Discover Crestron Touchpanels

Crestron launched an industry when is introduced the world’s first touchpanel.  Since then many home control companies have arrived on the market, and lately a range of consumer products have popped up for the DIY Weekend Warriors.  But with all this competition on the market Crestron has been able to remain a leader in home control and is recognized world wide.  Have a look at the Crestron Touchpanel Brochure to introduce yourself to the sleek designs of Crestron.


Move over iPad! There is a new tablet in town

Apple iPad has held the #1 spot for “buzz” about tablets, but lately it has been the Samsung Galaxy that has nudged its way to the top of the headlines and Apple isn’t liking it.  Apple felt that the Samsung Galaxy was a copy of the iPad and filed a suit against its sale.

Recently a  German court has temporarily lifted a restriction today that was preventing Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 from being sold throughout most of Europe. The initial sales injunction was enacted last week because of a suit filed by Apple, which claimed that Samsung’s tablet was essentially a copycat to Apple’s successful iPad tablet.

According to Dutch site Webwereld, the Dusseldorf District Court has issued an interim statement allowing Samsung to again sell the Galaxy Tab throughout the EU nations, with the exception of Germany. The German court will have formal hearing on August 25, at which time, the sales injunction could return.

At 499.99 US the Samsung Galaxy, an Android device which supports Adobe flash,  is at a perfect price point to compete with Apple’s iPad, which has been the “big boy” on the market for the last year.  Also, the new coming acquisition of Motorola by Google means that the android market more than likely going to boom!

Click here to find out more information about the Samsung Galaxy Tablet



Kaleidescape Media Server Introduces the new M700 Disc Vault

It can house and automatically import Blu-ray discs, DVD and CDs.

How Does it work:

Insert your Blu-ray Discs, DVDs and CDs and the M700 Disc Vault automatically copies them onto your Kaleidescape System. Up to 320 discs can be loaded into the vault making it easy to add great content to your library.

Discs in the vault remain organized and easy to find. To retrieve one, simply navigate to the title using the onscreen display, and select Eject Disc.

The presence of a Blu-ray Disc in the vault enables instant playback of the copy on the server by any M-Class player in the system. If a Blu-ray Disc is ejected, the system cannot play the movie until it is reinserted.

An M-Class player is integrated into the M700 Disc Vault; the disc vault plays the digital copies of movies and music stored on your Kaleidescape System.

The M700 Disc Vault connects to your home network with an Ethernet cable, and any number of disc vaults can be added to a Kaleidescape System.



Crestron Lecture Capture Technology

With One Touch, New Crestron Lecture Capture Technology Makes Classroom Presentations Available to Everyone

CAPTURE-HD Provides Faculty with a Simple and Affordable Way to Record and Publish Lectures Online; Students Can Now View Classroom Presentations from Anywhere, Anytime.

At InfoComm 2011, Crestron introduced CAPTURE-HD, its new high-definition lecture capture device for college campuses and the corporate enterprise. CAPTURE-HD provides faculty and presenters with a simple one-button solution to schedule, record, publish online, and view lectures, presentations, medical procedures, seminars, and training sessions. CAPTURE-HD is smartly designed as a complete yet practical meeting and lecture capture solution that’s easy for the entire faculty to use, and budget-friendly for wide-scale deployment across any sized campus or corporate environment. With CAPTURE-HD, students and staff can now view presentations and lecture series in high-definition from wherever and whenever they choose, including from popular mobile devices such as an iPhone®, iPad® or laptop, providing more options for accessing academic content.

“Capture HD delivers a simple and efficient end-to-end solution for recording, processing, online distribution, and remote viewing of lecture and presentation content – at a fraction of the cost of other systems,” said Fred Bargetzi, Crestron VP of Technology. “From a user perspective it’s easy – there are record, play and pause buttons, and no training is required to learn how to use it. The result is a greater use of resources and content, and a more effective learning experience.”

