SoundVision

Why is this remote so &!;!!?? complicated!!!!

Have a remote like this one? It’s crazy, right. Too many buttons, to hard to read.

Quick question, how do you turn on the TV? Stumped, don’t feel bad. I was too.

We hear all to often that today’s audio video systems are just to hard to use and the remotes are even worse.

The thing to remember is that the remote and the equipment are, like I said before, a SYSTEM. For them to work in concert, they have to be able to “talk” to one another.

Simply put, the remote needs to know what “state,” on or off, the system is. This is the first problem. With older equipment, and even some of today’s cable boxes, there is no way for the remote to know if they are on or off.

That’s because they don’t use “discrete” codes. Now, that’s a fancy way of saying, either on or off. Meaning, you could press the power on 100 times and it would never turn the TV off; conversely, you could press the power off command 100 times and the TV would never turn on. Now we are getting somewhere!

Quick, look at the remote above. You only see a POWER button, NOT a power on and power off button. Even the system on / off does not know whether the components are on or off. And, therein lies the problem.

Without knowing for sure if the TV is on or off, the remote doesn’t know what command to send when you push the power button. Worse yet, some older TVs internally don’t even have a power on and power off command. Whew, that’s a lot to take in.

One of the things we do when we program all our remotes is to make sure that the equipment we are working with always has these “discrete” codes so our systems work all the time. In fact, if we work with a client that has older equipment, we check to make sure it works. Otherwise, we tell them that they need to have newer equipment so their system will work consistently and efficiently ALL THE TIME, EVERY TIME!

And all this is just for power. Wait til I tell you how we take charge of multiple services, like cable TV, DirecTV, Dish Network, Apple TV, Roku, and any other video source you can think of. We can even cut the cord.

But that’s for next time….Until then, check is out on Instagram at soundvisionllc

We are a Google / Nest Authorized Partner

Innovative Design, Revolutionary Results

Which is the right solution for you? At SoundVision, we believe in simplifying life through technology, but that technology solution is different for everyone. Just as no two homeowners are alike, no two technology systems are either and that’s why, as Lake Norman’s premiere technology systems integrator, we offer a variety of solutions from leading manufacturers so that we can custom tailor each solution to meet the needs of each home.

In designing a home automation system, we start with a thorough needs analysis that documents your wants, needs and must haves. We’ll review your life-safety and security needs, network infrastructure, and more to engineer a solution that suits the needs of you and your family. So, whether you need automated door locks and a camera system, or a fully integrated home automation system to control your motorized shades, indoor and outdoor lighting, audio and video, we’ve got you covered.

Staying ahead of the curve

To be the best in design, installation and service for our customers and to meet the rigorous demands of the manufacturers’ lines that we are privileged to represent, our engineers, programmers and installation technicians undergo continuous education and hands-on training. We participate in industry and manufacturer-led sessions and continually seek new and innovative solutions to bring to our overall product offering.

We are proud to be one of the very first partners in the whole country with revolutionary lines such as Google Home and the Google Home Hub and the Nest line of products including the Nest thermostat, hello doorbell and camera system. Nest Protect is a life-safety pioneer. It not only detects smoke and carbon monoxide, but “speaks” when there’s a problem and can even text your phone.

And you may not think of a home technologies integrator when buying a door lock but think about that keyless touchpad being integrated into your home control. Yale keyless door locks are as beautiful as they are functional, safe and convenient. We can integrate them into your home’s system so that they operate with your home’s lighting and shades and be controlled from your home’s keypads and touchscreens or from a convenient mobile app.

Among the choices in voice control, Josh.ai adds a layer of artificial intelligence that makes accessing your systems seamless. Josh can control everything from your Yale door locks to your Sonos audio!

With so many amazing choices in smart home technologies, how do you know which is the best fit for you? It’s not just about the choosing the right stuff, it’s about making the right technologies work together. Give us a call and we’ll help navigate the myriad collection of high-tech gear, define the features and applications you’re looking for, and put together the perfect combination for you. “Josh, call SoundVision!”

 

 

 

Staying Connected While Entertaining for the Holidays

Whenever you think about the holidays, you probably think about friends and family around the table, enjoying a meal and each other’s company. Maybe you think about presents or twinkle lights – or maybe you just can’t wait to watch your favorite holiday movie. The reality, though, is that you’re probably spending a lot more time in the kitchen. Thanks to new tech, that doesn’t mean you’ll be missing out on the fun.

 

Make your kitchen a smart one

How much planning and personalization went into your kitchen? It’s arguably one of the most personal, necessary rooms in your entire home. All the more reason to pay some extra special attention to it! By incorporating the right functionality, entertainment features like built-in audio or video screens, and voice-controlled smart home automation like Josh.ai, you can personalize your kitchen to suit your needs for not only everyday living, but for special entertaining, too.

