Control 4 installer quote - I have questions...and concerns - Page 2 - AVS Forum
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post #31 of 84 Old 02-12-2010, 03:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Bi_Polar View Post

I can understand your point of view and that would be frustrating to say the least.

I am glad you understand my point of view.

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Originally Posted by Adidas4275 View Post

a community like this should be a place where you can post questions about a quote you got from an installer....I am not an installer....

If you were an installer or a business owner you would understand the frustration of reading a thread that questions a sub contractors quote. IMO there is a difference between BestBuy hanging a plasma on your wall and handing you a remote and a contractor bidding and installing a control system that incorporates the scope of work mentioned above. I have no problem with you shopping around for the plasma.
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post #32 of 84 Old 02-12-2010, 06:36 PM
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Don't skimp out on the network stuff, C4 is useless unless the network it is running on is rock solid, period.

Bottom line is that your CI is quoting you product that they know works and they can program and they have dealt with before.

As far HDMI switching goes matrix switches get expensive fast, a good solid one can easily cost 3 times as much as the one quoted. Look at the whole job don't get stuck on single pieces of the job, on a $100 grand job is a $400 router really going to make a difference?

If you really have questions about a particular product and why its on a quote ask the guy who make the quote.
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post #33 of 84 Old 02-12-2010, 07:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K Shep View Post

I am glad you understand my point of view.



If you were an installer or a business owner you would understand the frustration of reading a thread that questions a sub contractors quote. IMO there is a difference between BestBuy hanging a plasma on your wall and handing you a remote and a contractor bidding and installing a control system that incorporates the scope of work mentioned above. I have no problem with you shopping around for the plasma.


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Posting Guidline Reminder For These Sections. Please Read!
Please remember that these forums are a place for both DIY and industry professionals to talk about and share information about A/V control & automation. We work very hard to keep marketing off the site, in order to create an environment that encourages an open and honest exchange of information, free of ulterior motives. As such, PLEASE:

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as per forum rules.... it does prohibit asking for a price quote....

but it does not seem to prohibit asking about a quote or checking to make sure a quote has all necessary items.

there have been others to post quotes recently.... ones that got good reply that no one seemed to have issue there....

what the OP needs... is someone, if they feel inclined, with experience in Control4 to look over the equipment and let him know if the components listed are actually good devices... I do not have control4 experience and therefore cannot comment specifically on the equipment.
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post #34 of 84 Old 02-12-2010, 10:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adidas4275 View Post

as per forum rules.... it does prohibit asking for a price quote....

but it does not seem to prohibit asking about a quote or checking to make sure a quote has all necessary items.

You just don't get it.
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post #35 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 01:46 AM
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bottom line:

A CI needs to be a salesman, installer, programmer and jack of all trades.....

this CI obviously did a poor job of selling his/her product to the OP.

The OP asked decent questions and got poor answers..... he basically was brushed off.

so he he comes here to see if he can get answers from people, some CIs and some not, who have some experience with the products and line of work.....

I do not see anything wrong with it.... and so far I do not think you have done a good job of making a case for your opinion.


Do you honestly think that the OP is doing something immoral for posting general info about his quote and asking if it contains good equipment and is a fair price?

Would you rather a customer spend 20 K, which in my book is a hell of a lot of money to spend with out getting a second opinion, on questionable hardware while having concerns about it and end up with a system that is not reliable?


I understand a CI is selling service and hardware but in the end he/she needs to make the customer comfortable with their choice and respective quote.



If this is the wrong place to get a second opinion on a price quote for a highly specialized system in a niche market.... then where should the OP go to get a second opinion?
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post #36 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 09:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adidas4275 View Post

bottom line:

this CI obviously did a poor job of selling his/her product to the OP.

The OP asked decent questions and got poor answers..... he basically was brushed off.

Thats a pretty big assumption. I cant find anything in this thread that says the original CI did a poor job or brushed this guy off. I do however remember him saying this was his parents system. That makes me wonder how much direct contact he has had with the CI.

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so he he comes here to see if he can get answers from people, some CIs and some not, who have some experience with the products and line of work.....

Sometimes people assume that their opinion is the way things should be. The OP thought the HDMI switch was to expensive. Where did he draw this conclusion from? I would wager he has never purchased a similar product before and has no basis for his assumption.