Flexible enough for any college, university, teaching hospital or corporate setting, CAPTURE-HD enables instructors to teach using their choice of analog or digital media sources including high-definition videos, computers, whiteboards, and annotators. Requiring no special training or effort from the instructor, CAPTURE-HD records a complete presentation in high-definition 1080p and saves it in high-quality H.264 format.

The recorded lecture includes content and microphone audio, plus full screen, picture-in-picture (PIP) and picture-by-picture (PBP) video, including from the instructor camera and any other presentation source such as a PowerPoint®, DVD, or website.

Simply insert a USB stick into the CAPTURE-HD, press the “record” button, then walk away with a complete high-definition lecture in hand at the end of the class. The recorded lecture is now ready for easy transfer to online video hosting sites, or to store on a network server for publishing to a web page or internal faculty website. Once recorded, presentations can be automatically scheduled for playback/viewing in any room on the network or from a laptop while commuting on a train or plane.

Alternatively, schedule to record any lecture in advance from a Crestron touch screen. Using Crestron RoomView® SE enterprise software, organizations can instantly add a recorded lecture for playback to any room’s Outlook® scheduled meetings. RoomView also automatically sends recorded lectures to your choice of viewing platforms such as Lecture Management Systems, RSS feeds, iTunes® University, Blackboard™, Sharepoint™, Moodle™ and other hosting services, effectively broadcasting your content out to the world.

Accessing and viewing the final content is facilitated through an intuitive Web interface, providing a powerful search engine and full-featured media player tailored to deliver a consistent user experience across all common Web browsers and computer platforms.

Featuring a compact all-in-one design, CAPTURE-HD eliminates the need for multiple components such as a video window processor, video switcher and splitter, and microphone mixer, making installation simple. Whether used as a standalone solution or as part of a larger AV network environment, CAPTURE-HD integrates seamlessly into classrooms, lecture halls, training labs, and boardrooms.

“Lecture capture devices today consist of either very expensive and complex models, which many schools cannot justify with their tightening budgets, or very low-end models that are clunky to use and don’t provide the power or flexibility large organizations require,” said Vincent Bruno, Crestron Director of Marketing. “CAPTURE-HD handles the whole process for you, it’s versatile and affordable, and it provides the power to meet the digital content distribution needs for any size institution.”

With two models to choose from, the CAPTURE-HD line offers flexibility for all popular camera types and video resolutions. CAPTURE-HD-PRO features a 3G SDI input to support SDI, HD-SDI, or 3G-SDI cameras. CAPTURE-HD provides a composite input for lower-resolution cameras.

For more information about how you can bring advanced yet affordable lecture capture technology to your school or organization, go to Crestron CAPTURE-HD or CAPTURE-HD Video.


Crestron Introduces Slick New Docking Stations For iPad® And iPad® 2

With Crestron Control Solutions for Apple® Devices, the Mobile Lifestyle is Simply Magical; Whether You Own the Original Apple iPad® or iPad® 2 – Crestron’s Got You Covered

Crestron today began shipping a stylish new line of docking stations for both the original iPad® and the new, thinner iPad® 2. The new charging docks turn the wildly popular Apple mobile tablets into tabletop or wall mount Crestron touch screens for simple finger touch control of the home, classroom and building. IDOC-PAD and IDOC-PAD2 enables any iPad or iPad 2 to be stationed and used while charging in a sleek, minimalist in-wall design, or in a slim ergonomic tabletop model.

Available in a gloss white or black finish, both models provide a clean, contemporary appearance for mounted use of iPad and iPad 2 in any environment. Simply press the slim frame on the wall mount model and the dock extends, inviting you to slide the amazing tablet in or out. The curvy and lightweight tabletop model is designed for quick docking – and then swiping it off again – so you can move freely from room to room or across the office, keeping you as mobile as your iPad. There are no clumsy latches or annoying locks to slow you down.

