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Gacevich's Setup
#1
after learning from others for about a year, i thought i would start a thread to memorialize what i have learned, created and have in store for the future. most of what i have learned has come from the cqc forum and cocoontech. i wrestled with where to place my thread and settled on here since i find that i spend more time on this forum than ct (but not by much).

this is a hobby for me. i have done all the work myself except for running some of the wiring...a wise man once said "a man has got to know his limits". this journey is a chance to appease my "inner geek" and create something at the same time. its been fun and i hope to keep it going despite the economic downturn.

let's start at the beginning. when i started, this was the sum total of my ha. it supported a home theater and a 6-zone russound whole house audio system. the only sources for the russound were am/fm and an rca cable from my study pc where i could stream mp3's. you can see the htpc and the pioneer reciever used for am/fm as well as driving the sound for the home theater.
[Image: LAVisit007.jpg]

here is the media room screen
[Image: LAVisit008.jpg]

u can see the screenplay 7210 projector hung from the ceiling and the media closet to right where i keep all the equipment to run the home theater (which was convenient for expansion into ha).
[Image: LAVisit010.jpg]

here is command central. note the wireless keyboard and mx-800. since all of my equipment is in the media closet i didn't want any wires cluttering up the sitting area. btw, this picture is from 2004...we now have seating for four.
[Image: AdriannePicturesInsideHouse046.jpg]

that was extent of my ha when i was inspired by cqc and ct. except for a single structured wiring box that housed an ademco alarm panel and amps for the catv connections in the house.

after prowling around cqc and ct for a while it became clear to me that i would have to beef up the structured wiring runs and add another swb. this is where i enlisted the help of a professional. i was probably his best and worst client all at the same time--i knew how difficult running the wires would be and avoided sticking my nose into how he the ran wires throughout the house and installed an additional swb (and ran interferce to keep the wife mollified...yes, dear its loud, yes, dear it really does take this long...etc), but at the same time i had very specific views on the number of wires i wanted run and where they needed to be terminated. here are the swb's as they sit today. there holes in the 2x4 separating them to allow passing wires back and forth. the swb on the far right has conduit running out the far side that leads down to my basement. i couldn't fit the wireless router in either swb which didn't bother me because locating it inside a swb radically cuts down on the wireless network range. note the wiring channel covers proped up in the corner. it seems that just as soon as i install them i need to take them off again.
[Image: HomeAutomation020.jpg]

the top of the lhs swb houses an elk m1g and if you look at the rhs of the swb you can see a wiring pass-thru to the rhs swb.
[Image: HomeAutomation022.jpg]

the bottom of the lhs swb is dominated by elk add on modules. if i add many more cards i will have to come up with another way to mount them...on edge with the supplied card mounts?
[Image: HomeAutomation023.jpg]

the top of the rhs swb houses a cable modem, aprilaire 8811 and elk m1xep. note the black spot on the rhs of the swb. that is where the conduit runs to the basement.
[Image: HomeAutomation024.jpg]

the bottom of the rhs swb houses a lot of power supplies and a viking slp-1. the viking is used to page via the house phones and broadcast the doorbell via a pair of russound cav6.6's.
[Image: HomeAutomation025.jpg]

as i was installing all the components in the swb it dawned on me that i would never remember what each wire was for; so i developed this excel spreadsheet. there may be better ways to mark and display wires, but this works for me.
[Image: HomeAutomation021a.jpg]
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#2
the next infrastructure build out occured in the media closet. if i had anticipated getting into ha i would have had only one place where all my wires were terminated--the media closet. access is plentiful, space is abundant and its out of the way. however, i wasn't going to re-run all the wires currently terminating in swb's.

here is a view of the entire rack
[Image: HomeAutomation017.jpg]

starting from the top, there is a sa4250hdc stb, hdhr, hdpvr, russound st2, speakers for testing, and, of course, all the manuals & notes used to set up the equipment.
[Image: HomeAutomation014.jpg]

i am running two pcs: the htpc on the left runs btv and the home theater (not linked into cqc, yet) and the cqc master server is on the right. the two pcs share the wireless keyboard and montior via a iogear kvm. the iogear kvm switches easily between xp(htpc) and vista(cqc server). my prior tendnet kvm did not do this well.
[Image: HomeAutomation013.jpg]

at the bottom of the rack are a pair of russound cav 6.6's, pioneer elite vsx-54 and a (too?) beefy ups.
[Image: HomeAutomation011.jpg]
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#3
with all the equipment in place, here are some of the screenshots of my cqc interface which pulls them all together.

