Originally Posted by WiredNuts
You can keep saying you need a showroom, but that is not correct. Numerous dealerships across the country do not use showrooms and are not "grandfathered" in.
I am not sure why as a professional you would not care about speaker quality in a whole home audio system. Wouldn't you want the speakers being used most often to sound the best for the cost? If two speakers are priced the same for distribution purposes and one is noticeably better sounding than the other, it's something to consider. Savant and Control4 both push dealerships to use their branded speaker lines. It's not a matter of more cost and the idea of selling something "that just works" is why people have bad experiences and poor expectations.
Qmotion is very easy to integrate with, especially for Control4 since they can attach directly to C4s signee mesh. Most lines are "easy" to integrate with but having native product lines usually means more stability and control. Savant shades won't just fail because of "driver update" that can happen in Control4s world for example. The client and the dealership will care about the motors when they have to service them or support them. They will care when they are waiting months past an order and install date waiting for back ordered fabrication. This can be common in the custom shade industry depending on the brand. The process the Savant implements shades helps with some of those issues.
Again, MoIP, Wirestrom, Atlona, JAP etc. are all 3rd party products and can be used across the board with different control systems. Savants is native and as such has more intuitive control within the system and interface and it the quickest to implement.
You're t-stat argument isn't great and a common reason people shy away from home automation. A big sin in integration is trading normal function for form. Home automation isn't about relying on a cleaver app. Just like lighting, the last thing a normal consumer (non tech) wants to do is find their phone/tablet/app just to do a simple thing in their house at 2am. they were able to do for years before tech invaded their home.
You can not add devices or make system changes with Composer Home which is the most common complaint with people wanting to do more with their system. The reality is majority DON'T want to program or mess with their system. They may want to randomly edit lighting or home entertainment scene. They may want to edit HVAC or lighting scheduling from year to year. A lot are purchasing the tech to simplify their lives or enjoy modern features that they don't understand how to set up themselves.
A good dealership is absolutely the most important but thats almost an impossible task for the client. The only way to vet a dealer is to talk to clients with relationships a few years old. It doesnt matter if its a small shop or big shop, new or old... a bad dealer can sell himself looking great to any new client just based on a showroom or demo. That same bad dealer may also have long standing clients who are happy because they get taken care of or pay well. This leaves the middle client (who's not new project money, not an old client who's ready to upgrade, or a high level client not concerned with an invoice) out in the cold. If those type of clients are happy, thats who you want to deal with.
What about C4 os3 is really an improvement besides the graphical change? The interface navigation is far more cumbersome and they have removed half of the home control capabilities from places like the OSD. The Savant app allows users with customization, customization on the app, customization on the remotes, full single view of all home active functions and control of those functions, not just media C4 offers. You also need an additional app in Control4 to use the intercom or door station which defeats the whole idea of a single app home solution.
I have both systems installed in my home and have been a professional integrator doing systems $10k to $500k for both for 15 years, since both companies were started. You can take my "opinion" however you want but I can promise they come from a long list of experience.
Not sure if those numerous dealerships have been recent additions to C4 without prior Snap AV relationships. Again you can have your opinion and information just like I can get information from my sources.
Who said I am a professional? I've said numerous times I am an end user. And the main reason I picked C4 was to have access to Composer Home edition, something that is not available with Savant, Creston or Elan.
Quality of sound is 100% opinion. There has been numerous A/B testing done on speakers in various price points (and speaker wire for that matter). Reports are all over the internet. If I was picking a custom install home automation system the last concern is what 6'' speaker is going into my ceiling to play a streaming compressed digital signal. I dont care about bit rates, it is being compressed from its original form to get from the cloud to your box. I would be more concerned about aesthetics of the speaker (Grill-less for example or no logo on the speaker). Again I am not talking about a dedicated "theater room" or living room with a multi channel set up. Go into Magnolia in Best Buy and demo the 2-3 brands of ceiling speakers, the difference is slim, its there for sure, but its slim, and its a personal decision. You cannot say one is better or worse, sorry. Some people like more bass, some people like more treble, etc and those are the differences. Sound is subjective. So tell me, for floor standing speakers, what is "Better" - Audio Physics Avanti or Revel Performa 3 F225Be? There is no better, its what sounds better to you. I do not even have Triad speakers. I sourced the speakers on my own and went with Sonance and Yamaha because of just overall ease of purchasing and some aesthetic features.
Though I agree with the risks of 3rd party drivers, I believe QMotion has a native c4 driver, not 3rd party. Native driver, for a c4 product or a 3rd party product is really one in the same if you ask me. I am no expert, just a user of c4 with 5+ years of experience and about 75 IP devices and another 80 or so Zigbee devices on my network. So it is a fairly robust set up. Same goes with some of the Video set ups discussed, JAP has been around for 10+ years. I'm active on some C4 forums and user groups and never seen a whisper of any issues with drivers becoming messed up with upgrades, etc.
Again, like I mentioned with security cameras, I do not believe 1 company fits all, so if the best IP components are through a 3rd party, I'd rather do that than get everything Savant or C4 branded but be lacking in features. Back in the day before Triad/C4 I needed digital inputs on my AV Matrix, so I didn't get the C4 one, I got the Video Storm one. Get what is right for the application not what is easiest.
T-stat argument - all in the design of the system. I have 4 t-stats, but I also have 5 c4 touch screens. The touch screens are in common areas (entry in the basement, entry by front door, between kitchen/living room, bedroom and office) - all places we frequent where we'd want t-stat control. no fumbling for a phone, though we could do it on a phone, we just do it on a touch screen. Id rather have 5 nice full functioning touch screens vs smaller t-stats that can also maybe work as a touch screen. Just my preference, less clutter on the walls. We wanted the c4 touch screens for intercom and other daily functions. A truly automated house means you should rarely have to interact with your T-stats to be frank. same with lighting, its rare we interact with lighting. Sensors, timers, etc are pretty well designed these days. and it just works. If the Savant T-stat is so nice and big (7'' plus) just like a regular touch screen and can do everything a Savant (or c4) touch screen can do then that's great.
I am aware not all users will want Composer Home Edition, but I did, and Savant, Elan and Crestron didnt offer that feature. Having to get a dealer to add hardware is what it is, I knew of that requirement. But when I want to change my doorbell sound or work on screen savers or have cameras pop up when the doorbell rings, I can do that on my own. Yes I am in the minority, but this forum is focused on that minority - those who like to tinker. For those who want a DIY System, C4 certainly isnt DIY but its way more DIY than the others mentioned here. And for some, like me, that was a good compromise. Quality/support of a local dealer and long standing company with the ability to do some tinkering on my own when applicable.
OS3 has a better design than OS2, more customized options with wallpapers/graphics and also the ability for the end user to move more used things (tv or audio sources, security, cameras, whatever) to the main screen so there is less clicking/scrolling when you want to access your most used "things" and you can do that on a per room basis. Our opinions are the same, the UI on Savant is still nicer than C4, even with the OS3 launch. But again, that is just our opinion, someone may like OS3 better. There isnt a fact there, just opinions.
End of day, as we both agree, either system is more than capable of delivering a great experience. It really does come down to who is designing it, the infrastructure behind it and the support after the fact. And that is not Savant/C4, that is on the dealer.