The challenge was to incorporate cutting edge smart home technology into an historic building, parts of which date from the 15th century and whose walls are up to 6 feet thick in places.
Not an ordinary 'smart home' job, the comprehensive brief from the client gave a breakdown of features they would need in every room of this building and a general overview of how the various technologies should integrate.
The system design and product specification was down to IDES with the client having a preference for the Crestron control system.
IDES chose KNX protocol because of its international recognition and open structure, a building management system we use for all medium to large wired projects, the KNX system gave the client the flexibility to choose switches from one manufacturer, dimmers from another and blind control from another, albeit IDES utilised Gira actuators with Schneider switches, KNX also seamlessly interfaced with the proposed Crestron touch screen installation.
All individual rooms are locally switched with master scenes to set whole building lighting with one operation of switch such as
All ON, All OFF, Entertain, Morning, Evening etc.
The Crestron control system was specified along with Crestron audio and video distribution. The specialist wiring for this was then installed, the client had the foresight gained through previous projects to request that two cables be installed where only one was required. This eliminated the need to install cabling after the floors and walls were re-instated should any changes to specification or faults arise.
CCTV, Intruder and entry phone systems were all selected by IDES to integrate with Crestron to provide a fantastic user interface experience.
Much of the work on this project has gone into hiding the technology, the last thing the client wanted to see was obvious technology anywhere. The spectacular architecture and artwork are the key features of many rooms not the TV or sound system.
All speakers are all flush mounted into the ceiling or walls, many of the TV’s are hidden behind specialist mirror frames supplied by IDES and most of the electronics are located in an air conditioned ‘Hub’ on the ground floor.
The cameras were all colour coded inside and outside the property, not only does this enhance the look of the building but these are almost ‘invisible’ to the naked eye to the extent that most people would not realise they were even there.
Other major challenges faced were the network and broadband, after much discussion with various providers IDES over saw the installation of over 1Km of fibre optic cabling through the grounds, this served a dual purpose, to connect up the cottages on the estate to the main house and also bring in a superfast broadband connection.
The outcome off all this work is a spectacular family house that is brimming with technology, delivers entertainment, communication and security all discreetly and without over shadowing the impact of this magnificent building.
IDES Limited are based in Edinburgh serving Scotland.