 

There when you need a helping hand

There are countless options currently available for smart appliances like refrigerators, ovens and “hubs” like Josh. And while these might seem a little frivolous – or perhaps even intrusive – it’s worth taking time to consider the added convenience they can bring to your home. Having an app connected to your oven means you don’t have to miss the football game to keep the bird from burning. A smart refrigerator that can text you a picture of your refrigerator’s contents can save you from a second trip to the store.

 

Incorporate devices like a kitchen hub serve as your voice-controlled connection to the rest of your home, a helping hand for your recipes, or a backup phone when your hands are full. Connect these smart appliances with a hub like Josh, and you’ve got an extra set of hands in the kitchen!

 

Smart appliances are safe appliances

With hectic schedules, guests and your mind on a million different things, you wouldn’t be the first to forget to turn off the stove, turn off the lights or feel like you need to be in two places at once. By incorporating the right smart appliances and systems, you can maximize safety AND convenience in your kitchen. Your stove and oven can now warn you that they’ve been left on – instead of hearing the news from your smoke detector (or worse).

 

If a smart kitchen sounds like the solution you’ve been waiting for, we’re here to help you integrate the best tech for your needs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why you should be building (or living in) a smart MDU

As cities’ populations grow and the need for building upward grows, the trend toward multi-dwelling units (MDUs) has exploded. Not only are these MDUs in demand for the builder and buyer alike, but they’re increasingly more exclusive, high-tech and luxurious. The good news is: with technology from Control4, this level of modern luxury is affordable.

Our advice: Include smart home automation in the blueprints
The best way to incorporate smart home automation into your units is to include it in your plans from the beginning. Structured wiring, strategically-placed outlets and connectivity designed for the best internet connection, power capability and equipment placement increases the value of your units and allows for minimal interior design disruptions – ensuring your vision comes to life without having to worry about unsightly wires or bulky equipment getting in the way of the details. By wiring before the walls go up and considering features like built-in speakers, storage for entertainment features or a whole-home control center at the front door, design and convenience stay the center of attention.

Smart MDUs mean safety, connectivity, convenience and more
Buyers have placed convenience, connectivity and energy efficiency at the top of their must-have lists when it comes to shopping for their homes. By incorporating smart home technologies like climate control, automated shade and lighting control, they can improve their energy efficiencies, whether they’re at home or out-of-town.

Smart home automation also offers endless options that increase safety – from cameras at the lobby door to smart locks to timed settings for your shades and lights – that protect both the occupants and the building itself. Some systems can even alert residents and building staff about fire and water damage before they become a widespread or serious issue. Now, residents can know what’s happening in their homes, while it’s happening.

Make it easily customizable
One thing is for sure – anyone buying a home wants to make it feel like home and there’s no better way to accomplish that than offering a smart home system that’s customizable to their needs. Custom climate control, security features and entertainment systems with personalized moods and functions make your buyers happy. Even better, consider implementing connectivity to the concierge desk and any entry points like doors, automated gates and garages to ensure your residents are only a touch away from communicating with property staff and their visitors. All of these features are even more attractive when residents are able to connect them to their personal cell phones and tablets.

By making your MDU’s smart, you can increase the value of your MDU, while also making it more attractive to buyers. Moreover, you’re more likely to retain your residents if you’re ahead of the trend, as there’s less for you to update later on. Talk to us about how we can help you with the best tech for your next MDU!

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Home Theater. The Ultimate Entertainment Experience

Ultra HD, 4K…the quality of content these days is amazing and so are the number of ways we have in accessing it! Is your home theater or media room up to the task, able to make the most of the high definition audio and video available? With summer blockbusters available for streaming and with the holidays just around the corner, there’s no better time to add the home theater you’ve dreamed of or to upgrade your existing theater so that you may enjoy the very best digital entertainment experience!

Are you a movie lover, serious gamer or avid sports fan? A dedicated home theater makes an exceptional space for your home entertainment. And with technologies like Dolby Atmos and 4K, enjoying the mind-blowing sights and sounds in a room specifically designed for hi-performance audio and video is spectacular!

So what’ll it be, Home Theater or Media Room?

Your home media room offers a great space for enjoying some family-time movie-watching and for hosting your friends on game day. It can boast a stunning 4K laser projector or a surreal OLED display along with Smart TV streaming and savvy social media features. A well-designed and outfitted media room can also take advantage of exceptional audio through a surround sound or Dolby Atmos system. However, one potential disadvantage is its central location; today’s open floor plans often place the media room adjacent to the kitchen, the busiest hub in the home. While this is great for engaging conversation, it is not ideal for either sound or picture quality as the room is open to the back (uncontrolled sound) and likely flooded with natural light. These features may be distracting.

