Eyes Are Everywhere in Automated Home


BRONZE WINNER: (tie) Best Home of the Year

Custom-programmed control system tells homeowners everything.

May. 03, 2010 — by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

They say a little information goes a long way. That couldn’t be truer in this 5,800-square-foot quad-level. Numerous Crestron home control touchscreens show the owners which electronic systems are in use, where they’re being used and how they’re being used.

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The only missing piece of data is who’s using them; although that could be easily surmised by peering at the floorplan on the screen. A red flag in the playroom, for example, could indicate that the kids are watching a movie.

“If the owners see that, they know to choose a program from a different DVR if they want to watch something else in a different room,” says Max Angst, systems engineer at Maxsystems in Van Nuys, Calif. Or, they could use the phone system to call the kids to the kitchen table to finish their homework.

This degree of “system feedback” isn’t for everyone, admits Angst. It can be a bit overwhelming to see the status of every security sensor on the first floor of your house, for example. But in this case, the owner was comfortable with the technology and felt that the more information he had about his house, and at his fingertips, the better he’d be able to manage and enjoy it.

By knowing that the shades are up in the family room, for instance, the owners can determine if the lights in that room should be switched off - and make the change from anywhere in the house. They can also figure out if a window has been left open before leaving for work by viewing the security page on any touchscreen. And there’s no way someone might accidentally interrupt an important football game by blasting tunes from the whole-house audio system. The system “locks” out music in any area where a TV is in use.

For the most part, system feedback helps the family react to certain conditions, but there are some alterations that occur automatically based on data gathered by the system. Like the motorized shades that raise and lower based on the room temperature. And the lights that switch on and off while the owners are away to make the empty house look occupied.

Many of these schedules were programmed into the Crestron system by Maxsystems. But the owners are free to set up and tweak the routines as they see fit. “They’ve adjusted the levels of the lights in some of the pre-programmed scenes and created a few scenes of their own,” says Angst.

Although the owners love interacting with the systems in their house, they intentionally kept touchscreens, keypads and wall switches to a minimum so that nothing detracted from their extensive art collection and the home’s modern decor. Only one tiny keypad or touchscreen adorns the wall of each room so that the family can pick audio and video for that area and operate its lights and motorized shades.

To control anything in the house, the owners rely on wireless touchscreens, which can be placed inside drawers or cabinets when they’re not being used. TVs are stowed inside cabinetry, and audio and video components are hidden inside a special equipment room in the basement.

As tricked out as this house is, Maxsystems is preparing for phase two of the project. In a few months they’ll be back to transform a detached garage into a dedicated theater. Will a similar tell-all control system be designed for the operation of the theater gear? “You betcha,” says Angst

When Art & Technology Collide
The owners of this remodeled home rely on a variety of electronic systems to showcase and protect their extensive collection of artwork.

Motorized window shades can be lowered at the touch of a button to protect paintings from sunlight.

Lights have been preprogrammed to come on at certain intensity levels to accent particular pieces of art.

Security sensors and surveillance cameras watch over the gallery.

Stealth in-ceiling speakers and LED lighting reduce visual distractions.

Whole-house music creates a relaxing atmosphere conducive to admiring art.

Systems Design and Installation
Van Nuys, Calif.

J. Staff Architect
Los Angeles, Calif.

Mitchell Construction
Thousand Oaks, Calif.

