During the summer, with electrical storms and voltage fluctuations, it is important to test your security system after every such event. Lightning is a very freaky thing. What can happen is lightning can fuse together the reed switches in your door and window sensors. When this happens, the alarm system thinks everything is fine, as there is continuity in the loop for that zone. Open a door or a window on the affected zone however, and nothing happens. That is why it’s important to put your system into test mode after every lighting storm and open and close every door or window on the system. If you open a door or window and nothing happens, give us a call right away so we can replace the sensor.
Having recently passed that magic 65-year mark I was not all that surprised to see a chart posted on Steven Rochlin’s site, Enjoy The Music, that showed that between 2014 and 2016 the percentage of audio gear purchased by audiophiles aged 55 and over dropped from 36% of the market to only 18%. In two years. That is an 18% drop in overall “market share.” But what is even more shocking, even to me, is that spending by 55+ audiophiles dropped by 50%!
In short, baby boomers are no longer the driving force in audio sales. I have certainly noticed this drop-off in my own spending for audio. My reasons are simple – what I’ve got is already so good that there is far less motivation for onwards and upwards sound-quality-wise. I suspect that many of my contemporaries are in a similar situation.
What age-group, if any, is taking up the reins as the principal consumers of all things audio? Everyone but boomers. 18 to 24 year-old spending increased from 10% to 17%, which is a 70% increase. 25 to 34 year olds saw an uptick from 19% to 30%. 35 to 44 year olds went from 18% to 22 % and 45 to 54-year old’s spending dropped from 16% to 13%.
If you combine the spending power of 25 to 44-year-old audio buyers, you will find that these two demographics purchase over 50% of all home audio gear. The next big shift is that increase in purchasing among 18 to 24 year olds. The big question for audio dealers and manufacturers is “What kind of gear are these groups buying and how does it differ from what boomers used to buy?”
It’s pretty obvious that not too many 18 to 24 year olds are buying “end-game” $200,000 loudspeakers or $50,000 amplifiers. It’s also pretty clear that this group is spearheading the drive into personal and portable audio – they may not be able to afford that hot new car or their own one-bedroom apartment sans roommates, but they can afford a good personal audio system so as not to disturb the roommates they have. And although 24 to 44-year-olds may not be into their “forever home” quite yet, but they still want their starter homes to be as smart and fully connected as possible. But from what I can see, neither of these groups are gravitating as much toward room-based two-channel systems as boomer audiophiles did.
While I would not be so rash as to assume from this that “high-end audio is dying,” it would not be too much of a stretch to conclude that the “golden age” of super-sized and priced two-channel, dedicated room-based systems is slowly coming to a close. Sure, there will still be a market for the sort of gear that competes with high-performance automobiles and vacation homes for a percentage of high-earner’s disposable income, but their numbers (and percentage of the home audio pie) will continue to drop in the coming years. Instead we will see more portable, personal, and nearfield audio products in the future, geared toward intimate personal listening. Some of the older, well-established firms, such Sony and Onkyo, have already begun to shift their offerings toward these new consumers. Other specialist high-performance audio firms, like PS Audio, have also made the leap. And then there are a rash of new companies like Astell & Kern and HiFiMan, whose business is geared directly at this new demographic. But I’m concerned that many venerable audio firms, such as Krell and Audio Research have fewer and fewer products that interest new audio consumers.
Given the current trends, unless established “high end” audio firms adjust to the new realities of who they will be selling their gear to many will find that their market share and profits will see the kind of precipitous drop that usually precedes a merger or bankruptcy. Innovate or die – because the audio world has changed and will continue to change as we stumble into the 21st century.
Protect Your Home Entertainment System with Proper Ventilation
I want to tell you how to use proper ventilation in order to protect your audio and video equipment from overheating.
Using these techniques will help you:
- increase ventilation
- decrease heat pockets
- extend the life of your audio/video equipment
These techniques also help you by making installations easier.
Home audio and video technology benefits everyone by making life more enjoyable – except when this technology costs you time and money because of overheating due to bad ventilation.
The hottest offenders are cable boxes, amplifiers, A/V receivers, and video game consoles because they typically produce the most heat in any home theater or stereo system. Your cable box uses as much electricity as your refrigerator, so it generates a lot of heat which has to go somewhere.
Without enough air flow, someone could overheat these components to the point of damaging their system and even risking a fire. Overheating also stifles the efficiency of their electronics.
Follow these steps to insure your systems perform in top shape.
7 Techniques to Prevent Overheating
1. Install your audio/video equipment as far away from heat sources as possible.
Potential sources of heat include heating ducts, radiators, baseboard heaters, space heaters, and kitchen appliances. For example, I lived in an old apartment building which used radiator heat that was so hot. It was so hot, I had to keep my electronics on the other side of the room. This protected my electronics from receiving direct heat.
