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How Can Smart Technology Reduce Your Home's Energy Usage?

How Can Smart Technology Reduce Your Home's Energy Usage?
Identify Problem Areas With Home Monitoring Solutions• Help Out Your Air Conditioning With Smart Shading Control• Eliminate Excess Usage With Motion Sensors


Why Do You Need a Smart Home Monitoring Solution?
There are a lot of things that could make the energy bills in your Kauai, Hawaii home skyrocket. There’s the rising temperatures as spring approaches, the tendency to embrace the beautiful landscapes with large windows and doorways, and excess usage while you’re away. Alleviate these issues with a Crestron home monitoring system that brings all your technology together to find your biggest problem areas and design simple solutions.



How to Find Your Biggest Problem Areas
 The first step in crafting a successful energy-cutting solution is to figure out the rooms and technology taking up the most resources. Below we explain how to best find these problem areas. 
  • Using Your Energy Dashboard
    • Crestron’s Fusion EM Software lets you see how lighting, entertainment, climate control and security affect your usage.
      • Create historical reports: Look at your usage over time to see if certain months or even hours result in higher energy use.
      • Project future consumption: Once you start thinking of solutions, input them into your software to see how they would affect your consumption. These projections will help you pick and choose which solutions are best for you.
 How Can You Resolve Problem Areas?
 Once you’ve pinpointed issues in your home, it’s time to come up with a solution. Below are some common problem areas and potential solutions for each:
  • Reducing the Load on Your Air Conditioning
    • Make sure to lower your temperature when you’re not in your home or a specific room.
      • Install motion sensors so your thermostat rises in unoccupied rooms and automatically drops when you return.
      • Your home monitoring solution also lets you make changes remotely. Turn up your thermostat from your smartphone as you leave and turn it back down when you’re heading home.
      • We know most homes in Kauai are vacation homes. Pick out the months you’ll be away and let your system know the thermostat can be turned off or set to a higher temperature during that time.
    • With smart shading, you can use photo sensors to close shades as soon as they’re hit by direct sunlight to help cool down your home.
  • Reducing the Impact of Your Lighting
    • Adjust your default settings with a smart lighting control
      • Reduce the default settings on all your lights from 100 percent to 90 percent. Play with your Lutron dimmers to see which could go even lower.
    • Eliminate Excess Use
      • Use your tablet or touchpad to see if lights were left on in other rooms and turn them off at the press of a button.
      • Use motion sensors to ensure lights and appliances turn off as soon as a room has been unoccupied for a length of time.
      • You can also incorporate scenes that help you manage your lighting.
        • Away Scene: Turns all your lights off when you leave the house.
        • Goodnight Scene: Turns all your lights off at a given time every night.
Pacific Audio Communications Inc. crafts a home monitoring system that helps you keep tabs on your energy usage and lets you create effective solutions. Contact us today to set up a consultation!

What Cables Should You Use for Your Home Audio Distribution?

What Cables Should You Use for Your Home Audio Distribution?
• Have Access to Your Favorite Music in Every Corner of Your Home• Optimize the Audio Signals Within Your Kauai, Hawaii Space• Work With a Professional for a Discreet Wiring Installation

What is a Home Audio Distribution System?

A home audio distribution system lets you transfer audio signals from source components –a turntable, media library or CD player – to speakers throughout your house. When installing your system in Kauai, Hawaii, it’s not enough to find the best speakers and A/V receivers. You need to make sure your audio signals travel efficiently through the right cable solution.



What Kind of Cables Should You Use?
In most cases, your audio signals will go through one of the following cables: analog, HDMI or Ethernet. Below we take a look at features from all three to see what the best fit is for you.
  • Why Use Analog Cables?
    • Analog cables provide the purest sound from a turntable or CD player since the signal is never translated into digital form when it goes from the source to your receiver.
    • How to judge the quality of an analog cable
      • While all cables may look the same, slight variations in material and craftsmanship can make a huge difference.
        • Usually you want a copper conductor, double shielding and high-pressure connectors for the least signal interference.
      • Why Use HDMI Cables?
        • An HDMI cable can carry audio, video, and even internet signals.
        • When it comes to a home theater system, HDMI is the best way to get full surround sound, offering up to eight different soundtrack channels to create three-dimensional audio within the room.
        • A challenge for HDMI is that it is always evolving. This means the latest HDMI technology may not be compatible with older gear.
      • Why Use Ethernet Cables?
        • Ethernet cables can transmit signals in a multi-room system with limited interference. The CAT-6 line also lets you send signals back, meaning it can take a signal from your television receiver and transfer it back to your A/V receiver or speaker. This way any audio generated within your TV can be played on another system.
        • Ethernet connections are also common for wireless speaker systems like SONOS. We also connect your sources –music library or laptop—to a network router to boost the signal.
      • What is the best cable for a multi-room system?
        • Picking the right gauge: The longer your cable needs to travel within your home audio distribution system, the thicker you want it to be. The thicker a wire, the lower its gauge. Most installations will require a gauge between 12 and 14.
        • Wiring behind walls: To reduce the risk of overheating, fire or interference, you want to use CL2 or CL3 wires for in-wall installations.
      • Why should I work with a professional for my home audio distribution?
        • Figuring out what cables are right for you is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Your solution may require a variety of cables depending on your source components, type of speakers and the size of your home.
          • Will you also need to transmit video signals?
          • Will you want all wiring hidden behind walls?
          • Are you incorporating wireless speakers?
        • We ensure cables are compatible with your technology. Choosing incompatible cables will not only result in lower-quality audio, but it can also damage your system.
        • As licensed low-voltage contractors, we can find the perfect path from your A/V receivers or matrix switchers all the way to the speaker of your choice. All wiring remains hidden behind walls to reduce clutter.
Want to get the most out of your home audio distribution? Contact Pacific Audio and Communications Inc. for a professional installation.