Quote:


I do not see anything wrong with it.... Do you honestly think that the OP is doing something immoral for posting general info about his quote and asking if it contains good equipment and is a fair price?

Would you rather a customer spend 20 K, which in my book is a hell of a lot of money to spend with out getting a second opinion, on questionable hardware while having concerns about it and end up with a system that is not reliable?

Neither do i. He didn't post the companies name or contact details so as far as i am concerned the proposal he received is his to do whatever he wants with. I welcome proposals and wiring plans so that i can better gauge whats being discussed. This is probably his parents first go around with home automation & distributed AV so they really dont know what it should cost.

Quote:


If this is the wrong place to get a second opinion on a price quote for a highly specialized system in a niche market.... then where should the OP go to get a second opinion?

IMO this is the perfect and ONLY place to get opinions on quotes for automation and distributed AV.

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post #37 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 09:44 AM
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Originally Posted by 39CentStamp View Post

IMO this is the perfect and ONLY place to get opinions on quotes for automation and distributed AV.

Oh boy... Don't let your friends at RC forum ever see this or your chances of getting elected as the CE Pro of the year will be shot once more!

[inside joke: folks at remote central forum don't care much for folks who hang out at AVS.]

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post #38 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Adidas4275 View Post

I am not an installer ...

Then please don't pretend to be one on the internet.

Adidas,

First of all I am not going to get in a pissing match with you. I post my opinion about what I see as a potential customer questioning an integrators design. IMO that is not cool. Perhaps, I am taking it personal b/c this kind of thing has happened to me in the past.

I am currently working on a project in which the son in law of the client is consulting on the job.

This should be a place to come and ask questions and it is not up to me to control how those questions are asked. Let's agree to disagree this time.
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post #39 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 02:48 PM
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Originally Posted by bluewaves View Post


Look at the whole job don't get stuck on single pieces of the job, on a $100 grand job is a $400 router really going to make a difference?

that's one of the reason I didn't even bother giving a though on this thread. no offense to the op..
If i was the installer on this job, and I was to come across my client posting my quote on a public forum for a debate without discussing with me more thoroughly, I would just send the client away and rather loose the job, why? because it's more likely to bring PAIN and bad recommendations in yrs to come if the electronic happen to go wrong as some of them just happen to. I am not saying the OP is that type of person but experience shows it's bound to happen. I understand the economy is down and all and I don't mind if a client crosscheck online, but it's sometimes best to sit down with the installer and discuss properly and express your concern, if you feel you aren't satisfied maybe shop around by getting another installer bidding on the job and make the comparison. don't just compare the price on the job but also judge on who is most likely to be the best at supporting the system etc..
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post #40 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 02:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Adidas4275 View Post

bottom line:

A CI needs to be a salesman, installer, programmer and jack of all trades.....

this CI obviously did a poor job of selling his/her product to the OP.

The OP asked decent questions and got poor answers..... he basically was brushed off.

I sorted scanned through some of the post and NOT ONCE did the op mentioned about the incompetence of the installer. why are you making assumptions.. then again you do sound like a "typicall" DIyer so I am not surprised. no offence buddy.
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post #41 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 02:54 PM
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Originally Posted by 39CentStamp View Post



IMO this is the perfect and ONLY place to get opinions on quotes for automation and distributed AV.

Damn 39CENT..As a fellow RC user... im schocked!!!!!!
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post #42 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by djsmallz View Post

Damn 39CENT..As a fellow RC user... im schocked!!!!!!

Really? You're shocked? Have you ever seen someone ask for advice about a proposal or quote at remotecentral? Have you ever seen someone ask for advice about wiring their house themselves?

Lets just say it never goes very well and had this guy dared post the actual proposal in the CI lounge i think some of them might have tracked the guy down to beat him up.

I understand both sides of the "conversation" as a Custom Installer and as a consumer. I think its fine to post the proposal and i think its a joke when clients say "well i can get this TV for $200 less at Best Buy". What does the CI have to hide? And my answer about the BestBuy TV is "go buy it at Best Buy".

IMO, AVS is the place to get your proposal looked at if you think there is an issue with it. This site gets more traffic from both sides of the fence then any other and its not completely dominated by one or the other.

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post #43 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 04:13 PM
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Time out.

