17/02/2017 Get smart on tech needs for your home

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Posted by Len | No Comments on Get smart on tech needs for your home

PreWire

Don’t leave it to chance: pre-wiring and cabling for future entertainment needs

I have just read an article by a chap in the United States who recently built a home where the cabling for security, networking, audio distribution, automation etc. was part of the package. Once the home was completed it was discovered that most of what had been installed was redundant. The cameras were wired for older analogue technologies, the distribution system was CAT5 based where the system itself required twin CAT6 runs. All the cables were home-run to a cabinet in the living room. In short without pulling half the house apart and doing it again this client will never be able to access the technologies they desired.

This is hardly news but what intrigued me was that the home owner was also the owner of one of the largest specialist domestic networking companies in the US, and a member of CEDIA. Apparently while he specified what he wanted he, or more specifically his team, was not allowed involvement in the project prior to completion – and as he said, he trusted the contractors.

The lesson here is that if he could make this mistake – it could happen to anyone.

We see this happen far, far too frequently. Building a new home is stressful – I know, I have done it. You are dealing with plumbers, painters, electricians, interior designers, landscape designers etc.  You need to make decisions on flooring, paint colors, bathroom fittings – on and on it goes. So when one of the on-site trades or the builder says that they can also look after the networking, distributed audio or automation it seems like an easy way out.

There are many specialised services involved in building a home. Plumbing, electrical, irrigation, engineering all require skill and training. The best bricklayers are those that have been honing their trade for some time. Our industry is exactly the same – with the notable difference that the technologies involved are changing at rates vastly outstripping any of the other services.

I am sure that if push came to shove most carpenters could try their hand at bricklaying, and let’s be honest, the techniques have not changed much during the last century. Does this mean you would entrust this aspect of your build to the on-site carpenter, even if they were cheaper?

I very much doubt it.

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Get smart: plan for tomorrow, today & consult a specialist

So why do people, time and time again, entrust the most technically involved aspect of their build to people who do not have the knowledge or the experience in this industry.

Convenience? – I understand that.

Cost – this makes no sense because most times it ends in heartache, you either pay good money for something that you cannot use, or find that to get the results you need it costs far more than what it would have done had you consulted a specialist in the first place!

When most of us build or renovate it is with the intention of enjoying the fruits for many years to come. Entertainment is a big part of this – you will spend more time watching TV, listening to music or accessing the internet than you will swimming in the pool or cooking in the kitchen.

Surely this aspect of your home-build should be treated with the same respect.

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