News / Media

My Favorite (A/V!) Things From 2013

At Electronic House we are lucky to be exposed to the best new technology and most impressive. In the spirit of Julie Andrews’ rendition of “My Favorite Things” (or Carrie Underwood if you prefer) from The Sound of Music, we bring you our favorite things from 2013.

LISA MONTGOMERY:

Homes

Sophisticated Library Includes Hidden Lighting Controls I love it when custom electronics professionals get creative, and the book spine that was fitted with buttons for controlling the room’s lights is the epitome of thinking outside the box.

Smart Glass Creates a Home Office Hideout It’s not often we run across a home where smartglass has been integrated into a control system. Here, a curved wall of glass goes from clear to frosty when a button on a Lutron keypad is pressed.

Frosted office

NetZero Home Gets 600 LEDs Controlled by an Automation System To me, a story about an automated home is always more interesting when the owner of the house is intimately involved in the project. In this story, the owner was not only involved … he actually built a product that would expand the functionality of his professionally installed home automation system.

Trends

5 Up and Coming Technologies for the Home It’s fun to look into the future ball of home technologies, and this story does just that.

WiFi Strengthens its Position as a Home Control Protocol I always like cheering for the underdog, and in this story I do give a big hurrah to Wi-Fi, as it makes inroads as a very viable home control platform.

Integrated Control Vs. Multiple Apps for Home Automation Smartphone and downloadable apps have had huge implications in the home control marketplace. This story investigates the advantages and disadvantages of using apps to rule your house.

Products

Super Shading Solutions Get Motorized Of all the electronic systems available to the home, motorized shading is one of my favorites, mostly due to the fact that shades look about as low-tech as a throw pillow. Add a motor to them, though, and they can do some amazing things. This story discusses what’s possible.

High-Definition Artwork for Your TV This story came to my by surprise. I received a very well written email about a new technology that solves a very real problem facing anyone who owns a flat-panel TV: what to do with the screen to make it look better when the TV is off. This solution, unlike many others, is super affordable, easy to implement and lets you change the look of your static TV screen on a whim.

TV Art

To read the full article, click here.

Posted by ryan Tue, 24 Dec 2013 21:29:00 GMT

We have been nominated for a Union Tribune Best of the Best Award!

Best of the Best Awards

Thank you for your support so far and getting us nominated! We are now a candidate for a Best of the Best award in the Home Electronics Store category. Please continue to help us out by making a profile and voting us to the top!

http://uniontrib.secondstreetapp.com/Best-of-San-Diego-2013/Ballot/FortheHome

Thank you again for all your support so far- it’s been monumental!

Posted by virginia2 Mon, 10 Jun 2013 16:47:00 GMT

Neat-O: Cleaning out the Closet

The panels on this enclosure wouldn’t close until the wiring was cleaned up.



By Arlen Schweiger, May 10, 2012



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http://www.cepro.com/article/neato_cleaning_out_the_closet/

It would be one thing if the owner of this Southern California home could blame his closet wiring mess on the San Andreas Fault. But unfortunately, it was the fault of the original installation company that the owner needed to call on another CE pro to check out why his low-voltage panel doors wouldn’t close.

The client found San Diego-based Audio Impact as a referral from another of the integrator’s customers, and the tidiness of this result will likely earn more referral calls.

When system designer Ryan Lipkovicius of Audio Impact visited the home, it didn’t take him long to discover the wire spillage and sources of the homeowner’s complaints. Along with simply being unable to close the panel properly, the owner noted his home’s sporadic telephone and Internet problems.

“None of the master suite closet space in this immediate area could be used. At first glance, it was obvious why the panels wouldn’t close,” says Lipkovicius. “Upon further inspection, there were notable cable patches and splices. The modem and router were dangling in place by the Cat 5e Ethernet cable that was connected to them.”

The panels contain equipment to systems from Control4, Russound and Lutron, plus wiring to the home’s security cameras. Problem is, there’s just not much real estate to navigate in the master suite and the original installer obviously did not put much work into securing everything included.



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<strong><a href="http://www.cepro.com/article/neato_cleaning_out_the_closet/" target="_blank">http://www.cepro.com/article/neato_cleaning_out_the_closet/</a></strong></p>

Posted by chantal Fri, 25 May 2012 16:12:00 GMT

Neat-O! Audio Impact featured in CEPro Magazine

Audio Impact was featured in the May 2012 issue of CEPro Magazine - Neat-O!

Check out our transformation below.

Posted by chantal Wed, 16 May 2012 16:21:00 GMT

Audio Impact Featured in CEPro Magazine

Audio Impact was featured in the May 2012 issue of CEPro Magazine, for their Gold Win in the 2012 Electronic House Magazine - Home of the Year Awards.

