Home audio distribution questions - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 19 Old 03-18-2013, 05:37 AM - Thread Starter
Member
 
smenzer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 33
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Hi everyone,

I've been reading through these forums for a few weeks now but still have some open questions that I haven't seen explicit answers for so hoping you can help.

I'm putting in a home audio distribution system in the house I'm buying (existing construction - will have to run wires but should be able to do it via the attic). I'd like to be able to play music throughout the house, sometimes all the same source, other times different sources in each zone. I will want access to all sources (primarily I'll need iTunes, Spotify, and Pandora) from any room with local controls. Detailed requirements, followed by my questions, below:
  • Speakers in almost every room (generally 2 per room, bathrooms 1 stereo speaker)
  • 2 rooms with 5.1 or 7.1 home theater setups, would still like them connected to a zone (family room and large room in the basement)
  • Minimum of 6 zones, likely I'll want 11 at some point
  • I'll want access to my AppleTV / iTunes throughout the house and ideally be able to play different songs in each zone
  • I think this means I need multiple AppleTV's or some device. I read a lot about Sonos and I think the Sonos Connect would work.
  • I want to be able to play any source in any zone. I also want to be able to play the same source in several zones at the same time.
  • I want to have central control from an iPhone or iPad, but also want to have controls available in each zone so I don't have to pull out my phone to make quick changes (like volume, next song, etc.)
  • In some zones, I want guests to be able to play their own music - preferably via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi, but via a direct line input would suffice, too.
  • I'd like to be able to have a TV show on in the family room (playing via the AVR to get surround) while cooking dinner and wanting to play the audio in the kitchen (in stereo) as well

If you visit this link, you can see some floor plans I put together for the house: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/qeu5b5x173heysk/iKW6gBEu1K

Questions I Have
  • I can start with 6 zones now if I can easily expand later by simply rewiring at central location w/o having to re-run cables - is this true? Am I better off just wiring and setting up all 11 zones immediately?
  • If I put in 1 Sonos Connect today, that means I can only play one song throughout the house (which fine for now). I assume it's simply a matter of adding more Sonos Connects as inputs to the main device (the controller?) if I want to let multiple zones hear different songs - so this should be an easy upgrade later. Can you confirm?
  • Is it possible to take a source hooked up to my AVRs for the home theaters and play those in other zones? What would the setup/wiring look like?
  • I'm leaning towards HTD (probably this one http://www.htd.com/Products/Lync/Lync6-Sets) given its DIY focus and the cost, but would you recommend Nuvo or Russound instead?
  • Do you have recommendations for great in-wall speakers in the $100-$150 per pair range? How are the HTD speakers?
  • Should I run 16 or 18 gauge wire for all speakers? For my home theaters, I'll probably run 14 for the fronts and 16 for the surrounds - does that seem right?
  • Can I put in a regular in-ceiling speaker in the bathroom, knowing it will get very steamy in there? Or should I get an in-wall rated for the outdoors?
  • Assuming I need more speakers than the amp supports, can I just piggyback the amps and use several of them?
  • How many watts per channel do you recommend for the amp given that the majority of music played throughout the house (with the exception of the home theaters) will be background music
  • The HTD amps look to have analog inputs - can these actually take digital input, though?

Thanks so much for your help!
Scott
smenzer is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 19 Old 03-18-2013, 07:05 AM
AVS Special Member
 
jautor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 7,617
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 49 Post(s)
Liked: 335
Quote:
Originally Posted by smenzer View Post

  • I want to have central control from an iPhone or iPad, but also want to have controls available in each zone so I don't have to pull out my phone to make quick changes (like volume, next song, etc.)
  • In some zones, I want guests to be able to play their own music - preferably via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi, but via a direct line input would suffice, too.
  • I'd like to be able to have a TV show on in the family room (playing via the AVR to get surround) while cooking dinner and wanting to play the audio in the kitchen (in stereo) as well

If you want keypad controls that allow browsing of songs, you'll need to step up to a NuVo or Russound system. The HTD won't do that. I'd recommend the NuVo Grand Concerto and the MPS4 music server, but it will be a jump in price over the Lync. They will do everything on your list.