the main screen is based off a template design from blackmagic. i like the clean lines, calm blue theme and simplicity. i tried to make buttons and frames in photoshop but was never able to create anything i was happy with. the buttons on the rhs are designed to be easily pushed via a samsung q-1 and a righthanded user's thumb. this main screen serves as an "at-a-glance" infomation screen.
[Image: MainTemplate.png]

the music template allows all three music sources to be controlled.
[Image: MusicTemplate.png]

at some point i am going to build templates to control xm and am/fm that have category browsers with channel icons for each station. the mp3 library looks like this. i still struggle with getting coverart to work itunes 8 and the latest cqc beta.
[Image: MusicLibraryTemplate.png]

weather template
[Image: WeatherTemplate.png]

with ability to show doppler radar
[Image: RadarTemplate.png]

all four zones are controlled by aprilaire 8870's.
[Image: HVACTemplate.png]

i used ivb's back door way to create timers for controlling controlling the tstats.
[Image: HVACTimerTemplate.png]

getting all the upb switches installed and working properly has been the second most difficult thing to do (behind getting itunes to almost work properly). each circle/dot allows individual control of every light in the house. buttons/links on the right get used much more often. you can see another attempt to bring timer control to night lights in the lower right. i used visio to create the three floorplans.
[Image: lightingtemplate.png]

still struggling with how to setup this screen. i like the idea of using the image of the kp2 but haven't gotten around to programming it yet. i don't like the garage door and house door icons, but haven't found anything better yet.
[Image: SecurityTemplate.png]

tools is not a good name for this screen, but it gets the job done. here i am able to select the source and zone for both of my cav6.6's.
[Image: ToolsTemplate.png]

i haven't found a good use for browsing the net on the samsung q-1, yet. so this template may go away if i need the room in the future.
[Image: InternetTemplate.png]
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#4
so i was trying to add some songs to itunes today. dragged the folder with the mp3s to the itunes song list area and they were added as usual. i can play them from within itunes. if i "get info" it shows that the files were copied to the itunes folder (i let itunes manage my music folders). all seems well until i close itunes an reopen it. when i reopen itunes the recently added songs are not longer in itunes. i checked and they are still in the proper itunes directory. opening itunes library.xml and searching for the new songs reveals that the .xml is not updated with the new songs. checking the last modified date of itunes library.xml shows that the file is updated since i added the files. i am using the most recent version of itunes, 8.0.2. none of my networked computers are using itunes when this happens.

anybody ever seen this before? have any idea how to "save" added songs to the library?

edit: just noticed that the .itl file is not updating when the .xml file is modified. should these be modified at same time?

re-edit: it turns out that somehow itunes locked out my ability to save changes to the library. not sure how this happened, but a re-boot solved the problem.
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#5
Wow -
Nice looking templates!
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#6
broconne Wrote:Wow -
Nice looking templates!
thanks. i hesitated to post so many, but when i was designing mine i liked to see all the examples possible.
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#7
gacevich Wrote:thanks. i hesitated to post so many, but when i was designing mine i liked to see all the examples possible.

Can you post your Calendar template? What are you using for a Cal?
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#8
broconne, that's a place holder right now. i haven't built out a calendar function, yet. been hoping to see better intergration with either ms office or google calendar.
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#9
i am attempting to get my tts to work. i created a command button that when pressed properly executes the SayText function...so i think the tts is working. next step is to get the tts to activate when a upb button is pushed. for testing purposes i am using the lower attic upb switch since it is within reach of my master server. in the field browser a trigger was setup on the proper upb light switch
[Image: ttstrigger.jpg]

then a triggered event was created.
[Image: ttstriggeredaction.jpg]

i thought this would work, but it does not execute the SayText command. my first suspicion is that the triggered event is improperly set up. would appreciate any comments confirming proper programming or pointing me in the correct direction. thanks.
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#10
In some systems, the default SYSTEM account that the servers run in don't have text to speech rights. You may have to create a new administrative account and have the CQC Service log using that, so that it will have sufficient rights.
Dean Roddey
Software Geek Extraordinaire
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