fi Smart Homes was called in by these clients to install a system that was both reliable and fully functional. The design brief detailed a system that incorporated and managed entertainment, control, lighting and security all in one. The clients requested it to be discreet, user-friendly, yet up-to-date with technology. The location of this Sunshine Beach residence inspired many of the design elements. Early in the project, fi Smart Homes worked closely with the builder, electrician and architect to overcome the cable runs through this three-level home.
The challenge here was to provide adequate space for the many services without comprising the engineering. The walls in the home were rendered with special clay, so a template had to be designed for the Clipsal Slimline & Saturn series wall plates as no touch-ups to the wall finish were possible after the switches were fitted. Utilising space was the main priority. A spot underneath one of the stairwells in the house was chosen as the perfect location to accommodate the equipment racks. The Mid Atlantic Rack has floor service tracks which attach onto the base for servicing. Offering some of the best views on the coast, this home was further enhanced by its technological features. A plasma ceiling lift was installed upstairs in the master bedroom. The hidden plasma panel was designed to drop out of its ceiling recess when needed; this is to prevent the obstruction of the ocean views in this room. To support this clean, uncluttered look, the speakers for this zone are also flush in the ceiling. On the mid level, the heart of the AV system — a matrix switch — is located. This allowed for any of the high-definition video sources, on any screen throughout the home, to be viewed at any time. The audio system was to be of a quality befitting the rest of the system. All components were to be housed in one central location with remote radio frequency control from all zones. Energy efficiency was enhanced with a fully automated lighting, fan, and shutter control system. A monitored security system had to integrate seamlessly with the automation and lighting controls.
The switching is done by an Autopatch 12×8 video and audio matrix combined with an RTI remote-controlled processor. The equipment list consists of Denon AV receivers for the surround areas, Rotel power amplifiers for the stereo zones, Panasonic Blu Ray players, an Escient Video server and Pay TV decoders. A central CBus touchscreen also allows for master control over the lighting system. There are two 5.1 areas in the home — the entertainment room on the ground floor with its bar and pool table, and the main living/kitchen area on the mid level. Both these areas have Pioneer professional monitors wall-mounted into recesses to limit exposure to the elements common to beachside homes. Both monitors have Artisan LCR speaker systems attached. One has a Martin Logan sub woofer, and the other is teamed with a Velodyne. Rear in-ceilings from Sonance and Niles complete both kits. There are five more distributed audio zones — the kitchen, the three outdoor areas and the gym. All these zones have flush-mounted in-ceiling speakers in keeping with the rest of the home. Remote control for all zones is via RTI’s T3V Rf touchscreen remote controls including an in-wall-mounted coloured touchscreen in the living/kitchen area. The home’s lighting system can be controlled from the centrally located touchscreen on the mid-level equipment rack, or from anywhere in the home on the owner’s iPhone. All the in-room switches are Clipsal glassed-faced Saturn series, most of which have LCD designations for the switch functions. This luxury home is an entertainer’s delight, defined by clean lines, modern furniture and the latest in-built technology