2. Install your audio/video equipment top side up.
I know, it seems like this is common sense and everyone would set up their equipment this way. However, some people will incorrectly install their systems by placing the electronics sideways instead of with the top side up. Home theater and stereo electronics ventilate heat through the top because hot air rises and cold air sinks. Usually, there is little to no ventilation on the sides. When these electronics stand vertically on their sides instead of sit horizontally, the heat gets trapped inside and has more difficulty leaving.
3. Install your audio/video equipment in a ventilated cabinet or closet.
This lets the air flow around your equipment which keeps it cool. When your equipment gets little to no airflow in a cabinet, the hot air has nowhere to go and the temperature rises. When the air gets too hot, your electronics perform less efficiently. Make sure wherever you install your home entertainment or stereo system, the hot air has somewhere to go like extra head room or with a fan system like technique #6.
4. Install your audio/video equipment with a few inches of empty space on each side and above.
This gives your system’s components room to breathe so that cool air can flow all around. Installing your equipment in a tight space is like trying to run a marathon with a heavy wool blanket over your face. You’ll just be breathing the same hot, recycled air instead of the cool, fresh air all around you.
5. Never stack your equipment on top of each other.
This leaves very little space for air to flow out of the top of your equipment. Again, you need a few inches of space between each piece of equipment and leaving them stacked could give each piece ½ inch or less of breathing room.
6. Install a ventilation fan with your audio/video equipment.
Using a fan moves lots of air and when it comes to keeping your equipment cool, more air equals better ventilation. Usually, you can mount a fan to the back or top of your cabinet. This actively cools your electronics, whereas the other techniques I discussed passively cool your electronics.
7. Keep your audio/video equipment clear of dust.
Over time, dust builds up around your home theater or stereo systems. Try to dust and clean your system components fairly often, about once per week or month. Dust really well around the top and bottom vents of each piece because this will prevent clogs. Also, keep fans and vents clean with a can of air duster. A few quick bursts of air should blast away most of the dust which blocks fans and vents. This also reduces fan noise since the fan won’t have to work as hard to spin the blades.
In Conclusion: Preventing Your Electronics From Overheating
You can prevent your audio/video system from overheating by installing equipment with the right ventilation to encourage air flow. This insures you get the most power, efficiency, and life-span from your electronics.
Posted by Audio Affair Blog
The Yamaha Aventage series is one that we keep coming back to, and for a very good reason. The same reason that Yamaha keep making them better and better, we’re sure! Well, home-cinema-lovers, this month is a good month. It sees the release of several new/and or upgraded models within this somewhat legendary series of AV receivers.
They are due to land with us within the next few days, and we’re already making some room in stock as we’re expecting them to be very popular indeed. There are lots of new features and benefits, but the one we’re most excited about is: they all have MusicCast built in to use as a “zone”, which means they will all be fully integratable with Yamaha’s revolutionary multi-room system, enabling you to send all your music from one product to another via an app.
MusicCast, and everything which supports it, is compatible with a wide range of music/audio sources, including streaming services and even radio. It opens up your home to a world of music with very minimal fuss, and when we say all music – we mean it! The Aventages feature a variety of input terminals capable of handling television, CDs, turntables and other manner of AV equipment. They receive all!
The higher you go in the range, the better it gets. The seven and nine channel AV receivers support the state-of-the-art Dolby Atmos and DTS:X 3-D surround sound formats. A good all-around system brought right up to date, catering to all your AV needs.
Here’s a closer look at the models themselves. Remember, they all come as their own MusicCast Zones.
At the lower end of the scale we have a completely new 7 channel model, and not to be compared with the 550. It features both DTS:X and Atmos. It supports 4K Ultra HD via advanced HDMI terminals – the latest version of HDMI. There’s a pre/line out to, for system building.
The RX-A860, along with all higher models, phono input terminals. This means you can distribute the sound of vinyl throughout the entire house with MusicCast. That may well be the dream!
This particular model has seen an upgrade, with component changes, Zone 2 audio processing and Zone 2 pre/line out.
Getting higher up the food chain, these two models are upgrades of the models before them, now featuring YPAO 3D with angle measurement alongside component changes, Zone 2, 3, 4 audio processing and Zone 2 pre/line out.
The top of the range and definitely worth your consideration. These two feature Cinema DSP (on top of Atmos) a new, enhanced DSP program, YPAO 64 Bit precision EQ and a fresh set of components, UK Tuning attention, Zone 2, 3, 4 audio processing and – you guessed it – Zone 2 pre/line out.
