New theater lighting - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 03-01-2013, 07:42 PM - Thread Starter
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I recently started building a home theater in the basement of my home. I've come to the point
where it's time for the lighting. The theater will have a total of 7 can lights and a section of rope lights around the ceiling of the room. I want the ability to dim the lights and create different lighting scenes, and also,.. light control when a movie begins or ends. I like the idea of the Insteon 6 button dimmer control panel but not sure what other products I will need. Can everything that I want to accomplish be done with 6 button panel? What other items are needed? I'm open to your suggestions and ideas that you may have. Thank you for your time.

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post #2 of 10 Old 03-01-2013, 07:53 PM
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Lutron radio RA2 would be slightly more expensive but allow you to grow slowly after you get a taste for automation. Have you looked into Lutron's wireless pico series? Great product and great price point.
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post #3 of 10 Old 03-01-2013, 08:25 PM - Thread Starter
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I like the looks of the Pico series controls. If I used the Pico table top control would I still need to install a wall switch? Would I need to purchase a Pico controller for every set of lights that work independently? A wall switch that can control multiple sets of lights and dim is what I'm looking for. like the 6 button controller from insteon. A remote would be nice too.
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post #4 of 10 Old 03-02-2013, 12:15 PM
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pico's are typically to used to control a single light. they can be loose, tabletop, or wall mounted to add a switch where you don't have one. kind of nice since a lot of times electricians put them in the worst possible places to save time and money! are you doing the radiora2 system? what kind of lighting scenes are you trying to accomplish?
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post #5 of 10 Old 03-02-2013, 01:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Ideally I would like to be able to dim the 3 can lights above the projector screen while the other 4 in the theater remain off and vice versa. Also, I would like to turn on the rope lighting
while the 7 can lights remain off. Plus other variations. What else would be needed to purchase to accomplish these goals?.
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post #6 of 10 Old 03-02-2013, 06:23 PM
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You need one Insteon dimmer/relay per load. A load is a single light/appliance or a group of lights that are connected together.

The various dimmer/relays available with Insteon include:

KeypadLinc
SwitchLinc
InlineLinc
Micro Module
LampLinc
ApplianceLinc

Pick 3. Make sure the lights are capable of dimming if you are using dimmers.

Also be aware of single band vs dual band Insteon devices and that you should try to use dual band when possible.

You can use the extra buttons on a KeypadLinc or a RemoteLinc to set up scenes for your 3 loads.

I don't know why people recommend Lutron Radio RA2 for small projects like this. You are going to spend more including the main repeater you have to buy. There is a simple DIY setup option but it prevents you from using the iphone app or other automation later. So if you decide you want those features you'll have to either pay an installer or qualify as a programmer online by taking courses and an exam. BUT on top of that, to download the software there is also a requirement to buy a $900 starter kit through a dealer (which comes with the main repeater). It only seems viable if you're ready to spend the $900 and do the training at the beginning.
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post #7 of 10 Old 03-02-2013, 08:26 PM
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system cost if you shop around is 700 dollars. this includes 3 dimmers, a hybrid keypad, the main repeater, a repeat dimmer, and power supply. the beauty then is he can do scenes depending on his needs for theater and gives room for future expansion. once it's installed in bamement it will expand later obviously. i took the lutron training to get software after i aquired it on the avs. training took me all of about 6 hours and to me was well worth it.
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post #8 of 10 Old 03-02-2013, 08:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Than you AZ1324, I think I'm going to go with the keypad and micro modules for each set of lights. I need to go out and find the dual band can lights.
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post #9 of 10 Old 03-02-2013, 10:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mystikjoe View Post

system cost if you shop around is 700 dollars. this includes 3 dimmers, a hybrid keypad, the main repeater, a repeat dimmer, and power supply. the beauty then is he can do scenes depending on his needs for theater and gives room for future expansion. once it's installed in bamement it will expand later obviously. i took the lutron training to get software after i aquired it on the avs. training took me all of about 6 hours and to me was well worth it.

$700 and 6 hours is still a lot to ask for someone who wants to do one room w/ 3 loads, especially when it can be done for under $200 with Insteon and a few minutes of reading the instructions. Plus Insteon is just as expandable and the product line has a lot more variety. So unless you are in love with the look & feel of Lutron or believe it may have marginally improved reliability that justifies the additional expense, it isn't that tempting IMO.
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post #10 of 10 Old 03-20-2013, 10:44 AM
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You can't really compare the two products since there is a huge price difference. Bang for the buck doing one room and never wanting to expand you made a wise choice!
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