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Discussion Starter #1
Like many others, I have been researching home automation for my new home, with construction to start this winter (Oct-Nov?). 2600 sqft on 1st floor, 1500 on 2nd, and a basement, total just over 5000 sqft. 4 bedrooms, MBR on 1st floor.


Before I started reading on AVSforum, my general plans were:


HAI Omnipro II

HAI thermostats

HAI (UPB) lighting

Russound or Niles 6-zone AV distribution

2-3 touch screen controllers in key locations

Keypads in most rooms for AV control

only 4 HVAC zones (each floor and separate for Master suite)


Structured wiring to include 2-3 CAT6 in most rooms.

4 CAT6 in family room, Study, Master BR, (High computer use or HDTV/5.1)

2 QSRG6 to all rooms, 4 QSRG6 to above

Speaker wiring for 2 sets of speakers in all rooms, 5.1 in Family room.


Basic HA and integration via HAI system

Complex or 1-event automation via HAL 2000.

Control via HAI's Media Center plugin and HAL


Now that Control4's products are out, I am finally seeing a low cost (compared to Crestron), integrated system that seems very configurable. More importantly, the Control4 interface seems to bring everything together on one touch screen that would be easy to use, even for my technophobe wife and kids. I'm really not in a position to do a lot of DIY - I don't have any installation experience, and I'll be 6000 miles away while the house is being built. I was going to have all the structured wiring pulled by the electrician based on the original floor plans, modified by a systems integrator in my area for about $500. My questions are:


1. What of my above plans to I have to change to go with Control4? I assume the UPB lights/outlets need to be nixed. What else?


2. Can anyone comment on the reliability of Control4's Zigbee vs. any of the new PLC's such as Insteon and UPB? Z-Wave? (Both hardware and singaling reliability. No need to talk about X10!) Do you need a dense mesh network (lots of devices) for good reliability?


3. What would be the cost difference if I scrapped my plans and went with Control4 installation and equipment as much as possible?


4. How do current users feel about the ease of use of the Control4 interface compared to HAI's MCE plugin and/or HAL? (i.e., WAF)


A very rough cost was given to me for my original plans - realize this was sight unseen and without any floor plans. This is my basis for comparison.



- LIGHTING - . $1000 - $3000

- SECURITY - $5000 - $10,000

- AUTOMATION (Includes 2 PC Hardware ) - $3000 -

$5000

- WIRING - $3000 - $5000

- AV SYTEM (Includes Amps / Keypads / IR/Touch Screen

PC) - $6000 - $10,000


Rough Total - $18,000 - $33,000


Thanks in advance!


Alan
 

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1. C4 supports either wired or wireless for lighting and home audio. In a retro environment, wireless (zigbee for lighting & control, wifi for audio) is the simplest choice. When building from scratch, you have options of either or both.


2. I've had no - zero - reliability with C4 zigbee protocol. My mesh isn't that dense at all. I don't have many devices b/c I started with just a few in the C4 initial product release. I have more on order.


3. At first blush, I think you're gonna spend less than your current estimate. Of course I'm thinking the product price, not installation costs. But I still think you're gonna be towards the lower end, plus you'll end up with a well-integrated system.


4. I'm not familiar with HAI / MCE or HAL. My wife loves the remote.


See the Control4 Tips, tricks thread for more info: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=541813


Why don't you talk to a C4 dealer in the area you'll be building your house.


Max
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Spivak
2. I've had no - zero - reliability with C4 zigbee protocol. My mesh isn't that dense at all. I don't have many devices b/c I started with just a few in the C4 initial product release. I have more on order.
Zero reliability or Zero Problems? I couldn't tell :)
 

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Sounds like I could feel comfortable with the reliability issue. The interface sounds easy for my wife to operate. I guess I'll have to start hunting down some dealers in Wisconsin...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
When you say it supports wired lighting, you don't mean PLC lighting do you? Do they sell their own hardwired switches? Or do they have an interface module for PLC, like UPB or Insteon?
 
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