Everything on the old Aventages will be featured too – this is just a way of letting you know that things are about to get better.
They’ll be with us in a few days time. If you’re curious, give us a shout and we can set you up with a demo!
Posted by: Audio Affair Blog
As much as we love the contemporary style, something which continues to surprise us year-on-year, there is something warm and comforting about the vintage style. Not to mention how timeless it is. With a contemporary shell you run the risk of it looking a little dated within the next five or so years, but the tried and tested vintage style will never let you down.
The only problem with the vintage style is it’s usually only featured on the higher-end gear, which means it costs the higher end prices. Although in this context, the word ‘usually’ is pretty important. Let me show you why.
That is the gorgeous Yamaha A670 Integrated Amplifier, a newbie in the Yamaha hi-fi range. You may have already noticed its distinctive classic styling (pretty nice huh?), and I bet you have a price in mind. Well, I’m willing to bet that price is right off the mark. See, you can pick up your very own Yamaha A670 in either black or silver for just £199. That’s it. That’s not a sale price, that’s not an introductory offer, that’s the price.
It calls to mind Yamaha’s A-S2100, a beautiful vintage-styled amp… but at a much higher price point (the kind of price you’d expect from something with that look!). The A670 is a great way of getting into the vintage-style hi-fi at a lower price point. This amp, and its corresponding units boast the same styling as the much higher-end stuff – and it looks great!
Nice, slimline and minimalistic, straightforward bit of kit that can be in integrated into all sorts of systems. The Yamaha MCR-N670D is the matching CD player and streamer which also features MusicCast. It’s twice the price of the amp, but worth it if you want the matching thing. And if you’re buying a beautiful amp like this, it’s very likely you want the matching thing. Both are very compact and slimline and a great desktop solution. Perfect for the Dali Zensor Picos speakers if you have a decent sized desk.
Sure, there are plenty of other amps out there at this price point, and Yamaha themselves do other budget-friendly high-quality amps, but this is the first one to feature this purist styling. Everything in between is far more contemporary. The A670 is a tenth of the price of the usual vintage gear, yet looks just as good as the big and beautiful stuff. It’s also worth noting that it’s not just about looks, this amp is 65w per channel – so pretty powerful for the price!
Of course, you can buy a real (and well used) vintage amp for this price, but sometimes it’s better to pretend. When you pretend, you get a guarantee and the typical smooth and natural Yamaha sound. Natural sound is what Yamaha like to go for, regardless of how much they’re charging.
Like what you see? Learn more, by clicking here to contact Bentley Systems for a free consultation.
Marantz, a world leader in advanced audio technologies, announces the HD-AMP1, an elegant compact digital integrated amplifier engineered to the highest Marantz purist audiophile standards. Building on the success of last year’s HD-DAC1 Headphone Amplifier, the HD-AMP1 was created to serve at the center of a music system. This ultra-high quality amp delivers 2x 70W from a special switching amplifier circuit, providing amazing sound from all sources including the highest of high resolution audio files. It is expected to be available in January 2016 for $1,099.00.
Housed in an elegant compact chassis that occupies just over 1 square foot of desktop or shelf space, the HD-AMP1 is equipped with multiple digital inputs, including 2 optical, 1 coaxial along with 2 USB ports. It features the ability to decode the latest generation lossless high-resolution audio file types, including WAV, AIFF, ALAC, FLAC at up to 24-bit/192-kHz resolution, along with the ability to play MP3, WMA and AAC tracks. The rear panel USB-B port features advanced noise isolation so users can connect a PC or Mac and stream even higher resolution files, up to 32-bit/384-kHz. The HD-AMP1 is equipped with the reference grade ESS SABRE DAC and dual master clock crystals for the widest bandwidth, highest dynamic range and lowest distortion, and the HD-AMP1 can also play DSD hi-res audio tracks including 2.6/5.2/11.2-MHz.
Unique Marantz audio performance with Marantz Musical Digital Filtering
The HD-AMP1 delivers 2x 70 W into 4 Ohms; clearly handling even demanding music parts thanks to an ultra-stable power supply and Marantz exclusive Current Feedback technology. The Dual Crystal Clock and a discrete DAC post filter combined with the company’s highly-acclaimed HDAM pre-amplifier modules make standard counted sound feel like high-resolution audio. A high-current audiophile SABRE D/A-Converter with 384kHz/32bit processing capability is able to reproduce even the smallest details with ease.
