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Thread: Another n00b starting out...

  1. #1
    Automated Home Lurker
    Join Date
    Mar 2008

    Default Another n00b starting out...

    Hi guys, long time lurker first time poster!

    I have a bungalow ready to be wired, and was going to go the home automation route, but as I have read and read, I have just confused myself even more!

    What do I need to run? I figured most things can be run over cat5e, but should I be putting in RG6/fibre/speakers?

    Also, which products should I be going for? I don't want to adopt something which will be obsolete in a short while...

    Sorry for the vagueness!

  2. #2
    Automated Home Guru JonS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007


    I wired 18 months ago and I certainly ran video cable (CT100 rather than RG6, though I think PF100 now the prefered option as less prone to damage).
    I also recommend putting speaker cable in, not just for cinema / TV room but also other main areas like kitchen and bathroom, mani bedroom. You don't haveto use it (e.g. if you go Sonos / slimserver route) but it you want to, it is there.
    Unless you have very deep pockets, forget fibre. Multiple Cat5e fine, Cat6 if you want, but it is more hassle to terminate AFAIK.
    Plan where you want it, don't just think wall plates.
    Plan what items you want to automate e.g. lights, sockets, heating, cinema etc
    Think about how you want to control it : IR remote, web, touch screen etc
    Decide whether you want to integrate your own solution or chose something pre-integrated.
    Note there are no standards, everything will become obsolete, you will always think of one extra wire you should have run but with some care and planning you should be able to get a flexible system good enough for some years of HA fun.
    As for which products, the easiest sift is by budget. If you can afford AMX, why not go for it? If you want something highly funcional reasonably priced with lots of scope to configure Idratek is a fine choice. Cbus, comfort, HomeVision, HomeSeer, X10, Homeeasy etc all have their merits and price points.
    If deadlines are short before you get started, seriously consider some profesional design help and for goodness sake chose electrical contractors that have some experience with radial wiring and mixing ELV and mains voltages in an installation. If you want to control your heating also chose a plumber who has some idea of advanced controllers not found in a plumbers merchant.
    Last edited by JonS; 27th March 2008 at 10:21 PM.

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