You can feed the output of a set-top box as a source to the system, so that you can hear TV audio in any zone. Just need a wire to connect them together.

Local source inputs are possible with either of those brands, plus there are other solutions.
Quote:
I can start with 6 zones now if I can easily expand later by simply rewiring at central location w/o having to re-run cables - is this true? Am I better off just wiring and setting up all 11 zones immediately?

Everything will come from your central location. If you want to add 5-6 zones later, you just have to run wires for those zones. You'll need the expansion system anyway, so doing 6-8 to start is a good number.
Quote:
If I put in 1 Sonos Connect today, that means I can only play one song throughout the house (which fine for now). I assume it's simply a matter of adding more Sonos Connects as inputs to the main device (the controller?) if I want to let multiple zones hear different songs - so this should be an easy upgrade later. Can you confirm?

Correct. Also look at the NuVo P3100, which has similar capabilities, but three units in one box. But neither of these has any local keypad support.
Quote:
Is it possible to take a source hooked up to my AVRs for the home theaters and play those in other zones? What would the setup/wiring look like?

Any analog source can be attached to a WHA system. Easiest connection is a cat5e cable and a MuxLab RCA audio balun.
Quote:
I'm leaning towards HTD (probably this one http://www.htd.com/Products/Lync/Lync6-Sets) given its DIY focus and the cost, but would you recommend Nuvo or Russound instead?

HTD is a great value, but won't get you music browsing on the keypads.
Quote:
Should I run 16 or 18 gauge wire for all speakers?

16 is the recommended gauge. Don't go any smaller than that.
Quote:
Can I put in a regular in-ceiling speaker in the bathroom, knowing it will get very steamy in there? Or should I get an in-wall rated for the outdoors?

I'd just use speakers that aren't paper - Kelvar / plastic cones should be fine.
Quote:
Assuming I need more speakers than the amp supports, can I just piggyback the amps and use several of them?

??? You can connect two pairs of 8-ohm speakers to an amp IF the amp is 4-ohm stable. Many of them are...
Quote:
How many watts per channel do you recommend for the amp given that the majority of music played throughout the house (with the exception of the home theaters) will be background music

You'll see that most WHA systems are in the 20-40 watt range...
Quote:
The HTD amps look to have analog inputs - can these actually take digital input, though?

No, none of the systems take digital inputs. Analog only.

whew...


Jeff
killswitch1968 and smenzer like this.

Rock Creek Theater -- CIH, Panamorph, Martin Logan, SVS PB2000, Carada Masquerade, Grafik Eye, Bar table, Green Glue, JVC RS50 
Theater build photos: http://photobucket.com/autor-ht

jautor is online now  
post #3 of 19 Old 03-18-2013, 07:41 AM - Thread Starter
Member
 
smenzer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 33
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Jeff - thanks for all the answers! I'm going to do some more research based on your responses and come back with some more thoughts/questions.

Thanks!
Scott
smenzer is offline  
post #4 of 19 Old 03-19-2013, 05:07 AM - Thread Starter
Member
 
smenzer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 33
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

If you want keypad controls that allow browsing of songs, you'll need to step up to a NuVo or Russound system. The HTD won't do that. I'd recommend the NuVo Grand Concerto and the MPS4 music server, but it will be a jump in price over the Lync. They will do everything on your list.
If I'm using a Sonos as my source and playing Pandora or iTunes - will I still get to browse songs with a Nuvo or Russound? Can I at least Play/Pause/Skip/Back with HTD for a source like this?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

You can feed the output of a set-top box as a source to the system, so that you can hear TV audio in any zone. Just need a wire to connect them together.
I assume this means just running an analog audio out from the STB back to the central controller (could be a long run depending on where the central location is relative to the STB, but analog should be fine I think)

Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

Everything will come from your central location. If you want to add 5-6 zones later, you just have to run wires for those zones. You'll need the expansion system anyway, so doing 6-8 to start is a good number.
If every speaker has wires run back to the central location already (including the zones I want to add later - essentially I'm going to have several speakers on a single zones for now, then split them up later when I need to), then this should be an easy task.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

HTD is a great value, but won't get you music browsing on the keypads.
If I decide that I can live w/o music browsing on the keypads (since I can use an app on my phone to do it I think - either from the HTD app or directly with the source app (Sonos / Apple Remote)), are there any other reasons why HTD would not be recommended? Can I install Nuvo or Russound myself? I think I have to buy from a dealer, but do they also need to do the install generally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

??? You can connect two pairs of 8-ohm speakers to an amp IF the amp is 4-ohm stable. Many of them are...
I'll try to rephrase my question. If I have more speakers than the amp supports (let's assume I've already connected two pairs to some of the outputs, but I still need a second amp) - how do they hook together and still work properly with the main controller? Is this a standard setup or something where I'd want to think about a bigger amp from the get go?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

No, none of the systems take digital inputs. Analog only.
I guess for WHA this will be fine - my HT will have digital and that's where I'll really want it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

whew...
Thanks again for all the answers!


Scott
smenzer is offline  
post #5 of 19 Old 03-19-2013, 06:53 AM
AVS Special Member
 
jautor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 7,617
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 49 Post(s)
Liked: 335
Quote:
Originally Posted by smenzer View Post

If I'm using a Sonos as my source and playing Pandora or iTunes - will I still get to browse songs with a Nuvo or Russound? Can I at least Play/Pause/Skip/Back with HTD for a source like this?

No. Sonos is controlled only from their app.
Quote:
I assume this means just running an analog audio out from the STB back to the central controller (could be a long run depending on where the central location is relative to the STB, but analog should be fine I think)

Correct.
Quote:
If every speaker has wires run back to the central location already (including the zones I want to add later - essentially I'm going to have several speakers on a single zones for now, then split them up later when I need to), then this should be an easy task.

Yep, running the speaker wires, and the cat5e control wire for the keypads, is the hard part. Adding an expansion system once the wiring is done is a piece of cake.
Quote:
If I decide that I can live w/o music browsing on the keypads (since I can use an app on my phone to do it I think - either from the HTD app or directly with the source app (Sonos / Apple Remote)), are there any other reasons why HTD would not be recommended? Can I install Nuvo or Russound myself? I think I have to buy from a dealer, but do they also need to do the install generally?

Metadata and control/browsing on the keypads is the biggest difference. And yes, installing a Russound / NuVo is no more difficult than an HTD. Buy from an authorized dealer, as you'll want them to supply the configuration software (at least for NuVo). Find a dealer willing to give you a DIY price on the gear...
Quote:
I'll try to rephrase my question. If I have more speakers than the amp supports (let's assume I've already connected two pairs to some of the outputs, but I still need a second amp) - how do they hook together and still work properly with the main controller? Is this a standard setup or something where I'd want to think about a bigger amp from the get go?

Many of these systems have variable line outputs you can feed to an external amp. A bunch of speakers attached to an impedance-matching speaker selector and an external amp is one way to expand without forking out "expansion system" bucks. Just realize that volume control can become an issue as all speakers attached will get the same level.

Jeff
smenzer likes this.

Rock Creek Theater -- CIH, Panamorph, Martin Logan, SVS PB2000, Carada Masquerade, Grafik Eye, Bar table, Green Glue, JVC RS50 
Theater build photos: http://photobucket.com/autor-ht

jautor is online now  
post #6 of 19 Old 03-19-2013, 08:24 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Joe Fernand's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Scotland, UK
Posts: 1,088
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Liked: 60
Have a look at MY:RO Bridge if you are considering integrating Sonos with Russound.

http://www.myrocontrol.com/myrobridge

Joe

If I've helped 'Like' me on Facebook - www.facebook.com/Octavainc

Joe Fernand is offline  
post #7 of 19 Old 03-19-2013, 09:39 AM
AVS Special Member
 
jautor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 7,617
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 49 Post(s)
Liked: 335
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Fernand View Post

Have a look at MY:RO Bridge if you are considering integrating Sonos with Russound.

http://www.myrocontrol.com/myrobridge

Joe

Oh yeah, forgot about that!!

