me?


well, actually you can set a raspberry up anywhere and install vlc on it, vlc telnet will be able to remote control it over WiFi :wink:

Usable for not only doorbell chime, but for almost any kind of media. Even TTS works.

That would look like some obviously hacked-together solution, rather than an unobtrusive doorbell chime mounted to the wall, would it not?

That’s, what comes in to my mind, keeping it inside your initial scope: No solder iron needed. And it can do more, than chime only. Think about that a little.

But, it is only advice, you don’t need to follow at all :wink:

Here we are happy with this, it never fails on us…

Interesting that you’ve chosen to honor my requirement of “no soldering iron”, while simultaneously utterly disregarding my requirement that “a hacked raspberry pi with an attached speaker would have my wife strangling me”. Perhaps you’d like to just come over and strangle me yourself? :slight_smile:

Unless, of course, you’ve found some way of making this “pretty”? In which case a photo would help make your case. I just think of the way my server rack looks, and I’d be a dead man if any of that was in public view. Lol

Well i had the luck, that where i need the speakers to be, there is furniture also. So all the technical stuff is hidden on the back of the furniture and the PC speaker is laying on top of the furniture, which is higher, than a average man.

Nobody see anything of it except the one day, when a Swiffer dust cleaner has to go around there :wink:

But as said, advices are ment for a view, not to follow…

If it does not work for you, just don’t do it.

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Do you have any Smart tv’s that are recognized as a Castable Media player? if so you could run a scrip to play a chime depending on which door bell is selected and run them throught the TV’s.

No TVs on the main floor…

The other problem with casting is there’s too much delay - especially if the device you want to cast to isn’t powered on.

Fair enough, i have my Ring door bell set to cast to all my Google nest products this way my house is smaller at around 2000sq feet but i don’t experience much of a delay. as casting to google can be done locally through HA. i think your easiest and cheapest solution is going to be to buy some google home mini’s. if you want it to be 100% local ESPhome would probably be the next best way to do it.

I just confirmed with my configuration that google cast is local, note that it does not have the cloud icon.

Sure, when using the Google smart home speaker stuff those would always be powered on, so casting would be immediate.

I have whole-home audio set up, 6 pairs of speakers throughout the house, and each channel does have a chromecast on it (I use it to cast audio from Plex). However, in testing with TTS, the results were problematic at best - if the amplifier channel isn’t powered on, that needs to be done first, then you have to wait for it to actually begin playing audio, then the chromecast device needs to be sent a “Wake up” signal, THEN you can finally send the TTS message. Those whole process introduces an incredible amount of latency.

You’re saying that the google home contraptions - you can cast directly to those, locally, with no cloud API calls or anything? A buddy has the same doorbells I do (Ubiquiti), and uses Alexa. There is a noticeable delay from when I press his doorbell to Alexa announcing “Someone is at the door”. That delay is something I’d like to avoid.

If the Google mini’s can be casted to locally, then I can just create outbound firewall rules to prevent them from getting back out to the cloud so I don’t have to worry about the privacy issues that I’m concerned about with having something like that (or Alexa) in my house. Of course, this would prevent the use of them as a voice assistant, but since all I’m looking for is doorbell notifications - they might just fit the bill if that’s the case…

When you cast to them, do you just do TTS for your doorbell notifications, or how do you handle it?

why not use a cheap google home? Of course you could cast the video if you had a screen do this.

My automation is very simple. I do use TTS but i uploaded a sound file to my local WWW folder in HA ( i did i the hardway before the update which allows you to do this throught the UI. So basicaly i have a script that stops casting on any device then i have it play my “Chime” which i got from a royalty free sound website ( ) then a TTS message depending on the doorso example " Someone’s at the front door". i’ll leave my YAML Code to show anything else i have included in that automation. I use a ring door bell, but i do NOT use any alexa enable devices because those do call a cloud API.

alias: Front door (V.2)
description: ‘’

  • type: occupied
    platform: device
    device_id: 7acd368c9d9e09ed439f50f48208b679
    entity_id: binary_sensor.front_door_ding
    domain: binary_sensor
  • condition: time
    after: ‘06:00:00’
    before: ‘20:00:00’
  • service: script.stop_casting
    data: {}
  • service: script.max_google_home_volume
    data: {}
  • service: script.test
    data: {}
  • delay:
    hours: 0
    minutes: 0
    seconds: 3
    milliseconds: 0
  • service: script.stop_casting
    data: {}
  • service: script.doorbell
    data: {}
  • service: script.stop_casting
    data: {}
    mode: single

the script.test was when i was testing the TTS with google home and never bother to change it once i got it to work the way i want it to. i have a 3 second intentional delay between the door bell chime and the TTS so google as a chance to play the whole audio file. i use scripts to handle some of the automation task so instead of the automation triggering multiple events i have it trigger scripts that handle multiple events. I’m not sure if this helps HA streamline the automation or not but i don’t seem to have any issue.


Going back to the raspberry pi idea- what about putting it all behind a canvas type wall picture? The kind that are deep with empty space behind them.
Or getting a standard chime and gutting it?

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Getting a standard chime box and gutting it is certainly a possibility. The issue then becomes powering the RPI if it’s high up on the wall. There would need to be some kind of power cord protruding from the chime box, wouldn’t there?

And I did a bit more looking into that, it appears that some of the USB speakerphones are the preferred way to do audio on there (like the Jabra 510). Those also require power, and are big enough that I’m not sure they’d fit in a chime box? Unless you have ideas for different speakers (and of course the power issue)…

Yeah, hardwired power is going to be a requirement with a lot of ideas and the feasibility of that will be your call (since you know your house layout).
Since you were able to run the doorbell wire could you run the power in the same path? Realizing that would place the chime right beside the door.
If that doesn’t work, like was mentioned earlier, could always hide it behind some furniture where an existing outlet is.

Just wanted to come back and update this thread. I’d like to say thank you to @Bcschwifty for the recommendation of the Google Nest Minis. I picked one up from WalMart (convenient, and super easy return policy if it didn’t work out) to check out. Not only is the notification INSTANT - but there’s also a button on the unit to physically turn the microphone off since I don’t want any NSA listening devices in my house.

It’s not quite as aesthetically pleasing as an actual doorbell chime box, but it is far better (and more cost effective) than several Raspberry Pis and random speakers and whatnot.

I did have to block access to Google’s DNS servers in order for the TTY to work, which is stupid. They thing gets a DHCP IP address, it should honor the DNS servers I gave it. Stupid Google. But whatever, I got it working. :slight_smile:

Thanks again!!


So many way’s leading to Rome :wink:

Nice, you got it sorted…

Im glad it all worked out. i agree though google is dumb like that. Now you can chain multiple google homes and hide them so the chime/TTS could be heard throughout your house. this is what i did.

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