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Articles in Category: Residential Blog

2016 Holiday Gift Guide

2016 Holiday Gift Guide

Tech Xmas Tree

With only one more month left in the year, we wanted to share our recommendations on Holiday Gifts that will not only make that special someone’s life easier, but save them time and money!
  • Who do you know that would like to have a personal home assistant?
  • What about someone who would like to control their thermostat from their phone?
  • Maybe, you want to see who is at the front door when you aren’t home.
  • Do you want to bring better sound and music into your home?
  • Anyone who is using more than one remote to watch their favorite movie!

Home Automation

Solutions like the ones our Staff picked below make great gifts for someone you know who takes pride in their home and enjoys using technology.   
Amazon Echo
amazon echo 300x300

Using Alexa is as simple as asking a question. Just ask to play music, read the news, control your smart home, tell a joke, and more—Alexa will respond instantly. Whether you are at home or on the go, Alexa is designed to make your life easier by letting you voice-control your world.  Alexa lives in the cloud so it’s always getting smarter, and updates are delivered automatically. The more you talk to Alexa, the more it adapts to your speech patterns, vocabulary, and personal preferences. Alexa comes included with Echo and other Alexa devices. The Echo Dot has all the Alexa functionality, but just a tiny speaker not designed for music listening. The Dot is designed to be connected to external speakers through Bluetooth or an aux-out port.


Nest Thermostat

After installation, you spend a few days/weeks adjusting the thermostat normally and before you know it, the Nest will learn your habits and start adjusting itself.  The Nest Learning Thermostat learns from you, creates a schedule and is proven to save energy. And now, its ring comes in stainless steel, copper, black and white.  In independent studies, the Nest Thermostat saved an average of 10% to 12% on heating bills and 15% on cooling bills. So in under two years, it can pay for itself.

Answer your door anywhere and never miss a visitor at your front door!  You can see your visitors, speak with them and open the door by smartphone or tablet – from anywhere in the world.  DoorBird also gives you the ability to use your current door chime and integrate with your Smart Lock of Choice.   It can work with your gate or garage door system. 

Sonos Speakers

Upgrade any TV in the house to a simple Home Theater that can also stream your favorite Music.  By adding a Sonos PLAYBar and Wireless HiFi Subwoofer you will never have to reply on the TV Speakers again.  While the Sub and PLAYBar will certainly upgrade the audio in your favorite viewing area, we recommend adding a couple of PLAY:1 speakers to round out your surround-sound setup.  When you're not using them for your TV, placing the small speakers around the house is fun for your Holiday parties.


Control4 Xmas

A lot of Home Automation Technology is meant to make our lives easier, but sometimes it can be a challenge to get these Systems working together the right way.   Designed as the ideal starter system for an exceptional family room entertainment experience, the Control4 Processor and Remote deliver a fast and responsive on-screen experience and the ability to control the entertainment equipment for any TV in the house.  This solution can orchestrate over 9,500 connected products, including a wide range of entertainment devices comprising of Blu-ray players, satellite or cable boxes, game consoles, TVs, and any product with infrared (IR) control. It features IP control for Apple TV, Roku, or other network connected devices, and wireless control for lights, thermostats, smart locks, and more.

It seems like everything today is getting us and our homes “smarter” and more “connected”, but it can be overwhelming for some.  We have been a reliable resource for all our customers when it comes to new and cutting edge technology that save them time and money.  Let us take the time to share our experiences with the above solutions and provide our recommendations for similar solutions not in this guide. 

Control4 Christmas1

We sincerely hope you enjoy the Holiday season and a Happy New Year!

If you would like more information on these gifts, please contact us.


Will investing in Home Automation increase your Property Value and sell your home Faster?

The Answer is YES!

Whether you are selling your home or want to increase the value, integrating Home Automation solutions can really affect the overall Market Value of the Property.
Smart Home 2
TAGS: Audio | Camera System | Home Automation | Home Theater | Lighting Control | Network | Security System | Shades | Smart Home | Smart Thermostat | Video

10 Benefits of Lighting Control!

A room’s lighting is one of the first things you notice when you enter the space.  Too much lighting can be uncomfortable. Not enough lighting can put a strain on the eyes.    Lighting Control Systems are designed to provide the right amount of light where and when it is needed.  Properly lighting your home or business not only enhances the user experience, but increases safety and saves energy.  One of the major advantages of a Lighting Control System over stand-alone lighting controls or conventional manual switching is the ability to control individual lights or groups of lights from a single user interface device.  This ability to control multiple light sources from a user device allows custom lighting scenes to be created for different activities in that room.  
Lutron Lighting Control
TAGS: Exterior Lighting | LED Lights | Lighting Control

The World's First 4K Ultra HD Movie Player!

In the past, most of the online reviews of Kaleidescape have agreed that it is truly amazing technology, but it is way too expensive.  With the recent announcement from the CEO regarding their new Encore System, Kaleidescape is more accessible and more affordable than ever before.
"We are very proud to introduce our new Encore line of movie players and servers, which provides the industry's finest sound and picture quality, and the most entertaining and convenient way to experience your movies at home," said Cheena Srinivasan, Kaleidescape co-founder and CEO. "Our new Strato movie player provides the most authentic home-cinema experience. Our new Terra product is Kaleidescape's third-generation movie server; it incorporates everything we learned from the first two generations. These new products are supported by the release of our new movie store, which is more attractive and easier to navigate than ever before. To date, Kaleidescape has licensed over 11,000 movies and 1,500 television seasons for our movie store. We also provide a way for you to seamlessly integrate your DVDs and Blu-ray discs with the content you download from our movie store."
 Kaleidescape Encore System
TAGS: 4K | 4K Ultra HD | HD Movie Player | Kaleidescape