IVB\’s Home Theater and Home Automation

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Got Lists?

Posted by IVB on May 4, 2006

There's been some chatter on the CQC forums about the long lists of to-do that we all seem to have. I thought I'd formally write up everything I know that I still need to do. Dang, just writing this makes me tired. And to think – nearly all of this needs to be done before I can lay down the plywood in the attic to greatly expand our storage capacity, which I wanted to do June 10-17. That's a lotta work…

1) Run a 2nd 18/2 power wire from main Elk to 2ndary cabinet. I only ran the main power line that's constantly on. However, I'm putting stuff like smoke detectors in the 2ndary cabinet that need to be "switched" on/off by the main cabinet in the event of an alert, so the fire can be confirmed.

2) Run wiring for 20-ish more sensors. 12 of them are window sensors where I need to drill into the base, then into the crawlspace, and somehow divine how to get from one to the other

3) Connect telephone to the Elk and CQC so that I can have the CD pause if the phone rings

4) Rewire doorbell so I can create a naptime mode where it doesn't ring, and a daytime mode where it does ring. These would be selectable via a toggle on the wrapper

5) Mount & run wiring for internal speakers in 2 more locations where we can't hear the doorbell, setup Elk to send chimes to those locations when the doorbell rings [but only in daytime mode]. These speakers would also be used for security announcments [i.e., "dude there's a fire"], or to warn intruders ["hey buddy, you better get out now – the camera has begun recording and the cops have been called"]

6) Disconnect ADT and run the door sensors and RJ31X-main telco line from it into the Elk

7) Reformat one of my machines to act as a file server/CCTV recorder, setup & configure all software, test with the camera to make sure it all works.

8) Mount the front-door camera in a covert fashion

9) Mount & run wiring for 11 in-ceiling speakers in 7 rooms.

10) Mount & run wiring for 7 in-wall volume controllers for each of the above rooms

11) Install amps in a heat-friendly location, hook up to ZPR68

12) Switch over all screens to using the ZPR68 in production mode.

13) Run video wiring from ZPR68 to Kitchen & MBR so that I can render SDTV/DVD in those zones

14) Setup CQC/SageTV Server to send composite out to ZPR68, to act as a SDTV/DVD source.

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2 Responses to “Got Lists?”

  1. Curtis said

    My list is pretty similiar to yours. I’m maybe halfway through my equivilant list. About the doorbell: I just used a Powerflash unit, one new enough to have the third mode. Ran speaker wire from a standard doorbell into the powerflash unit, the computer IS the doorbell. I just have X10Net respond with a wav and send me an email when the doorbell rings, I could have it ding an X10 chime if I wanted.

    I use PhoneTray Free so I have the ringers on my phones turned off. I installed AT&T Natural Voices so incoming caller’s names are spoken unless they’re on my blacklist. So, since phone and doorbell come out there, it’s easy to have a rule mapped to an X10 address for a nap mode, just mute the speakers with a command line utility.

    I have a Telemaster unit for phone response, it sends codes on hook on/hook off and phone ring. So, I set up a Trillian Pro hotkey for “On the Phone” and “Online” statuses. Then I used a VB script so when X10Net sees the phone ringing, it pauses Winamp, and when I pick up the phone, it makes Trillian show “On the Phone” as status and sets it back when I hang up. Check out my website to see my Flash receptionist who is basically a PHP script I wrote to interpret my status.

    A nice touch I have is when I turn out my bedside lamp, and the system sees from a Hawkeye that it’s dark outside, it will shut down all other lights, the computer monitor, and set my status to “Gone to Bed.” My next big plan is VoIP integration using Asterisk on my Linux server and a SIP-3000.

  2. IVB said

    Interesting. So in that model, your PC handles all that. How are you handlig it if your PC dies?

    The way i'm wiring it up, I'm putting a doorbell with the plunger removed on the circuit so it makes no sound, then using an Elk Relay to connect a 2nd circuit with a real doorbell and/or speakers. The real doorbell will only sound during daytime mode, otherwise the Elk will keep that circuit open and prevent the chime. The dummy is on an N/O circuit, real is on a N/C. However, the Elk can determine which circuit to keep open or not.

    In the event of a pc/elk death, there's a power loss, and the N/C real doorbell takes over and the bell still rings. However, if those things are on, then they keep the real doorbell from activiating unless I want it to.

    Very similar to electronic/magnetic door locks that have a failsafe-open mode.

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