Special Class-D Amplifier Concept
The HD-AMP1 is the first ever Marantz Hi-Fi product that incorporated the concept of Class-D amplification. Up to now, switching (Class-D) amplifiers had certain limitations which made them unacceptable for demanding Marantz sound engineers to be used in premium Hi-Fi products. Now, the HD-AMP1 combines the unique Marantz HDAM technologies, the Class-D amplifier concept and an overall feedback loop to guarantee a consistent performance with a wide range of loudspeaker types.
The HD-AMP1 not only builds on the famous Marantz sound, it is also highly connectable. Featuring two USB ports, one on the front and one on the back, the HD-AMP1 lets users connect their favorite iDevice or USB drive to the front panel USB port, and a PC or Mac to the rear panel USB-B port to stream high resolution audio tracks. In addition it features advanced noise isolation to guard against digital noise from degrading the high-resolution sound. For even more connectivity, Marantz also included two analog inputs. The USB-B works in asynchronous mode to support not only 384kHz/32bits high-resolution audio but also the DSD 2.8MHz, 5.6MHz and even 11.2MHz formats for maximized performance and the most direct way to enjoy excellent quality. To safeguard quality when connected to a computer, Marantz built extended isolation around the USB-B input to eliminate the chance of high frequency noise generated by the computer entering the HD-AMP1.
Elegant Chassis with Audiophile Construction
The compact, elegant chassis features a premium brushed alloy front panel with matching knobs along with our signature Porthole round front panel 2-line OLED display, which features 3 dimming, levels and off. The stylish woodtone side panels add a luxurious touch and the robust chassis features our rugged dual bottom plate construction for maximum rigidity coupled to aluminum alloy chassis feet for maximum vibration resistance. The Marantz HD-AMP1 offers a powerful yet sophisticated sound from modern and legacy sources in a beautiful small-format appeal.
HD-AMP1 Integrated Amplifier with DAC-mode – Main Features
- Compact Integrated Amplifier with digital and analog inputs
- High-quality 2x 70W (4 Ohm RMS) switching amplifier
- Marantz Current Feedback technology for detailed, natural sound
- Exclusive Marantz HDAM-SA2 technology
- Marantz Musical Digital Filtering with proprietary DSP filtering and 2 filter options
- Plays lossless WAV, AIFF, ALAC, FLAC file types, up to 24-bit/192-kHz via digital inputs
- Plays lossless WAV, AIFF, ALAC, FLAC file types up to 32-bit/384-kHz via rear USB
- 2x optical, coaxial and USB type B digital inputs capable of 384kHz/32bit high resolution audio including native DSD2.8, DSD5.6 and DSD11.2 support
- Plays 2.6/5.2/11.2-MHz DSD files via rear USB
- Also plays WMA, MP3, AAC tracks
- 2 optical and 1 coaxial digital inputs
- USB-A front panel port and USB-B rear panel port
- USB-B block features advanced noise isolation
- Reference grade ESS SABRE 32-bit/384-kHz DAC
- Dual Clock for high digital accuracy
- Headphone amplifier with HDAM-SA2 and 3 gain/impedance choices
- 2 Analog inputs
- iDevice and USB drive connectivity
- Auto iDevice recharge via front USB
- Marantz SPKT-1 premium speaker connectors
- Available in black
Lutron allows you to control your lights, shades and temperature from anywhere – whether you’re home or away. Caséta Wireless dimmers and switches install in minutes, work with numerous bulb types – including dimmable LEDs and CFLs, and bring the convenience of a connected home to your fingertips.
Enhanced Apple® HomeKit Functionality
In addition to being able to tell Siri® to “turn my lights on”, you’re now able to adjust your shades by telling Siri to “open my kitchen shades”. Also, because Caséta Wireless works with HomeKit, any HomeKit-enabled thermostat in your home can now be controlled directly from the Lutron app.
Additional “Works with Nest®” Features
The Nest Learning Thermostat already works with Caséta Wireless. Now, if your Nest Protect Smoke + CO alarm detects smoke or carbon monoxide in your home, all of the Caséta Wireless lights in your home will turn on and your Lutron shades will open to help you find your way.
Expanded thermostat support
In addition to the Lutron Wireless Thermostat, Nest Learning thermostat, Honeywell Wi-Fi thermostats, and HomeKit-enabled thermostats, Caséta Wireless now also works with Carrier® Cor™ and Ecobee® thermostats, allowing for temperature control directly from the Lutron app.
Works with XFINITY Home
Control your Caséta Wireless lights from anywhere using the free XFINITY Home app on your mobile device. XFINITY Home creates one centralized solution to enhance your home’s security, efficiency and all-around comfort.
Enjoy the Ultimate Audio/Video Experience with Control4
Control4 brings the power, performance and reliability to deliver the best entertainment over one, robust platform.
