Remember when all you did to watch TV was turn it on and change the channels? Today, many suffer from too many remotes, too many buttons, and too many steps.
Spouses at work are getting calls from spouses at home who can’t get the TV going. Want TV to be as easy as it ever was? Imagine being able to plop down on your couch, touch just one button, and it all just works?
Well, there are two things you can do. One, you can make your TV “system” a simple one. Get rid of the DVD player, video game, AppleTV, surround sound stereo, and ignore any streaming apps like Netflix. You should now be left with a cable box–or antenna–and a TV. If there is still something else attached get rid of it. You can now pick up one remote only and you’re good to go. That’s one solution.
Or, you can keep all of your TV “add-ons” and, with the right TV, the right add-ons, and an automated remote control, you can have things as simple as they ever were.
It takes careful component selection–this isn’t related to component price, by the way–and custom programming of the automated remote, to make a system dead-simple to use. Most of the time, this means paying a professional home theater designer. In its ideal form, audio and home theater system automation means one button-press for whatever it is you want to do: watch TV, listen to music, stream a movie, play a game. For those who want more than just their audio and video to be so simple, system automation puts the user one-button press away from lights off, lights on, lights dimmed, shades up, shades down, shades half-way, security system armed, security system disarmed.
The more systems that are controlled by a single control system, the more vulnerable the homeowner may be should that system go down. A good designer will take your needs and desires into account here, as should be done for everything he/she plans. DH Audio and Home Theater, for example, usually finds it best to leave the audio and TV on its own dedicated controller with no other tasks assigned to that controller–this is very reliable. On the other hand, other systems you might tie together on the same controller as your audio and TV, like thermostats and security cameras, tend to run on your home’s network. As reliable as networks can be, they are problematic too often for most people’s tastes if every time they go down they can’t watch TV!
Controllers range in style from the common hand-held remote, to wall-mounted touch screen controls. The best controllers don’t need to be pointed, are fast, reliable, and allow your gear to be hidden out of sight. You can expect to pay anywhere from $1000 to $10,000 for a quality controller—and the hidden gear that comes with it–installed. Generally speaking, the more things that need to be controlled the greater the price. And, generally speaking, the larger the controller the greater the price. At the most luxurious level, we’re talking about touch screen panels throughout the house that access the internet, that access security cameras, that access music and movies, and that double as TVs or computer screens.
Often, even if you already have audio and video equipment that wasn’t chosen with the goal of one-touch automation, the right control system can make operating that home-theater a whole lot easier—if not “one-touch” easy. We’re talking the difference between enjoying that surround sound system you spent all that money on, or just not bothering. Imagine being able to plop down on your couch and touch a button and just have it work.
Your best value is when you let us help you design your whole entertainment system and then have us deliver and install it. Most systems, to get them right, require hours of preparation. A site survey is usually just a small part of this planning time. When you hire us to handle everything start to finish, you not only get it done right, you get all the hours of prep and planning at no charge.
If you think checking out any of the above–or something else–might be useful then give a call to (973) 428- 9800 and let’s see if we can help. Please remember, all demonstrations at our Parsippany, NJ location are by appointment only.
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