Big Control in Little Rock
To bring end-to-end automated gate notification capabilities and full A/V control to a 5,289-square-foot brick home in Little Rock, Arkansas, integrator FX Pros turned to RTI’s portfolio of flexible control solutions. Using an innovative combination of multiprotocol connectivity, reliable data transport, and beautiful design, the integrator was able to install a seamless and easy-to-use control system, which circumvented the complexities of the house’s challenging building materials while providing the client with residence-wide operability.
Implementing failsafe security capabilities within residential settings means integrating solutions and components that will ensure error-free operation throughout the home — at all times. To retrofit a 5,289-square-foot house in Little Rock, Arkansas, set on nine acres of land, integrator FX Pros installed a wide-ranging control system to bring the client fully automated outdoor gate notification, simple home theater operation, and single-button scene settings that rapidly transform specific areas of the house into pre-programmed audio, video, and lighting environments. Seamlessly integrated despite the house’s rigid structural characteristics, FX Pros put together an easy-to-use system without disturbing the home’s classic look and feel.
“The customer was looking for an easy way to control multiple A/V systems both inside and outside the home,” said Jeff Jenkins, owner of FX Pros. “This included the ability to control visitor access remotely while monitoring the entire property from within the residence. However, like most retrofit projects, this particular installation presented a long list of challenges related to wiring, data transport, and wireless communications, which were weakened because of the thick construction materials that were used when initially building the home. Using RTI’s intuitive interfaces, processors, and port control modules, we were able to create a powerful, flexible, and extremely simple solution for total A/V component and gate control across all areas, complemented by simple operation and beautiful design.”
To streamline A/V control, two RTI PCM-4 port control modules combined with a slave processor were installed to connect the home’s wide range of A/V components throughout the space. Designed to bring versatility to sizeable installations, PCM-4 modules include four MPIO ports and a 12-VDC voltage trigger output to extend control to devices seamlessly throughout larger installations or homes with challenging structural requirements. The integrator then connected the client’s systems to a central XP-8s — RTI’s control processor with advanced control interface options including two-way RS-232, relay, routable IR, and Ethernet control — to provide accelerated, lightning-fast processing power across the installation. To interact with the system, the FX Pros set up three RTI T2x remotes for use within areas such as the house’s main bedroom, den area, and media room while providing the client with the RTiPanel app for control via various tablets and smartphones.
Beautifully designed, RTI's T2x remote control combines a flush-mount, edge-to-edge 2.8-inch color TFT LCD touchscreen with 47 programmable hard buttons, integrated grip sensors, an accelerometer, and wireless control options such as WiFi®, 433-MHz RF, and 2.4-GHz ZigBee® compatibility — providing exceptional functionality, flexible installation capabilities, and an elegant design to match the sophistication of the space. Within the house’s mudroom, FX Pros installed a KX2 in-wall controller touchpanel as well as an RTI CX7 touchpanel mounted inverted under a cabinet for the kitchen, and a U2 weather-resistant controller for use on the outdoor patio near the pool. To allow members of the household to take control of the entire home regardless of location, the RTiPanel App brings total functionality from iOS and Android handheld devices.
To create an innovative and fully automated gate process, a SnapAV Wirepath IP camera system was integrated with the home’s RTI control solution. Using Cat5e cabling running to the house’s XP-8s central processor and connected to a 12V relay, the RTI processor senses voltage whenever a visitor presses the button at the gate entrance — triggering a notification to house members that a guest is present. After generating a doorbell chime, a video feed of the visitor is sent from the Wirepath camera to the kitchen’s CX7 touchpanel with a button appearing in order for the house member to open the gate remotely. The result is a streamlined system for monitoring a gate located over 400 feet away from the home that increases security capabilities within the home while remaining extremely easy to use via RTI’s intuitive touchscreen control.
“Since the home contains solid brick walls inside, wire routing was difficult, and ZigBee and RF coverage were somewhat unreliable,” added Jenkins. “To surmount this challenge, we used a slave XP-3 control processor on one side of the brick walls and the master XP-8s processor, a ZM-24 ZigBee transceiver module, and an RM433 RF receiver on the other side to seamlessly extend connectivity without compromising transmission speed or quality. The client was also particularly pleased with the ability to set scenes automatically at the touch of a button to turn the house into a party atmosphere whenever the owners are entertaining guests, for example. Overall, the installation has been an enormous success; the client is extremely satisfied with the system’s speed, responsiveness, and undisruptive design across all devices. There are already plans to expand the system in the near future.”
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