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post #1 of 34 Old 09-22-2013, 03:02 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm looking for some advise on a Nuvo system I'm planning to install for a friend. He wants 8 rooms covered. My Nuvo list consists of:

- Grand Concerto
- D460 Amplifier
- Music Port (the lower cost one)
- 8 Keypads

My plan is to combine two rooms (Master BR and Master Bath) into one zone and use the D460 amplifer. I would then have the 6 remaining rooms powered by the 6 zones from the Grand Concerto. Does this configuration make sense?

In addition, do I need to worry about moisture for the Master Bath speakers and/or keypad?

Two of the zones are outside but under porch roofs. Do I need to use a special wall speaker and/or keypad for these locations?

Thanks for the help!
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post #2 of 34 Old 09-22-2013, 03:29 PM
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Originally Posted by sbex55 View Post

My plan is to combine two rooms (Master BR and Master Bath) into one zone and use the D460 amplifer. I would then have the 6 remaining rooms powered by the 6 zones from the Grand Concerto. Does this configuration make sense?

The D460 gives you four channels, so those two rooms can be separate zones (as they should be) connected to zones 7&8. Get one more keypad so you've got full control in all eight rooms.
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In addition, do I need to worry about moisture for the Master Bath speakers and/or keypad? Two of the zones are outside but under porch roofs. Do I need to use a special wall speaker and/or keypad for these locations?

I'd suggest using non-paper speaker cones (Kelvar / plastic) for bathroom and outdoor (under cover) locations. No issue with the keypads, just keep them dry.


Jeff
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post #3 of 34 Old 09-23-2013, 10:01 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you for the help. A couple of new questions:

1 - how would I pass TV audio to the Nuvo? For example ... listen to the football game while going into a different room.

2 - What are the differences between the basic Nuvo Music Port and the Elite version besides the additional storage?

Thanks!
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post #4 of 34 Old 09-23-2013, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by sbex55 View Post

1 - how would I pass TV audio to the Nuvo? For example ... listen to the football game while going into a different room.

Take the audio output from the set-top box (assuming the TV's source is a DVR or set-top box) and connect it to the NuVo as a source. Really only a question of where those two pieces of equipment sit and what cabling exists between them... A cat5e cable can do the job.
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2 - What are the differences between the basic Nuvo Music Port and the Elite version besides the additional storage?

NAS support for additional storage is the big one. "Cloud Sync-ing" between servers (at a vacation home, etc.) is the other. The Elite also enables the IP control interface for 3rd party automation integration.
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post #5 of 34 Old 09-23-2013, 04:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the responses! Of course I have a few more questions:

1 - My current cable box has rca output connections and a SPDIF port. How would I hookup a cat5e cable to my cable box to get audio to my Nuvo? I am able to run any type cable from the cable box location to the Nuvo equipment.

2 - I don't have to have a keypad with every zone, correct? Since all the zones are on the 1st floor and the homeowners have 2 iphones and 2 ipads I'm thinking of placing 4-5 keypads in convenient places. Does this make sense? How many button presses does it take to turn on a zone not linked to the keypad?

3 - I read on the Nuvo website that the Music Port will not playback ITunes 'Protected' files. I assume if you purchase a album/song from ITunes it's not a 'Protected' file, correct?

My apologies if these questions are too basic. I've done a lot of reading but haven't found answers to my specific questions.

Thank you for the help (again)!
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post #6 of 34 Old 09-23-2013, 04:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbex55 View Post

1 - My current cable box has rca output connections and a SPDIF port. How would I hookup a cat5e cable to my cable box to get audio to my Nuvo? I am able to run any type cable from the cable box location to the Nuvo equipment.

MuxLab HiFi audio balun (in a nice 2-pack):

http://muxlab.com/product?product=stereo-hi-fi-balun-2-pack&pid=1247

Or a pair of coax cables if you're running cables regardless.
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2 - I don't have to have a keypad with every zone, correct?

Don't have to, but you probably want to.
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Since all the zones are on the 1st floor and the homeowners have 2 iphones and 2 ipads I'm thinking of placing 4-5 keypads in convenient places. Does this make sense? How many button presses does it take to turn on a zone not linked to the keypad?

