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Florida Dream Home Features 32 Music Zones, 16 TVs

The sky’s the limit. Nothing but the best. What would be on your wish list if you were building the home of your dreams? Lots of space, proximity to the shoreline, balmy temperatures, perhaps? For one Florida family in a position to make its dream a reality, the wish list included all of this, as well as “music everywhere,” multiple spaces in which to watch sporting events, and a control system that would be easy to understand, expandable, and accessible from personal devices like smartphones and iPads.

For Clear Systems Integration, an integrator in Tarpon Springs, along the Florida Gulf Coast, this project was an interesting challenge. Simply in terms of volume, it was the biggest house they’d ever tackled (at 9,000 square feet) and the biggest project in terms of total automation, with 32 different zones of music and 16 different televisions, not to mention lighting and security and surveillance cameras including control of 130-plus lights and seven thermostats (controls for window treatments and a future pool area were set aside for the future).

According to Clear Systems Integration’s president, Chris Luecke, the system was incredibly complex to design and install—but with the goal of making it very simple for the family and its guests to use. Integration Designer APEX software, RTI’s Windows-based programming platform, played a key role in the ambitious project, giving Luecke’s team all the flexibility they needed and the ability to call macros across all the controllers.

Inside the home, two RTI KX10 in-wall touchpanels in the kitchen and master suite respectively provide whole house control and focus on AV and lights. Two KX7 in-wall touchpanels in the foyer and garage entry provide quick access to security and lighting control and status, as well as whole-house control of AV. KX3 touchpanel keypads are found in each bedroom and are used to control local systems (AV, lights) along with intercom for room-to-room communication. Each bedroom with a TV also receives a T1B+ remote control for simple control of TV and sources. T2x touchscreen remote controls are used for the family room and master bedroom TVs.

The convenience enabled by technology was important to the husband and wife owners—and especially to the wife, who surprised the husband by commissioning a dedicated theater with a 4K Sony projector, 145-inch screen, 7.2.2 Dolby Atmos sound system, and control via T3x remotes from RTI. When the family isn’t watching something like a Tampa Bay Lightning game on the big screen, they might be listening to up to five different streams of music playing simultaneously in different zones of the property, or all enjoying the same music throughout all 32 zones—each with its own customized volume level.

List of RTI products used:

1 – XP8s

1 – XP6

2 – KX10

2 – KX7

8 – KX3

1 – T3x

2 – T2x

8 – T1B+

4 – PCM4

2 – ESC2+

2 – ZM24