Posted by chantal Wed, 09 May 2012 16:21:00 GMT

Electronic House 2012 Awards: Audio Passion Inspired Home Theater Design

Sweet sounds take center stage in this theater, thanks to Monitor Audio speakers, an Integra preamp and a powerful Crestron amp.



May 01, 2012 by Lisa Montgomery



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http://www.electronichouse.com/article/audio_passion_inspired_home_theater_design



It’s obvious when entering this grand, custom-crafted theater, which part of its design took priority: the audio. A contact sensor on the door that leads into the 27-by-16-foot space triggers an array of small LED fixtures, showcasing a pair of high-grade Monitor Audio Platinum tower speakers. Most people would have chosen to let the huge reference speakers stay hidden behind the acoustical fabric that covers each of two speaker cavities built into custom cabinetry at the front of the room. But not this homeowner. “On a scale from 1 to 10, his passion for audio is a 20,” says Ryan Lipkovicius of Audio Impact, the San Diego–based custom electronics design and installation fi rm hired to build this theater.

Several small, energy-efficient LED lights were carefully positioned within each of the cabinet’s two speaker cavities. When the door to the room opens, they illuminate so the speakers can be seen through the acoustical fabric. Part of Monitor Audio’s Platinum line, the speakers are the company’s top performers and this theater’s crowning jewel.

It would take plenty of horsepower to drive these freestanding giants, plus the rest of the Monitor Audio 9.2-channel surround-sound system. Audio Impact chose an Integra DHC-80.2 preamp for its ability to work well with other A/V components and numerous audio decoding options, and a Crestron Procise Proamp-7X400 amplifier for its pure, raw output of power.

Another important part of the audio design was the engineering of a carefully constructed and acoustically treated shell. “Sam Cavitt of Paradise Theater in San Diego calculated all of the parameters, including the room dimensions, number of seats and size and position of the screen, and the software (from Kinetics Noise Control) figured where we needed to put acoustical materials, how to position the speakers, and where to put the seats so the audio reproduction was true and smooth,” says Lipkovicius. To further enhance the acoustical performance, Audio Impact and Paradise Theater instructed the contractors to “float” the room so none of its walls or ceiling would touch the walls of adjacent rooms or the floor of the room above it. Air conditioning vents, light fixtures and electrical outlets were treated with special isolation materials so that no sound would escape from the theater.





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<strong><a href="http://www.electronichouse.com/article/audio_passion_inspired_home_theater_design" target="_blank">http://www.electronichouse.com/article/audio_passion_inspired_home_theater_design</a></strong></p>

Posted by chantal Mon, 07 May 2012 16:24:00 GMT

Audio Impact Wins Gold in Electronic House Home of the Year 2012

Audio Impact is proud to announce that it has won the 2012 Gold Best Theater from Electronic House.

The stage was set during the client discovery. When asked, “How would you describe your dream theater?” the client paused to reflect, then said “A special place. A room that draws us in, that brings us together as a family and where we can experience amazing sound and vision in comfort and serenity. A special room that creates an emotional bond as soon as we enter”. A tall order to be sure but attainable since the team was assembled early enough in the process to design and engineer excellence.

It starts with the room; the foundation of the performance theater environment. Room ratios and construction techniques were addressed to create an ideal scenario for quiet room construction and smooth acoustical performance. Subsystems were engineered, including mechanical, electrical and lighting to assure no unwanted sound entered or propagated through them. A detailed set of construction documents guided the project contractors through each step. The result was a theater “chassis” that would support the profound performance.

The engineering continues in the design of the system. The engine that provides the horsepower for our clients envisioned experiences. Monitor Platinum PL 300 reference towers and PL 350 center are perfectly matched with 6 of the newly developed Platinum In Wall PLIW for side and rear surrounds while 2 PLW-15 Subwoofers provide the prodigious bass. These superb components are precisely matched with the rooms acoustical environment resulting in accurate sound reproduction whatever the source. Powered and processed by the Integra THX Ultra 2 DHC-80 with Audyssey and Crestron PROAMP-7X400 amplifier there is no shortage of power and enveloping quality sound. The visual elements of the theater features the Runco LS-10 1080p projector driving a 135” 1.78:1 micro-perforated Stewart Filmscreen. The LS-10 complemented with Runco’s video processing provides plenty of visual excitement which is accurately rendered on the Stewart screen surface.