If you dedicate a tablet or other wireless device to that room (zone), or use the Nuvo wireless keypad, that can work. Launching the app, navigating around, etc. does take a few button presses. But many actions, like scrolling through the digital library (or any long menus / lists) are much faster/easier using the app.

But I would plan for keypads in every zone, unless there's a strong reason why not - they're always available, in the same place, and very quick to do on/off/mute. They're also available for anyone (guests) to use without having to be connected to the internal WiFi network.

If you just don't want "all those keypads" on the walls - wire for them and bury the cables. Then if you change your mind, you can cut a hole for the keypad and easily add it.
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3 - I read on the Nuvo website that the Music Port will not playback ITunes 'Protected' files. I assume if you purchase a album/song from ITunes it's not a 'Protected' file, correct?

Old "purchased" iTunes tracks were DRM-encrypted. None of these products will play back DRM'ed songs. All of your stuff should have had the DRM removed long ago... So, this shouldn't be an issue any more. Easy test - if you can play the file in any non-Apple product / application, there's no DRM... biggrin.gif
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post #7 of 34 Old 09-23-2013, 08:24 PM - Thread Starter
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You are awesome! Thank you for the help!

Those baluns are nice. I've read about using baluns but never really looked at the products. I will use those with a cat5 cable.

Also, I will take your advise and pre-wire for all keypads if I decide not to put a keypad in each zone.

I found out today the rear deck zone will not have a porch. I've read some installers use the Xantech Waterpad as a keypad for wet areas. When I showed the homeowners a picture of this keypad they did not like it very much. So, I'm thinking maybe I place the keypad just inside the exit door to the rear deck.

So what about purchasing the equipment? My plan is to send the equipment list to the three closest dealers and ask for a quote and compare to the online authorized dealer prices. Does this make sense? I know I need to ask for the configuration software with the equipment.

Thank you again!
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post #8 of 34 Old 09-23-2013, 09:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbex55 View Post

I found out today the rear deck zone will not have a porch. I've read some installers use the Xantech Waterpad as a keypad for wet areas. When I showed the homeowners a picture of this keypad they did not like it very much. So, I'm thinking maybe I place the keypad just inside the exit door to the rear deck.

The Waterpad isn't compatible, so don't go that route... Just inside the door isn't a bad answer. There are weather-proof covers that might be an option, but the combination of the keypad just inside and the mobile app is probably fine, too.
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So what about purchasing the equipment? My plan is to send the equipment list to the three closest dealers and ask for a quote and compare to the online authorized dealer prices. Does this make sense? I know I need to ask for the configuration software with the equipment.

Yep, exactly what I did... And my local dealer gave me the best price and has been great when I've called for more gear! The more knowledge and understanding of the system you have before you talk to the dealer will help - they don't want to give out a DIY price and then end up being "free support"...

Jeff

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post #9 of 34 Old 09-24-2013, 05:02 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks again! Just looked at your theater pictures. Very very nice. Plus the backyard pond is very cool. Jealousy now flowing ... 8)

I noticed you had a keypad wiring diagram. Did you have to run speaker wire to the keypads? I assume this is for future proofing. I was thinking 14/4 from my equipment rack to the 1st speaker in each zone and then extend one pair to the 2nd speaker. This logically seems a bit easier than pulling 2 14/2 wires. Thoughts?

Have you used the Nuvo Mute Interrupter module for the doorbell? How is this wired? I wanted to play a doorbell sound thru the speakers but looks like Nuvo doesn't provide this capability.
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post #10 of 34 Old 09-24-2013, 05:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Just found the install manuals on Smarthome. Looks like the Mute Interrupter wiring is fairly simple. I think I'll add this item to my purchase list.
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post #11 of 34 Old 09-24-2013, 09:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbex55 View Post

I noticed you had a keypad wiring diagram. Did you have to run speaker wire to the keypads? I assume this is for future proofing. I was thinking 14/4 from my equipment rack to the 1st speaker in each zone and then extend one pair to the 2nd speaker. This logically seems a bit easier than pulling 2 14/2 wires. Thoughts?

Yes, the builder and I both ran each zone according to the CEA wiring recommendations, which has 16/4 to the keypad location and 16/2 from there to each speaker. That allows for installation of either centralized or keypad-based digital amps. If you're going to install a NuVo system, you can wire directly to the speakers as you suggest, but you lose the potential for a distributed amp system in the future. Is that a big deal? I don't know - which is why I ran the wires to support both architectures...

