Cool Homes
Audio and Video Inside and Out
Simple operation is what completes a complex system.
June 15, 2011 by Grant Clauser

Retrofitting a full automation system into an existing home that wasn’t originally wired for one is always a big challenge, for both the integrator and the home owner.

In this case, the homeowners liked the traditional, colonial look of their home, and didn’t want technology to be an intrusive element, but they still wanted the benefits of the best technology at a reasonable budget.

The home, located in Lake Wales, Fl, got the complete audio/video and control treatment from Home Sound Solutions for less than $50,000. The gorgeous three-bedroom home includes an office and media room, as well as a detached guest house. The owners were looking for a whole house audio system, plus an impressive home theater system for enjoying movies and TV. It was important that the system be reliable and very easy to operate. Also, being Florida, the owners wanted to incorporate their outdoor space, which included an extensive deck and pool.

For the multiroom audio option, Home Sound Solutions went with a Crestron system and Crestron touchpanels located throughout the house. A Crestron wireless TPS-6X was included that allows a user to walk anywhere and still control all the audio sources and zones. They can even use it outside, because it has a 300-foot range.

Sonance architectural speakers installed in ceilings and walls provide most of the whole-house audio because Home Sound Solutions felt they offered the best combination of sound quality and aesthetics.

The professionals wired the whole house for televisions, but for now, the owners opted to have only two installed. The main media room includes an ample 65-inch Panasonic plasma TV matched with a surround sound set of Dali speakers installed in custom bookshelf cabinetry. Additional custom cabinetry holds a Middle Atlantic equipment rack for all the A/V gear. In this case, the homeowners opted to show, rather than hide, the electronics, so all the components are proudly displayed. The Middle Atlantic rack includes air duct ventilation to keep all the hard-working components from getting too hot.

In the home office, a smaller TV was wall mounted with a set of Artison speakers alongside it.

In addition to the audio and video integration, the installer also wired the home’s pool and spa area for control of the security system, deck shades, garage door and lighting.

The whole project, which started with prewiring the 6,500 square-foot home, and ended with the final control programing, took from February to November to complete.

What impresses the owners most, aside from the excellent audio and video quality of the products, is the simplicity, and they love to give house guests demonstrations.

Home Sound Solutions
Phone: 863.248.5770
Fax: 863.248.3743

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Grant Clauser - Technology and Web Editor, Electronic House
Grant Clauser has been covering home electronics for more than 10 years with editorial roles in several consumer and trade magazines. He's done ISF-level damage to hundreds of reviewed products and has had training from THX, the Home Acoustics Alliance, Control4 and Sencore. His latest book is Necessary Myths. Follow him on Twitter @geclauser.

Partial Equipment List

Equipment Used:
Sonance Architectural Series In-Ceiling Speakers
Crestron Keypads
Crestron TPS-6X Wireless Touchpanel
Crestron TPS-4L
Middle Atlantic Rack
Crestron CNX-PAD8A
Crestron CNAMPX-16X60 Multi-Channel Amplifier
Crestron CEN-IDOC
Crestron CP2E
Crestron CEN-TRACK
Crestron CEN-UPS1250
Crestron MLX-2 Remotes
DirecTV HR21-PRO
Denon BDP-2010CI Blu-Ray Disc Player
Parasound D3 Disc Player
Vudu XL2 Box
Ruckus Wireless Networking
Panasonic 65-inch Plasma
Panasonic 54-inch Plasma
Chief Fusion Mounts
Sonance Mariner 82
Artison Sketch Speakers
Dali Speakers

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