“Whether you own the original iPad or the new iPad 2, there’s a Crestron mobile control solution to accommodate you,” said Crestron VP of Technology, Fred Bargetzi. “We’re committed to keeping our customers on the edge of cutting edge by offering the solutions that bring the latest, most popular technology into their lives. Our new IDOCs for iPad and iPad 2 are just the latest examples of our commitment.”

IDOC-PAD docking stations for iPad and iPad 2 are the latest additions to Crestron’s complete line of mobile solutions for Apple mobile devices. The best-selling Crestron Mobile Pro® G app turns any iPad into a powerful Crestron or Prodigy touch screen, enabling reliable whole home and building control from anywhere in the world.

From any iPad or iPad 2, users can control lighting, thermostats, and audio settings and view streaming video in one or multiple locations such as a primary residence, vacation home, office, or across a campus. The ultra-intuitive graphical interface also provides convenient real-time feedback so users can adjust settings as they deem necessary, no matter where you are. Room temperatures, shade positions and lighting levels, plus audio volumes and metadata including album, song and artist, are displayed right on the iPad screen.


Crestron DigitalMedia™ is More Than HDMI Over CAT5e

The seeds of Crestron DigitalMedia™ were planted several years ago. That’s when Crestron engineers began building on their ambitious vision to create a solution to transmit uncompressed, content protected, HD digital video long distance over a single wire that could be run through walls and conduit and terminated in the field. Actually, that was only a part of the vision.

The original goal was to transmit any mix of analog & digital AV signals, high-speed Ethernet to support streaming media and IR/Serial control up to 100 meters using standard CAT5e cable. For longer distances, a fiber solution would be developed.

During the R&D process, HDMI proved to be more multi-layered and sophisticated than originally anticipated. In addition to the audio and video signals carried on HDMI and DisplayPort, Crestron engineers had to manage several other signal paths and data streams, including HDCP content protection, CEC device control and EDID resolution management.

After years of research and engineering, which included developing new software and equipment for testing and diagnostics, Crestron DigitalMedia™ was introduced – the first solution for long distance digital transmission and distribution.

The first version of DM was truly revolutionary. No other company was working on any technology to transmit uncompressed HD digital signals combined with analog AV signals, data, control and high-speed Ethernet on a single wire. The original DM solution used chipsets from five different vendors, and while using a single jacketed cable, required three separate terminated wires.

Innovative and visionary, Crestron was the lone voice in an analog world, signaling that the digital revolution was heading our way. At this point, all the analog pioneers scoffed and denied the need for a digital solution. “Just continue to use component and VGA cable and avoid all the issues with HDMI. Crestron is just making things more complicated than they have to be,” was their mantra. One even discouraged their customers from buying Blu-ray players.

Steadfast and committed, Crestron engineers continued to work to achieve their ultimate goal of a standard UTP solution for uncompressed HD digital AV. About this time, a technology company named Valens Semiconductor approached Crestron with the idea of a new chipset that would transmit full uncompressed HD video over standard CAT5e.

Many months later, Valens delivered their very first chip. Crestron extensively evaluated the chipset in its DM Lab equipped with specially designed testing equipment. This initial chipset brought DM closer to a standard UTP solution, but the technology didn’t meet the full specification yet. The chipset was successful in reducing the cabling requirements from three wires down to just one, but still required an engineered, shielded twisted pair wire to guarantee reliable performance. DigitalMedia 8G™ was born, and Crestron was one step closer to realizing its vision.

Recognizing that there was still significant work to be done, Crestron and Valens solidified their working relationship by forming an exclusive arrangement. Valens and Crestron engineers collaborated to refine the technology and deliver a true UTP solution for full 1080p HDMI. After several months of development, a new firmware version finally passed the rigorous set of tests and demands of the Crestron engineering team.