Folks, I will call your attention to the sticky I wrote at the top of the forum:
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4. Finally, we ask DIY and industry professionals to respect each other. Attacks or insults by industry professionals towards DIY AND visa versa will not be tolerated.

I wrote that because this before I started moderating this forum too many threads were devolving into DIY versus CI (or CI versus DIY) flames. This thread is a good example. Someone has posted asking advice about a proposal. First a DIY made some comments about CI pricing and I nipped that in the bud because I knew where that would go (there are plenty of 10 page + threads with people flaming back and forth about that). Now some CI's are upset that someone is questioning a proposal. Well sorry, but an exchange of knowledge is what this forum is for.

I do understand why this is an emotionally charged issue for CI's. I know what it’s like to put a lot of time and effort into a proposal and then have someone use that proposal as a shopping list. I also personally find it especially offensive when consumers (in any industry) waste professionals time getting proposals just to suck information out of them when they have no intention from the beginning of even considering buying anything from them. So yes, I understand the emotions on our side of the fence. (and I'm sure that at one time or another we've also all dealt with the resident kid/brother/worker who is assigned to "help" ).

But I also know that a lot of CI's seem to want people to just accept everything they say without question and get easily threatened when someone questions them.

Also, like it or not, if you give proposals out for free, then you are going to be wasting your time a fair amount of the time (win some, lose some), but no one is forcing you to do it, so it seems silly to me that so many CI's get so worked up over it. You basically have three options IMO:
1. Do a better job of qualifying leads and determining who you will give proposals to (which will at least minimize the amount of time you waste).
2. Work on a design basis (this is what my company does).
3. Give proposals out to anyone who asks for one. This seems to be the approach a lot of CI's follow and then they get angry when their time is wasted. It's like shooting a nail in your foot and then getting angry because it hurts . Ok, I admit that's not a good analogy, but my point is that if you find yourself giving out lots of proposals that end up being a waste of time, then it may be time for you to analyze what's happening and why and take corrective action instead of blaming it on "naughty" consumers.

Anyhow, continue to debate as you please, but please keep it civil.
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post #44 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 04:32 PM
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To Adidas4275 you said:
Quote:
Originally Posted by djsmallz View Post

then again you do sound like a "typical" DIyer so I am not surprised.

What is a "typical DIYer" ? Here is what Adidas4275 said:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adidas4275 View Post

A CI needs to be a salesman, installer, programmer and jack of all trades...

I interpreted the above as a compliment. i.e. not anti-ci at all.
Quote:


this CI obviously did a poor job of selling his/her product to the OP.

The OP asked decent questions and got poor answers..... he basically was brushed off.

I'll agree (with djsmallz) we probably don't know enough to determine the above, but we can only go by what the OP stated, and based on his statements, it sounds like he asked some questions and received rather curt and not very meaningful answers. Of course it's also possible he just came straight here to get answers because he is more comfortable here. If so, I would absolutely encourage him to spend some more time talking to the CI.
Quote:


so he he comes here to see if he can get answers from people, some CIs and some not, who have some experience with the products and line of work.....

I do not see anything wrong with it.... and so far I do not think you have done a good job of making a case for your opinion.

Do you honestly think that the OP is doing something immoral for posting general info about his quote and asking if it contains good equipment and is a fair price?

Would you rather a customer spend 20 K, which in my book is a hell of a lot of money to spend with out getting a second opinion, on questionable hardware while having concerns about it and end up with a system that is not reliable?

I understand a CI is selling service and hardware but in the end he/she needs to make the customer comfortable with their choice and respective quote.

If this is the wrong place to get a second opinion on a price quote for a highly specialized system in a niche market.... then where should the OP go to get a second opinion?

Everything else adidas said above seems very reasonable to me. I don't know what a "typical DIYer" is, but it seems to me he is not anti-ci by any stretch, unless believing it is OK to ask questions and do research makes him "anti-ci".
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post #45 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 04:37 PM
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Bi_Polar,

Are you still with us? Have you asked the CI for any further info based on the feedback here?
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post #46 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 04:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K Shep View Post

Then please don't pretend to be one on the internet.

Adidas,

First of all I am not going to get in a pissing match with you. I post my opinion about what I see as a potential customer questioning an integrators design. IMO that is not cool. Perhaps, I am taking it personal b/c this kind of thing has happened to me in the past.

