An existing client bought this 2016 CEDIA Awards-nominated product to London-based TwentyTwo Integration, with the client in question requesting audio and video distribution, lighting and window treatments, control, an intruder alarm, CCTV, data networking, a professional telephone system and video door entry, including internal intercom and a home cinema.
“Our client’s overall objective from the outset has been to achieve a reliable, user friendly and bespoke system tailored to their needs,” Andy Jack, director of TwentyTwo Integration tells CE Pro Eu.
“The home is a large stucco fronted, early Victorian house overlooking Regents Canal in London. A thorough renovation of the property has taken place over the past two years, including digging out a double basement to create a five-storey, high specification family home. It has been meticulously redesigned to marry original features in the upper floors of the house with a modern feel to the new lower floors. The property also houses the client’s extensive and eclectic art collection and the lighting has been designed to highlight this feature.”
As a large family it was very important that each family member’s specific needs were met, and so a broad range of solutions have been employed to ensure the system is beneficial and convenient to use for all ages of user.
“We aimed to make the system as self-explanatory as possible, so that many guests can easily use the equipment when visiting with minimal input from the homeowners,” says Andy.
Another specific request was to locate as much of the specified equipment out of sight and collectively as possible, meaning the team ended up structuring a solution around a large centralised AV rack and low-voltage service cupboard, subsequently minimising equipment in each of the serviced rooms throughout the property.
The client also specifically requested both wireless and in-wall touchscreen controllers for use with the system, and having used Control4 touchscreens before, were particularly keen that each portable touch panel could control multiple locations of the property.
“After looking at these particular requirements and the available budget, it became clear early on that a Control4 solution would nicely suit the requirements well,” says Andy.
The client is a keen art collector so correct lighting control of this home was imperative to accentuate the artistic moods using dimmer switches.
“We therefore recommended Lutron Homeworks for the entire property except the staff quarters which used local Rania dimmers,” Andy explains. “A number of window treatments were also requested and supplied from Lutron along with the client’s own fabric specialist solutions, including Ripplefold and Pinchpleat curtain tracks and a custom made Lutron supplied 2.4m long skylight for the study area.”
The client made particular note of the door entry system requirements, which included control of four entry points, the two doors of the house, plus vehicle and pedestrian gates.
Not only were high quality video and audio communications required for the Control4 touch panels, but the Panasonic phone system (allowing all doors/gates to be controlled from over 20 locations around the home), also had to be integrated.
The system provided was based on a Control4 system with both in-wall and wireless TouchScreens, plus Control4 hard button remotes and the option for Apple iPads running the Control4 App.
To maximise the functionally from a single user interface, the Control4 system was interfaced with an expansive range of the subsidiary systems including audio and video distribution, lighting control, window treatments, CCTV, video door entry and the telephone system.
The Audio Visual System
“For the audio visual system we used a centralised approach, incorporating a Control4 16×16 audio matrix and two eight-zone Control4 power amplifiers,” Andy explains.
“The audio matrix and two amplifiers used just 6U in the rack which was a real help in keeping within our limited rack enclosure space. For video distribution we used an 8×8 Wyrestorm HDMI matrix, while video sources consisted of three Sky HD, two Apple TVs and a WirePath CCTV hard drive. We used Samsung TVs throughout, with the cinema room’s 55inch screen fitted within a bespoke made media unit, with three of the total seven screens incorporated into custom built recess.”
In the music room, TwentyTwo Integration used the clients existing 42” Samsung screen mounted on a pull-out bracket allowing a very tight fit in a ‘liquid metal’ recess, also installing a 22” TileVision television in the master bathroom.
“The audio sources consist of two Internet radio feeds provided via the Control4 HC800 processor; we also included a Contol4 Wireless Bridge allowing the users to stream music from their mobile devices – something the client and in particular their children were very keen on,” Andy points out. The users also have access to their Napster services for on-demand streaming.
The Lutron control system manages the control of the lighting and window treatments at the property: two future automation LCP8 lighting panels are used to house the 24 dimming modules powering the 96 lighting circuits around the house. Four window treatments including Ripplefold and Pinchpleat curtain tracks plus a large 2.4m skylight are also controlled via the Lutron system – these controls are also available via the Control4 GUI’s as well.
The CCTV system uses a WirePath DVR with four Bosch external vandal-resistant and two Pecan internal day/night IR cameras. The DVR was set up for viewing on the screens around the house for remote monitoring, which interfaces with the Contol4 system, allowing control and viewing on each of the touchscreens and mobile devices running.
“For the door entry solution, we knew this was a particularly important aspect for the client, requiring extensive functionality. We therefore specified a custom solution comprising of a 2N system at the core with integration to both the Control4 and Panasonic systems,” Andy reflects.
“The door intercom solution was probably the most challenging element of the project,” he admits. “We took the decision to take advantage of Control4, enabling the use of third party SIP door intercom devices as this enabled us to deliver an intercom that is integrated with multiple systems and in an aesthetic that suited the property. Whilst we had previously installed a number of Control4 door intercom solutions, integrating the 2N SIP solution involved taking the time to research and develop the final working bespoke solution.”