You can run a single 14/4 or 16/4 from the amp, loop it through the keypad location and continue unbroken to the first, then the second speaker location. Leave a loop of slack at the first speaker (and the keypad), so you can cut/splice the wire (one pair will continue on to the 2nd speaker).
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Have you used the Nuvo Mute Interrupter module for the doorbell? How is this wired? I wanted to play a doorbell sound thru the speakers but looks like Nuvo doesn't provide this capability.

I haven't used the Doorbell Mute, and there was an application note I think using an Elk part that would provide a doorbell chime through the NuVo speakers as well. But the wiring diagram shows how to do the basic stuff...


Jeff

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post #12 of 34 Old 09-24-2013, 05:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Jautor - Thank you again. I was wondering about the use of 14 gauge vs 16 gauge. I see the Nuvo installation manual states 16 gauge. I've read several threads which recommend using 14 gauge for runs over 50' and 12 gauge over 100'. I'd like to save the $ if 16 gauge is acceptable for the Nuvo system based on the power levels involved. I'm inclined to use 16 gauge based on your usage and (obvious) system knowledge.
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post #13 of 34 Old 09-24-2013, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbex55 View Post

Jautor - Thank you again. I was wondering about the use of 14 gauge vs 16 gauge. I see the Nuvo installation manual states 16 gauge. I've read several threads which recommend using 14 gauge for runs over 50' and 12 gauge over 100'. I'd like to save the $ if 16 gauge is acceptable for the Nuvo system based on the power levels involved. I'm inclined to use 16 gauge based on your usage and (obvious) system knowledge.

I ran 16/4 per their recommendations even though I knew 14/4 would be better - didn't know if there could be problems with the wire being too large to fit into the connectors (having not installed one before). Now familiar with the unit, 14 or 12 AWG wouldn't be an issue for installation. But my whole house is run with 16/4 and 16/2, with most runs ~75ft, and it works just fine.

Now, if you buy your wire from Monoprice, the cost delta is really small, I wouldn't blame you for "upgrading" to 14/4 for those runs. I'd probably do the same, even though I have no issues with my setup...
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post #14 of 34 Old 10-19-2013, 07:56 AM
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Thought it would be ok to pick this thread back up, as I'm looking for a couple of suggestions on a new Nuvo build as well.

The basics:
I pre-wired a few months ago, running cat 5e + 16/4 to each of (8) keypad locations, and then 16/4 (just used all 16/4) to (2) speaker locations in 7 of the zones, and to (4) speaker locations in 1 zone (kitchen).

Was planning on looking in to a "lower-end" system (e.g., HTD) as well as a "mid-range" system (e.g., Nuvo), however after really thinking about it, I need the system to be as user-friendly as possible, and for it to "just work." The idea of not being able to control source & volume on the same keypad or phone/tablet app is kind of eliminating the lower-end system.

I installed a Concerto system at a house a few years back, and although I fumbled my way through parts of it, in general it was a pretty smooth setup, and I liked the finished product. A few questions for this install:

- I don't have room for the I8GCP keypads, only the single-gang E6GCP keypads. I see the E6GCP are compatible with the Concerto, however all of the "package" deals I see online only come bundled with the double-gang ones, and the savings going with the bundles seem to be pretty good. Any Concerto + single-gang keypad deals out there?

- For sources, Sirius/XM will be the main listening source. I was going to use the T2SIR, an iPod dock, and probably a cable box. Question here is, is it necessary to use the T2SIR to get the artist info/controls at the keypads? Or can you use a 3rd party?

- I haven't used the Apple/Android app before; what is required to make this work? Wi-fi in the house?

- I can't grasp my head around how the main Living Room speakers will work with the TV in that room + WHA system. Do I just run the analog outs of the cable box as a source to the Concerto, and then the digital out to a separate 5.1/7.1 receiver for that room? All of the equipment will be in the same area.

More to come I'm sure. Thanks.