Fill one room or every room with your favorite high-definition content. From watching the latest 4K movies to streaming high-resolution music, you can enjoy limitless entertainment with a single remote or create an unrivaled home theater experience. It’s simple, clean and clutter-free entertainment—right at your fingertips.
Simplify your entertainment experience and control it all with just one remote at a budget-friendly price.
Watch TV, access your movies, stream video, power up a game or enjoy your music library. Integrate your AppleTV, Roku, Amazon Fire, Netflix, Hulu and more with Control4, for simple control of all of your entertainment gear.
Design a jaw-dropping home cinema that rivals any cineplex. Press the “Movie” button, and the projector screen descends, the DVD player fires up, the surround sound is activated and the lights dim.
Incorporate immersive, high-resolution audio, high-definition video, a smart TV or projection screen, and customized lighting to create the ultimate experience. All equipment can be tucked away in a closet and controlled easily from one remote or touch screen.
Fill the entire house with music or stream it to just one room.
As part your Control4 system, enjoy access to millions of songs and thousands of artists through popular streaming music services—such as Pandora, Rhapsody, TIDAL, and dozens more—without the need for additional gear. Showcase beautiful cover art, along with artist and track information, on your mobile device, touch screen or TV.
Deliver superior sound, stunning video and an incredible entertainment experience in every room throughout the house.
Share your entire movie library, streaming video and satellite channels in every room—no need for set-top boxes and multiple video sources. Consolidate all of your audio and video equipment into a closet, creating a clutter-free installation.
Honeywell Security recently launched the Total Connect Apple Watch app for all users of the Honeywell Total Connect 2.0 platform. The app increases the ways consumers can access their security systems, increasing the value of the platform you’re selling.
The Apple Watch app allows a user to quickly and conveniently check the status of their system directly from their wrist, without having to pull their phone out and log into the Honeywell Total Connect app. Being able to easily check security status gives a busy person confidence that their home, family and/or business is safe and secure 24/7.
The Apple Watch app lets users arm and disarm their security system with a single tap. If the system is disarmed, they can choose to set it to either Armed Away or Armed Stay, and if it’s armed, they can press the disarm button to immediately disarm it. When arming, they can bypass any open zones from their Apple Watch. Most importantly, should the system go into alarm, the app will display the type of alarm (security, fire, CO or medical) and allow the user to disarm it when appropriate with their four-digit code. Watch the video above to see these and more features in action.
The usage of the Honeywell Security Total Connect Apple Watch app has skyrocketed, and we encourage you to discuss the benefits on your sales calls.
Bentley Systems offers the most start of the art home theater components and these latest products from LG and Integra are no exception! The LG G6 OLED 4K HDTV offers the sharpest picture in the business and has been recognized with a 2016 CES Innovation Award. The Integra 7 Series Home Theater Receivers provide an incredible cinema-like experience and outputs such a clear sound you will feel like you’re actually in the movie!
G6 OLED 4K HDTV by LG®
OLED, short for organic light-emitting diode, is a display technology with self-lighting pixels that can be individually controlled to achieve perfect black and infinite contrast.
LG® OLED TV has a radically simplified new design: An incredibly thin screen mounted onto a glass sheet. This makes it lightweight and more versatile than other TV technologies, resulting in some of the most beautiful televisions ever designed.
The individually illuminating pixels of LG® OLED TV can switch completely off to achieve perfect black. That means that contrast—the difference between the lightest and darkest areas of the screen—is truly infinite, for a more natural, lifelike image with bolder colors. Take high dynamic range viewing to the next level with OLED HDR from LG® that displays programs with the superior contrast and color of HDR as well as premium Dolby Vision™.
Transform your OLED TV experience with dramatic imaging that brings entertainment to life before your eyes. Enjoy a refined, lifelike picture when you watch UHD Dolby Vision™ mastered content on 2016 OLED 4K TVs via streaming services such as Netflix® and VUDU®.
Integra 7 Series Home Theater Receivers
Integra introduces two exciting additions to its 2015 lineup. Painstakingly engineered, the new DTR-50.7 and DHC-60.7 are both THX®-certified and support HDMI 2.0a, 4:4:4 color space and High Dynamic Range (HDR) as well as next generation HDCP 2.2 copy protection on five inputs making them ideal for the 4K Ultra HD video revolution. Both products are DTS:X™-ready and feature award-winning Dolby Atmos multidimensional surround sound as well as Apple AirPlay support.
The new DHC-60.7 is a THX Ultra2™ Plus certified 7.2 channel network A/V preamp processor sporting 8 HDMI 2.0 inputs for 4K/60Hz support and 2 outputs. In addition to Zone2 HDMI and HDBaseT, the DHC-60.7 is equipped with 7.2 multichannel balanced XLR pre-puts (with front bi-amp capability), two-channel balanced XLR audio inputs as well as 7.2 multichannel pre-outs and audio-grade 18 mm-pitch RCA Pre-Outs (Front L / R).
