2009 BLOG Articles

A teaser list of new articles are presented below in reverse chronological order.

Two Recommendations for High Quality Desktop Sound

Bose and AudioEngine Offer Great Desktop Audio
December 9, 2009

With advances in personal computing display and audio technology you can now complement your new desktop PC with a great sounding speaker system.


Nine Green HDTVs

Available Now These TVs Reduce Standby and Full Power Consumption
December 2, 2009

This article presents a summary of nine HDTVs high in performance and low in energy consumption.


Three Automation Holiday Gifts Under $100

Give a Gift That Provides Convenience and Energy Savings
November 18, 2009

Three automation products are presented below with "buy now" links to allow you to give a gift to someone who would appreciate a little more convenience while also contributing to energy conservation.


How To Gain Even More Savings With "Green" Lighting

Consider adding sensors to your home CFL/LED lighting already installed.
November 9, 2009

You likely already know CFLs (compact fluorescent lamps) and LED (light emitting diodes) fixtures conserve electricity. CFLs are four times more efficient and last 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs, while LEDs use less than 10 watts of electricity and have even longer lifespans.


Windows 7 Is Good For Home Automation

Improvements to Windows Media Center Strengthen the Platform for Whole-house Automation
October 30, 2009

Windows 7 improvements in the Windows Media Center (WMC) application in multiple areas make this OS a better option for home automation.


How Does LED TV Differ From LCD TV?

LED HDTVs achieve a much higher contrast ratio
October 19, 2009

Just when we had all sorted out the difference between Plasma and LCD flat-panel HDTVs, now we have LED HDTVs to consider too! However, there still seems to be a fair bit of confusion surrounding what exactly an LED TV is.


Panasonic Strives To Be Market Leader for 3D Television

Panasonic offers a 50" 3D Plasma HDTV
October 13, 2009

Have fond memories of watching 3D movies in the theater? Now you can renew the experience with a Panasonic 3D TV at home.


Russound to Acquire Colorado vNet

Deal to be done by October 31, 2009
October 6, 2009

Russound's acquisition of Colorado vNet places them squarely in the whole house automation market.


You Can Now Distribute HDTV Over Coax

The ZvBox 150 supports the distribution of Internet and Local HD programming.
September 28, 2009

If you have digital cable TV service for your entertainment center, you are likely aware you can distribute analog cable TV to other TVs in your home simply by connecting a coaxial cable from your room cable outlet to your TV. Now you can also distribute 720p HD to those other rooms with the ZvBox 150 from ZeeVee.


Internet Audio/Video Streaming Without Windows Media Center

Checkout the Sherwood R-904N NetBoxx Internet A/V Receiver.
September 9, 2009

If you'd like to stream high definition audio/video programming to your entertainment center from the internet, and you don't need or want a Windows Media Center (WMC) system, Sherwood may have a solution for you.


Home Automation for the Care Giver - Part 2

CloseBy Network Remote Monitoring Is Now Available.
August 27, 2009

Control4 Dealers are now positioned to offer the CloseBy Network remote monitoring solution for Care Givers.


Check Out the Netflix Plug-in on Windows Media Center

Watch Unlimited Instant Movies For Free.
August 3, 2009

The recession-buster feature of free movie downloads from Netflix is greatly enhanced with an integrated Windows Media Center PC in your entertainment center.


Interact With the Smart Power Meter - Part 2

Control4 Secures Venture Funding for Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) product initiatives.
July 13, 2009

This article is a follow-up to our June 3, 2009 blog entitled "How Your Home Can Interact With the Smart Power Meter".


Home Automation for the Care Giver

Wireless Technology Enables Remote Monitoring for Care Givers.
July 1, 2009

CE Industry marketers forecast by 2012, 7.2 million Americans will be using home health monitoring services, generating more than $4 billion in service provider revenue.


How Your Home Can Interact With the Smart Power Meter

By Managing Home Power Loads Via Automation.
June 3, 2009

According to U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, "President Obama has made a smart electrical grid a key element of his plan to lower energy costs for consumers, achieve energy independence and reduce greenhouse gas emissions".


Home Entertainment and Global Warming

What's Your Strategy For Cutting Home Energy Usage?
May 19, 2009

Many folks view home automation as a discretionary expense, and limit their foray into home controls to adding a universal remote to the Entertainment Center.

However, if you're in the middle of developing a serious plan to reduce your home energy consumption, your Entertainment Center can not be ignored.


Does Control4 Really Plan to Integrate With Lutron?

Is this a Shotgun Wedding Resulting from the Recent Patent Infringement Settlement?
March 27, 2009

On February 3rd of this year CEPro and others reported on the patent infringment settlement resulting from the law suit filed by Lutron against Control4.

The CEPro article reported: "the latest casualty is Control4, which settled today in a battle that began in May 2006. Lutron had claimed that Control4 infringed several patents covering inventions in the area of RF communications. As part of the settlement, Control4 has signed a license agreement with Lutron, and agreed to pay royalties on past and future sales of certain RF lighting-control products that allegedly infringe on Lutron patents".


Want To Control Your Home Using Your Cell Phone?

Verizon May Roll Out a Home Control System Accesible from Your Cell Phone.
March 24, 2009

Last week Julie Jacosen of CEPro published an article stating: "CE Pro discovered a document on an FCC Web site that describes the Verizon Home Monitoring Gateway and Home Monitor Service, referring to the service as 4Home." She further stated: "Z-Wave devices such as motion sensors, lights, thermostats, garage-door openers, door locks and other compatible products can be monitored and controlled through the system. Certain IP-based surveillance cameras also can be integrated".


A 1080p HDTV is Only the First Step to Full HD

Your HDMI Cable Also Must Support 1080p
March 12, 2009

OK, so you paid more for your new 1080p HDTV to ensure you'll be able to view source programming actually delivered in 1080p at full high definition quality. Presumably you or your installer connected your HD source devices to the new TV using HDMI cables.

However, even if you are aware the lastest HDMI cable standard is governed by the 1.3a HDMI Specification, there are two categories specified.


Life/Ware Extends Windows Vista Media Center

Life/Ware: Extends Vista Media Center to Whole-house Automation
February 5, 2009

If you've read the Digital Home story on this site about the emergence of Windows Vista Media Center as a platform for home automation. You are aware Life/Ware (LW) can be a powerful choice for a complete home automation solution.

However, you may not be aware a Life/Ware Media Server or any Windows PC running Vista Media Center can easily be incorporated into an existing entertainment center to consolidate all your digital media, and also into another automation solution such as Control4.


Best Product of CES 2009 Plus 2 Others

3 Products from 2009 CES We Recommend
February 5, 2009

Last month Julie Jacobson of CEPro previewed the PSX2 from Universal Remote Control (URC). This iPod Dock is truly the "magical iPod Server" for those wanting features unavailable in any other dock. “Favorites” menu? One button press is all it takes. All albums that start with the letter “J”? Just press a single button. Shuffle the “Kids’ Playlist” with one touch. These are just a small sample of this dock's features.