Get lost in an immersive experience

A dedicated home theater includes technologies specifically designed to perform in a controlled space. Acoustic issues have been addressed for optimal sound as well as for noise-control to and from adjoining spaces. Custom seating is ideally positioned for viewing and comfort rather working around window placement or to aid in conversation. Speaker systems, like Martin Logan’s iconic Masterpiece Series, can be positioned and calibrated in the defined space as designed.  And in this perfectly suited environment, it won’t take long to understand why they have earned the tagline “the art of Truth in Sound!”

This isolated room rarely features windows, so images are true and free from glare. If there are any windows, they will have been treated with black-out shades to maintain the perfect environment. So, enjoy an afternoon of football or binge-watch your favorite streamed series free from interruption.

Another advantage is that, in a purpose-built space, décor doesn’t depend on the rest of the house, so the sky is the limit (actually, it’s not; you can add a custom fiber-optic constellation mural on the ceiling!). A home theater is also a place that reflects your personality and style– from mid-century modern to the Starship Enterprise or a custom tribute to your alma mater or favorite NASCAR driver!

The set up can be a single or multi-screen configuration, or a hybrid of multiple screens ideal for watching sports with a large projection screen that rolls down for serious movie watching. Integrated controls allow the user to choose from a variety of streamed or local content. The content may be exclusive to the theater or shared across the home’s systems from a movie server.

Trending now

Aside from incredible imagery and sound, what’s trending in custom theaters now?

  • Establishing a seamless connectivity across a robust network
  • Experiencing virtual reality through wearable technology & virtual reality that transforms your movie-watching experience.
  • Connecting in real-time through Social Media integration
  • Integrated control throughout the home, with access to content sources, control of security features, whole-house lighting, HVAC and more
  • Voice Control – Limitless searching, command and control of the theater and smart home’s multiple features including the ability to order your showtime pizza via a voice control interface such as Josh.ai!

Where will you be hosting Thanksgiving Day game-watching and cozy mid-winter movie nights? Give us a call and let’s get started planning the best seat in the house!

 

 

 

 

How to make your bathroom the smartest room in your home

What comes to mind when you think about a smart home? Design trends in 2018 all point to smart bathrooms.

 

Bathrooms are where you live the most. Prioritize it!

It’s easy to want the flashiest and highest tech for all your living and entertaining spaces, but what about the first place you go when you wake up and the last place you go before crawling into bed? Most homeowners place such an emphasis on their entertaining spaces that they forget about just how much time they spend living in their bathrooms.

 

So why haven’t you made your bathroom just as smart as the rest of your home? You pamper yourself here, you prepare for the day here – not to mention the necessary nature of it in the first place. And if you’re at all concerned about resale value, it seems as though futuristic bathrooms are making their way into everyday homes and here to stay.

 

Make every day a spa experience

Technology exists for every purpose and place in your home – especially your bathroom. Whether you want music piped in for your own personal concert while you shower, a movie theatre experience in the bathtub, or your entire schedule and home control in your vanity mirror, you can turn your bathroom into the room you live in the most by integrating the right products.

 

Connect your bathroom to the rest of the house. Control your thermostat, dim the lights and still have access to your security system so that you can escape the everyday, without even leaving your house. By incorporating the right technology into your bathroom, you can turn a utility into your own personal oasis.

 

Entrust the integration pros

Whether you want all the best technology that exists (high-tech toilets, anyone?) or just want to add some convenience with a few key pieces, the pros are here to help you make sure it’s just as smart as – if not smarter than – the rest of your home.

 

 

Blending Your Home’s Technology and Design

With all of the technology available to use now, it’s no wonder why we’ve seen so many developments made in terms of connectivity and smart homes. What most homeowners don’t realize, though, is that some of these developments now allow you to customize your technology’s appearance – ensuring you never have to compromise design for the tech you want.

Imagine Your TV as Art

You probably have a room or two, like your living room, for example, that’s centered around the technology in it. It makes sense to arrange your furniture around your television to allow for the best viewing and listening experience, and then decorating the spaces in between. But what if you made your television the decoration? Consider a motorized screen that can cover your television with a piece of art, so that you don’t need to design around a black rectangle on the wall. There are numerous ways to make your tech work for you – even when it’s off.

The Unexpected Smart Home Space

We’ve heard a lot about ways to improve your entertaining spaces, but what about the areas you live and spend the most amount of time? Often overlooked are areas like the kitchen and bathroom. Imagine being able to check social media, glance at the weather forecast, watch the morning news and voice-control all of the smart technology in your house all from your bathroom mirror while you get ready for work. These new smart mirrors are more than just your standard square – they can be finished in multiple designs to create an eye-catching centerpiece in any room.

