Originally Posted by RyanDe680
I'd also like to incorporate a system where watching a movie in the great room can be paused and continued in the bedroom for example.
Are you talking about watching a movie from the DVR furnished by your service provider, or from a DVD player? Have you investigated available service providers in your area? I ask because some providers (Verizon FIOS, AT&T U-Verse, etc) either have or are coming out with a "whole house DVR" system, where content recorded on the DVR located in your main viewing area (e.g., the great room) can be viewed in other rooms (e.g., the bedroom) using the STB in the other room. On the other hand, if you're talking about starting a DVD movie in the great room and finishing it in the bedroom, you can certainly go with a distributed video system. Another method (and the one that I'll employ) is to have inexpensive DVD players in both rooms.
We're in the process of building a home, and I did a lot of research and got a lot of great information on this forum. AT&T U-Verse is one of the providers in our new area, so I'll probably try them out for most TV watching. Most of my serious movie viewing will be done in the upstairs media room, using the PS3 as my blu-ray/DVD player. I didn't see the need for a distributed video system, so that's not on the plate, at least for now.
I concentrated more on planning for whole house audio, so I can listen to music from various sources (music server, Ipod, internet radio, etc) throughout the house (family room, bedrooms, study, kitchen, patio, garage, etc). My builder uses a custom installer, and a basic package (3 rooms audio, several rooms video/data) is included in the home price. I paid extra to have the installer go ahead and run extra video/data to certain rooms, and audio to almost every room. I also had them run conduit to some key locations for future expansion or technology changes. I'll be set up for video and data when the house is completed. When I decide to install whole house audio in 6 to 9 months, all of the structured wiring will already be in place. If I want to start with audio in half of the rooms, I can install ceiling speakers and keypads/volume controls in those rooms. I can add other rooms later, depending upon my needs and the capabilities of the system I choose.
Good luck. It's a bit overwhelming at first, but it's really a lot of fun learning about what's available and planning for a new house.