This should be a place to come and ask questions and it is not up to me to control how those questions are asked. Let's agree to disagree this time.

totally understand taking something personally, when you have had a bad experience...

but the OP is not your customer.... well i hope not

i am not trying to be an installer.... here or anywhere.... I am however someone who takes pride in being able to do things myself, by reading, learning, trying, learning and perfecting.... which is common to most people here at AVS.

I just hope the OP gets what he wants for a reasonable price..... and it works for a prolonged period of time
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post #47 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 05:12 PM
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Back to the proposal. Here is another thing I found odd:

"Multi-room audio system equipment installation, programming and customer training $1,500.00"

That is INSANELY low. Which takes us back to the advice the other poster who advised that it's best to judge proposals as a whole and not get too focused on only one item. My point is that this company may well provide a large amount of labor at "no charge" because they are making profit from equipment sales. So I'd not look at the equipment prices in a vacuum so to speak. You might find product A for $300 less elsewhere, but then find that same company would charge $4700 for the installation. Or whatever.

I'm not saying people should not question equipment prices, just to also make sure to look at the big picture. In fact, I'd not only be asking the CI about the HDMi switch, I'd be asking them why the $1500 figure is so low.
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post #48 of 84 Old 02-13-2010, 08:16 PM
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Originally Posted by djsmallz View Post

I sorted scanned through some of the post and NOT ONCE did the op mentioned about the incompetence of the installer. why are you making assumptions.. then again you do sound like a "typicall" DIyer so I am not surprised. no offence buddy.

well, i did not specifically say that the installer was incompetent but when the OP got his quote, reviewed it and asked questions.... he was brushed off... which well the equipment is $$ because it is C4 recommended.... with out going into detail on why certain equipment is better for this use and should be more $$

as a salesman the CI did not go a good job. He did not make the OP feel comfortable with his quote and in the end the OP felt he needed to post here in order to get the answers to his questions.

I am not sure if you have seen my thread of my house, but I do not think anything I have done is typical of a DIYer.

In fact every single person, including my in-laws who have a 10 year old CI done lighting and AV system, who has come over has asked who did the work, assuming I hired a CI.

Now you might be a highly respected CI, but this is your 5th post? I have not been here on AVS that long, but if you look over at [H], Thegreenbutton, wegotserved, missingremote and homeseers boards you will see 4 years of my questions and suggestions.....


Honestly, I would love to be CI.... but i value my job too much to quit and start up a company on my own starting with consumer grade equipment, then moving to lower end HA and doing all the certs and stuff.... it is really interesting stuff and I love taking the time to figure it out, i envy you guys who do this for a living, though I know it can be difficult to make a good income, which is probably why many have took offense to a post like this.... I am sure there are a lot of good CIs out there who work hard and do great work.

in the end the OPs total prices does not seem too high for what he wants... IMO, the specific equipment does need someone to look into.

has any found the HDMI switch? does anyone know if it will decode a 7.1 stream for a 2.0 TV so that there is not the HDMI audio issue there is with many other HDMI matrix switches? is it a CATx extender or just HDMI? is is RS-232 control? I think the price for that switch is midrange if it is CATx, does 7.1 decoding and is RS-232..... like the creston switch, but I could not find much info about it. The company Intel AVocation Systems is a reputable company with some really high end equipment....
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post #49 of 84 Old 02-14-2010, 10:39 PM
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Originally Posted by 39CentStamp View Post

As for the network gear, i would assume Control4 quoted those products because they have found they are good components. My guess is that they spend/waste a lot of money trying to provide tech support to people who are using inferior products.

Bolded for emphasis. Your installer is doing you a favor (honestly) by speccing in robust equipment for that job. As C4 becomes more powerful it is exposing cheap networking equipment for being exactly that, cheap.

I have one concern regarding the OP's quote, no audio switch?

A very likely reason that the installer quoted the things that he did is because he has used that equipment and it works. There is no money to be made trying to integrate new equipment on every job, and no offense intended to the OP, but there isn't nearly enough margin in that quote to monkey around with unknowns.

Concerning Control4 recommended products, I'm assuming the installer is referring to Partner Products. These products will have drivers included in the programming software, and as such he will not have to build drivers for the project. Project gets done faster and more reliably. Your parents don't have to worry about unforseen incidents due to an untested (within a Control 4 environment) product and system downtime/problems,and the installer makes more money (that is his purpose). Or he may just mean products that he has used and little to no trouble with.

