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Broconne's Wiring Adventure


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#16 broconne

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 09:56 AM

Nothing to add at the moment - but how much did the basment architectural plans cost, if you don't mind my asking? That future basement layout looks awesome, with the media room, workshop, billiards area, and kitchen. Putting the HA equipment in the mechanical room?


We paid a total of $390 for the basement and attic plans. We were able to provide plans from the builder for the unfinished space - which certainly helped. Also, the builder has a model home in this floorplan and elevation so we could walk through. The architect was worth it. We were convinced in the attic we needed to add a dormer option, she drew up a floorplan that didn't require it and we saved about $3k right there.

The plans are a bit hard to read, the "kitchen" area is actually a bar. And the media room is going to be a full on home theater with risers and theater seating. My Home Theater pre-build thread is here: A/B Prebuild Thread which has some sketchup diagrams of the space.

I think the H/A equipment will go between the exercise room and the mechanical room. It will give me two full walls on which I will put the following:
(1) OnQ/ALC 50 inch Can
(2) HAI/Elk 50 inch Can

The other wall will have (eventually):
(1) Computer Rack
(2) Whole Home Audio Rack

I am not sure if I need a rack for the computer stuff. I am basically going to craigslist around till I find one. For the computer, I plan to try and build one very large box (Quad Core, etc) and create VMWare instances for CQC,Asterix(maybe), and Sage. However, I have some USB/serial port things to figure out if I go that route.

#17 AceCannon

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 06:32 PM

Just an idea-

I've got a dedicated, lockable closet also. I plan to omit cans completely and mount OnQ, Elk, 66-blocks, etc directly on the walls (I specified plywood instead of drywall specifically for this). I think it will make cable management and space constraints less of an issue. Plus it could look cool as long as I spend some time doing it right.

I am going to put rubber-coated hooks and hardware of that ilk into the walls and route the cables on the surfaces of the walls. There will be one or two 4-post racks in there that some cables will end up getting routed to. (I.E., I will have a cat5e patch panel there, I plan to terminate Elk keypads into it, the ethernet switch will be in the rack, matrix switch, amps, etc)

#18 broconne

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 09:15 PM

Just an idea-

I've got a dedicated, lockable closet also. I plan to omit cans completely and mount OnQ, Elk, 66-blocks, etc directly on the walls (I specified plywood instead of drywall specifically for this). I think it will make cable management and space constraints less of an issue. Plus it could look cool as long as I spend some time doing it right.

I am going to put rubber-coated hooks and hardware of that ilk into the walls and route the cables on the surfaces of the walls. There will be one or two 4-post racks in there that some cables will end up getting routed to. (I.E., I will have a cat5e patch panel there, I plan to terminate Elk keypads into it, the ethernet switch will be in the rack, matrix switch, amps, etc)


Not a bad idea. I can't wait to see your setup! Post it in here when all setup - hopefully I can use that in my setup!

#19 Sokoloff

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 09:25 PM

Ace, I'd look into wire ducting, rather than "rubber coated hooks". It will protect the wiring marginally better, and look a ton more organized. cableorganizer.com is where I've ordered the cheap stuff for work and for home (the cheap stuff works just fine, it just doesn't say Panduit on it)

#20 broconne

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 10:24 PM

Family Room

Ok Cocoon tech, I am going to need some help here. Questions at the bottom!

Room Purpose: This is the family room. I am unsure how much use this room will get.. It will have the fireplace, it is close to the kitchen. It might be where we watch TV when company is over.. But not really sure - there will be a media room upstairs that will have the larger TV in it.. But with guests - might be strange to go upstairs.

H/A Equipment: The room has an occupancy sensor pre-wire, I placed it in the corner so it would not point pickup motion in the hallway. There are 4 cat5 cables run for ALC/OnQ. One for the recessed light and fan light, one for the fan, one for a scene switch and one for the floor outlets linked to lamps.

Security Equipment:
4 Window Contacts

H/A Goals:
(1) Turn on the lights when occupied.
(2) Turn off lights when unoccupied for a duration.
(3) Turn on the fan when occupied if temperature warrants air movement.