Rock Creek Theater -- CIH, Panamorph, Martin Logan, SVS PB2000, Carada Masquerade, Grafik Eye, Bar table, Green Glue, JVC RS50 
Theater build photos: http://photobucket.com/autor-ht

jautor is online now  
post #8 of 19 Old 03-19-2013, 11:12 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Joe Fernand's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Scotland, UK
Posts: 1,088
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Liked: 60
We've had a couple of customers using them with our Octava HDMI Matrix.

Danny who designs/supplies the MY:RO tech is very helpful.

Joe

If I've helped 'Like' me on Facebook - www.facebook.com/Octavainc

Joe Fernand is offline  
post #9 of 19 Old 03-20-2013, 02:23 PM - Thread Starter
Member
 
smenzer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 33
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Thanks Joe!


Does anyone have suggestions for good in-wall/in-ceiling speakers in the $100-$200 per pair price range? These would be for the non-HT rooms throughout the house.

Thanks,
Scott
smenzer is offline  
post #10 of 19 Old 03-20-2013, 03:39 PM
AVS Special Member
 
wkearney99's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Bethesda, MD USA
Posts: 1,267
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Liked: 52
I have the Myro bridge with our Russound CAV66 setup and while it does work, it's not really a viable replacement for a regular sonos control (either a real sonos remote or an app on a touchscreen device). It's also only geared toward a single sonos source; the alphabetically first one. This is not configurable, so be prepared to rename your sonos zones if necessary. Installing a Russound is brain-dead simple. Just run cat5e to the keypads and either 16 or 14 gauge wire to the speakers. It's common to run 16/4 to the keypad box and then 16/2 up to each speaker. This to allow you to change to a different system in the future, if one offered in-keypad speaker control/amplification. That and you'd have one less cable to run all the way back to the rack. You can get combo cat5e-16/4 cable all in one jacket. For the background level sound you get out of these systems you're fine with 16 gauge if you're under 80' total to the speakers, otherwise Russound recommends 14 gauge for up to 250'. You could always use more but I'd stick with only 12 gauge for other 5.1 theater setups.
smenzer likes this.
wkearney99 is offline  
post #11 of 19 Old 03-28-2013, 03:41 PM - Thread Starter
Member
 
smenzer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 33
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Thanks for the answers everyone. Another question I'm facing:

I'm going to have a zone that has 3 different rooms on it (6 speakers total). I will never need to play different audio between those rooms since they are close and open to each other. I would, however, like to control the volume in each room and whether the speakers are on at all. Ideally, I can do this via a keypad/remote/iphone app, but would settle for volume controls/local keypads in each room. Is there a way to do this in my preferred way?

From a wiring perspective, I believe this would mean I have to run wire from the amp to each keypad/volume control, then up to the speakers, correct?

Thanks again!
Scott
smenzer is offline  
post #12 of 19 Old 03-28-2013, 04:18 PM
AVS Special Member
 
jautor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 7,617
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 49 Post(s)
Liked: 335
Quote:
Originally Posted by smenzer View Post

I'm going to have a zone that has 3 different rooms on it (6 speakers total). I will never need to play different audio between those rooms since they are close and open to each other. I would, however, like to control the volume in each room and whether the speakers are on at all. Ideally, I can do this via a keypad/remote/iphone app, but would settle for volume controls/local keypads in each room. Is there a way to do this in my preferred way?

That's the other purpose for having different zones. Individual on/off or volume control... You have two choices depending on your future plans. A speaker selector with impedance-matching and volume controls for each output, or individual wall-mounted impedance-matching volume controls.

