Thanks to Best in Singapore for the collaboration, I am able to review the Starke digital lock recently. If you are thinking of getting a digital lock, there are many brands in the market but not all are the same.
I have been using a digital lock for my main door for a few years already. It is a basic model with keycode and card access.
I have been looking for a new one that fits my budget and has all the features I wanted ever since there is a problem with my card access on the digital lock. I have to admit, the brand Starke never crosses my path when I was searching for one.
I was looking at the top brands in the market but the price is definitely high for the features that I want (passcode access, RFID, Fingerprint, App).
For this review, I will be very honest here even though this is a collaboration.
If you hate reading this long post, here is my video review on YouTube.
BTW, here is a very simple overview of the different models in the market, their features and price-point curated by Starke.
For your info, all Starke digital locks have the same features to access it – Fingerprint, Passcode, Mobile App, RFID Card, Mechanical Key.
Purchasing Starke Digital Lock online
Purchasing the Starke Digital Lock is just like any other shopping site. Add the lock to the cart and perform the transaction.
However, you will need to prepare 3 pictures (Front, Side, Back) to upload during the ordering process for Starke to understand more about your lock. Here are my pictures.
Once done, you will wait for a call to fix the installation appointment. I got mine the next day. Once the date is confirmed, I got a WhatsApp message to confirm the installation date and time again.
In my case, I only got the installation appointment about 3 weeks later, which is fine with me but I feel that the wait is a little too long.
On the installation day, the technician arrived on time and started to examine my lock. He immediately told me that the lock that I chose might not be a good fit for the door because the hole cutting from my old digital lock might not fit the new one. True enough, after measuring, it is concluded that it cannot be fitted properly without additional modifications.
Or I can choose one that fits the hole. Of course I choose the one that can fit the current hole since there is little differences in them.
This is the beauty of getting a Starke Digital Lock. You can change the design on the spot. They brought different locks for your reference.
He immediately went to work. At this point, I can actually leave him alone to fix up the new digital lock but I stayed to film the whole process.
It took less than two hours to install it as he encountered some fitting issues along the way. Everything was resolved within 2 hours.
Once done, we immediately setup the lock for usage
Setting up the digital lock
Starke uses the TTLock Mobile App. You will need to download it and register a new account if you don’t have one yet.
Once done, you can setup passcode, prepare IC card (RFID card), register fingerprint, check records, or generate or send eKeys.
I am not going to go into details on them as I have already explained in my video.
The process is very simple and you usually need to do it one time during the setup.
For those who are interested, here are the technical specs of the lock.
- Bluetooth Type : Bluetooth Low Energy (4.2)
- RFID Type : ISO 14443 Types A & B (13.56 MHz)
- Operational Temp : -25°C to 55°C
- IP Rating : IP64 (withstands light dust and water)
- Door Type : Any
- Door Thickness : 40mm to 70mm
- Clearance from door edge : >190mm (with handle)
- Access Modes (Entry) : PIN code, Bluetooth, RFID tags & stickers, Physical key
- Access Modes (Exit) : Handle, Lock/Unlock button
- PIN Types : Permanent, Duration, One-Time, Recurring
- Power Type : 4 AA Alkaline batteries (Recommended batteries)
- Emergency Power : USB
- Battery Life : 3-5 years
- CE, FCC, IP64
Note: On the Starke website, it says 4 AA batteries but in fact, it is using 8 batteries
Before I talked about my experience using the Starke Digital Lock, you might want to know about the features of it.
The Starke Lock is designed in Germany and has an anti-rust coating. For this feature, I am unable to test out since it is newly installed. However, for the rest, let me provide my views and user experience.
After installation, my favorite way to unlock the door is via the fingerprint sensor. On the website, it is touted to have a very fast response time and incorporate the ANTI-HACKING PRINTSAVE™ SYSTEM.
In my opinion, you will need to get used to it. Unlike on-screen fingerprint lock on smartphones, the possibility of unlocking the lock by carelessly pressing on the fingerprint sensor might not work. I have tried it many times and now, I am already getting used to it. Unlocking it with fingerprint is usually succesfully but not 100%.
The IC card, in my opinion, is the easiest as it always works. However, you will need to carry it around.
Using the mobile app is ok but not the best experience. To have a better experience using the mobile app, you will need to be close to the Starke Digital Lock as it communicates via Bluetooth. It takes a few seconds to communicate and unlock the lock.
The Passcode is also one of my favorites but you will need to key in the passcode every single time.
Finally, you can use the mechanical key to open the door. This is usually done if your battery in your digital lock is flat.
The Starke Digital Lock is powered by 8 AA batteries and based on the website, it can last 3 years. There will be a warning indicator on the digital lock if it depletes to 25% battery life. There is also a battery indicator on the app. If you totally forgot about the low battery warning or forgot to bring the key out, there is one way to open the door when the battery runs out. You will need a Micro-USB cable and a powerbank to plug it into the port (shown below) as an emergency power supply.
So, there you have it. 5 ways to unlock the Starke Digital Lock.
One of the highlights of the Starke Digital Lock is the app. It has a lot of functions. For example, if you want to let someone access the lock at a fixed timing for one time only, you can generate an eKey and send it to the person. This person can then use the link provided to unlock it using the app.
And all the records can be found on the app and the method is lock is unlocked.
Overall, I am satisfied with the Starke digital lock. It has a minimalist design that is suitable for most doors. Here is the view inside the house.
And the locking mechanism seems sturdy. By lifting up the handle, it will activate another latch to lock the door.
Here are my “plus points” about the Starke Digital Lock.
- Many ways to access it.
- Fingerprint (which is my favorite)
- Smart Card (very efficient)
- Pin Code (old school and can get the job done)
- App (very nicely done)
- Key (Super old school and last resort if you tried all other ways)
- Good built quality
- It is using German Technology based on the website. On the actual product, it is very well built and sturdy.
- Long battery life.
- Efficient and powerful mobile app
- Good price point (with discount)
So far, there is nothing that I don’t like. If I were to compare it with my old digital lock, I do miss one thing. For my old lock, I can set it to always unlock so that anyone can open the door from the outside. This is useful if I am holding a party.
I think that is it for my review. If you have any questions on the Starke Digital Lock, feel free to comment here or on my YouTube video.
(Check out this Best in Singapore – Best 7 Digital Locks to Buy in Singapore if you need more opinion on digital locks)