Denver – Anyone who says installers will always pull wire might be pulling your chain.
Here at the CEDIA Expo, suppliers are introducing devices that distribute control signals and content wirelessly. Although there might not be wires to pull through walls, many nonetheless require expertise to configure and integrate into multiroom AV systems and other home systems. At least two companies –Avocent and Gefen – are showing wireless transmitters and receivers that send high-definition without wires.
Here’s what installers will find, from A (Avocent) to Z (Z-Wave).
Avocent: The new Emerge MPX1000 HDMI Multipoint Extender distributes audio and video over a CAT5 Ethernet network or via embedded wireless transceiver combining 5GHz IEEE802.11a-based radio with a specialized protocol. It supports any HDMI source, including DVRs, and any HDMI destination. The transmitters and receivers aren’t installed in wall plates but are intended for placement behind a display or in a rack.
They distribute high resolution computer graphics, high-definition video, stereo audio, and control data to up to eight wireless receivers or to an unlimited number of LAN-connected receivers.
Wired range is more than 600 feet. Wireless range was unavailable,as was the nukber of simultaneous wireless HD streams.
Gefen: The company is launching its first wireless HDMI Extender to deliver wire-free high definition video up to 60 feet.
The $499 system delivers HD 720p and 1080i video up to 60 feet from satellite set top boxes, HD DVD players, and gaming systems with plug-and-play installation and full digital and analog audio support, the company said..
Compact sender and receiver units deliver HDCP-compliant high definition video and audio soundtracks in compressed and encrypted format for delivery through the HDMI connector on the display or projector.
Wireless transmission speeds are achieved up to 480 Mbps, supporting even the most stringent demands of high-definition video.
The sender also accepts video from component and composite sources with a separate analog audio input. The receiver outputs in HDMI 1.2a, essentially functioning as a format converter for incorporating legacy components, the company said.
The devices incorporate Tzero Technologies’ ultra wideband (UWB) technology, said to deliver the same quality of service as wired products.
Leviton: The company is expanding its wireless commitment with the adoption of wireless Z-Wave technology in Leviton’s first family of wireless RF products, all in the Vizia lighting-control line.
Leviton, one of the 125 companies in the Z-Wave Alliance, is launching lighting switches and dimmers, in-wall keypads, a handheld remote, and plug-in appliance and lamp modules.
Z-Wave technology, developed by Zensys, is ideal for retrofit installations of wireless home-control systems. The low-power, two-way, 9.6kbps mesh-network technology delivers two-way wireless-remote control over lighting, appliances, garage-door openers, thermostats, and other home systems from handheld or tabletop remotes located anywhere in the house. It reroutes signals when necessary to ensure reliable control.
Intermatic: An expanded line of Z-Wave-equipped lighting controls includes a USB stick and ControlThink PC program enabling PC-based control of a Z-Wave home control system that includes lighting controls and appliance modules, dimmers, and a new screw-in lamp module that can be used with incandescent and compact-fluorescent bulbs in lampposts and other out-of–the-way lights
Intermatic sells its HomeSettings line of Z-Wave devices through Lowe’s, , Fry’s, HomeSeer.com, and SmartHome.com.
Lagotek: The company’s Home Intelligence system, which controls home devices equipped with Z-Wave or Wi-Fi, has been expanded to control Slim Device’s Wi-Fi-based digital media players (DMPs), which stream music from a PC to a stereo system. The Lagotek system also controls Roku Wi-Fi-based DMPs.
Lagotek’s system includes the HIP 100 Intelligent Controller (an in-wall touchscreen) and HIP 200 Wireless Interface Hub, which connects via wires to other home systems to deliver wireless control.
The system can be installed in new or existing homes for as little as $10,000, including all components, installation, and configuration, the company said.
Remote Technologies Inc. (RTI): With touchscreen IR and RS-232 controllers under its belt, RTI is launching a Zigbee-based wireless RF handheld remote to control lighting, multiroom audio, and other Zigbee-interfaced home systems. The TC-2 features color LCD, 35 hard buttons, and Zigbee. It’s due in the fall.