The DTR-50.7 is a 7.2 channel, THX Select2 Plus network A/V receiver rated at 135 watts per channel. The unit supports an abundant package of connectivity options including 8-in/2-out HDMI; an HDBaseT port and Zone 2 HDMI, and 7.2 multichannel pre-outs. Amplification for the DTR-50.7 comes courtesy of proprietary WRAT (Wide Range Amp Technology) and discrete Three-Stage Inverted Darlington Circuitry, a combination that delivers truly dynamic performance.
Bentley Systems is proud to announce the arrival of our two latest lines of high tech products! The Autonomic Controls Mirage Audio System is a media player that allows you to enjoy all of your music and streaming services anywhere in your home. While Pakedge offers some of the most powerful wireless products in the industry and continues to innovate.
Mirage Audio System by Autonomic Controls
The Mirage Audio System is a turnkey, audiophile grade, whole home audio system. It supports high definition music files, iTunes & WMP playlists, and the most popular streaming music services including Pandora, Rhapsody, Spotify, SiriusXM, Deezer, Slacker Radio, as well as local and international AM/FM radio stations via the TuneIn Radio Service.
This complete package provides everything you need to install the highest performing house-wide audio system available, just add your choice of in-wall or free standing speakers. With the Mirage Audio System’s high-end audio specifications and power rating, you have the flexibility to select higher quality loudspeakers in your favorite rooms.
The user interface seamlessly blends room control with music browsing to create a simple and enjoyable experience. Easily group together multiple rooms, select a music program from your local content or from the universe of online music available, and then easily control the volume level across the group of zones, or in each room individually.
The Mirage Audio System can be supported up to 96 individual zones of audio, making it an outstanding choice for everything from small residential projects, to the largest commercial environments.
Pakedge Network Infrastructure
Pakedge offers a full line of enterprise grade networking gear, such as routers, switches, access points and controllers made especially for audio/video systems and automation systems. Pakedge wireless access points and high tech cable infrastructure solutions provide high-range, enterprise-level communication between all devices within a network. Combined with the C36 Network Controller, the Pakedge portfolio of wireless products allows an entire network with multiple APs to function wirelessly and without interference.
The Pakedge SmartWav technology takes advantage of proprietary intelligent software algorithms and advanced antenna designs adapt to each site to improve or enhance wireless transmission and reception while mitigating interference.
Pakedge TruStream technology, network speeds are given a boost – ensuring peak performance for latency-sensitive applications like VoIP, streaming video, and streaming audio.
For Pakedge wireless solutions, SectorMaxx antenna technology works in the background to improve signal-to-noise ratio, coverage, and reception. SectorMaxx improves range up to 3x over conventional wireless technology and ensures uninterrupted data transmission.
Honeywell has recently released a number of updates to its popular Honeywell Total Connect 2.0 platform to help security dealers provide a better user experience, stay competitive and drive more recurring monthly revenue.
The enhancements extend the value and reach of the award-winning solution, which lets consumers use mobile devices to remotely control security and automation functions, view live video, stay in the know with real-time alerts and track vehicles and assets via GPS technology.
“In today’s mobile society, people are busier than ever. So we focused on key areas of usability to make it easy for customers to manage their systems in a way that revolves around their lives,” said Alice DeBiasio, general manager for Honeywell Total Connect. “The Smart Scenes, for example, are so intuitive users can set scenes to personalize their environment without any training. Enhancements like tool tips, the refreshed interface and auto-syncing all make Honeywell Total Connect easier to use, easier to sell, and provide dealers with more opportunity for RMR.”
Platform enhancements include:
- Smart Scene Wizards: An intuitive wizard guides users through each step when configuring scenes for energy savings, ambiance and convenience—reducing training time, delivering a better user experience and helping consumers make the most of their connected homes and businesses. This feature is supported on the iPhone®, iPad®, Android™ and web via Internet Explorer 10+ or higher.
- Expanded Test Drive Demo: The Test Drive demo, which lets dealers simulate a “live” experience of the platform right on a user’s iPhone without the need for Wi-Fi or cellular connectivity, has been expanded to support iPad and Android devices. It also contains tool tips—informative pop-ups that accompany and explain each feature. It’s an excellent sales tool and an easy way to familiarize consumers with the features and benefits of Honeywell Total Connect.
