Which windows sensor are better supported (Aqara or MAX!)?

Hi all and thank you for the time you will spend reading this post.

I just finished my first complex (at least for my ability) Openhab project using some RM-MINI ir senders, Tuya Thermostats and “Tasmotized” Sonoffs but now i’m in stuck with the choice of the windows sensors.
At the beginning i decided to buy some AQARA sensors (model MCCGQ11LM), basically because they are cheap and seems to be well supported by Openhab binding, but i didn’t realized that the AQARA GATEWAY (v.3) is not supported yet by Openhab, as the producer no longer release the developer key which is necessary to make it working with OH.

Do you think i can use them with the “original” XIAOMI GATEWAY? As far as i kwon the sensors are based on a custom version of Zigbee and i don’t understand if they will work or not with this gateway.
If so, someone can point me on the right model of the XIAOMI GATEWAY to buy?

Otherwise if they are not supported by the xiaomi gateway i tought to buy some MAX! Windows Sensors, but i read many complains on the MAX!Cube here on the forum. In this case do you think that is better to use a Usb dongle with homematic ?

Ps. i’m not able to mod any hardware by myself (the sonoff were already “tasmotized”), so i prefer hardware that is supported out of the box.


MAX! devices including window sensors work fine and reliably at if you run the binding in permanent connection mode with openHAB 2.4 or newer.
Just be aware that MAX! is thermostats and window sensors only, you need a cube, and it’s not meshed RF. But it’s working. Happily using it with my windows and doors and a couple of other places.

Thank you Markus for your reply and help.

So, if i understand well your reply, the max! windows sensor are working well with openhab but the gateway (the “cube”) will only bind other max! sensors and thermostats. So it will not work with others products by homematic.
Is it right (i don’t undestand well what you mean when writing “is not meshed RF”) ?

Another question: how is the coverage of this sensors? Will they cover a 2 floor house? I think i will need, more or less, 15 windows sensors.

Are the MAX! products in EOF (end of life) stage? My reseller told me that they will not be longer available here in Italy.

Thanks again

Yes it is. Maxcube works with MAX! only, for Homematic devices you need a CCU or CUL+Homegear.

It’ll probably do if you place the cube on the middle floor but noone can tell, it depends on the building.
(my house has 3 levels with the cube on the upper most, at times there’s difficulties to reach all sensors in the basement).
When I said it is “not meshed RF” I meant MAX! devices cannot forward messages to others to extend range. Range is better than in Zigbee (Xiaomi stuff) but with Zigbee you can build a mesh so range is not a problem. Be aware though that battery devices cannot act as routers so you might need additional mains powered ZigBee devices. But at least you can extend range that way.

EOL? Possibly, they prefer selling the (almost) same stuff as Homematic at a higher price. But you don’t need SW support. If you can get the devices, get them.
With OH you can mix & match technologies so it does not do much harm if you go for the cheapest (working) ones today. Whenever any of them breaks tomorrow you can exchange it with some other technology on the fly.


The maximum number of devices supported by a Max!Cube is: 50


If you also use zwave (868,42 MHz) it could happen, that there are some interferences with RF of Max!Cube (868,3 MHz). But it depends on the amount of zwave devices.
Before I installed zwave, there were zero problems with the Max! system.

It also depends on the locations of the Cube and the zwave-controller and/or zwave repeater. I figured it out after some testing. And now I nearly have no problems anymore.

Thanks for all your suggestions @mstormi and @Celaeno1 and sorry for my late reply.
Well to be honest the possibility to increase the coverage using a Zigbee “repeater” is pretty amazing and let me favor for the Xiaomi devices (if i will be able to make it working with OH, of course :stuck_out_tongue: ).

One last question on MAX! devices: Do you have an idea on how long the batteries will survive in a “home” installation (more or less 2-5 window opening a day) ???
Thanks again


Manufacturers data sheet: approx. 5 years

My contacts: Battery life cycle: 5 month - 2 years

Mine last since ~2 years, and they’re standard AAA.

Have you looked at getting a zigbee stick cc2531 and using zigbee2mqtt? This allows you to skip the gateway.

I’m using it and it’s great with the Xiaomi Aqara contacts

@Celaeno1 and @mstormi, 2 years is more than i thought!!!

@tebore i’m not able to mod the stick :wink: in order to flash the custom firmware :frowning:
Can i ask you how long does the batteries survive in the Aqara contacts? Do you think that they will work on the original Xiaomi Mijia Gateway Hub ?

Thanks all of you

as for the cc2531 stick, I bought it off ebay, there was someone selling already modded version, so no flashing tool was required. Now it has been working with other zigbee devices at my home quite nicely. Just I dont have Aqara sensors to test…

Modding the stick is easy. I’d definitely go the Zigbee2mqtt route with the CC2531.

As for the battery life. I have sensors going on 3 months and it’s still showing 100%. They must be on deep sleep a lot if the status doesn’t change.

@tebore and @James_Huang thanks a lot. I’ve looked on ebay as suggested and there are some CC2531 already modded that seems pretty cheap :stuck_out_tongue:

Last question is on zigbee coverage: if i need to increase it creating a mesh network what kind of products can i use? Xiaomi/Aqara smart plug?
Is it true, as i read somewhere, that another CC2531 stick (flashed as a router) can do the job if i simply plug it in a usb charger (so i don’t need another raspberry) ??

You should look at the Zigbee2MQTT project documentation

It has a lot of details on how to set it up and how to build and flash a router.