Why Building a Strong Infrastructure for Your Smart Home Pays Off

Why Building a Strong Infrastructure for Your Smart Home Pays Off
• Increase Resale Value for Your Kauai, Hawaii Property • Let Your Smart Home Automation System Get the Most out of Energy-Saving Technology• Enable mobile control, monitoring with better system integration • Save money, time, and grief when it comes to upgrades, maintenance or additions.
   

Who’s Wiring Your Home and Do They Know What They’re Doing?

Check out some frequently asked questions about smart home automation and home technology integration and find out why you should work with Pacific Audio and Communications Inc.


  • Do I need a lot of wiring in my home? Couldn’t I just go with wireless solutions?
    • You don’t need a lot of wiring, but you need to ensure what you install is the right kind of wire and is installed correctly. Using the right kind of wire makes a huge difference in performance and future upgrades. A smart installer primes your system for growth by installing conduit points in specific locations to create access for future wiring. Just one conduit install can save you thousands in future upgrades and avoids having to cut into walls, ceilings or floors if you want to incorporate new components, services or upgrades in your smart home automation system.
    • A wireless network relies on strategically placed Access Points which have to be wired to your home network. Cable, phone, alarm and security locations will also need a wiring foundation. The best quality when it comes to internet speed and audio video signals comes from wired systems. By relying on wireless solutions, you also risk interference from neighbors. Wireless is good and will get better, but in some areas wiring will always be the better option. And that wiring needs to be of the best quality and properly installed.
  • What are some considerations when preparing a smart home’s infrastructure?
    • Work with your contractor when finding a low-voltage subcontractor for your project and make sure to ask the following questions:
      • Can they install the systems you want to incorporate in your smart home automation system?
      • Can they provide service and maintenance afterwards? Many low-voltage subcontracts will only take part in the installation and leave users stranded when they face problems.
      • Do they have a reputation for reliable work and systems?
      • Are they licensed?
    • Once you have found the low-voltage contractor you want to work with, make sure you discuss which systems you want to include in your home. When discussing this take both aesthetics and functionality into account:
      • Where do you want to place your main system control panels and equipment?
      • How do you want to interact with your system?
        • Control it from your smartphone with mobile control and monitoring.
        • Find the right user interface for ease-of-use of the system.
        • Will the access be designed for a rental market with multiple users?
      • Don’t fast track through this initial process. Taking the time to communicate with your low voltage contractor will result in a spectacular end product that operates just the way you want and expect it to.
  • Why Should I Trust Pacific Audio & Communications Inc. With my Home Technology Needs?
  • We have over 25 years of experience in the industry and we just keep getting better. Through our experience we know the best products in the market and when to use them. All our smart home automation solutions are tried and true—fully tested for optimal results.
  • Something that makes us stand out is our commitment to customer support. Our past customers love us because we service everything we install with labor and equipment warranties included.
  • We do it all to offer comprehensive smart services including home theaters, whole house audio, wired and wireless networking, lighting systems, security and surveillance, motorized shades, power protection systems and smart home control integration.
Looking for a low-voltage contractor to take care of your home technology needs? We specialize in the outer island market (Maui, Kauai, Big Island) and we’re here to take care of you. Contact us to set up a consultation!

Press Release: Pacific Audio receives CEDIA outreach Instructor designation

Press Release: Pacific Audio receives CEDIA outreach Instructor designation

For Immediate Release

Continuing Education Courses Available for Design and Build Professionals in Maui, Kauai and Big Island

Local electronic systems professionals deliver training; members of participating organizations earn continuing education units

 
Kihei, Hawaii (10/21/2015) — Educating architects, building designers, builders, interior designers, and remodelers on ways to increase their business through home technology is top priority for Pacific Audio & Communications Hawaii. Recently, Patrick Mulligan, of Pacific Audio & Communications Hawaii, received the CEDIA Outreach Instructor (COI) designation from the Custom Electronic Design & Installation Association (CEDIA) enabling him to deliver multiple courses approved for continuing education credit by the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the American Institute of Building Design (AIBD), Interior Design Continuing Education Council (IDCEC)-governed interior designer associations (ASID, IIDA, and IDC), and the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI).

 
These COI courses are part of CEDIA’s industry outreach efforts, designed to strengthen collaboration between home technology professionals and the design and build industry. As technology continues to grow and change at a rapid pace, the courses that Patrick Mulligan offers help design and build professionals better understand the capabilities of residential electronic systems. The courses are provided at no charge by Pacific Audio & Communications.
 
“We work in unison with builders, architects, interior designers, and related professionals to combine grace and elegance with high-tech wizardry” Patrick Mulligan COI
 
Local chapters of industry partner associations, such as AIA, AIBD, NARI, and ASID are encouraged to contact Pacific Audio & Communications to take advantage of this free education.  Courses cover such topics as hiding technology, planning for residential electronics systems, and home theater design.

 
About Pacific Audio & Communications Hawaii.
Pacific Audio & Communications (PAC) is one of the nation's premier Electronic Systems Integration Company specializing in design, integration, and installation of electronic systems in residential environments. Since 1991, we have completed over a thousand quality installations in Hawaii, California, and Nevada. Our installations have received national attention in several consumer and trade publications. More info can be found on our website www.pachawaii.com

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