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Author Topic: My House and Recording Studio X10 Setup (And growing....)  (Read 14705 times)

bitman

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My House and Recording Studio X10 Setup (And growing....)
« on: February 25, 2009, 11:18:50 PM »

My house:

I put an MS16a motion detector on the back deck where my dog heads out to do her business, and have it trigger an x10 chime with user added enable/disable toggle switch that is plugged into an AC socket right by the back door. When the Dog comes back she is seen by the MS16a and fires off the chime. Then I had the MS16a also trigger a macro that if it is Thursday between the hours of 5:00 AM and 11:00 AM turns on a dummy module. When that dummy module comes on, X10 dispatcher sees that and says thought wireless speakers in the living room by the back door "Good Morning, It's Trash Day", and sends me an email about it as well. Something I always spaced until I pulled out of the driveway to go to work and saw all the trash cans out.

Dark stairwells are automatically lit by the presence of a warm body.

I also use x10 extensively in the basement recording studio to remotely turn on and off six small audio mixers that drive headphones at the various "Play Stations" mainly to hush blaring headphones left around while open mics are used for overdubbing. This problem used to keep me running all about the tracking room during sessions. Now I have AHP up on a second LCD monitor with the modules up on the screen showing me which ones are on and which ones are off. I deployed credit card remotes at the mixers for local power up control as well.

I have amplifier microphones on Ninja camera mounts to sweep microphone in front of the speaker to find the sweet spot.

Also I have a powerflash that has it's input circuit slightly modified (Replaced the 33K 1/2 watt with a 100k).
This increases the sensitivity of the powerflash so it will trigger on line level audio signals. Then I feed that powerflash a steady line level tone that comes out of my audio workstation when in record mode. The powerflash is then set to M13 and "ON AIR"  lights with old style lamp controller (Fast start) guts built in to ON-AIR light boxes and are set (By virtue of the code wheels removed) to M13 and are placed at strategic places inside and outside the studio. Ta-Da! automatic ON-AIR indicators.

This worked so well that I built a powerflash into my ADAT field recorder. By sensing it's record LED current with an opto-coupler chip, I am able to make the ADAT send M13 out of it's AC socket to portable ON-AIR lights when out in the field.
 
Now the garage door is in the party too. Using a DS10a, x10 dispatcher, AlertDialer (free edition) and some macros, when the garage door opens the system waits 10 minutes before panicking. Than if the door gets closed before the 10 minute countdown, the system resets and goes back to waiting. If the 10 minutes is allowed to elapse, then a dummy module is set and that starts the panic sequence. x10 dispatcher sees the dummy module go on and speaks into the wireless voice setup that the garage door has been left open, It also emails me and fires off AlertDialer to call my cel phone and tells me the same thing. This panic sequence repeats every 10 minutes until someone does something about it. I know by summer I will need an override but I stll have time  :' And I can't close the garage remotely as I don't have the hardware yet.

Added 3-28-09

Now we have a "Garage open alert" override via a SS13a stick a switch that sets an appliance controller with a night light attached inside the garage. So if I need to clear snow, mow the lawn, load in or out a band, or just any other reason why the garage door needs to be open in excess of the allowed 10 minute "time before panic",
I can just push the top button of the ss13a on and the night light lights indicating we are indeed in override mode , then open the garage door for any length of time. The appliance controller being on inhibits the door open macro from firing and is reset to off when the door is closed, thus re-arming the system so to speak.

Added 3-31-09

Wow, with all the aforementioned stuff I forgot the basics. All lights in the living area are under x10 and ICON remote control. The bedroom has two sconce lights under x10 control as well as a my wifes xp machine controlled by a ss13a at the doorway and a keychain remote on a leash over her bedpost.  ;D. The xp box has
a note on the monitor: DO NOT SHUT DOWN. We just wait till it seems quiet then we cut the power on it with an x10 remote. It's BIOS is set to power on when it's power is reapplied via an appliance module. Brutal I know! 

I have a new AHP macro that also uses some of the ICON's new software's ability to control IR in a macro.
So with one clickeroo, The living rooms lights out, The TV goes out, the cable goes out, the hall lights to the bedroom come on, and wireless speakers speak to us via X10 dispatcher, "Good night, sleep tight and don't let the bed bugs bite".

When I execute the "I'm home" macro, The TV comes on, The cable comes on to a predetermined channel.
No more me coming home to "Lifetime TV", No more my dear wife having the NFL Network come on when she powers it all up.

************** NEW! 5-6-09 **********************

X10 Sprinklers!

Spring has sprung in the Rockies and I have acquired a Orbit 24 vac sprinkler valve and a hose end adapter for it at Home Depot for a scant $12.00! Then I bought a 24 vac transformer on eBay. They work and are going in today. I will be turning on and off the valve via an appliance controller.

No more:

Crawling out of bed to turn off the water when I've forgotten.
Getting up in the morning to find that I've left the water on all night!

 Thank you x10, and all here who have been such a help.

 >!

