Three years ago, we wrote a post—Savant vs. Control4—comparing the benefits of our top two whole home automation systems. Since then, it has consistently been one of the most visited pages on our site, earning more than 10,000 pageviews from across the globe.
The question “which control system is right for me” is a question asked by nearly every client who walks through our door. Each time our answer is pretty simple: It Depends On What You’re Looking For. Keep reading for details.
Advances in Whole Home Automation
Since publishing our original post, both Control4 and Savant have advanced dramatically, and continue to be world-class products. We also recently added a third whole home automation system to our lineup: Crestron.
With all of the changes, we decided it was time to take a fresh look at these three smart home automation platforms in an effort to help our clients make the decision that is best for them.
An Overview of Control4, Savant, and Crestron
Control4 vs. Savant vs. Crestron: Which One is Right for You?
Asking us to pick our favorite control system is like asking us which of our kids we like better. We like all of them for different reasons.
Control4: Entry-level platform, approachable price point, flexible, integrates with an array of 3rd party devices.
Savant: Mid-level price point, extensive customization options, better user experience.
Crestron: Most robust and customizable solution, ideal for complex integration, higher-end price point.
A few more differences between the platforms:
- Integrates with more 3rd party devices than any of the other platform including: Nest, Sonos, smart locks, smart thermostats and other “Internet of Things” devices.
- As close to an “out of the box” product as you can get. This allows for quick installation and systems that can be deployed in minutes, versus weeks.
- Offers an on-screen display, allowing our clients to control their audio and video experience straight from their television.
- The only platform that allows you to use the TV as a navigation tool.
- The leading choice for retrofit projects due to its Zigbee wireless capabilities. This allows our clients to take advantage of home technology without rewiring the home.
- A favorite among Apple fans.
- Easy to install and very easy to modify.
- Allows users the ability to customize and set “scenes” themselves.
- The most reliable system on the market. Requires the least amount of maintenance and technical support.
- Requires professional installation and wiring. It is the most popular choice for new construction in the Denver area.
- The ultimate ability in customization, integration and luxury features. As such, it generally requires some level of personalized programming. When done well, this can be a key benefit. When done poorly, it can make system operations challenging.
- Ideal choice for a select clients but, for those select few, it is the ONLY choice. If you want to customize the user experience, this is the right platform for you.
- Ideal choice for large properties and quasi commercial environments.
Making The Decision
When people ask me “Which system do you prefer.” I tell them the following:
- I like all of them. At RSI, we only represent the best in custom integration so we wouldn’t install a product that we didn’t believe in.
- The system you select is less important than who installs it for you. Find a reliable systems integrator you can count on. A poorly installed Crestron system will function much worse than a well-installed Control4 system, regardless of price.
- Play with the user interface and figure out which one you like best. That’s more important than the brand. You’ll use the interfaces everyday so make sure you come to our office and try them all out.
- If it tells you anything, I (along with several RSI employees) have a Savant system in my own house. That said, many of the other employees at RSI have Control4 as well.
The beauty of supporting all three platforms is that we have a solution to fit every client’s needs. We believe in giving our clients a choice when it comes to control system and budget. By bringing together these best-in-class platforms, we are able to offer clients a solution that will meet their needs at a price point that fits their budget.
For help figuring out which system is right for you, give us a call, visit our web site or schedule an appointment at our Design Studio.