As an installer I wouldn't touch a job that the customer picked up the gear from the internet/Costco/Best Buy. I've had nothing but Hellish experiences (understatement) with those jobs. Those people tried to nickle and dime EVERYTHING and expected miracles from equipment that quite simply can't do what they want it to. This is not at all referring to OP, this is in response to comments within the thread.

The switch is more than likely a POE piece as the 7" in-wall touchscreens require POE.

Quote:


That's easy to say but life has proven that it's not as easily done. I've inherited systems from competitors who should know better... A system is indeed only as good as the installer and programmer (and to a certain degree, the network hardware). This is the case with anything from a Harmony remote all the way through a full-on Crestron system."

Absolute truth.

Quote:


The HC1000 controller was listed as $3500+ until I asked why I am finding it online for $1700. He said it was a new version."

He is correct. The pricing on the HC1000 went down DRAMATICALLY (50% IIRC) with the V2/V3 hardware. Give him the benefit of the doubt, he may not have changed the price in his database to reflect this. All of the other pricing looks perfectly reasonable for C4 product.
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post #50 of 84 Old 02-14-2010, 10:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bi_Polar View Post


Another question if anyone can answer this:

What sources from Control 4 would be plugged into this video matrix switch that would make the installer say "it has to be Control4 approved"? The CCTV cameras? Obviously the graphical interface to control the system from a TV would be a source but what else? There must be programming involved here from the backend standpoint....

It isn't a display issue as only one C4 product can even output HDMI (The Media Player). It's a control issue. I'm sure he wants a device that is bi-directional serial. He has control AND feedback, something that may be important for his programming on the job.

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Haddad View Post

Let's use Crestron as an example. They have countless companies listed as "partners" on their website. All that means is that the partner has an official relationship with Crestron and have cooperated with them in making their products available for control. So in that instance "partner" might be one level of "recommended". However it's a "level" with very little meaning. i.e. it does not assure a high level of control or even a good product. It just means the company has cooperated at making their products available and have cooperated with having a control module written for it. On the other hand a company that is not listed at all might work excellently, but might not be a partner if they are in direct competition with Crestron and don't want to be a partner.

I'm going to go out on a limb and bet that Control4's recommendations fall very much in line with this.
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post #51 of 84 Old 02-14-2010, 10:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Bi_Polar View Post

What I don't get is why there is one choice for a video matrix switch - and of course it is the most expensive you can find. I dont get why they dont stamp more than one router, or network switch. Seems silly to me.

This is not the case. Not even remotely. THE INSTALLER recommended that switch. Don't interpret the "Control 4 recommended" to mean "The Exclusive Choice For Control 4 Video Switching."
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post #52 of 84 Old 02-14-2010, 11:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K Shep View Post

.

I am currently working on a project in which the son in law of the client is consulting on the job.

I'm sorry. Nothing better than having a guy with a HTIB trying to suggest how to hook up his relative's 5 figure job. Yes, I had that happen. No, I wasn't ok with it.
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post #53 of 84 Old 02-14-2010, 11:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Haddad View Post

Back to the proposal. Here is another thing I found odd:

"Multi-room audio system equipment installation, programming and customer training $1,500.00"

That is INSANELY low. Which takes us back to the advice the other poster who advised that it's best to judge proposals as a whole and not get too focused on only one item. My point is that this company may well provide a large amount of labor at "no charge" because they are making profit from equipment sales. So I'd not look at the equipment prices in a vacuum so to speak. You might find product A for $300 less elsewhere, but then find that same company would charge $4700 for the installation. Or whatever.

I'm not saying people should not question equipment prices, just to also make sure to look at the big picture. In fact, I'd not only be asking the CI about the HDMi switch, I'd be asking them why the $1500 figure is so low.

As well as my question about not having an audio switch for two 8 zone amps, I agree with every point in this post.
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post #54 of 84 Old 02-15-2010, 08:20 AM
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As an installer I wouldn't touch a job that the customer picked up the gear from the internet/Costco/Best Buy. I've had nothing but Hellish experiences (understatement) with those jobs. Those people tried to nickle and dime EVERYTHING and expected miracles from equipment that quite simply can't do what they want it to. This is not at all referring to OP, this is in response to comments within the thread.