All the theater, house-wide audio and Crestron control systems are housed in 2 Middle Atlantic ERK racks concealed in ventilated cabinets in the rear of the room. The equipment rack cabinets and Projector compartment are constantly monitored by Crestron temperature C2N-RTHS sensors and turn on ultra quit exhaust fans if needed. The System features Crestron ADMS Intermedia Delivery System that brings movies from a Sony 400 Disk Blu-ray changer, Netflix, Hulu, The homes computers, Youtube to life at the touch of one button. There is a HD Cable box along with an Apple TV. The entire Theater Audio/Video, Lighting and HVAC is easily controlled via an in-wall removable TPS-6x wireless touchscreen remote. There are quick assess to lighting scenes and even a virtual keyboard for the ADMS.

Finally comes the blend of performance and aesthetics. The theaters acoustical components, which were specified as a result of an acoustical modeling process were integrated with the interior design artfully. The screen wall features display columns where the beautiful Platinum towers are nestled in an ideal acoustical surrounding and illuminated by concealed lighting. Behind the perforated screen sits, not only the PL350 center but custom engineered baffles to provide both expansive sound stage and accurate imaging. The whole assembly housed in a furniture grade cabinet design. Walls and ceilings feature concealed Kinetics acoustical devices behind a stretch fabric system which is complemented by pilasters, housing the surround speakers and gorgeous millwork trim throughout.

The impact upon entry is stunning, the serenity of the space is enchanting but when the system is fired up the experience is astonishing. Whether seated in the first row or the third get ready to “suspend your disbelief” for the home theater ride of your life.

Posted by chantal Fri, 04 May 2012 16:13:00 GMT

Audio Impact Wins Gold in Electronic House Home of the Year 2011

Audio Impact is proud to announce that it has won the 2011 Gold Outdoor Space Electronic Home of the Year award.

The Electronic House editorial team picked the winning entries, which featured fantastic audio, video, lighting and automation systems, and ultimately awarded 32 winning installations in 12 categories. The winning entries were selected based upon technological innovation, creative solutions to challenges, and design elements and will be showcased in the May/June and July/August issues of Electronic House magazine and on www.electronichouse.com/specials/hoty11.

“The focus on an outdoor space was a new challenge for us. The underwater speakers were built into the pool frame, at the right depths, to create amazing sound in the infinity pool. The Jacuzzi TV was built into a custom design deck/housing, on a swing arm, behind a glass wall to ensure it is completely weather resistant. We are most proud of the integration of all the unique features into an overall automation system that can be controlled throughout the home.” said Ryan Lipkovicius CEO of Audio Impact Inc.

In 2010 Audio Impact won the Best Master Suite Electronic Home of the Year Award. Audio Impact is proud of these accomplishments that portray our emphasis on quality, attention to detail, design innovations, and exemplary service.

Posted by chantal Fri, 21 Oct 2011 16:13:00 GMT

Audio Impact Wins Gold in Electronic House Home of the Year 2011!

Audio Impact wins Gold in Outdoor Space Category



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http://www.electronichouse.com/article/pushbutton_paradise



Pushbutton Paradise

April 29, 2011 by Rebecca Day

It started off with a request for basic lighting control. The owner of this Del Mar home simply wanted to control the newly installed LED and security lights on the property from the master bedroom suite above the pool. The backyard, meanwhile, was undergoing a complete overhaul, morphing from an area with a simple pool and barbeque pit to one with an infinity pool, sauna, Jacuzzi and outdoor kitchen/dining room.

The custom electronics (CE) pros from Audio Impact, San Diego, Calif., fulfilled the lighting request with a Control4 system that organized the sconces, pool lights, and security spotlights into easily accessible zones. Since they were there already, Audio Impact president Ryan Lipkovicius asked the client, why not add a little music and some video, too? Eighteen months and 250 feet of conduit later, the backyard had been wired for six zones of audio and a big-screen Jacuzzi theater.

The owner got his bedroom-controlled lighting system and then some. He can turn on lights in various zones of the backyard to keep an eye on the kids, check on the firepit, and turn off the pool or security lights without having to leave the bedroom. Audio Impact added a three-way switch outside that mirrored the lighting commends in the bedroom so that the lights could be managed from either place.

Control was a key concern for the owner, who didn’t want to have to go to different areas to change the volume on speakers or flip lights on or off. Audio Impact had the benefit of being able to start from scratch with the backyard do-over. The crew ran wire in conduit to speaker locations and control pads and installed specially designed pool speakers according to spec. Underwater music requires heavy-duty amplification, according to Lipkovicius. The pool speakers are fed 100 watts each because “you need a decent amount of power to move sound through the water,” he explains.

There’s a central Control4 touchscreen controller in the master bedroom above the pool deck where the owner can set the lights and volume levels for each zone, including the Paradigm on-wall speakers on the balcony above the pool deck. Individual controls in each zone allow users to tailor the sound at those locations. The outdoor kitchen received a bit of special attention. In addition to an independent volume control for the music, there’s an OnQ intercom station. From it, the parents can call any of the three kids to dinner from various locations in the house. They can also use the intercom to buzz in guests who are waiting at the front door.

The spa area got its own private theater, a Samsung 46-inch TV built inside a thick shatter-resistant pane of glass. The sealed window in front of the TV protects it from moisture and doors cover the TV for extra protection when it’s not in use. All of the video sources from the home’s main video distribution system are available to the spa theater. This includes DirecTV, cable, Apple TV, a Blu-ray player and feeds from the surveillance cameras around the property. While the five other zones in the backyard enjoy a single source—usually a Rhapsody online music channel—spa users can toggle between music and TV audio while watching a movie or game. As for the indoor entertainment system? The owners save that for a rainy day.

Underwater Tunes
Installing pool speakers in is a lot like putting a light into a pool, says Ryan Lipkovicius, president of San Diego–based Audio Impact, the company added the electronic elegance to this award-winning backyard. The round Aquasonic speakers and their special housings, which were used in this award-winning space, had to be positioned at a certain depth based on the volume of the pool. “You need enough pressure for it to work,” Lipkovicius says, and in this infinity pool that depth was about six feet. At the proper depth, the speaker vibrates the water, resulting in music “that sounds pretty good,” Lipkovicius says. “I was amazed.” EH

The pool includes special underwater speakers built into the pool’s frame.


This outdoor oasis even has an entire built-in kitchen complete with a pizza oven.


The entire backyard is packed with hidden technology.


The Jacuzzi area features a TV hidden behind two wooden swing doors. TV is built into a custom design deck/housing on a swing arm behind a glass wall to ensure it is completely weather resistant.


The outdoor lighting is controlled by a Control4 system. One button from the Mater Bedroom keypad or any touchscreen turns all groups of outside lights on and off.



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<strong><a href="http://www.electronichouse.com/article/pushbutton_paradise" target="_blank">http://www.electronichouse.com/article/pushbutton_paradise</a></strong></p>

Posted by chantal Thu, 05 May 2011 00:08:00 GMT

Home of the year 2010 Winner by Electronic House Magazine | Home Theater Installation

Home of the Year 2010

Home of the year 2010 Winner by Electronic House Magazine

We have been awarded winner of the 2010 Master Suite Home of the Year 2010 by Electronic House Magazine

Everything from the TV to the motorized shades moves in this innovative beachfront bedroom suite. Underbed Lift Enhances View at Beachfront Suite



May 03, 2010 | by Steven Castle

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http://www.electronichouse.com/article/underbed_lift_enahnces_view_at_beachfront_suite/Slideshows

Even with this bedroom’s beach view one might eventually want to watch TV in bed or order up a movie.

But where to mount a flat-panel TV without destroying this Mission Beach vista just north of San Diego? Easy. Just place the TV in a lift — under the bed. And at the press of a button have it slide out and tilt into view.

Actually, it wasn’t so easy.

First, a special Underbed Lift from MK 1 Studio was required to slide arms from under the bed and position the screen upright. Then, the lift had to be designed into the bed frame, according to Ryan Lipkovicius of custom electronics company Audio Impact in San Diego.

Once the homeowners press a button on their RTI T2 remote control, the TV takes about 32 seconds to rise into view. Lipkovicius says a 39-pound Samsung LED TV was chosen for its thinness and light weight, above all else. It also doesn’t hurt that the LED TV is more energy-efficient than many other types of sets, and that helps make up for the energy required to operate the lift mechanisms.

The TV is accompanied by two 8-inch B&W CC M80 two-way in-ceiling speakers in the bedroom area, as well as two of the same in the adjacent sitting room. The owners can summon music from an XM Radio tuner and iPod docks located downstairs in the main part of the house. A spacious bath area with a cool shower and copper tub is wired for speakers as well, but those have yet to be installed.

When the owners are done with the TV, they simply press another button, and the screen disappears, leaving a not-so-bad beach scene.

Other very cool scene-setting technologies in this master suite include motorized curtains and shades. But these are no ordinary curtains. They’re curved metal and perforated to complement the very contemporary form and feel of the house. (The house encompasses five floors of striking curved layers.)

The curtains close over the curved glass wall of the sitting room, and in the bedroom area three custom-sized Lutron Sivoia blackout shades descend for those rare times the owners don’t want to feel like they’re lying on the beach. Another blackout shade descends to block light from the sitting room.

The curtains and shades are controlled by a http://www.electronichouse.com/article/underbed_lift_enahnces_view_at_beachfront_suite/Slideshows

Posted by ryan Thu, 06 May 2010 02:38:00 GMT