What Makes a “Biggest, Baddest Home?”
ACS reveals what it takes to win a prestigious Integration Award from CEDIA (Part 1 of 2)
At ACS, we’re committed to providing the level of professional service that makes a home or business owner a client for life. For example, we were given the opportunity to work with a particular client again after proving our abilities on their previous home, which ACS integrated more than a decade ago. Even after so much time had passed, our relationship included a comfort and confidence that was invaluable with all the unique challenges and requests which were brought to the new project.
The Challenges: The new home is 42,000 sq ft in beautiful Greenwich, CT. There were considerable differences in the two projects. At the first home we integrated for the client, our racks were shoe-horned into a small room along with the alarm vendor, pool controls, thermostats, and an existing (and not very-well designed) infrastructure. While in the previous home the client perceived that, when a piece of electronic equipment wasn’t working, a simple “power cycle” could fix the problem 99% of the time. He requested that we design the system so that anyone could easily access the backs of all the equipment. (In the previous home this was not possible due to equipment being housed inside custom cabinetry).
Additional challenges included:
• Ensuring multiple people could use the control system in a home this large
• Client requested the large V15 touch panel to be utilized as a TV monitor in a number of areas
• The natatorium (indoor pool) had a 25' barreled ceiling, making speaker installation difficult and requiring close coordination with both the architect and general contractor
The Solutions: When asked what we wanted for the new house, ACS requested as much room as the owners could afford to allow for the neatest installation possible. We were given a dedicated room (25' x 15') with a raised computer room floor. This allowed us to more easily manage the 26.7 miles of cabling that ran through the property. The added benefit for having this much space allowed us to store all the equipment for the entire home in this one room with the exception of local BluRay Players and Video Games for the kids (and adults) to enjoy. All of the equipment for the new home is now in this dedicated A/V room.
In order to design a user interface that everyone can understand and use, we reviewed feedback from the previous installation and made sure to retain the things the clients liked and update the things the clients did not like. The system was designed so that each person in the home has their own dedicated Cable/Satellite box via the Crestron DM system. In addition to a whole-house UPS system, the client had a flywheel system installed to provide a bridge between utility and generator power should the grid fail. And we documented every device in our engineering so that we can remotely reset specific outlets via the UPS devices that were installed.
The house has a fully-integrated Crestron system controlling HVAC, Lighting, Shades, Motorized Exterior Doors that drop into the basement, a pair of Hidden Doors Security System Emulation and Gun Range Ventilation. For audio distribution, we used Procise Surround Processors and Procise Amplifiers in the rooms with Surround Sound (the Master Bedroom, Home Theater, Family Room, and Kids’ Playroom).
For the indoor pool, temporary scaffolding was installed in order to build the ceiling. We had a very short window to install and test the speakers before the scaffolding was removed, so we had to be prepared and expedient, which was consistent with the entire project.
Be sure to check our next blog entry to learn how the Results of our efforts became an award-winning entry at the most recent CEDIA Expo!