At first glance this master suite looks like any other well-appointed bedroom. Press a button on a Crestron remote, however, and it becomes something totally different.
In a matter of seconds, the 400-square-foot space turns into a full-fledged theater, with a 5.1 surround-sound system and a 40-inch Samsung LED TV that rises quietly from the footboard of a custom-crafted king-size bed.
It all starts by selecting a video source on the Crestron remote. The owners’ choices include an Apple TV box, Kaleidescape media server, live or recorded shows from a high-def DirecTV receiver, and a docked iPod. The Samsung TV connects directly to the Internet, so they can access web videos, too.
By the time the TV has ascended from its hiding place, the show of choice is on the screen and the audio is firing through inconspicuous in-ceiling speakers from SpeakerCraft, all tilted toward the headboard of the bed, and custom Leon speakers flanking the TV. A Velodyne subwoofer, stowed behind a bedside nightstand, completes the room’s A/V arrangement.
“I wouldn’t say the bedroom system rivals the dedicated theater in this house, but it’s still a powerful system, especially for a bedroom,” says Ryan Downing, design engineer and project manager at Integrated Home Systems in Reno, Nev.
Of course, creating the perfect movie-viewing environment takes more than just turning on an A/V system. The remote can darken the space by commanding the Lutron lighting system to dim the lamps and several massive floor-to-ceiling shades to lower over the windows.
A web-connected Samsung TV rises out of the custom concealment to allow the homeowner to watch Apple TV and Kaleidescape content in comfort. Photo by Jim Bowers
Dark, private and with plentiful entertainment options, this master bedroom has become a favorite respite. Still, thanks to routines programmed into the Crestron system by Integrated Home Systems, the homeowners can easily stay in touch with the rest of the house.
For example, when the doorbell rings, a real-time image from the surveillance camera by the front gate pops onto on the TV screen. The owners can speak with the guest via the intercom feature on the bedroom telephone and unlock the gate from its dialpad or from the Crestron remote.
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Lisa Montgomery has been writing about home technology for 15 years, with a focus on the impact of electronics on a modern lifestyle.