Questions:
(1) Not sure of a great place to put the temperature sensor - So I put it on the column. Any other suggestions?
(2) There is a big question about how to orient this room. We can pay about $1000 to put a niche above the fireplace that has doors that can hide a TV. That would orient the room towards the fireplace. I would also need to pay to put an outlet back there and a pipe chase. The other option is to move the TV to the one wall in the room and put a nice media cabinet over there, we were thinking something like this: Pottery Barn Media Center If we do that I would probably change the orientation of the speakers too. Any comments here would be great - we aren't sure what to do!
(3) I have no glass break sensor in here. There is no direct access to that wall of windows, they would need a ladder - not sure if someone would bother when they could try to break in from the deck.. Is that a mistake.


The Family Room:
Posted Image

#21 broconne

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Posted 04 March 2009 - 11:00 PM

Breakfast Room

Room Purpose: This is the place where most meals will be eaten. There is a bump out at the top for a coffee niche for a small table with chairs, etc..

H/A Equipment: The room has an occupancy/motion sensor pre-wire, I placed it in the corner so it would not point pickup motion in the hallway or kitchen. There are 3 cat5 cables run for ALC/OnQ. One for the recessed lights, one for the chandelier, one for the scene switch. On the other side of the room, near the deck door, there are 4 cat5 cables as well. 1 for the covered deck fan (come on future cat5 fan switch!), 1 for the fan light on the covered deck, and one for the outside light on deck and 1 for a scene switch.

Security Equipment:
5 Window Contacts
1 Door Contact
Glass Break

H/A Goals:
(1) Turn on the lights when occupied.
(2) Turn off lights when unoccupied for a duration.
(3) Turning on the covered deck light when the door is opened or off when closed based on occupancy of the covered deck.

Audio:
You may note there is only one speaker - the other speaker is in the kitchen.

The volume control is for the deck and covered deck.

Electrical:
We are putting an outlet in the floor here under the table, for the potential plugin of laptops, etc. Anyone have a setup like that? Is it worth it? Will cost me about $160.


Questions:
(1) I wanted to put in a temperature sensor - for no real reason other well gathering the temperature - however, I may take this out and save the $40. I can't think of a good place to put it. Can anyone think of a good HA use for a temperature sensor in a room without a fan?
(2) I am sort of assuming I can find a wired 22/4 sensor that can do both occupancy and motion and report both back independently. Anyone have a link to one?


The Breakfast Room:
Posted Image

Edited by broconne, 09 March 2009 - 10:16 PM.


#22 Neurorad

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 07:57 AM

Do you plan on security/flood lights along the back of the house? If so, where will you position the switch(es)? Kitchen? FR? Front door? Basement also, of course.

#23 sda

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 08:19 AM

(2) There is a big question about how to orient this room. We can pay about $1000 to put a niche above the fireplace that has doors that can hide a TV. That would orient the room towards the fireplace.

I can't stand TV's over fireplaces. TV's should be at eye level. I watch TV sitting or laying on the sofa, not standing up.

#24 broconne

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 08:35 AM

(2) There is a big question about how to orient this room. We can pay about $1000 to put a niche above the fireplace that has doors that can hide a TV. That would orient the room towards the fireplace.

I can't stand TV's over fireplaces. TV's should be at eye level. I watch TV sitting or laying on the sofa, not standing up.


Well, that is one strong vote against :-)

I will keep a tally.

1 - No


We found out a neighbor of ours built the niche, we are going to go visit/meet them on Sunday and see how we like it. I really thought I would be opposed to the TV over the fireplace thing.. But our current apartment came with a 52 inch over the fireplace and it is no strain at all on the neck, etc. One thought is that if we put the TV over the fireplace, then people (company) can be watching TV yet not be cut off from people in the kitchen. If it is on the other wall, then your back is to the kitchen.

#25 broconne

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 08:50 AM

Do you plan on security/flood lights along the back of the house? If so, where will you position the switch(es)? Kitchen? FR? Front door? Basement also, of course.