We (as a company) would not do this. We would either a) put in a disclaimer to say that we will try and work with a product you purchase and basically tell the customer "You are taking a chance. If it works great, if not we tried". and b) Try and steer them in the right direction of buying equipment that we know works even if they are not buying from us. Why lose a job just because they didn't buy from you? I've had hellish experiences on both jobs where we spec'd things and where we didn't spec them. Each job is a different animal with its own set of problems.

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post #55 of 84 Old 02-15-2010, 09:32 AM
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I had a conversation with the owner of a local IT installation company, at a party Fri. He doesn't make ANY money on equipment, all time/labor/contracts. He wants his clients to trust his equipment recommendation advice. He bills at $125/hour, per installer. His company does mostly commercial/small business, plus residential of local celebrities/bigwigs.

Imagine a CI selling all equipment at cost, and charging $200/hour labor. I think that would be awesome.

Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense. -Buddha

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post #56 of 84 Old 02-15-2010, 10:54 AM
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Is he also charging $ 200.00/hr for the time it takes to put the proposal together, determine how many feet of this and that, time to issue POs, track orders, and handle RMAs, warranty service items and the like?

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post #57 of 84 Old 02-15-2010, 08:05 PM
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Yes, he said he bills for that too.

I think, though, that he also makes a lot of recurring revenue, from service contracts.

Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense. -Buddha

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post #58 of 84 Old 02-18-2010, 11:55 AM
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Video switching and data switching products vary immensely in quality and reliability. Spending a little extra on these items, especially if they are certified to work properly with C4 will go a LONG way in ensuring the reliability and proper functionality of the entire system. I assume this network will also work double-duty as your primary data network for the PC's in your house. You will notice the difference in many ways, but mostly by the fact that you won't notice the network. It will work when you want it to at the speed you want it to. These infrastructure devices are the "unsung hero's"(too dramatic, maybe) of multi-faceted systems like this.

That said.....

Why are you picking apart at most $1000 worth of differences? 1% of the total. This installer is, no doubt, a professional. He recommended these products, more than likely, because he has used them before or because they are the best parts for the job. If you don't trust the motives behind his recommendations, you probably shouldn't be giving him the business. If you trust the installer, go with his recommendations. Maybe even pay a little extra for things you know are a tad overpriced. This is the way you can make sure a quality installer will outlive the scam-artists. Evolution at it's finest.
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post #59 of 84 Old 02-18-2010, 01:01 PM
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My car salesman is a professional, also. And I don't want my car window etched with my VIN, I don't want rustproofing, and I'm not paying for a $300 pinstripe that was added during prep.

I had many fillings put in my teeth as a child, too, that all were not needed. I think my dentist needed to make some boat payments.

Your cardiologist isn't above making recommendations for unneeded invasive procedures, either. Make sure your neurologist doesn't own the MR scanner he's referring you to. Always ask who owns the equipment, and get a 2nd opinion if there is a conflict of interest.

Blindly accepting recommendations is a common mistake, in all money matters. Everyone has an agenda.

Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense. -Buddha

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post #60 of 84 Old 02-18-2010, 01:51 PM
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I refer back to the word "trust" which I used in my previous post. I never recommended blindly following anyone. Regardless, your analogy isn't applicable. He is not contesting the need for a matrix switcher, etc.. He is questioning the price being charged.

I also re-iterate my previous statement. He is nickle-and-diming the quote. If you want a better price, ask for it. He recommended specific equipment for a reason. If he was trying to rip you off, there are much more efficient ways of doing so. The time you are putting in to scrutinizing each line of the quote isn't worth the potential payout. Obviously you should study the quote, but don't lose sleep over a couple hundred dollars here and there on a $100,000 quote. Instead, ask yourself, if the person you are doing business with is worth it. You will get a lot further going to your installer and saying you would like to see "X" dollars taken off the quote than by going to him and saying individual little items are a little pricey.

Besides, if you want to save a few bucks here and there, your installer will be much better qualified to recommend where you should trim the fat. For instance, you may be better off dropping a feature or two than skimping on the overall quality of the infrastructure you are building the entire system on. After all, you can add features down the road. Replacing key components down the road could be VERY costly.
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