Building an Intuitive Home TheaterThe client wanted to achieve control and automation of lighting, shades, audio, video, security, and HVAC systems while keeping the interfaces extremely easy to use. 4/02/2007 8:00 AM Eastern
Building an Intuitive Home Theater
Apr 2, 2007 12:00 PM
The following information is courtesy of the 2006 CEDIA Electronic Lifestyles Designers' Choice Awards. For more information on how to become a member of CEDIA, or information on its awards program please visit www.cedia.org or call (800) 669-5329.
2006 CEDIA Electronic Lifestyles Winner
Designers Choice Awards: Best Intergrated Home
Gold Technical Design, Level II ($177,000-299,000)
The client wanted to achieve control and automation of lighting, shades, audio, video, security, and HVAC systems while keeping the interfaces extremely easy to use. The bonus room was to be kept as a multi-purpose room, while still delivering a great surround sound experience. The owner also wanted to showcase current technology, eliminate wall clutter, and provide entertainment for their family and friends.
Crestron controls the lighting, HVAC, audio, video, shades, security, and cameras. A master control with table top touchpanel (TPS 4000) is located in the kitchen and in-wall touchpanels in the master, garage hall, nook, foyer, and bonus. Automated lighting scenes are programmed for morning and evening. One-touch control of the bonus room through a wireless touchpanel closes the blinds, dims the lights, turns the projector and source on, and raises the screen from a bench seat below.
The timeframe on the project was very short for a builder "Street of Dreams" show. The house not only had to be finished but in absolute working order. The bonus room was not to be a dedicated theater, but a multi-purpose room that could double as a movie watching area. The system not only had to be completely hidden to achieve the aesthetic requirements of the clients, but it also had to deliver a great cinema experience with an easy-to-use system for the older, non-technical clients.
Since ease-of-use was considered the primary goal, the touchpanel design was chosen to be very easy to read and intuitive. Operation of the system is one-button oriented so that many things happen simultaneously. Quality, integration capable components were very important to providing a reliable system. Engineering and designing the system beforehand as well as racking, testing, and programming in house ensured success, especially in a restrictive timeframe. Lastly, we have become experts at "hidden systems"—from the theater room, to remote locating equipment, to concealed speakers and televisions.
The five most used functions of the system include the lighting control, security, distributed audio, media room, and control system. With the lighting control, the home had a significant number of circuits which traditional switching would have produced a lot of unsightly multi-gang switches. By installing a control system the client can control many circuits at once or individually. It is also integrated with the security and has automated lighting scenes for dawn, dusk, and goodnight. The homeowners were very security-oriented and were moving into a considerably larger home than they were used to. This required monitoring of the security that included doors, windows, glassbreaks, and motion detection. CCTV cameras were installed at four locations that record to a DVR and are viewable over the Internet. The fire/life safety system is also part of the security. The distributed audio system is an important function of the system because it is used by the clients on a daily basis. They can listen to their favorite radio stations, listen to their favorite artists on the music server, or have access to cable television or DVD. The touchpanels allow for easy selection of source and control of the house audio system. The media room was the bonus room, used constantly for watching movies or sports. The projector and screen provide a large format for viewing and 6.1 surround sound envelops the clients. When not in use, the room is a completely normal family room. Lastly, the control system has utmost importance because it is really the key for using all of the systems. Easy, intuitive touchpanels and automated features keep the complexity of the system hidden while remaining completely user friendly to the clients.
|Time and Expertise Worksheet|
|Electronic Design and Engineering:||10|
|Proposal and System Documentation Preparation:||10|
|Shop Time for Racking and Testing:||40|
|Final Installation and Calibration:||82|
|Interior Design and/or Architecture by your Company:||4|
|Interior Design and/or Architecture by Others:||8|
|Project Management by Others:||8|
|Other time: builder's interior designs, drawings done on paper:||0|
|Total Hours to Complete:||410|