Home Size
5,800 square feet

PAC2 Lighting System
Crestron CAEN 2X1 Lighting Enclosure, Cover
CAEN 7X1 Lighting Enclosure, Cover
CAEN 7X2 Lighting Enclosure, Cover
CAEN-BLOCK Termination Block (2)
CLX-1DELV4 4 Zone 1 Circuit Low Voltage Fluorescent Dimmer (11)
CLT-1DELV4 Termination Block CLX-1DELV4 (11)
CLX 1DIM4 4 Load 1 Circuit Incandescent Dimmer Module
CLT-1DIM4 Termination Block CLX 1DIM4
CLX 2DIM8 2 Feed 8 Channel Dimmer Module (6)
CLT-2DIM8 Terminal Blocks CLX-2 DIM 8 Dimmer Module (6)
CLX 4HSW4 4 Zone 4 Circuit High Inrush Switch (2)
CLT-4HSW4 Termination Block CLX-4HSW4 (2)
CNX-PVID8X4 Video Distribution System
PRO 2 Central Controller
CNX-BIPAD8 16 Source/8 Room Audio Distribution Processor (3)
CNAMP 16X60 16 Channel Amplifier (2)
CEN-TRACK AM/FM, Sirius Tuner
ATC AMFMSR AM/FM, Sirius Tuner
CEN-IDOC Interface Apple iPod
I-PORT FS-1 Freestanding iPod Dock (3)
C2ENET-1 Ethernet Card (2)
CNX-B12W 12-Button Keypad (25)
C2N-HBLOCK Cresnet Distribution Block (3)
CNXHUB Hub Repeater
CNXRMC Room Controller (7)
ST COM Dual RS232/422/485 Com Module
CRES C2N SPWS300 Power Supply
CRES CNPWS 75 75-Watt Power Supply (2)
TMPC 8X I/O Wi-Fi Color Touchpanel (3)
TMPC 8X DS Docking Station TPMC 8X (3)
TPS 6X 5.7” Wired/Wireless Color Touchpanel (2)
TPS 4L 3.6” Wallmount Color Touchpanel (4)
MLX-2 2-way RF Handheld Remote Control (5)
CEN RFGW EX High-Powered Gateway (5)
CEN HPRFGW High-Powered Gateway TPS 6X (2)
CHV-RTS Remote Temperature Sensor (4)
CHV-TSTAT Heating /Cooling/Humidity Thermostat (4)
Lutron Homeworks Lighting Processor
Jandy Aqualink RS RS232 Adapter
Panasonic KXTDA 50 Hybrid Phone System
7636 52-Button Station Phone (18)
7690 Cordless Phone (3)
Caddex 16 Zone Security Alarm System
Sonance 623TR 6/5” 2-way Round Inceiling Speakers (31)
SRS1 Inceiling Speaker (2)
Mariner 52 5.25” 2-way Outdoor Speaker (8)
Extreme XTR Environmental Speaker (4)
624TR 6.5” 2-way Round Ceiling Speaker (5)
Sub 12- 250 12” 150 Watt Subwoofer (2)
Panasonic DMPBD30K Blu-ray DVD player
Denon AVR3808CI Multi-Zone 7.1 A/V Receiver
Denon DVD 1800 BDCI Blu-ray DVD player
Denon DVM1845 5 Disc DVD Changer
Terk FM50 Amplified FM Antenna
Terk Sirius Satellite-Radio Antenna
Furman Elite 20PF Power Conditioner
PAK SW84PB Power Injector
Panamax MIW-POWER In-wall Surge Protector (9)
Kaleidescape KSystem 120 Music / Movie Server System
Pioneer Elite PRO111FD 50” 1080p Plasma TV
Pioneer Elite PRO141FD 60” 1080p Plasma TV
Pioneer KRP-500M 50” Plasma TV
Samsung LN19A330 19” LCD TV w/ HDMI
Samsung LN32A650 32” LCD TV 1080p, HDMI (5)
Omnimount 75100CL TV Mount
Omnimount CLMB Single-arm TV Mount (5)
Peerless ST660S Tiltmount TV Bracket
DLink D1624 4-Port Wireless Router
DLink DG21016D 16 Port gigabit Switch
PAK WASP-W3-01 Wireless Access Point (5)
Nuvico EV4000N 4-Channel CCTV DVR
Nuvico CBSDN1 IR Cameras (4)
Door King 1812 Digital Control Box
Rutherford 1711 Door-Strike
Honeywell 4BH603 10-Outlet Central Vacuum System
CAL 951044RCA Component Video Balun (2)
Gefen EXTCOMPOSIT E14 Composite Video Extender
Middle Atlantic Slim 5, 40 space, 25” deep equipment rack (2), shelves, parts

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