Home automation - lighting, tv, sound, heating, curtains

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Im looking to add some home auotmation into our house renovation project, but im having trouble linking them all together in what I should be buying. I have bought a nest thermostat and fire alarm (which I will have anyway regardless of complete automation)

I am considering lightwave sockets and light switches for the lights and i have the thermostat as mentioned but i have a few questions.

- i want to control our curtains too which go over our large patio doors, any ideas for brand which will be compatible with a system which can be controlled all from the Ipad?
- is the lighting controlled by lightwave switches or do i have to get special bulbs?
- what would be the best budget hub to control it all from one app?
- what about the TV? We never watch normal tv we just download and watch from the harddrive, is it just a case of buying a smart tv? Or we need something else?

Thanks in advanced
 
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Before you start buying things give some thought to the complexity and reliability of the system. Will your visitors be able to operate the system. Will they be able to turn the landing light on if they need to use the bathroom late at night.

Lights can be controlled by the Ipad
That is useful, but only as long as the Ipad is a) working and b) has not dis-appeared behind the furniture. Ensure the iPad is not essential to the needs of normal living.

A super modern fully automated house in South Africa recently became inhabitable when the BroadBand connection failed. The leading edge technology that controlled the house required access to " the Cloud " ( or some other internet resource ). No Broadband, no control of the house systems.

A colleague designed a "fully automated house" back in the 1990's. When they came to sell it they had to rip out most of the automation as people wanted to be in control using light switched on the wall and not a remote control.
 
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Indeed, bear in mind that whatever you spend will probably devalue your house to all but a select few - most sill simply realise that any "regular" electrician will be incapable of dealing with any fault, and sooner or later the house will need a rewire to make it usable.
It may be a bit better if you stick with a "recognised" system AND DOCUMENT IT WELL, but a DIY system will be a definite turn off as a candidate for a total rewire.
Some years ago I got sent to Monte Carlo (old school friend of the boss who'd "done well selling an internet business) - and no, it really really wasn't as glamorous as it sounds :rolleyes: He had a wardrobe with false back, and opening it up revealed a wall full of X10 inputs and outputs. Pretty well everything in the apartment ran off these - so (for example) light switches were wired in control cable back to an input, then the system connected that to an output relay to work the light. While he was showing me all this the first time, he did say he wondered if it added any value - I managed to remain fairly polite while suggesting that "it probably didn't". In reality, anyone buying the apartment would be paying someone to rip it all out and "do it properly - did I mention that as well as being complicated, completely undocumented, it was also done rather badly and probably was well outside of their wiring regs.
 

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