An effective audio and visual (AV) smart home system needs a solid foundation to deliver long-lasting value. And that starts with AV design considerations.
Here are the top AV design considerations for integrating these technologies into your home.
Collaborate Early With Specialists
You should consider various factors, depending on what you want included in your smart home system. Plus, you can request features such as lighting, temperature, acoustics, automated window coverings, networking and more.
Your system can be a unique blend of whatever you want in your home. But to achieve a well-integrated system, you need to make sure your infrastructure will support and correctly connect the technologies.
The best systems are a result of working with a contractor and architect early in your AV project. Be sure to hold collaborative conversations with your AV specialist, architects and contractors before construction is underway.
This helps create a groundwork strategy that not only is achievable but also gives you the best results.
Anticipate Your Future Needs
A great home AV system should be able to evolve as your needs change. So, features you may not want or need right now might end up being useful in the future.
For example, think about a home surveillance system. You might have plans to renovate your driveway, so your property’s landscape will eventually affect where your cameras should be placed. Or maybe you don’t have kids but expect to in the future — having a system that can easily add features such as a home surveillance system will serve you well in the long run.
This type of up-front planning is a crucial part of designing a system that will keep working for you down the road.
Aim for an Integrative System
You want your smart home system to be as integrative as possible so that adding features (like for future needs) is easy later.
You also want your system to integrate with new technologies as they emerge. Technology changes quickly, and you’ll want to incorporate new advancements as they become available. Who wants to be stuck with outdated systems when more advanced ones exist?
Well-designed systems have a solid foundation and flexible infrastructure, especially when it comes to evolving technologies in the human interface arena. This includes projectors for home theaters, liquid crystal display (LCD) monitors for taking meetings or watching videos, touch screens and much more.
But an integrative system doesn’t include AV technology alone. It involves other technologies — such as climate control, lighting control and networking systems — that might eventually require easily completed updates.
Focus on Convenience and Usability
It’s easy to be wowed by the latest AV technologies and shiny smart home gadgets. But before giving the greenlight on every hot piece of equipment, think about what you can realistically manage.
It’s never impossible to learn a new system, but let’s say you’re helping an older family member decide which features to include in their AV system. Think about their skill level and the types of equipment that will actually benefit them in their daily lives.
The usability of AV equipment needs to match the skill level of the person or people operating it. Training sessions from your AV installers are always helpful, but convenience doesn’t necessarily equal usability. So, this is a good thing to think about early in your AV project before moving forward with any definite decisions.
[Related: Are Smart Home Devices Secure?]
Look for Low-Maintenance Components
Low-maintenance components are an important feature in your AV system design. Who wants to spend time constantly repairing items that are supposed to make life more convenient?
Cutting-edge technology shouldn’t require constant maintenance. The whole point of having a smart home is to make life easier and more comfortable. Although it’s important to care for your equipment, undergoing constant repairs isn’t realistic.
Working with a skilled AV designer, technician and installer will help ensure you have the highest-quality, lowest-maintenance components for your home.
[Related: Five Smart Gadgets for Your Home]
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