A new Dallas-area home now stands as a model for sustainable housing that puts comfort and technology at the center of the home experience. Thanks to a 48-panel rooftop solar array, the owners minimize their electric bill and will always have uninterrupted power for their ELAN g! Entertainment and Control System that integrates 10 TVs, 14 audio zones, three surround sound systems, climate controls, 34 motorized Lutron window shades, a security system with 8 surveillance cameras, the pool/spa equipment and irrigation system.
In addition to its role in the sustainability of the home, the owners chose the ELAN g! system to help eliminate as much wall clutter as possible including thermostats, security panels and pool control panels. The g! system makes this possible by allowing owners to use their own smartphones, tablets, computers, a few discreet in-wall touchpanels and ELAN HR2 remotes to control every core home system from lighting to AV to irrigation.
Powering all of this is a 10.56kW rooftop solar array comprised of 48 Sanyo solar panels that produces a total of 45-60kWh every day. The system can provide enough power for the entire home, but is also tied into the electrical grid so there is never a power shortage during peak usage, and so the owners can sell their excess electricity back to the utility company during low usage times. This way, the system eventually pays for itself!
According to Eco High Fidelity's Tommy Kissell, many factors play into the energy efficiency of the home, including the specially-angled roof designed to provide ideal placement for the solar panels, premium insulation, two 2,500-gallon rainwater collection barrels for irrigation, tank-less hot water and intelligently-located windows with automated motorized window shades that either let in or block out light depending on the climate inside the home and time of day.
The homeowners felt it was important to create an incredible AV experience throughout the entire home, using ELAN g! because it merges energy efficiency with audio and video distribution. The house also has an enterprise-grade Pakedge network that provides high speed wi-fi in every room.
According to Kissell, the home's designer and builder, Artex Development, was integral in the success of this project because the company embraces the importance of technology in today's new homes. "A lot of builders today put the electronics integrator last and take a reactionary approach, but Artex was all over the AV and control aspect from day one. They made us a priority and kept us involved throughout the entire planning and building process, and this approach helped deliver the perfect system for the homeowner."
The ELAN g! Entertainment and Control System provides users with a uniform and intuitive icon-based control from their favorite devices including TVs, touchscreens, touchpads, PCs, iPhones and iPads. The standardized interface works across platforms, so that the g!Mobile app users have on the iPhone appears and works similarly on ELAN touchscreens, valets and handheld remotes as well as users' televisions and mobile devices. And the system's IP backbone makes it just as easy to control the system from across the room - or across the globe.