 
« Last Edit: May 06, 2009, 03:54:55 PM by bitman »
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dave w

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Re: My House and Recording Studio X10 Setup (And growing....)
« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2009, 12:32:57 PM »

Very impressive Bitman!

I remember you having problems with noise from your “On Air” signs and switching supplies in your line amps. Your studio is probably a hotbed of noise and this just confirms that X10 can work even in absolutely hostile environments. Someday I will tell you about hacking X10 to control 5KW Klieg lights in a video studio. It was a hilarious lesson in the actual purpose of those big chokes in the lamp modules.

How many modules are you using in your system?

I’m confused about the Ninjas to find the sweet spot in your speaker. What causes  the sweet spot to change? Or does “speaker” mean the talent?

Also in describing your garage door project, if interested, you can simplify a bit. I used a SPDT magnetic door/window switch to monitor door status AND complete the path for the Universal Module used to close the garage door via the opener. The Common side of the switch goes to both a Universal Module and PowerFlash Module. I will refrane from using “N.O. N.C.” nomenclature because I was never sure if the NO-NC designations is supposed to be with the magnet or without the magnet (as a relay would be described), so will describe the hard way.

When the door is closed the closed side of the SPDT shorts across the PowerFlash telling Homeseer (or AHP) system the door is closed. The open side of the SPDT switch now open circuits loop going to the garage door opener “local” control switch, so if the Universal Module accidently activates, it can not energize the door opener. This way just saved me some wiring time.

Thanks for some great examples out of the box thinking (which I’m getting too old for).
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bitman

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Re: My House and Recording Studio X10 Setup (And growing....)
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2009, 12:44:11 PM »

Very impressive Bitman!

I remember you having problems with noise from your “On Air” signs and switching supplies in your line amps. Your studio is probably a hotbed of noise and this just confirms that X10 can work even in absolutely hostile environments. Someday I will tell you about hacking X10 to control 5KW Klieg lights in a video studio. It was a hilarious lesson in the actual purpose of those big chokes in the lamp modules.


The CM15a needs to be in the studio to work. Then no matter of interference seems to bother it at all.
I ended up running a long powered usb extention from it to the AHP PC (Vaio laptop) in the laundry room.
I put a filter on the Vaio and the trouble cleared up. - Woo-Hoo!

I RDP into that box from the studio so I can see my module status.

Quote
How many modules are you using in your system?

In total? - In the living area there are 5 lamp controllers, Two appliance controllers, One Chime, Two Motion detectors, One wall switch w/ slave. One ICON remote and a keychaine remote on a leash over a bedpost in the master to on/off dim the two bedside lamps.

In the downstairs (Studio and garage) There in one motion detector in the garage with a night light on a lamp controller to keep my dear wife from pulling in too far blocking my work bench. - I forgot about that one.

There is one new DS10a for the garage door open detector (I just got that yesterday)
One wall switch in the entry way and one wall switch for the main basement can lights.

In the studio there are 6 appliance controllers, one powerflash, 3 lamp controllers built into ON AIR boxes
and a ninja. Remotes galore

Quote
I’m confused about the Ninjas to find the sweet spot in your speaker. What causes  the sweet spot to change? Or does “speaker” mean the talent?

When recording rock guitar, it can make a big difference if the mic is move so much as an inch left or right, up or down with respect to the amp speaker. One either sends a intern out into the tracking room to sweep the mic slowly back and forth in front of the amp while it blares away until the good sound is found in the control room - or- As is in my case, tweak it a bit then run back to the control room to listen - repeat as necessary.
The ninja mounted on a mic stand serves as my intern. See it here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EViVZ947oNo

The same goes for the snare drum but there is so much gear and so little time....

Quote
Also in describing your garage door project, if interested, you can simplify a bit. I used a SPDT magnetic door/window switch to monitor door status AND complete the path for the Universal Module used to close the garage door via the opener. The Common side of the switch goes to both a Universal Module and PowerFlash Module. I will refrane from using “N.O. N.C.” nomenclature because I was never sure if the NO-NC designations is supposed to be with the magnet or without the magnet (as a relay would be described), so will describe the hard way.

When the door is closed the closed side of the SPDT shorts across the PowerFlash telling Homeseer (or AHP) system the door is closed. The open side of the SPDT switch now open circuits loop going to the garage door opener “local” control switch, so if the Universal Module accidently activates, it can not energize the door opener. This way just saved me some wiring time.

Thanks for some great examples out of the box thinking (which I’m getting too old for).


Yesterday I was looking up at the open garage door and noticed that there is a SPST switch with a big plastic lever that tells the motor to stop pulling. I'm going to hook into that!  -:)

« Last Edit: February 27, 2009, 06:42:13 PM by bitman »
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Tuicemen

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Re: My House and Recording Studio X10 Setup (And growing....)
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2009, 02:23:58 AM »

Very nice setup!
Glad I'm not the only one that has problems on trash days!
Worse here trash day isn't every week just recycle but X10dispatcher handles that for me too! (or did)
Now my wife reminds me after she has put it out! rofl
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