- Dynamic New Interface: The sleek new interface is cleaner, more modern and inviting, with a subtle color refresh for a calming visual feel. It’s intuitive and easy to operate, with a common user interface that makes operation easier and familiar across all platforms. It is available in four languages— English, Latin American Spanish, French Canadian and Brazilian Portuguese.
- Smart Auto-Syncing: Honeywell Total Connect auto-syncs with the LYNX Touch 7000, 5200 and 5100 Control Systems—greatly simplifying operation when adding or removing sensors, users and Z-Wave® devices or rules. Panel changes occur automatically within seconds.
- Touch ID™: The platform supports Touch ID, an easy, highly secure feature from Apple that uses customers’ fingerprints to act as their passcodes when logging into the iOS app. It works on iPhone 5S, 6, 6Plus, iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3 and is supported on iOS 8+.
Control4, a leading provider of smart home solutions, today announced the upcoming roll-out of its OS 2.7 software, which will power several new Control4 solutions for smart homes. The OS 2.7 software release will support elegant new touch screens that will enable instantaneous HD video intercom communications throughout the home, beautiful enhancements to the Control4 user interface for an enriched, interactive climate control experience, Control4’s versatile new wireless thermostat, and a newly redesigned handheld system remote.
“Today, we announce several new solutions that have been designed to dramatically enhance the Control4 experience for homeowners and their families around the world,” said Control4 Chairman and CEO, Martin Plaehn. “By centering our efforts on delivering exceptional performance, exquisite design and engaging interaction, including integrating with the third-party products that customers may want in their homes, our new solutions will empower our Dealers to deliver to their customers the customized lifestyle benefits of a Control4 Smart Home.”
A New HD Video Intercom Experience Featuring Powerful & Blazing Fast Touch Screens
Whether you want to see who is at the front door, check on your sleeping baby, or simply call the family together for dinner, the Control4 high-quality audio/video intercom makes it simple and convenient — and all of that functionality is automatically enabled on every new Control4 touch screen.
Homeowners can experience this elegant video intercom capability with the all-new Control4 touch screens, which feature a High Definition camera, high-quality speakers and microphone, and a fast, high-resolution display providing full frame-rate HD video – delivering a smooth, life-like call experience. Other key benefits include:
- Dramatically faster connection speed, to let you quickly see who’s at the front door
- Crisp, full-screen visual clarity so that you can monitor your sleeping baby or check on your children playing in another room at a glance,
- Enhanced control and privacy functionality, including settings for do not disturb, audio-only, and auto-answer
- The ability to select an alternate camera as the video source for exterior video door stations, providing preferred view and the best audio source whether inside or outside the home
- When connected on the same home or business network, interoperability with third-party SIP products, including door stations (from industry leaders like Siedle and 2N), home phones, and mobile apps for iOS & Android
- Out-of-the-box intercom functionality – simply add at least two video-enabled end-points (one or more video touch screens or video door stations), and the security and convenience of Control4’s HD Video Intercom is now part of your smart home experience.
Control4 also announced a new line of gorgeous, gesture-capable glass-edge touch screens that operate as dedicated interfaces for Control4 Smart Homes, bringing intuitive, responsive, and elegant interactions to homeowners’ entertainment, lighting, comfort and security experiences. With a simple swipe, you can browse music playlists and display bold cover art images. In addition, it’s easy to personalize lighting, temperature, and security settings directly on the expansive touch screen. As powerful on the inside as it is beautiful on the outside, the new line of touch screens are powered by a 1.4GHz quad-core processor, providing all the horsepower necessary to drive the new graphics and HD video capabilities, as well as the capacitive-touch user interaction. Key features of the new Control4 touch screens include:
- 7” and 10” sizes available for in-wall installations
- 7” tabletop available for coffee-table, bed-stand, and portable use
- Extremely fast and responsive processing power
- Crisp, beautiful picture quality, with twice the resolution of previous models
- HD camera, high-quality speakers and microphone for video intercom use with touch screens, a door station, or front gate
- A brand new interface for managing smart locks throughout the home (exclusive to the new line of touch screens)
- One-touch access to local and regional weather forecasts.
A New Comfort Experience
Control4 OS 2.7 also delivers a completely redesigned Comfort Control experience, with an elegant new UI to provide easy interactive climate control in the home – or from miles away. The new Comfort Control experience features a more intuitive dial interface for quick access to all comfort functions, including temperature, heat/cool set-points, thermostat mode, fan speed and humidity levels, as well as access to new configurable comfort control presets. These new presets are an intuitive and easy way to save all of your HVAC settings and recall them with one touch, or simply have them take effect automatically on a schedule or when a designated event occurs. The new Control4 comfort experience also works with the world’s leading HVAC systems, including forced air, radiant heating, split HVAC, dual fuel and geothermal systems. Additionally, the new interface works seamlessly with the most popular thermostat brands across the U.S., Europe, Latin America and Asia including: Aprilaire, Carrier, Cool Automation, Heatmiser, and Nest.
