An elegant Manhattan townhouse becomes a smart townhouse, with full home theater, lighting, HVAC and intercom systems installed during the renovation.
When a home is undergoing a renovation, it’s the perfect time to upgrade the home theater, lighting, heating/air conditioning and access security systems. That’s exactly what we did in this upper East Side townhouse in New York.
The walls were all opened up for the renovation, so we ran new cables for lighting system, speakers, audio/video, intercoms and cameras. We also installed in-wall subwoofers.
Then we got to work on the equipment. A custom A/V rack went into a first-floor closet, where it can be pulled out for access or service when needed; everything in the rack is controlled by a MX780 smart universal remote control. For example, when the client pushes a button marked “watch TV” the television, audio receiver and cable feed are turned on and the remote enters “cable mode.”
We installed Polk RT90 audio speakers in the first-floor ceilings and covered the grilles with customer-supplied fabric to match the home’s décor. We also installed Sonos amplifiers for each speaker, so the audio levels in each room can be controlled separately or in whole-house mode.
The client’s basment Samsung HDTV was installed on a full-motion arm, and we added front Definitive Technology speakers (including center channel) and rear in-ceiling speaker boxes. So we turned that men’s cave into a home theater.
Next came the lighting system. We put in full remote control with scene buttons, which allow the client to adjust the entire first-floor lighting scheme or set a specific mood either with the buttons or by using their smartphones. For the HVAC, we installed a NEST thermostat integrated with the townhouse heating and cooling systems. It was put onto the client’s internet network so it can also be controlled with smartphones (via port forwarding on the router)
The final ingredient in this upper Manhattan townhouse was the intercom system. One outdoor and five indoor stations with cameras and microphones were installed; the video transmitted from the intercom stations can be viewed on smartphones, and two-way audio communication allows the client to talk to whoever is at the door or open the door remotely, even from a location outside the home.
This is a perfect example of how a client can take advantage of structural renovations to completely upgrade electronic systems to a fully-integrated automated smart home.