May 31, 2007 by Steven Castle
How many times has this happened: You want to watch your favorite show or a great movie in the bedroom, but Honey Bunny either wants to sleep or watch something you have no interest in. A North Carolina couple with irreconcilable viewing differences got around this marital problem with an innovative his-and-hers audio/video system.
Here’s how it works: He can watch The Sopranos on his 32-inch Sony flat-panel LCD HDTV while she watches an intriguing drama on her identical 32-inch set. One of them can hear the audio through the in-wall Sonance surround-sound speakers and Klipsch center channel while the other dons a set of wireless Sennheiser headphones. (If they want, they can each use their own Sennheiser headphones.) Each viewer also has a high-definition satellite receiver and a wireless AMX Modero touchpanel to operate the system.
A button on each touchpanel selects whether audio from the selected video source is sent to the surround processor or the corresponding wireless headphones. One interesting feature of the system is that when one of the touchpanels has “room speakers” selected, it disables the selection on the other wireless touchpanel.
Fortunately, only one Yamaha surround processor and preamp was required, along with a single Yamaha 5-disc DVD/CD changer. “The Yamaha receiver powers the Sonance in-wall speakers, and zones two and three on the receiver, and sends audio to the respective wireless headphones,” explains custom electronics installer Charley Dearmin of MHS Technologies of Newland, NC.
In the rare event that the couple wants to watch the same thing, the TV defaults to the cabinet where the center channel is housed. Additionally, a 7-inch in-wall AMX touchpanel allows for control of housewide and room lighting, housewide music selection, security, and HVAC control. Wall-mounted his and hers LiteTouch bedside stations allow for lighting control without getting out of bed. Recessed cans with pinhole trims are mounted above the bed and provide his and hers reading lights.
There’s even more: Enter the walk-in closet, and you’ll find a 23-inch Sony LCD. But there was no need to double the fun in there.
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Steven Castle is Electronic House's managing editor. he has been writing about consumer electronics, homes and energy efficiency topics for two decades. He is also the co-founder of GreenTech Advocates
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- Yamaha RX-V2600 A/V surround processor/amp
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