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post #15 of 34 Old 10-19-2013, 10:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oktoberrust11 View Post

I don't have room for the I8GCP keypads, only the single-gang E6GCP keypads. I see the E6GCP are compatible with the Concerto, however all of the "package" deals I see online only come bundled with the double-gang ones, and the savings going with the bundles seem to be pretty good. Any Concerto + single-gang keypad deals out there?

None that I'm aware of - you should contact some local dealers to see if they can help you out. May be cheaper to buy an Essentia kit and sell the base unit on eBay (keeping 6 keypads) than buying all eight keypads individually.
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- For sources, Sirius/XM will be the main listening source. I was going to use the T2SIR, an iPod dock, and probably a cable box. Question here is, is it necessary to use the T2SIR to get the artist info/controls at the keypads? Or can you use a 3rd party?

Must use the NuVo sources to get metadata on the keypads.
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- I haven't used the Apple/Android app before; what is required to make this work? Wi-fi in the house?

Wifi, certainly. But more importantly, the app is actually controlling the Music Port server (MPS4 or MPS4E), which in turn controls the Concerto system. If you want mobile device support, you have buy one of the MusicPort servers.

Now, you're probably better off doing that anyway, as you get the Internet services and digital library, so you may not need the iPod dock, and the MPS4 has Sirius/XM streaming support, which gets you more channels than the sat tuner, too. So you could skip the T2SIR, too. The MPS4 has four outputs, I don't know if you can have multiple Sirius streams simultaneously - but certainly can use other Internet sources (Pandora and Internet Radio) at the same time.
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- I can't grasp my head around how the main Living Room speakers will work with the TV in that room + WHA system. Do I just run the analog outs of the cable box as a source to the Concerto, and then the digital out to a separate 5.1/7.1 receiver for that room? All of the equipment will be in the same area.

You can easily run analog audio from any device to the Concerto to make it a source on the WHA system. And since you have an AVR in that room, use one of the unpowered zones (#7 / #8) for the Living Room - taking the analog line out from the Concerto to a source input on your AVR. That allows you to use the AVR's power and speakers, but still have that room participate in the WHA system.

Hope that helps,

Jeff

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post #16 of 34 Old 10-19-2013, 11:43 AM
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Thanks Jeff, it does help.

I'm toying with the idea of doing an Essentia system instead. Obvious main limitation here would be going to 6-zones, but I don't think I truly need 8 separate audio zones. I was thinking of combining the Dining & Kitchen (2 & 5) in to 1 zone, and the Master Bed & Bath (6 & 8) into one. I can't imagine different sources being played in those zones, based on the layout. However, I would still like independent volume controls. Doable?

http://sdrv.ms/1b0enrR

Thanks for the tip about the Music Port Server being a requirement for the mobile app. I need to weigh if the ~3x cost is worth 1) the mobile app & 2) internet/Pondora/etc.

Looking at higher resolution pics of the keypads; man, going from the 2.7" to the 1" is a huge difference. I know it's hard to judge by these pictures, but these are the 2 keypad locations I'm concerned about fitting in a 2-gang box. Based on your installation experience, do you think I'd have enough room?

http://sdrv.ms/1b0dOOG
http://sdrv.ms/GVwJ3T

Thanks again,
Matt

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post #17 of 34 Old 10-19-2013, 01:18 PM
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You'll have zero trouble installing the double-gang keypad in either of those locations. Any place a double-gang box can fit (and you've got 3 or 4-gang boxes in those images for reference) you can put the GC keypad.

Don't combine zones if you can avoid it when they're really different rooms. A large, open space, perhaps, but bedroom / bathroom - no, keep those separate. Otherwise you can't use the bathroom speakers while someone else is sleeping, for example. And hacking in a manual volume control won't pass the "ease of use" test that you mention! biggrin.gif

And yes, highly recommend sticking with the 2.7" keypads - that was one of two deciding factors for me when I chose the system. You can read the keypad from across the room due to the high contrast and the text size.

The other deciding factor was the MusicPort server (I have the older, discontinued, PC-based product). I also have the XM tuner, but quite frankly, don't use it any more as the quality of the SiriusXM content has declined significantly since the merger, and the Pandora / Internet radio support provides a better experience anyway... I use those sources almost exclusively for WHA "background" purposes.

Most of us with these systems consider the MusicPort a mandatory component... No, it's not cheap, but that functionality integrated with the keypads is what makes the system worth it.


