When it comes to wire, don’t skimp out. If you’re building a new house don’t let wiring up your systems be an afterthought. You can never put too much wire! Preparing for the future is a must nowadays. Technology is moving faster and faster so best prepare for tomorrow today.
So how can you plan for the future of technology when we don’t know what the next big thing will be. Well we won’t be able to completely prepare, but we can do our best. We will get a sense of what you want by asking yourself a few questions:
- What would I install today? Putting budget aside.
- If you could which rooms would you make 5.1, 7.1 or 9.2 surround sound?
- Where would you put touchscreens? Will you eventually want an intercom system to the front door? Would you put up a gate that you want to control and intercom with also?
- If money wasn’t an issue, how many TVs would you put up? Where?
- Would you motorize all window coverings or just a few? What if you’re not sure about them but end up falling in love? Are you going to regret foregoing the wire in ALL windows?
- Is it important to put, for the alarm, wire every second floor windows or just main floor and basement? Flood sensors? Fire?
- May you ever want indoor cameras in any areas? Inside doors? Baby room for monitoring? Don’t think of it always as an indoor camera, think what else it can be down the road. Like a motion sensor, a daylight sensor, a room mic, wifi or some future tech that we can’t even imagine.
I can’t say it enough, you can never put in too much wire! You have your best chance to wire everything properly when you are building or renovating. Otherwise it may not be possible or if it is possible it will be a costly problem to solve.
Hardwired VS Wireless
At the end of the day a hardwired solution is always the best option. Down the road you may be able to get a wireless system. Quite a few systems are actually available today, with one major drawback… Batteries! That’s right, if your blinds run out of batteries and are all the way up, they’re stuck there until a service technician comes to replace them. Not all smart devices are easy to replace batteries.
There are plenty of other drawbacks to wireless systems. Wireless connectivity can drop without warning. One device can drop off wireless at a time for best case scenario. With wireless, though, there is almost definitely a single point of failure. If one specific device or controller goes down you may be unable to control all of your wireless devices. A hardwired device will rarely go down a whole system at a time, it’s almost always a single device at a time that fails. Also, the more wireless you add into a place the more interference you will cause.
Run Wire for your TVs
Even if you aren’t planning on putting a TV there today just prepare for it. TV’s usually have the most wiring to them. So even if you never use the TV location for a TV it’s nice to have a spare wire to extend and use close by for a camera, touchscreen, speakers, WiFi access point or for a DJ stand. You can pretty much re-use TV wiring for any other purposes.
Speakers Sound Like a Good Idea
You would usually put speakers where the TV’s are to hear what’s on. What is most important is to know what kind of system you want in that room. Is it going to be a set of stereo speakers? Or maybe a full theatre system with 5-9 or more speakers and a subwoofer or 2 (5.1, 7.1 or 9.2). Decide now because remember you don’t have to use it if you have it, but if you want more later it may be more of a hassle than it’s worth.
Create a Strong Network
Most devices are coming out with option to connect with wired network or wireless. Make sure the network options you choose are enough to get you good wired and wireless connectivity. Put cables in places that give you options even if you aren’t sure what you are going to install. For example we can put a wire in the ceiling somewhere for a wifi access point, camera or somewhere with a good location for a room microphone. Who knows, maybe the house of tomorrow uses voice control and gestures with facial recognition to load a users preferences. So put wire in the ceiling and hope we can keep your house relatively smart for as long as possible. Hardwire is always best.
Hire experienced experts because they know the ins and outs of running wires. There are certain unspoken methods for running wires that your average general contractor or electrician may not know. Such as, when to use cat5 VS cat6, which way to run it to reduce interference and even how hard to pull on it to avoid damage. All these things should be known by your low voltage contractor but may not be common knowledge to everyone who runs cabling.
The guys at SASA know the best way to get it done so even if you don’t plan on installing anything today give them a call, because you need a solid foundation to build a solid home.