The difference depends on your expected usage. If you intend to adjust volume in the three areas "together" - meaning you just need to set the relative volume levels once and leave them (or infrequently adjust them), the central control will be better. If you expect to really use the volume controls often, the in-wall controls will be better.
Quote:
From a wiring perspective, I believe this would mean I have to run wire from the amp to each keypad/volume control, then up to the speakers, correct?

In both cases, run wire as if they were individual zones with speaker wire and a cat5e to the volume control location. Then you can use either solution today, change your mind later, and still upgrade them to "real" zones in the future. Best to have all the wiring consistent - and to handle 'special' needs as extra cabling...


Jeff
smenzer likes this.

Rock Creek Theater -- CIH, Panamorph, Martin Logan, SVS PB2000, Carada Masquerade, Grafik Eye, Bar table, Green Glue, JVC RS50 
Theater build photos: http://photobucket.com/autor-ht

jautor is online now  
post #13 of 19 Old 03-28-2013, 04:30 PM - Thread Starter
Member
 
smenzer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 33
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Thanks Jeff. I will want individual volume controls (I might want the volume louder in the kitchen while I'm cooking but then turn it down when I'm done, but leaving the audio on).

Since I will not be putting in all speakers/wall controles/etc on day one, but I would like to wire for it, it sounds like I should do the following:

1) Figure out where my central location will be
2) Run 16 gauge speaker wire from the central location to all zones to the area on the wall where I'll put a keypad/volume control
3) From all wall keypad/volume locations, run a 16 gauge speaker wire up to the ceiling where the speakers will be
4) Run Cat5e cable from the central location to all walls where keypads will be, plus any location that I will want a "hard wire" internet connection or phone jack
5) Run a separate Cat5e cable from the central location to any location where I would want video sourced/output (via a balun) so I can potentially distribute video throughout the house some day
6) 5.1/7.1 surround areas will be wired directly to a local AVR using 14 gauge speaker wire
7) Run a Cat5e cable from each AVR to the central location so that I can share audio from this location to the rest of the house (via a balun)

2 more questions:
Should I run duplicate cables anywhere for future proofing / immediate needs?
If I want to distribute audio from a central source to a room that has its own AVR, what's the best way to wire this? I assume the AVR would be required to turn on and the source changed to the "WHA" source, but I'm not really sure the wiring setup from the central controller or the local keypad.

Thanks again!
Scott
smenzer is offline  
post #14 of 19 Old 03-28-2013, 06:41 PM
AVS Special Member
 
jautor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 7,617
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 49 Post(s)
Liked: 335
Quote:
Originally Posted by smenzer View Post

Since I will not be putting in all speakers/wall controles/etc on day one, but I would like to wire for it, it sounds like I should do the following:

1) Figure out where my central location will be
2) Run 16 gauge speaker wire from the central location to all zones to the area on the wall where I'll put a keypad/volume control
3) From all wall keypad/volume locations, run a 16 gauge speaker wire up to the ceiling where the speakers will be
4) Run Cat5e cable from the central location to all walls where keypads will be, plus any location that I will want a "hard wire" internet connection or phone jack
5) Run a separate Cat5e cable from the central location to any location where I would want video sourced/output (via a balun) so I can potentially distribute video throughout the house some day
6) 5.1/7.1 surround areas will be wired directly to a local AVR using 14 gauge speaker wire
7) Run a Cat5e cable from each AVR to the central location so that I can share audio from this location to the rest of the house (via a balun)

That all looks good. Except for (oh wait, you're going to ask the question anyway)...
Quote:
2 more questions:
Should I run duplicate cables anywhere for future proofing / immediate needs?

Yes, lots more cat5e. Not "duplicate", but additional. Adding one more to everywhere you run one (except the keypads, one is plenty there) is a good start. Anywhere there will be a TV i would recommend three. Two for A/V distribution and one for Ethernet. In the future you may select HDBaseT products that will do all that on one cat5e, but they are currently expensive, wire is really cheap, and there's 100 other potential uses...
Quote:
If I want to distribute audio from a central source to a room that has its own AVR, what's the best way to wire this? I assume the AVR would be required to turn on and the source changed to the "WHA" source, but I'm not really sure the wiring setup from the central controller or the local keypad.