The 2N SIP entry panel units were built into one-off custom designed faceplates. The system has four entry points and three entry panels: the panels have all been custom built with bronze plates, including a numerical keypad by the main vehicle and pedestrian gates, plus two additional smaller entry panels at the service and main entrance doors.
When a guest calls the system, all Control4 touchscreens pop up with their native C4 entry GUI. All Panasonic system phones are also called, so either can be used at the user’s convenience. Either option allows the tenant to speak to the guest with clear audio and control the maglocks and latch releases of the gates/doors. The Control4 touchscreens also allow the built in cameras of each 2N door station to be viewed in high definition allowing confirmation of the visitor’s identity.
A Panasonic telephone system is included with all-important locations around the house covered with either one of the 10 desktop or two cordless system phones. The telephone system also interfaces with the 2N SIP door entry and Control4 system and therefore rings when a guest calls the front gate, main entrance or the service entrance. The corresponding door can then be opened using the DTMF dial tones from the phones numerical keypad.
The data network utilised Ruckus equipment throughout, offering a stable infrastructure for the Control4 system and all other networked devices to operate across. Wireless access points are located strategically per floor to ensure good connection to all wireless devices throughout the property. Also, with the owner being a regular traveller, the team set up a VPN for secure remote access to their system while away.
An intruder security system was also integrated into the property, comprised of a 96-zone Honeywell Galaxy dimension panel and various Grade 3 detectors throughout the property to suit. The system has connection via telephone and GSM to a remote monitoring station in case of a break in.
The home cinema is a mixed-use room that also includes a poker table, which happens to be next to a wine cellar. TwentyTwo Integration installed a 55” Samsung screen recessed on a pull-out bracket allowing a small 5mm shadow gap around the screen.
The 5.1 audio arrives via a Yamaha RX-A740 AV amplifier, two Monitor Audio CT265 in-ceiling rear speakers for the surrounds and three Monitor Audio WT250 rectangular in-wall speakers mounted behind acoustically transparent fabric in the joinery below the 55” screen.
A Velodyne Impact mini subwoofer reinforces the bass and is also neatly hidden within the same joinery unit, which covers the full width of the cinema area. A JVC DLAX500 projector and Screen Research in-ceiling, perforated and tensioned Pix 110in roll-down screen were also installed, falling just in front of the joinery unit allowing the audio from the Monitor Audio WT250 speakers to pass through to the audience.
Source wise, high-definition feeds include two Sky+HD boxes, two Apple TVs, CCTV plus a dedicated local Samsung and PS4 games console.
“Control4 was the natural choice for this project – and the client – as they had a system installed in their previous home and that extends through to the media room, where the 7” wireless touch panel enables the simple choice between using the large TV for general use and switching to the concealed projector and motorised in-ceiling screen for watching movies,” says Andy.
Additionally, the integration of the Lutron curtain tracks and lighting control on the same touch panel means the mood for each event can easily be set.
“By utilising the flexibility of the Control4 touch panels, we have been able to reduce the amount of wall clutter by integrating the 2N SIP access control solution and lighting keypads into one device,” says Andy.
A key security feature for many of TwentyTwo Integration’s clients is being able to view and talk to who is at the gate or front door and to be able to make a choice of whether to let them in or not.
“We were able to satisfy this brief by using the latest 2N entry panel systems combined with Control4’s in wall and portable touch panels, as well as the Panasonic telephone system, to provide the client with easy access to the door intercom wherever they are in the house,” says Andy.
A visitor to the property can press the call button at any of the three bespoke made entry points, which incorporate the 2N Video Kit SIP system, with Focus SB faceplates in a Jordan Bronze finish to match other ironmongery used at the property.
“This combination of products makes it especially easy for the home owner to know when someone is at the door, as the music from the speakers is automatically muted and a door bell sound is played through them instead, as well as the touch panels,” Andy asserts.
The screen on the touch panels automatically displays the camera from the call point and enables the homeowner to press a button to speak to the person at the gate. The touch panel also allows the homeowner to open either the pedestrian or vehicle gate to allow access, and integration with the Panasonic phone system allows the home owner not only to speak with the guest but release the door/gates by entering the correct code.
Andy says that the key to success on this project was ensuring that the whole family was able to use the home automation system. “The two children are particularly thrilled with the media room and the single remote that they need to use allows them to simply select what they wish to watch,” Andy enthuses.
For the parents, it is the lighting control that has enabled them to display their art collection to its full potential.
“The family dog has yet to express his favourite part of the project, but seems to particularly enjoy the under floor heating in the kitchen,” Andy laughs.
The client is also full of praise: “I had a Control4 system in my previous home and I was keen to carry on using a system that my family have become familiar with. The new Control4 touch panels are a big improvement on the older model and with the latest software they are a lot faster and I find them really intuitive and friendly to use. I find it amazing how Control4 brings all of the control for music, TV, movies, lighting, CCTV and door intercom onto a single controller; it makes my life so much easier! Our previous system had equipment around the house, so I’m really pleased with the cleaner and more coherent feel of having it installed in a central rack, which is concealed by a hidden door”.
The 2016 CEDIA Awards take place Friday July 1 at the Guildhall, London, where all winners will be announced. Here’s a reminder of the categories for 2016.