Although launched in August 2015, you’ll now find here, a number older reviews and articles relating to home automation and the smart home, going back more than a year.  Those were originally posted on Projector Reviews, our oldest website (since 2000), but were been moved here when this site was completed.

Projector Reviews & Smart Home Automation

Welcome to Projector Reviews newest endeavor: Smarter Home Automation.  Home automation has routinely started in many homes in the home theater, with people pressing a button turn on a home theater projector, that also triggered, lowering of a screen, dimming lights…  As our projector review site tackled more home projectors suitable for rooms other than dedicated theaters, it seemed natural for us to consider expanding beyond projectors and to look at how to control other aspects of today’s home, aka Smart Home.   Out of that has come this new website, which we expect will quickly grow in size and content.

It is our goal to be the most insightful website around, to help you keep up on trends, and to determine though our reviews, which are the best products – lighting, thermostats, locks and other security, sensors, shades, appliances, and more for you to choose from.

The "Dream Home Project"

In order to launch our efforts, we decided to create a Dream Home Project, where we will work with an existing home (our own) and focus on automating lighting, audio and video including a home theater, HVAC (heating), security and much more.

Our home automation focus will try to be smarter home automation rather than more expensive “old school” automation from the ’90s.  We plan to control virtually everything we can with iOS devices – iPhones, IPads… (In your home, if it’s your preference, you can just as easily use Android devices.)   We may in fact use a little “old school” such as Crestron or Control4 type systems, at least in the theater, but for most of the rest of our home automation project, we’re looking to work with newer standards, including Z-Wave, Zigbee, and others.  Both Wifi and Bluetooth are also widely being implemented for home automation devices.

If the tech becomes practical and affordable, I’d even like to see if our “smarter” home automation can – by the time the Dream Home project is finished almost two years from now – tie in facial recognition to the security system and voice control for most aspects.

The home already has extensive use of RGB LED lighting, indoors and out, but controllers are individually controlled by their own remotes.    We are now replacing those controllers and remotes with Wifi based ones to integrate all that into our “smarter” home automation, so that they too can be controlled by iPads and the like.  We chose iOS because we’re Apple users.  Virtually every iOS app we’ve encountered for home automation devices has an Android equivalent.

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Defining "Smarter" Home Automation

“Smarter” Home Automation:   Automating a home in an affordable manner.  In this Dream Home project we may not end up with the ultimate integration – a single application (such as Crestron), to rule every device and event.  Although that’s ideal, if it takes two or three “apps” to automate the whole home, we think most folks will find that a fine trade-off if the alternative is a far more extensive, but drastically more expensive system.  We want to home automate spending a few thousand here and there, rather than tens and tens of thousands.   We’ll do our best to deliver on that.

Count on it.  -art

Smarter Home