Two "good" ways to do this.

1) Use a cat5 balun or a pair of coax cables to connect the line-level analog audio output from the WHA system for that zone to the AVR. Then operate the AVR normally, using an "app" or a keypad mounted in that room to control it. Benefit - get to use the power and capabilities of your AVR, on your main L/R speakers easily.

2) Share only the surround channels between the AVR and the WHA system using a "local source interrupt" solution. This connects the two systems at speaker level with an automatic switch, so that normally the speakers are for surround, but when the WHA zone is turned on, they switch to the WHA amp. Benefit - automatic operation, background music, wired and operates like every other WHA zone (plus some extra bits to do the LSI).

The correct answer is "yes". biggrin.gif You can wire for both possibilities if you'd like. For my family room I did (1) - except I didn't put a keypad in that room - I shared the zone with another room (control it from an app, though). Doing it over I would have wired a keypad in the room to be consistent and convenient, and wired the room for both (1) and (2).

In my bedrooms I've wired each for (2), and actually use the LSI setup in my master.

Hope that helps,

Jeff
smenzer likes this.

Rock Creek Theater -- CIH, Panamorph, Martin Logan, SVS PB2000, Carada Masquerade, Grafik Eye, Bar table, Green Glue, JVC RS50 
Theater build photos: http://photobucket.com/autor-ht

jautor is online now  
post #15 of 19 Old 03-29-2013, 04:31 AM - Thread Starter
Member
 
smenzer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 33
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Again you provide amazing answers, thanks Jeff! I'll do more research on #2, but it sounds like doing both would be ideal. #2 for ease of use if it's really just background music; but #1 would allow me to really crank it if I want to (with the added step of turning on the AVR, not a big deal in that situation).

Thanks!
Scott
smenzer is offline  
post #16 of 19 Old 03-29-2013, 10:50 AM
Member
 
capaill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 154
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
great thread, and I have the exact same questions, and possibly the same viewpoints as Scott in terms of cost and usability. I've done lots of other research done as well, so hopefully I add to the thread without detracting from Scot's goal

Hi was also seriously looking at Sonos, it works really well, plays local music (at CD quality) and streaming content, but at $350 a zones (an-amplified), its a bit on the is on the expensive side. And like Scott I was leaning towards only using touchscreen devices for music selection, although, having some keypads for local ipod use for quests might be a good thing, or even just for local volume control.

And if Sonos is a bit on the expensive side, that really just leaves HTD as a solution, since Russound, Niles, Nuvo etc are dealer only and even more expensive than Sonos.

One topic that has been missed so far is a control interface. If choosing a HTD system, what user interface do you recommend?....It would be nice to be able to select music, zones and volume all from the single UI. HTD uses an app for zone and volume control, but then you need another app to browse the actual music, which could be a sonos unit or even a PC connected to the HTD.

Another option to HTD would be a second hand matrix such as Autopatch or extron. Would any of yo still recommend these, as they are going cheap on ebay.

Derek

Capall
capaill is offline  
post #17 of 19 Old 03-29-2013, 11:55 AM
AVS Special Member
 
jautor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 7,617
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 49 Post(s)
Liked: 335
Quote:
Originally Posted by capaill View Post

And like Scott I was leaning towards only using touchscreen devices for music selection, although, having some keypads for local ipod use for quests might be a good thing, or even just for local volume control.

Don't underestimate the usefulness of in-room keypads, even if they're "just for volume control". Unless you carry your phone with you at all times around the house, the keypad is a very convenient, always-in-the-same-place control.
Quote:
And if Sonos is a bit on the expensive side, that really just leaves HTD as a solution, since Russound, Niles, Nuvo etc are dealer only and even more expensive than Sonos.