Crestron is now introducing its third generation technology – DigitalMedia 8G+™, which enables transmission of uncompressed 1080p/60 digital video up to 330 feet using standard unshielded CAT5e wire. After years of research and engineering and three generations of technology, Crestron DigitalMedia 8G+ delivers on what seemed to be an impossible dream that started many years ago.

The collaboration between Crestron and Valens has resulted in accomplishments that are advancing an entire industry. The latest Valens chip is now publicly available, so it’s no coincidence that as InfoComm approaches, several of those analog pioneers who denied that the digital revolution was coming, are now introducing their first digital switchers. Unfortunately, a switcher alone does not make a system, and a Valens chip is only a small part of providing a reliable digital solution. As Crestron engineers learned from years of experience, a reliable system requires a complete engineered, end-to-end solution that includes all the hardware and software.

Crestron DigitalMedia is Much More Than a Chipset or a Cable

The latest chipset is just the foundation on which Crestron DigitalMedia is built. DigitalMedia is a complete, modular single platform solution. Crestron DigitalMedia distributes all analog and digital audio and video signals, plus Gigabit Ethernet, USB and control – not just HDMI – all through a single matrix (rather than a several independent switchers that require transcoding) over a single wire. DigitalMedia switches any signal to any and all displays without compression, manages all the HDCP, EDID and CEC automatically, and provides the software tools necessary for installation and troubleshooting.

“With the launch of DigitalMedia 8G+, our DM® technology continues to lead our industry in the digital revolution. While others are trying to figure it all out for the first time, we’re now on our third generation of DigitalMedia technology,” said Crestron Executive Vice President, Randy Klein. “Just six months ago our competition was telling dealers not to buy Blu-ray players and to keep installing component video. All of a sudden they’re jumping on the digital bandwagon and trying to catch up.”

When you design a system with DM, you get years of experience, with the support of thousands of installations and hundreds of thousands of fully-tested connection points behind it. It’s a full and ever-expanding product line. It is sophisticated, easy-to-use diagnostics software that cannot be replicated or purchased from a third party vendor.

Most importantly, Crestron DigitalMedia is proven to work. The most demanding clients in the world, including some of the most prestigious Fortune 500 companies and universities, trust and rely on Crestron DigitalMedia. As a result, Crestron has clearly established itself as the true leader of digital AV.


Let’s Sling

The Slingbox concept is simple: It puts a virtual version of your own television on any Windows or Mac computer with an Internet connection, as well as on certain handhelds and smartphones. This is an especially appealing proposition if you have a DVR, because the Slingbox lets you access its stored programs and pause playback—a necessity when multitasking on a laptop or watching on your handheld while out and about.

SlingBox is great for persons who have a second home elsewhere that has a cable/ satellite feed that you can access in Bermuda or vice versa.  You can Sling your cable feed and enjoy your cable subscription anywhere in the world that you have your laptop and a fast enough internet connection. 

Do you travel a lot? Never miss a beat – watch local Bermuda News in Australia (if you are up) or access your DVR from Vancouver while you have a spare minute and catch up on your recorded shows.

Ok so you are sold- but not too Tech savvy and you are unsure if you can pull this off yourself. Not to worry Sling Media designed the Slingbox Pro’s installation process well, and no networking expertise is required. A simple tutorial tells you which cables to connect and where. Then, you can stash the Slingbox away—but not too far out of reach, because the IR blaster cables need to reach your cable/satellite/DVR in order to control them.

Slingbox or Slingbox Pro? Go for the Pro! It has 4 inputs allowing you to connect and sling more sources than the original Slingbox—yes! You can Sling Cable, Satellite, DVDs and security cameras with the Slingbox Pro.



Additional SlingBox Pro Features:

SlingBox also has an App for your iPad and iTouch! How awesome is that? It is 29.99 and available from the Apple App Store

Skype Me™!


The Styles of LiteTouch

Lite Touch has designed a slew of new keypad styles that suit a wide range of decors and come in a slew of colours and finishes.  These styles are so new that they are not all available until the end of this year.    

