Zigbee Smoke detector with CC2531 USB dongle

I am using HomeAssistant (on RaspberryPi) with Sonoff Zigbee CC2531 USB dongle. Currently I have foru Aquara sensors installed and everything works just fine.

Now I am thinking to install smoke detector. On Aliexpress I have found “Tuya Smart Zigbee Smoke Detector”, but on a product page it is stated that “This product needs to be used with ZigBee3.0 gateway.”

If I understand, Zigbeee gateway is a device that connects Zigbee devices to WiFi? Do I really need it with my current setup? I. e. can I just buy this “Tuya Smart Zigbee Smoke Detector” and will it work with my HomeAssistant setup?

Any thoughts and advice is highly appreciated. Thanks!

It will probably work with either ZHA or Zigbee2MQTT (you did not specify which you use) as most Zigbee 3.0 devices have some backwards compatibility mode, read the ZHA docs → https://www.home-assistant.io/integrations/zha#knowing-which-devices-are-supported

However, I still recommend that you buy and migrate to CC2652 (preferable CC2652P) USB dongle. Migrating is extremely easy today if you just make sure upgrade the firmware on it before getting started and they do not cost a lot either, see example → https://community.home-assistant.io/t/iteads-sonoff-zigbee-3-0-usb-dongle-plus-model-zbdongle-p-based-on-texas-instruments-cc2652p-20dbm-radio-mcu-now-sold-for-19-99/340705

By the way, CC2530/CC2531 are now even listed as not recommened due to using older obsolete hardware and deprecated old end-of-life firmware, see → https://www.home-assistant.io/integrations/zha#compatible-hardware and https://www.zigbee2mqtt.io/guide/adapters/

Great, I was actually thinking to get new Zigbee USB dongle with external antenna, because my current has very good range.

I am looking at this one: https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005004443820263.html

Is there any guide how to update firmware on it? I guess this cable and small PCB is some kind of device programmer?

And if I understand, I need Zigbee coordinator (not router), right?

Yes you need a Zigbee Coordinator to use ZHA or Zigbee2MQTT but since you can re-flash most if not all CC1352/CC2652/CC2538 based adapter into either a Zigbee Coordinator or Zigbee Router the hardware should be no different. So them coming pre-flashed is really only for convenience, (just make sure it has a BTL/Bootloader button on the board for re-flashing).

I would not recommend that specific one as it is from unknown source. I personally recommend ITead’s “Sonoff Zigbee 3.0 USB Dongle Plus” (model “ZBDongle-P”) but if you do not want to get that then suggest at least get one of the others that is specifically recommended by the Zigbee2MQTT project here → https://www.zigbee2mqtt.io/guide/adapters/#recommended

If anCC1352/CC2652/CC2538 based adapter comes pre-flashed with an older working firmware then you can upgrade it via USB, so no need for a special cJTAG flashing adapter if the bootloader is not corrupt. For flashing firmware upgrade to any CC1352/CC2652/CC2538 based adapter follow links for tools on the same Zigbee2MQTT website page here → https://www.zigbee2mqtt.io/guide/adapters/#notes

My tip is to just order the recommended Sonoff branded “ZBDongle-P” from Amazon for local shipping.