A space-saving equipment rack and recycled electronics gear grace this Manhattan condo.
The home’s electronics originally were housed in a giant cabinet beneath the big screen. It has since been replaced with a more elegant, space-saving piece. The gear now resides in an office closet.
October 07, 2009 by Julie Jacobson
Even the wealthiest homeowners want to save. In this case, a resident of New York’s Trump Towers was ready to overhaul his three-year-old automation and audio/video system. He hired local integration firm IVCi Home for the task.
The condo, though elegant, is a typical cramped New York City space, measuring 1,100 square feet. The living room was devoured by two half-sized racks, hidden in a giant bureau beneath the flat-screen TV.
IVCi replaced them with a single rack hidden in an office closet. “By doing this, we combined and contained all of the technology, saved precious real estate in the living room and re-evaluated what was really needed to make the system work,” says system designer Richard Hollander.
Hollander explains, “We do an audit before we go into projects that have an existing system. We advise the homeowner what’s important to keep, and what is older technology that should be replaced.”
Rather than ripping out the client’s existing gear, here’s how IVCi approached the project:
—The homeowner had a couple of older Kaleidescape movie servers. IVCi took advantage of a special trade-in offer from the manufacturer in order to upgrade to 1080p.
—The original surround-sound receiver had to go, but IVCi kept the AM/FM tuners from Crestron.
—Although the homeowner’s existing Crestron control system was a bit dated, IVCi was able to give it a “fresh coat of paint” by simply swapping out faceplates on the in-wall touchscreens and creating a new graphical user interface “for a more current look and feel,” says Hollander.
—The original Crestron wireless touchpanels lacked Internet widgets—and the homeowner loves to pause his movies to check his stocks in one fell swoop. Rather than chucking the older ones, though, IVCi “redeployed” them to less-critical locations. For example, an older model was positioned by the entryway, granting the residents access to their whole-house control system. “Now they have an AWAY button by the front door.”
—IVCi could have replaced the customer’s existing Vienna Acoustic speakers in the living room with more modern-looking, TV-matching loudspeakers. But the existing speakers worked beautifully, so IVCi simply added two more to give the customer a 7.1 surround sound system.
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Julie Jacobson is co-founder of EH Publishing and currently spends most of her time writing for CE Pro, mostly in the areas of home automation, networked A/V and the business of home systems integration. She majored in Economics at the University of Michigan, earned an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin, and has never taken a journalism class in her life. Julie is a washed-up Ultimate Frisbee player with the scars to prove it. Follow her on Twitter @juliejacobson.
Systems Design & Installation
Rack: Mid Atlantic AXS Pull Out System
AV Receiver: Denon AVR 5308 CI
Digital Movie/Music Server: Kaleidescape 1x 3U Server, 2x 1080p HD Players
Control Processor: Crestron CP2E
FM Tuner: Crestron C2N-TFM
Power Conditioner: Panamax 7500 PRO
HD DVR Cable Boxes: Scientific Atlanta 2x Explorer 8300HDC
Video Matrix Switcher: Extron MAV 8X4
Component Matrix Switcher: KeyDigital KD-MSW 8X4
Shade Control: Crestron Relays n/a
Touchscreen Video over CAT5E: Crestron QM-TX
Additional Com Ports: Crestron 3x ST-COM
Audio Matrix Switcher: Crestron CNX-BIPAD8
Control Device: Crestron STX-1700CXP
Control Device: Crestron 1x TPS 2000L (existing)
Control Device: Crestron 2x TPMC-8X
Display: Panasonic TH-65PF11UK
Speakers: Vienna Acoustic Webern (for front L/C/R), Berg (for rears and surrounds)
Wall-mount iPod Interface: Sonance iPort
Control Device: Crestron 1x TPMC 8X, 1x TPS 2000L (existing)
Display: Panasonic TH-37PH10UK
Speakers: Vienna Acoustic Berg
Wall-mount iPod Interface: Sonance iPort
Gaming Platform: Sony PlayStation 3
Control Device: Crestron 2x TPMC 8X, 1x TPS 2000L (existing)
Display: Fujitsu P55XTA51US 55 inch HDTV Plasmavision
Speakers: Vienna Acoustic Webern (for front L/C/R)
Control Device: Crestron 12G-QM-L Isys G-Series
Lighting Control: Lutron Radio Ra
Shading Control: Somfy
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