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post #18 of 34 Old 10-26-2013, 07:23 AM
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Ok, we've decided on going with the GC system w/ 2.7" keypads, the T2SIR tuner & the MPS4 server. A couple more questions..

The only thing I'm gaining in buying the T2SIR tuner in addition to the MPS4 is AM/FM, correct? And the main (only?) reason to get the NuVo tuner is for the metadata? Is it worth it to investigate if my local stations are available via internet radio? I'm probably answering most of my own questions here..

Thanks.

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post #19 of 34 Old 10-26-2013, 10:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oktoberrust11 View Post

The only thing I'm gaining in buying the T2SIR tuner in addition to the MPS4 is AM/FM, correct? And the main (only?) reason to get the NuVo tuner is for the metadata? Is it worth it to investigate if my local stations are available via internet radio?

Yes, yes, and definitely. You can easily look up your local stations at the TuneIn website. Create an account and set your local zip code, and you'll get the full list. Many local radio stations have additional streams for their digital radio implementations, too.

I have the NuVo tuner, which I bought used, and never use. If I actually did want to listen to local radio, I'd use the Internet stream anyway. The ONLY reason I've kept it is for potential use during times my Internet access is down (we do get hurricanes here...).
Quote:
I'm probably answering most of my own questions here..

Yes, probably. biggrin.gif

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post #20 of 34 Old 10-26-2013, 03:24 PM
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Put audio keypads at eye height (maybe 60" off floor).

MPS4 is the only source I use. It's priced about the same as 2 components.

You get a single SiriusXM stream, for each online acct. If you want more, add additional accts.

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post #21 of 34 Old 10-27-2013, 08:53 AM
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Thanks guys. I browsed the tunein site and see all of the local stations available. Do you browse these via the mobile NuVo app, the tunein site/app, or from the NuVo Keypads?

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post #22 of 34 Old 10-27-2013, 10:09 AM
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Originally Posted by oktoberrust11 View Post

Thanks guys. I browsed the tunein site and see all of the local stations available. Do you browse these via the mobile NuVo app, the tunein site/app, or from the NuVo Keypads?

From the keypads or the app. Setting "Favorites" makes it easy to select them quickly...

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post #23 of 34 Old 10-27-2013, 12:22 PM
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And I see what you mean about the keypad mounting height. Was assuming light switch height, but now see by pics and a tape measurer that ~60" makes more sense.

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post #24 of 34 Old 12-02-2013, 08:58 AM
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So 2 weekends back I was able to install all of the speakers, and (5) of the (6) keypads. In the next couple of weekends I'll install the headend and program, etc.

The one keypad I didn't install is one that's used for the outdoor screened in porch. Call it lack of thinking, but I wired this keypad to be installed on the exterior of the house. Granted, I don't think precipitation will get to it, but it's literally a screened in porch, and in northern Michigan, it will get chilly. I couldn't find a temperature rating on these, but has anyone installed them in less than ideal locations using some sort of keypad cover? I'd like to keep the keypad out there if possible.

I can relocate it so it's on the inside of the house to the right of the door that leads outside with a bit of work. I'm thinking that's what I'll end up doing, unless I can find something to keep it outside.

Thanks.

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post #25 of 34 Old 12-02-2013, 03:06 PM
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NAS support for additional storage is the big one. "Cloud Sync-ing" between servers (at a vacation home, etc.) is the other. The Elite also enables the IP control interface for 3rd party automation integration.
Do you know if the API for this public? (TCP version of the nuvonet adapter?) That would be useful & tempt me to buy one.

It might be too late, but I have experience with the mute/doorbell inputs for the Nuvo if you have questions. (very simple: close the circuit with a relay/opt-isolator - this triggers either a mute of enabled zone. You can also configure to play "Source 6" on all zones instead of just mute. I have a doorbell that triggers the Nuvo and plays a mp3 file to most zones when you push the button).

