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Thread: Full house Audio and Video - The last piece of the puzzle.

  1. #1
    Automated Home Ninja Andrew Millne's Avatar
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    Default Full house Audio and Video - The last piece of the puzzle.

    I now have plans for most aspects of my upcoming install including heating, lighting, security, communications etc but I've left the most complex two pieces of the puzzle til last. I'm talking about whole house audio and video which I realise warrants as much planning as the rest put together.

    At the moment I'm running a media centre server in my home office which is connected to an xbox 360 with A/V receiver in the living room and also an xbox 360 in one of my housemates bedrooms. There is a dual freeview tuner in the server which works well for the most part with very few viewing conflicts appearing (only been tempted to add another tuner card once).

    What are other peoples thoughts on windows media centre? my only grumble is the fan noise on the xbox 360 is awful and not ideal for movie watching in the living room.

    At the moment I'm thinking of putting a different media centre extender in the living room but this is not really feasible for the rest of the house (kitchen for instance) also I would like audio/video in the bathroom at a later date and audio in several other locations in the house.

    Also the media centre approach does not allow for synchronised playback in different zones.

    Where do I start?

  2. #2
    Automated Home Legend Paul_B's Avatar
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    For audio only have you had a look at the Squeezebox from Slim Devices (now part of Logitech)? It is a great piece of kit with a gorgeous display (the display can be used to display loads of things and is integrated into Idratek).

    For video I haven't really looked into this seriously but have kept an eye on Kiss (now part of Linksys / Cisco) or if you want to do it properly at HD quality then look at Matrix Switches from Gefen, Kramer, etc (but they ain't cheap. You can also send video over CAT. 5 have a look at the Kat 5 forum on here.

    HTH

  3. #3
    Moderator toscal's Avatar
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    Have a look here www.abitana.com for Abitana or here http://www.intouchtech.co.uk/ for lexcom.

  4. #4
    Automated Home Legend chris_j_hunter's Avatar
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    Default Full house Audio and Video - The last piece of the puzzle.

    we're looking to do something similar ... still doing my homework, but for HDMI distribution (audio & video) this looks promising & affordable, using Cat-5 :

    http://www.avrio.co.uk/acatalog/HDMI..._Switches.html

    not sure yet how a mutli-screen set-up would be arranged - eg: can splitters be on either end of a Cat-5 run, etc ?

    for some of our set-up, we'll be using old-fashioned analogue balanced lines, for the real hi-fi bit ... but for the rest, looking at Apple Mac options, and Squeezebox, too, especially due to its Idratek options ... no feel for what can be displayed though - is it just a few lines of text, or is it more ??

  5. #5
    Automated Home Legend Paul_B's Avatar
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    Chris,

    The SB3 screen is a VFD rather than LCD which gives a very high quality and bright output. You are right with it having two lines but these can be subdivided or made into a single line. Plus it will scroll. So you can use it to ouptut virtually any info.

    To give you an idea of what is possible here is a Weather Date Time plugin that uses RSS data from Weather.com to display local conditions:

    Attached Images Attached Images

  6. #6
    Automated Home Legend chris_j_hunter's Avatar
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    Default Full house Audio and Video - The last piece of the puzzle.

    Paul -

    thanks, interesting ... could be handy ...

    gives hope, too, that larger displays could be fed by Idratek, as well !

  7. #7
    Automated Home Legend Paul_B's Avatar
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    Back to the topic of the upcoming Visual Modules from Idratek

  8. #8
    Moderator toscal's Avatar
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    Default HDMI distribution

    Abitana do a special HDMI distribution amplifier
    http://www.abitana.com/index.php?id=49&L=0&tx_ttnews[tt_news]=20&tx_ttnews[backPid]=1&cHash=cae4cd11ec
    They cost 76 euros each on their webhop.

  9. #9
    Automated Home Legend chris_j_hunter's Avatar
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    Default Full house Audio and Video - The last piece of the puzzle.

    >Abitana ...

    interesting web-site, and catalogue, too ... page 47 of which includes something on fitting plug etc ...

    >HDMI distribution amplifier ...

    seems not to include HDMI connector ... but says it is HD ... so, not sure ! ?

  10. #10
    Automated Home Legend TimH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris_j_hunter View Post

    >HDMI distribution amplifier ...

    seems not to include HDMI connector ... but says it is HD ... so, not sure ! ?
    It has a component interface via RCA plugs, aka "phono" plugs, plus SP/DIF for the audio, quoting: http://www.abitana.com/index.php?id=...ash=cae4cd11ec
    The component video interface (Y, Pb, Pr or Y, B-Y, R-Y or Y, Cb, Cr) is presented on 3x RCA/Cinch gold-plated high quality connectors. The digital Audio 5.1 interface (S/PDIF) is presented on 1x gold-plated high quality RCA/Cinch connector.
    HTH,

    Tim.

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