Consumer Electronic Control (CEC) is bidirectional serial bus that allows components to control each other across an HDMI cable. You’ve probably already heard of this system without knowing it as each manufacture gives it its own name, for example ‘Bravia Sync’ from Sony, ‘Kuro Link’ from Pioneer and ‘SimpLink’ from LG.
Kwikwai proposes a simple and affordable way to bridge home automation systems to consumer electronics devices. TV sets, DVD players or home theater systems are all supported, provided they’re connected using HDMI and support CEC.
“CEC ? – Consumer Electronic Control (CEC) is a mechanism that utilizes HDMI’s two-way communication to allow for single remote control of any CEC-enabled devices connected with HDMI. The manufacturers who implement CEC must do so in a way that ensures that the common command sets interoperate amongst all devices, regardless of manufacturer.
The set of commands enables some high-level features such as “system standby” to switch all CEC devices to standby, “one touch play” to allows a playback device to be played and become the active source with a single button press or “OSD display” to allow a device to transfer a text string to the TV for On Screen Display.
CEC is an optional feature within the HDMI specification, which is now supported by most of the manufacturers under their own proprietary names :
- EZSynch / HDAVI / Viera Link (Panasonic)
- Bravia Theater Synch / Bravia Link (Sony)
- AQUOS Link / AQUOS FamiLink (Sharp)
- CE-Link / Regza Link (Toshiba)
- AnyNet+ (Samsung)
- SimpLink (LG)
- Kuro Link (Pioneer)
- RIHD (Onkyo)
- EasyLink (Philips)
- NetCommand (Mitsubishi)
Kwikwai as a bridge – Using kwikwai, a HA system can control HDMI devices by participating in the HDMI-CEC exchanges between them. This can happen over IP (telnet or http) or serial connection. Many HDMI-CEC capable devices answer to status queries, and are capable to process IR codes sent over CEC. In many cases, kwikwai can advantageously replace traditional control methods such as IR stickers and RS-232 ports.
In this usage, kwikwai provides a simple an affordable extension of entry/mid level home automation solutions.
Kwikwai as a tinkering & discovery tool – Kwikwai’s web interface displays and decodes CEC messages exchanged between devices on the HDMI bus. It can also send messages. This allows to discover what messages your devices support, to investigate any proprietary ones, and try control scenarios comfortably.
With a cost of around £230 kwikwai is the best tool to access the control features of HDMI for home automation enthusiasts and professional installers.”
More information at www.kwikwai.com