We added one floodlight on the front of the garage, more for lighting as you are taking the trash out rather than security. The house comes with one double bulb floodlight package on the rear. I am not sure if we need another one. Do people find them useful for security or other purposes? They cost $219 each here - so adding them is not a trivial expense. I figure I can have the standard one in the back yard and if I need more, I can add them myself from the unfinished basement - I guess the downside is the angle is not very good? Any strong reasons to spend another $220 to have two back there?


Thanks.

#26 sda

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 08:52 AM

Breakfast Room
We are putting an outlet in the floor here under the table, for the potential plugin of laptops, etc. Anyone have a setup like that? Is it worth it? Will cost me about $160.

Interesting idea. Do you plan on crawling under the table every time to plug in, or are you going to semi-permanently rig an ugly power strip under the table? What if wifey wants a pedestal table and it covers the recep? It might work if it was positioned at the edge of the table near a leg where chairs won't get hung up on it. You'll need to layout the room for furniture and spec exactly where the recep needs to be, and probably never change your layout or table.

You could hang one of these from the ceiling:
http://www.americord...d/prod_412.html

Or you could install a retractable cord similar to that in a kitchen cabinet and pull it out when you need it.

#27 sda

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 09:09 AM

We found out a neighbor of ours built the niche, we are going to go visit/meet them on Sunday and see how we like it. I really thought I would be opposed to the TV over the fireplace thing.. But our current apartment came with a 52 inch over the fireplace and it is no strain at all on the neck, etc. One thought is that if we put the TV over the fireplace, then people (company) can be watching TV yet not be cut off from people in the kitchen. If it is on the other wall, then your back is to the kitchen.

Really depends on the height of the fireplace and if you have/want to use the mantle for display. For houses with a modern gas fireplace low to the floor and no mantle I'd consider it. In my house the mantle is at 4 feet and my wife likes to put stuff there, so the bottom of the TV would be at 5' and she wouldn't be able to put candles on the mantle.

#28 sic0048

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 09:45 AM

I was going to say that we installed several TVs over fireplaces at my parents house and I don't mind the height. But they are over gas fireplaces with no mantles. At my house we didn't put the TV over the fireplace, but more due to the seating arrangement than anything else.

#29 broconne

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 10:07 AM

We found out a neighbor of ours built the niche, we are going to go visit/meet them on Sunday and see how we like it. I really thought I would be opposed to the TV over the fireplace thing.. But our current apartment came with a 52 inch over the fireplace and it is no strain at all on the neck, etc. One thought is that if we put the TV over the fireplace, then people (company) can be watching TV yet not be cut off from people in the kitchen. If it is on the other wall, then your back is to the kitchen.

Really depends on the height of the fireplace and if you have/want to use the mantle for display. For houses with a modern gas fireplace low to the floor and no mantle I'd consider it. In my house the mantle is at 4 feet and my wife likes to put stuff there, so the bottom of the TV would be at 5' and she wouldn't be able to put candles on the mantle.



The mantle is 54.5 inches off the floor and 68 inches wide. In the current apartment we have a few short things on the mantle - but not much. Looking at the room, the primary seating position would be back close to 14 ft. So that is a viewing angle of only 15 degrees which should be reasonable.

I need to measure the angle and height of the apartment to see if it would be reasonable.

Edited by broconne, 05 March 2009 - 10:11 AM.


#30 broconne

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Posted 05 March 2009 - 10:10 AM

Breakfast Room
We are putting an outlet in the floor here under the table, for the potential plugin of laptops, etc. Anyone have a setup like that? Is it worth it? Will cost me about $160.

Interesting idea. Do you plan on crawling under the table every time to plug in, or are you going to semi-permanently rig an ugly power strip under the table? What if wifey wants a pedestal table and it covers the recep? It might work if it was positioned at the edge of the table near a leg where chairs won't get hung up on it. You'll need to layout the room for furniture and spec exactly where the recep needs to be, and probably never change your layout or table.

You could hang one of these from the ceiling:
http://www.americord...d/prod_412.html

Or you could install a retractable cord similar to that in a kitchen cabinet and pull it out when you need it.


There would be no power strip. Quite frankly I don't think we would use it a lot.. But was more envisioning a use for children when doing their homework etc..

I think there would be some serious WAF issues with hanging one of those from a ceiling. A cabinet might be better..




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