As always LiteTouch Low Voltage Keypads Offer Beauty, Simplicity and Elegance to Your Home. With the many button configurations and finishes to choose from, you have as many options as your imagination allows. Custom button engraving is available on every keypad allowing you to truly personalize any keypad.

LiteTouch Coastal Key Pad:


LiteTouch Metropolitan Key Pad:


LiteTouch Circa Key Pad:


LiteTouch Circa Key Pad:


If you did not like any of the new styles remeber that LiteTouch can make customized keypads.  Custom keypads are one of LiteTouch’s specialties.  Consumers can design their own keypad, including custom faceplate finishes.  Many customers choose LiteTouch because they are the one lighting control company who will give customers exactly what they want.  In fact, last year 20% of all the keypads ordered at LiteTouch were custom! 


Prodigy Brochure

[View Prodigy Brochure]

Prodigy by Crestron, the most respected and trusted name in home automation, is control without compromise. Installed in more homes worldwide than all other brands combined, Crestron is the global standard in luxury homes. Backed by Crestron quality, expertise and support, Prodigy provides the power and scalability you’d expect at a price you can afford. Now every house can be a Crestron home with Prodigy.

Prodigy offers affordable, simplified control of your home and entertainment from any room in your house or any place on the planet. Keep all your music, movies, lights, thermostats and security at your fingertips wherever you are and wherever you go. You are always in touch and in control with Prodigy. Make your home the perfect sanctuary where you can escape everyday stress. Just a simple tap of your finger brings you serenity, comfort, convenience and pleasure. Prodigy does all the thinking so you don’t have to.


A Media Room for Every Budget

Home Theatre’s can be pricey, but a common misconception is that they only exist in the homes of the rich and famous.  Crestron, used in more home automation installs in the United States than any other product, has a line for everyone and different budgets.  Their Prodigy Line is described as Simple+ Affordable + Expandable making it perfect for a room upgrade to give you some “cool factor” without having to dig too deep into your pockets.  The best thing about Prodigy, and Crestron, is that it is 100% expandable! Start with some cool source control in your media room and expand it to control speakers, lighting and even other rooms!

If you are just getting into the idea of Home Automation and adding a cool media room you may be asking yourself where to start? How can I get something cool right now?

First you should clean up your sources.  Put a mental check next to all items that are huddling around your TV in media or family room: 

  • DVD player
  • Cable box
  • Satellite receiver
  •  Apple TV
  • Other Source devices all
  • Spaghetti network of cables
  • Multiple power bars
  • Cables trailing around your room

If you have check 3 or more of these points then chances are a Prodigy System can really help you out.  First we can pack all of your sources in a neat tidy out of sight area so that you are left with a clean area free of black boxes and their cables and power strips.  We take away all those remotes and replace it with a single one.

That would be the first step – -why not just get a universal remote and a few IR repeaters and do this yourself? The answer is EXPANSION!

The above can be step #1  – Next you can call us back and we can include Lighting control without even channeling through your walls.  Crestron Prodigy is a complete wireless line meaning we can take out your old toggle switches and install wireless keypads(buttons) or Touchscreens!  Additions can include:

  • Lighting control from your media room remote or directly from the keypad or touchscreen
  • iPad, iTouch, iPhone control integration (yes control your media room from your idevice) giving you an instant Touchscreen.
  • Addition of iPod, iTunes as a media source
  • Adding XM Radio, FM/ AM as a source
  • Explore the possibility of adding a media server to store you DVDs
  • Expanding control into different entertaining room: Kitchen, patio, bedrooms etc.

The Crestron Prodigy System is a great stepping stone into Home Automation, not only because of its great pricing but because the room for expansion is so big. 

Don’t know where to start? Or what budget you will be looking at? Call us for a site visit and we can design Crestron Control within your budget and advise you on a plan for future upgrades.

All you need to start controlling your sources better: