5 Keys to a Successful Smart Home

The promise of the automated, “smart” home has been around for decades. Remotely controllable, whole-house audio/video systems, automated lighting and window treatments, integrated monitoring, and security systems have all existed for a long time. So have computerized control systems to connect everything together and operate the various components from a single device.

So why doesn’t everyone have a smart home? Well, until only recently those technologies have only been available to the social elite. With technology advances, these solutions have moved down in cost significantly, opening it up to the more people.

The challenge that remains today is to create a system with components that are compatible with one another and that work together seamlessly to provide an easy and enjoyable user experience. Do-able? Absolutely. Do it yourself? Not so much.

If you’re thinking about adding automation to your home or upgrading smart home components you may already have, here a few things to keep in mind to ensure you get the satisfying results you’re looking for.

Know when NOT to automate

Just because you can hook certain systems together doesn’t mean you should. Sometimes separate systems that are individually controllable will fit your needs better. The more components and functions that are combined under a single control system, the more complex the programming and the more challenges that can arise if one piece is replaced or fails. And don’t forget ease of operation. The more complex the system, the less likely everyone in the house will be able to use and enjoy it.

Choose the right firm, not the product

Most companies carry the same top tier brands, but every project is different. Select the firm that best listens to your needs and has the expertise to integrate products from various suppliers into a system that gives you what you want and works the way you want it to. Backend support is important, too. Sophisticated smart home systems require serious engineering skills to properly design, and professional project management to install, especially as part of larger construction or remodeling projects.

Invest where it counts

A smart home can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. It’s important to invest wisely, in the performance and features that matter to you. Is music an important part of your life? Upgrade your audio and emphasize music listening in our system design. Are you a Type A personality who needs everything in the home monitored and controlled? Steer your budget there. Cinephile? Forego a couple rooms in home and get that dream private cinema.

Maintenance matters

Office IT systems, HVAC, cars…all complex systems require maintenance and the occasional tune-up. Choose a company that is responsive to requests for service and that has the expertise to diagnose problems quickly and fix them right the first time.

Beware the one-man band

There are many talented individuals out there offering smart home design and installation services. Because they don’t have the overhead of an established business, they can often offer a low price. We don’t mean to put them down, but the simple fact is that, today, no single individual can be truly expert in every facet of home automation technology and take detailed care of every stage of the process. Their expertise may be audio/video, but what about networking and IT, or lighting, or security? Will they be able to respond to your service needs? Will they have the infrastructure to take care of you after the installation or are they too busy installing new projects? You get the point.

Choose RSI for Peace of Mind

With Residential Systems, you get a team of over 30 high quality people who are experts at what they do, proven with the over 280 years of combined experience that RSI has in house who collaborate every day to design and install individually customized systems using the latest in home technology. We design systems to integrate with the way you and your family live, creating safer, smarter, intuitive spaces that allow you to transform the way you live in your home.

It all starts with a professional free in-home consultation. Contact us to schedule yours today.

Removing Blue Light as the Day Passes and Why You Should Have That Power

Until artificial lighting was invented, our main source of lighting came from the sun. People were content to spend their evenings in relative darkness. Today, much of our world is illuminated and though it has been a blessing for years, we are now finding out it may not be the blessing we thought it was. Seems we’ve been taking lumens for granted all this time.

Blue Light

We understand that very strong light will cause irritation or pain, think of staring at a very bright lightbulb, and that low light will cause us strain, think reading in low light.

What we have learned though over time is that the waves of light beaming toward us causes varying effects. Blue wavelengths for instance, are extremely beneficial during the daylight hours. They boost attention, reaction times and can act as a mood stabilizer. Blue wavelengths at night though presents a problem. The problem of blue light is more known with mobile phones and computer screens, and manufacturers are combating that with a “night mode” that removes blue light from the screen. However, as LED’s become the norm blue light waves are more present than ever, increasing our exposure after sundown, when we least need them.

A phototoxic effect

In a recent French study, the French Health Authority has warned of the “phototoxic effects” of blue light short-term high intensity exposure. The study claims that there is an increased risk of age-related macular degeneration after continuous exposure to lower-intensity sources like electronic devices and LED lighting, to name a couple. Blue light will also affect the circadian rhythm of people who tend to stay up later than normal (Your circadian rhythm keeps your internal ‘clock’ aligned with the rise and setting of the sun). It will also cause your body to reduce production of melatonin, a hormone that influences circadian rhythms at night and needed to relax and get a good night’s rest.

While light of any kind can affect and suppress secretion of melatonin, blue light at night does this with quite a bit more power. Its effect can shift circadian rhythms by as much as 3 hours.

Leading a healthier life, letting blue light go as the day passes

Personalized lighting is the ability to adjust lighting in your home to any event, time, temperature, architectural feature by putting the smart technology in the lighting system and using a central panel to control the light wavelengths.

Color shifting is a major advantage of this type of home lighting design. Think of it like adjusting your mobile phone to nighttime viewing. You will receive less harmful wavelengths while being unaffected by the light itself so seeing your surroundings remains virtually the same. Color shifting also follows your circadian rhythm to give you that ‘warm’ lighting when needed the most, at night.

This smart lighting design moves toward a ‘human-centric’ circadian light response to your environment, rather than leaving you with no options to control the blue light wavelengths as the day passes.

Human centric lighting brings natural lighting indoors, designed to stimulate your mind during daytime to maximize productivity while dimming any damaging blue light in the evening to allow for a better night’s rest.

It’s a fact that human centric lighting is the biggest breakthrough in residential lighting since the dimmer was invented by Lutron in 1959. Controlling the ability to reduce damaging light for you and your family is simply one of the best residential technologies to have come along in a while!

If you’re interested about learning more, call us today!

Play to Win with RSI and GolfZon

Yesterday you may have ducked out of work to hit the links, who wouldn’t with that weather, but it seems jack frost isn’t done with us yet!

Don’t throw your clubs back into storage just yet, RSI is here to scratch your golf itch with our GolfZon simulator and challenge contest. From now until May 10th stop by and play 3 holes at Pebble Beach on our GolfZon simulator. Best score wins, any ties will be settled on the green with a round of golf darts. Winner receives a $200 gift card for Travis Matthew’s apparel, and of course the best prize of all, bragging rights.

Space is limited, send a message or call us and get your spot today!

How to Make Your Smart Home Even Safer with Alarm.com

While home security systems have been available for decades, even the most trusted brands can’t go the extra mile. They are robust in protection, but don’t have the helpful amenities homeowners seek— leaving them instead with a system that lacks the clever and convenient features a smart home needs.

Enter Alarm.com, the industry leader in automated security.

Residential Systems Inc. is proud to add this line of products to our selection of carefully vetted security solutions. Alarm.com products work with your existing systems to provide additional features, all on a well-constructed interface that operates right from your smartphone.

More than a smart app or a stylish thermostat, Alarm.com seamlessly connects the key devices in your home on one platform — so they work together and work smarter.

Here are a few key features:

 

Personalized Alerts

What time did my teenager get home?

Did I forget to close the garage door when I left today?

Did I leave the lights on?

Unlike traditional systems that only alert you in an emergency event, Alarm.com lets you know what’s happening at your property at any time.

It’s easy to set your own alerts and reminders to be notified of any activity you care about, whether your system is armed or not.

 

Access Control

Stop leaving your key under the mat or worrying that you left the garage door open. With Alarm.com you can remotely lock the door, close the garage and get a reminder if you forget. Give friends and family their own codes and get a notification when they’re used. Do the same thing for your garage door, too!

 

Energy Management

Save money and stay comfortable with responsive energy savings, location-based automation and personalized usage recommendations based on your activity patterns.

 

Video Monitoring

Don’t miss a moment of activity at home. Get video alerts when activity is detected and watch live or recorded video from your smartphone, tablet or smartwatch.

 

Proactive Safeguards

Alarm.com quickly learns your home’s usual activity patterns, so it can alert you when something is out of place. If an intrusion occurs, Alarm.com will proactively alert their 24/7 monitoring station and emergency personnel, then notify you via text message when help is on the way.

 

Geo-Services

Using your phone’s location services, Alarm.com can set up a virtual perimeter or Geofence that automatically triggers specific actions when you cross it. With this technology, Alarm.com detects when you are leaving and will send you an alert if you forget to lock the door as you leave. Geo-fencing can also turn off your climate control upon your departure, saving both money and energy that otherwise would be wasted on an empty house.

 

Why Do We Recommend Alarm.com?

We are very careful about the products we bring to our clients, choosing only to carry what we believe are the top solutions on the market. After careful consideration, we chose to bring Alarm.com into our suite of products because:

  • It’s a wireless solution, which means it’s more convenient, more secure and always accessible
  • They provide comprehensive protection from conventional locks and cameras to climate control
  • Each system is easily customized to your home’s unique configuration
  • It works with your existing security system. No need to upgrade
  • Works with all z-wave capable devices you already have installed in your home
  • Works with other leading-class providers like Rachio, Westinghouse, Qualcomm, Lutron and more
  • It’s already securing over 6 million homes

Ready to talk smarter home security? Contact us today to start personalizing your Alarm.com plan today.

The Latest Home Technology for Interior Design

Samsung Frame TV

Residential Systems Inc. turned 31 years old on June 1. While we’ve witnessed the world of home technology change dramatically over the last 30+ years, one thing has remained the same: Our dedication to bringing the most innovative technology and leading-edge integration techniques into your clients’ homes.

With products ranging from automated lighting and shades, to invisible speakers, TVs that virtually disappear, 4K projectors and screens, and endless ways to customize each, we understand that it can be difficult to sift through the options to find the ideal solution.

The good news? We stay on top of trends so you can focus on design.

Our goal is to eliminate confusion, and provide you with products that not only revolutionize your client’s experience within their homes, but also transform the way you customize your spaces.

Here are a few of our top home-tech picks that are bringing excitement and innovation to interior design in 2018.

Frame TV

The 4K revolution made Samsung’s Frame TV possible. With more than a billion shades of color and four times the resolution of HD, the 4K HDR Pro creates an almost lifelike picture.

This level of resolution not only provides the ultimate viewing experience, it also informs the dual nature of the technology, which can transform into a beautiful work of art with the click of a button. “Art Mode” provides homeowners with a way to effectively hide the TV when not in use by displaying an LED gallery-quality piece that’s indistinguishable from the real thing.

The artwork can then be complemented with a combination of frame material as well as matte layout and color, with thousands of options to choose from. Homeowners can also display their personal photos as art, switching them out at any given time.

The Frame TV changes the game for what you can do with design. No more “deciding what to do with the TV” or creating custom solutions to conceal it.

Interested in learning more? Contact us for additional details and a pricing sheet.

samsung frame tv


Lutron’s Palladiom Shades & Keypads

Made by the pioneers of automated window treatments, Lutron’s newest automated shade provides a silent and stylish application specifically crafted to complement interior design.

Unlike other Lutron products, Palladiom was made to be seen. Designed with an exposed roller, concealed wiring and clean lines, it seamlessly blends into architecture, making it the most elegant form of automated shade. And, with thousands of fabrics and dozens of metal and bracket finishes, Lutron’s customization options ensure each shade suits the space.

As with all Lutron products, Palladiom activates at the touch of a button. Plus, the system is fully compatible with the beautiful Palladiom keypad and thermostats, which were designed with high-style in mind—a true celebration of design.

RSI is one of only a handful of dealers in the country where you can test drive Palladiom shades. Contact us today to set up an appointment to see this elegant system in person.

lutron keypad


Personalized / Human-Centric Lighting

Experts agree that Personalized and Human Centric Lighting is the biggest breakthrough in residential lighting, and Residential Systems Inc. is one of the first to bring this technology to you. Here’s why we’re excited about this type of lighting for the interior design community:

interior lighting

Human-Centric Perspective

Like Night Shift on your iPhone, Human Centric Lighting automatically helps people tune into their circadian rhythm.

This technology, powered by what is called “tunable white light”, brings natural lighting indoors, stimulating the mind in daytime for greater productivity and dimming light at night for better sleep.

According to scientists around the world, this technology promotes better sleep, enhances performance, and overall, encourages a happier and healthier lifestyle.

human centric led bulbs

human centric lighting

Personalized Lighting

This lighting technology also revolutionizes the way your clients experience their home with light across the color spectrum.

While the Human-Centric experience is one aspect of “tunable white light” technology, we have discovered that homeowners also like some of the more dramatic lighting options ranging the full color spectrum from warm and cool to playful colors like red, blue, yellow, etc.

With warm and cool settings, paint, fabric and everything in between can be continuously illuminated with the correct light, no matter the time of day.

Art

A snowy landscape portrait illuminated with cool tones looks crisp and clear, whereas a colorful still life under the same light looks stale and flat.

Fabric

Showcase exquisite fabric and draperies the way they were meant to be seen at any time of day with strategically placed light fixtures. Cool tones look crisp under a cool light setting, while warm tones appear more vibrant under the perfect mix.

Events

Dinner parties, kids birthday parties, or everyday living room dance parties will never be the same with customized color experiences. The Personalized Lighting concept allows your client to change the tones in a room to match the mood. Spanning the spectrum, color options help create illuminated experiences that are personal and unique.

Interested in seeing this type of lighting in action? Our new showroom has a fully functional home theater room where you can live demo the systems for your clients.

Contact us today to set up an appointment to test drive this revolutionary technology that’s changing the way we live and work.

Top Streaming Services Reviewed: Netflix vs Hulu vs Youtube vs DirecTV Now (2018)

Netflix vs Hulu vs Youtube vs DirecTV— Which One is Best for You?

The quality and quantity of shows on streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu, has increased exponentially over the last few years.

This improvement of content has prompted many of our clients to consider “cutting the cord” and completely move away from traditional cable.

While there is an appeal to tossing your cable bill into the bin, the drawback is the overwhelming number of streaming options out there, which can make your decision confusing.

What to Consider When Cutting the Cord
First address your viewing preferences, such as how important watching live sports is to you; how often you watch movies; if you prefer to maintain your subscription to live local channels; or if you frequently use gaming systems.

If channel and service options aren’t complex enough, there are also multiple types of streaming devices to choose from— Amazon Fire, Nintendo Switch, Roku, Apple TV, Xbox One, Chromecast, Sony Smart TV, and more.

To further complicate things: Not all streaming services work on every device.

Which Device is Right for You?
With all this in mind, it may seem impossible to know which device one is right for you, your family, preferences, budget and habits.

The good news: We’ve done all the hard work for you.

We have worked with dozens of customers to help them make the switch. The most important advice we can offer is to completely understand your choices and costs before committing to anything.

As you consider options, use the chart below to help you compare some of the most common options for devices and streaming capabilities.

And, if you still feel uncertain about your options, our doors are always open to help you assess all the possibilities, and choose and integrate the streaming system that best suits you.

Ready to learn more? Contact us today to get started.

 

TV Streaming Services Comparison Guide

 

 

 

 

Palladiom Shading System with Exposed Rollers

In recent years, there has been a trend toward modern, industrial interior design— both in homes and commercial spaces—and Lutron has taken note.

Traditionally, automated shades have been installed into recessed pockets or facia that conceal the motor and roller. However, due to demand for more contemporary applications, Lutron’s created their new Palladiom line of automated shades, which are the first of their kind, and specifically designed to be an exposed, elegant shade.

lutron palladiom shades

Lutron Palladiom shade features include:

  • Ultra-quiet motors
  • Exposed rollers
  • New drive, brackets, and wire management systems
  • Hidden wires
  • Minimal light gaps
  • New hem bar design
  • Compatibility with Palladiom keypad and new thermostats
  • Ability to accommodate openings as large as 12x12ft

The result is a highly functional, attractive window covering that adds a modern touch to any space.

 

 

Form and Function

Visually, this type of shade stands out from its counterparts due to the use of exposed metal and bracket systems. Lutron’s selection of customization options encompasses hundreds of fabrics and dozens of metal and bracket finishes, ensuring that each shade perfectly suits the space.

The functionality of Palladiom shades is the same as all other motorized shades– they keep the light out, and activate at the touch of a button. Every Palladiom product features the same motor as Lutron’s previous automated models, but this newer model boasts quieter function.

 

Ask an RSI Professional about Palladiom

Lutron tends to innovate and optimize as a product evolves, which means we can look forward to more customization options in the future. Our team at Residential Systems Inc are the leading experts in Lutron products and installation in Denver. Test drive Lutron’s latest products at our brand new, 5,000 sq ft showroom today to learn more about how Palladiom can enhance your next project. 

Residential Systems, Inc. Has Moved

Residential Systems Inc. Moves to New 5,000 Square Foot Showroom

Our brand new space, opened September 24, includes a 2,000 sq. ft. warehouse and ample space for clients to explore a vast selection of home automation products.

Colorado’s top smart home automation and smart home technology integrator, has moved to a new brand new 5,000 square foot showroom in Littleton, Colorado. The space will give clients the ability to experience, first-hand, the vast selection of home technology offerings from Savant, Control4, Sonance, Crestron, Lutron, Sonos and more.

A Word from Travis Leo, CEO of RSI

“This move into a space allows our customers to experience home automation like never before,” says RSI’s CEO, Travis Leo. “With an innovative layout and all the latest technology installed throughout, this is a unique experience and environment where homeowners can see, feel and experience the products before they install them in their home. Our team is looking forward to this next chapter in our business.”

Where to Find Us

Located near the intersection of Ken Caryl Ave and C-470, Residential Systems Inc’s new address will be 7661 Shaffer Parkway Littleton, CO 80127. Visitors will have the opportunity to test drive some of the most popular smart home offerings– from a fully equipped home theater to elegant Lutron lighting systems, and automated Palladom shades.

About Residential Systems Inc

Residential Systems Inc. has been one of Colorado’s leading providers of home technology services for 30 years, specializing in:

Our team of seasoned design and installation professionals have created and installed elegant, functional home technology systems for homes of all sizes throughout the nation. To date, they have completed large-scale projects in over 5,500 homes and businesses and have been featured in multiple local, regional and national media publications.

For more information on our products and services, or to speak to one of our team members, contact us at 303-277-9983.

 

Introducing Lutron’s EcoSystem