And don’t forget the details. Things like wires and wall plates can get in the way, so consider systems that allow for fewer cables, or wall plates that can be finished to match the color and texture of your walls so that there are no distractions from the style you’ve created in your home. Whether you’re building your home from scratch or wanting to upgrade to include sleek home automation technologies for your Lake Norman home, let us help you find the best solution for both your lifestyle and design style.

 

 

Home Automation and The Wine Cellar, a Smart Combination

The phrase “smart home technology” often conjures images of temperature control, automated lighting and shades, voice-control entertainment and security. What you might not realize is that this technology extends beyond practicality and into your wine cellar.

Gone are the days of having to chill your wine in the fridge at the wrong temperature and worrying about what you have ready for your next dinner party. There are numerous options fit for any level of connoisseur and any budget. New technology from a standard wine cooler to a decked-out cellar, complete with the accessibility and organization at your fingertips thanks to state-of-the-art smart home technology and apps, make this investment an excellent one for your home.

These systems have many benefits, the most important being their ability to connect with your already-existing or planned home automation technology. Motorized shades, lighting and audio aren’t just for your living areas anymore – you can utilize your smart home tech to adjust the lighting, control the temperature, play your favorite music or lock your cellar from unwanted guests.  For those with serious collections, systems can offer round-the-clock monitoring of your inventory so you know what bottle has been accessed, including by whom and when. Check out how this Star Trek fan integrated his home automation into his themed wine cellar.

Want more apps to connect? High-tech options like the Elertus Wine Protection System or the IWG Cellar Cerveau offer your stash protection from humidity, incorrect temperature, open doors and power outages.  Systems like the Cellar Cerveau and Cellar Tracker come equipped with barcode scanners, label recognition software and RFID label technology to help you track your inventory – down to where the bottle is in your cellar and what your collection is worth.  What’s more, some systems come pre-configured with a wide listing of data like wine types, grape varieties and tasting notes, while others also can offer suggestions to add to your collection.

Whether you’re just starting your collection, or have been curating your inventory for decades, consider the value of automating your wine cellar. Need more inspiration? These five luxury homes took wine cellars to the next level with their designs and smart home control.

 

 

Why We Say “Simplify Your Life through Technology”

Imagine what you could do with just a few extra moments in your day. What if some everyday tasks were made simpler, freeing up your time? And imagine simple door locks and HVAC sensors making you and your family safer and more comfortable? Well, that’s why at SoundVision we say, “Simplify life through technology.”

We automate the everyday, and the not-so-everyday tasks, that make things easier, more efficient, cost-effective, fun, safe and…simple. To some, home automation is thought of as a luxury. While automating shades and lighting adds elegance, there are also aspects that are simply practical, saving time, energy and adding security to your home. Imagine creating scenes with your lighting and motorized shades to mimic the appearance that someone is home while you’re on vacation. Or integrating your lighting control with your security system so that your front porch lights flash to quickly signal first responders during an emergency. And how about the peace of mind that being able to see your child arrive home safely can bring?

Home automation, when integrated with innovative yet easy to use voice control, can also provide ease and safety for those wanting to stay in their homes as they age, while sensors and monitoring bring comfort to the caregivers who are watching over them.  It can assure you that doors are locked, and appliances are on. It can ease control of your systems by having them work seamlessly as one. It can make homework time less stressful and entertaining effortless.

How can we simplify your life through technology? Call us today and let’s discover.

Meet Josh, Your Home’s New Interface

The tiny interface that can understand your natural language and connect your whole home

 

You’ve gone through the process of automating your entire home. Your new smart home, outfitted by a SoundVision, is complete with all of the control systems necessary to keep your home in check. But how do you connect it all and make it work for you?

 

Josh.ai is “artificial intelligence as unique as the home it runs,” serving as a whole-home processor, connecting with all of the devices in your network, from pre-existing control systems like Control4, Sonos and Lutron.

 

The interface, designed to fit the aesthetic of any room, can go anywhere and do anything you want in your home. The “holistic interface” allows you to make your home automation smarter, without having to physically interact with it. Equipped with sensors enabling contextual awareness, Josh can help you control the lighting, temperature and humidity in your home to make its automation smarter. These sensors can tell which room you’re in and can adapt its functions using this room awareness.

 

Its touch-sensitive surface works to control event triggers like lighting scenes or volume control — a feature only outdone by its intelligent voice control, which understands natural language. Josh is a luxury voice control system, designed to work with your professionally-installed home automation system(s). It’s leading the industry in natural language processing and uses machine learning to adapt to you and your preferences, making it easier to use.

If you’re serious about automating and connecting your home, make your professional installation work for you. Josh ensures the best experience for you as an end-user as part of your custom design install solution when installed by a professional integrator.

SERVICE

Clients can expect a response to emails by noon the following business day. For more immediate support, please call (704) 696-2792 extension 2 for Service

Custom Membership

Send us your contact info and we will contact you to discuss our custom membership option.