There is no easy way to get an AVR into a Nuvo setup. I hacked a custom solution using a .NET micro controller, but that is a hobbyist-class solution. The controller translates data from the Nuvo to/from the AVR to synchronize volume, source selection, & metadata display. I get a "free" zone 17, but I had to use a source 6 for the display - which was OK since source 6 audio was the doorbell anyway. I was also able to make AVR-zone2 into a source for the rest of the house (which is nice since it has Pandora, Sirius, iRadio, and all the rarely used audio sources like tape & cd) I still need to find a used nuvonet adapter so I can access the AVR's menus from the keypad (or I might have to reverse engineer the rs486 from a rarely-used ipod interface).
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post #26 of 34 Old 12-02-2013, 04:54 PM
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Do you know if the API for this public? (TCP version of the nuvonet adapter?) That would be useful & tempt me to buy one.

The TCP version of the NuVoNet API was published. I can't remember if the details were shown by Autonomic or by NuVo, but it's simple. A raw TCP connection to the MPS4's address at port 5006. Then it's just the NuVoNet Adapter RS232 protocol from there.

Autonomic has another interface for controlling Mirage, which should be what the mobile apps use to control the MPS4. They published that spec, I'd have to look to see if I still have the documentation for it, but it's probably on Autonomic's website.


Jeff

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post #27 of 34 Old 12-09-2013, 07:08 AM
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So this weekend I was able to complete the keypad installs, install the outdoor antennas, and hook up the G.C., MPS4, & T2 SIR tuner (kept it for traditional FM tuning). Spent time adjusting volume & bass/treble settings in each room, setting presets, etc. Don't having internet connection yet, so still have a lot of toying with the MPS4 still, but I was able to set up a temporary wireless router and got the iPad connected with the app.

Question; when I make bass/treble/preset/etc changes at the keypad location, does that automatically update the "program" back to the G.C. and/or T2 tuner?

Now that the G.C. & tuner have the initial program on it, is it best practice to first pull the program from the devices before making any changes, or just work off of your last saved program on your laptop?

A few photos, thanks for everyone's help so far.






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post #28 of 34 Old 12-09-2013, 07:27 AM
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Originally Posted by oktoberrust11 View Post

So this weekend I was able to complete the keypad installs, install the outdoor antennas, and hook up the G.C., MPS4, & T2 SIR tuner (kept it for traditional FM tuning). Spent time adjusting volume & bass/treble settings in each room, setting presets, etc. Don't having internet connection yet, so still have a lot of toying with the MPS4 still, but I was able to set up a temporary wireless router and got the iPad connected with the app.

Nice job!
Quote:
Question; when I make bass/treble/preset/etc changes at the keypad location, does that automatically update the "program" back to the G.C. and/or T2 tuner?

Now that the G.C. & tuner have the initial program on it, is it best practice to first pull the program from the devices before making any changes, or just work off of your last saved program on your laptop?

Well, it's updated the system, but not the copy of the configuration on your laptop. So yes, if you've made changes via the keypad's setup menus, pull the config from the system. Then save the config - best to keep known "good" configuration files in case you start messing around and don't like the results...


Jeff

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post #29 of 34 Old 12-09-2013, 07:29 AM
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Originally Posted by oktoberrust11 View Post

So this weekend I was able to complete the keypad installs, install the outdoor antennas, and hook up the G.C., MPS4, & T2 SIR tuner (kept it for traditional FM tuning). Spent time adjusting volume & bass/treble settings in each room, setting presets, etc. Don't having internet connection yet, so still have a lot of toying with the MPS4 still, but I was able to set up a temporary wireless router and got the iPad connected with the app.

Nice job!

You did the same thing I did - got the important stuff done before moving in! Now you can listen to tunes while unpacking boxes. biggrin.gif
Quote:
Question; when I make bass/treble/preset/etc changes at the keypad location, does that automatically update the "program" back to the G.C. and/or T2 tuner?

Now that the G.C. & tuner have the initial program on it, is it best practice to first pull the program from the devices before making any changes, or just work off of your last saved program on your laptop?

Well, it's updated the system, but not the copy of the configuration on your laptop. So yes, if you've made changes via the keypad's setup menus, pull the config from the system. Then save the config - best to keep known "good" configuration files in case you start messing around and don't like the results...


Jeff
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post #30 of 34 Old 12-12-2013, 11:07 AM
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In the Music Port Configurator page where you log in to various services, it says:

Last.fm: Paid subscription required
Pandora: Free or premium account supported
Spotify: Premium account required

Is this info accurate, that only Pandora is supported without a paid subscription?

Thanks.

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