All of those are sold through authorized dealers. You can purchase most from authorized on-line sources (Smarthome, Parts Express), but working with a local dealer that is willing to provide a DIY price / discount can get you a better deal. Having a good relationship with a local dealer is a good idea - they'll be more willing to make some fast money on equipment if they know you won't turn around and demand lots of "free advice" to set the thing up...
Quote:
One topic that has been missed so far is a control interface. If choosing a HTD system, what user interface do you recommend?....It would be nice to be able to select music, zones and volume all from the single UI. HTD uses an app for zone and volume control, but then you need another app to browse the actual music, which could be a sonos unit or even a PC connected to the HTD.

This is the difference between the HTD and the "source-integrated" systems from Russound/NuVo - you get metadata keypads with menus/controls, and a single app that control both the system and the source(s). Note to HTD and Sonos - if y'all worked together so that one of your apps would allow control of the others' volume / zone / source pieces, you'd both have a killer product combination. Probably easier for Sonos to add the HTDnet support to their app than the other way round...

Jeff

Rock Creek Theater -- CIH, Panamorph, Martin Logan, SVS PB2000, Carada Masquerade, Grafik Eye, Bar table, Green Glue, JVC RS50 
Theater build photos: http://photobucket.com/autor-ht

jautor is online now  
post #18 of 19 Old 03-29-2013, 12:06 PM - Thread Starter
Member
 
smenzer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 33
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Maybe I'm mistaken, but can't you DIY for Nuvo? You can buy their systems and accessories on smarthome.com. For example, here's the grand concerto system: http://www.smarthome.com/8270GMS/NuVo-Technologies-Grand-Concerto-6-Source-8-Zone-System-NV-I8GMS/p.aspx. There's a pretty extensive user manual that comes with it.

At this point, I'm leaning towards Nuvo as my system (over HTD) and probably their music server (over Sonos - but I need to research it a bit more). The pros of the Nuvo music server is that it will integrate nicer with the keypads and be in a single app, so as long as I can play playlists from itunes and easily choose a station on pandora, I'm happy. A little bummed it doesn't support Spotify, but maybe by the time I buy it they will.
smenzer is offline  
post #19 of 19 Old 03-29-2013, 03:33 PM
AVS Special Member
 
jautor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 7,617
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 49 Post(s)
Liked: 335
Quote:
Originally Posted by smenzer View Post

Maybe I'm mistaken, but can't you DIY for Nuvo? You can buy their systems and accessories on smarthome.com. For example, here's the grand concerto system: http://www.smarthome.com/8270GMS/NuVo-Technologies-Grand-Concerto-6-Source-8-Zone-System-NV-I8GMS/p.aspx. There's a pretty extensive user manual that comes with it.

You'll want to have the configuration software, which the dealer or NuVo tech support will have to provide - which is why you should buy from an authorized source. But the wiring and the speaker install is the hard part of any of these. Setting up the unit itself is cake.
Quote:
At this point, I'm leaning towards Nuvo as my system (over HTD) and probably their music server (over Sonos - but I need to research it a bit more). The pros of the Nuvo music server is that it will integrate nicer with the keypads and be in a single app, so as long as I can play playlists from itunes and easily choose a station on pandora, I'm happy. A little bummed it doesn't support Spotify, but maybe by the time I buy it they will.

If you move up to a Russound or NuVo system, you should absolutely have the media streamer/server - think of it as a requirement. Paying for the metadata/menu-based keypads without the server support would be a waste of $$ compared to an HTD.

I wouldn't expect new features / services to be added to the "old " MPS4 servers - NuVo is putting all their effort on the wireless system (different software, different vendor for that matter). Autonomic did add Spotify to their products, so there's certainly a chance, but I don't know if they're really working together at all anymore... Which is why I keep pestering NuVo to add keypad support to the new P3100 server, or make a version of it minus the amp to pair well with the GC.

Jeff

Rock Creek Theater -- CIH, Panamorph, Martin Logan, SVS PB2000, Carada Masquerade, Grafik Eye, Bar table, Green Glue, JVC RS50 
Theater build photos: http://photobucket.com/autor-ht

jautor is online now  
Reply Home A/V Distribution

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off