As part of the OS 2.7 release, Control4 is also introducing a new wireless thermostat, purposely built for comfort control and automation, and jointly developed with climate control specialists Aprilaire. The new Control4/Aprilaire Wireless Thermostat delivers a consistently comfortable home, with advanced HVAC control built-in for ideal comfort and efficient operation. The wireless thermostat features enhanced compatibility for use with more modern HVAC systems, including geothermal, dual fuel, and humidity control systems, and offers advanced scheduling and presets for increased flexibility and comfort. Additionally, the new wireless thermostat can be powered using AC power or batteries, allowing for maximum installation flexibility.
I’m just back from the CEDIA Expo in Dallas, TX. CEDIA is the industry association for audio/video integrators, of which I am one. Going to this show is like being a kid in a candy store. Aisles and aisles of audio video, automation equipment, and the tools and equipment to put it all together and make it work.
So what’s new? Top of the list has to be 4k television. Take your best current, 1080p television, and sharpen the picture by a factor of four. Four times the resolution of what you have now. Simply outstanding. There has been a death in the industry. Plasma is officially dead. First Pioneer gave it up, then Visio, and Panasonic. The last two holdouts were Samsung and LG. Samsung killed it earlier this year, and LG abruptly dumped it about two weeks before the show. Shame. It was clearly the better video technology vs. LCD/LED. Don’t cry too much. Plasma is being replaced by OLED (Organic light emitting diode). This technology has been in the works for years. About ten years ago, Sony showed the first OLED set with a screen size of 11” diagonal. To round out televisions, a couple of manufactures were showing sets with curved screens.
In audio, the big deal was Dolby Atmos (short for Atmosphere). This technology adds more speakers overhead to give a more enveloping experience. Existing systems can be upgraded to this technology, so you don’t have to jettison your existing system . Demo rooms from Integra, Yamaha, and more did their best to showcase this new theater technology.
In the lines that I sell, Integra showed their new soundbar, which is awesome. Integra is distributing the Cabasse speaker line in the US. Cabasse is a French company with some different twists on speakers. Sonance has a killer Landscape outdoor audio system with in-ground subwoofer with accompanying gobs of power. I have recently become a Compass by Key Digital dealer. Compass is an automation system that can be run solely by the tremendous processing power built into the Apple iPAD. Sonos showed a new device called the Boost. This will soon replace the BRIDGE, and allows the Sonos system to operate over every day WiFi, and has three times the coverage of the BRIDGE.
I altered my travel plans to attend a special event Control 4 was putting on, and it was worth the change. A new operating system, a mobile version of the programming software (for dealers only), and the acquisition of British driver maker Extra Vegetables (yes, that’s the name of the company. They are British, after all.) rounded out the event. Speaking of British audio, I saw some very interesting equipment from Cambridge Audio. This niche British audio company has some of the best sounding audio components I have ever heard. They have their main line of equipment, and the Minx series features audio streamers and some unique pieces. Stay tuned for more news regarding Cambridge Audio. Lastly in audio, I took a look at Autonomics. Autonomics is an audio streamer with the capability of also being a whole home system, in addition to storing all your music in the cloud, so that if you own another home or two anywhere in the world, you can access your music. Interesting stuff.
This was one of the best CEDIA shows I’ve been to in some time. Please give us a call at (860) 657-8558 or contact us for more information.
Welcome to the new Bentley Electronic Systems! We just redesigned our website and logo to bring you a fresh new look and more streamlined experience. Our goal was to make it easier for you to learn more about Bentley Systems and the products and services we offer.
Our full line of services and products can now be accessed from our easy to use navigation menu. You can also now request a quote or schedule a free consultation right on our homepage. All of these new features are also fully mobile and tablet compatible for use on the go.
Bentley Systems is proud to offer the following products and services:
- Cambridge Audio
- Audio/Video Systems
- Home Theater Installation
- HDTV Calibration
- Lighting/Shading Control Systems
- IT Network Infrastructure
- Outdoor A/V Systems
- CCTV Surveillance
- Commercial Security
- Home Security
- Automation Systems
At Bentley Systems, we’ve always believed there’s a custom solution for everyone. We make it easy for you to see your dreams become reality and can turn any space into a state of the art home or office. We take pride in our customers’ satisfaction and in our work. And, no project is too big or too small: if you require nothing more than a simple speaker installation we will take the same care as if we were installing a full in-home theater system or a A/V ready commercial conference room.