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Not so long ago, the majority of homes were wired with little more than the AC
electrical powerlines, a few phone lines, and a few TV cables. Times have
changed. Electrical and security system contractors routinely install low
voltage communication cabling for a wide range of smart home systems. Of course,
the new technology does still, for the most part, require connection to the same
old AC powerline; but some unique and highly specific requirements must also be
The term 'prewiring' refers to the installation of cables and wires during a new
home's construction. It includes the AC electrical wiring, as well as the low
voltage, home systems cabling.
If you're considering opting out of prewiring based on the wide availability of
wireless devices today, remember that, despite industry pushes toward
standardization, many wireless devices still use proprietary communication
protocols, making them incompatible with other manufacturer's products. Partly
for this reason, most home systems products are designed with structured wiring
in mind. Remember also that prewiring is a permanent upgrade to your home,
increasing its value at sale time.
Some of the residential and commercial systems that require prewiring are
security; home theater and entertainment; phones, door-phones and intercoms; PC
and internet networks; surveillance cameras; driveway vehicle detection;
communicating thermostats; motorized window treatments; entry systems; and
irrigation systems. In addition to installing access ports for these systems,
you should (remove 'also') decide upon at least two locations for centralized
controls, i.e., one in the living room and one in the master bedroom.
The Prewire Planning Guide below is intended only as a general frame of
reference, and should be altered to meet your specific requirements. It's a good
idea to keep such a document as talking paper for discussions with your
contractor. A written specification ensures that all contractors are bidding on
the same effort. Discuss your requirements with each contractor and request that
they include the details of their work plan in their proposals. Have them take
the time to write up a scope-of-work and, if possible, to accurately markup the
builder's floor plans. Specify where in each room you want the cable
terminations, as well as the type of jacks and wall plates to be used at each
termination. All cables running into the home control distribution center should
be labeled with a room name and function. Lastly, all cables should be tested
for continuity to ensure there are no shorts, opens, mislabels, or incorrect
The prewiring of an average size home entails the running of miles of cables and
usually requires several days for two installers to complete. The cost of low
voltage prewiring varies, depending in some measure upon the number and length
of cable pulls, as well as the number of terminations, but you can expect a
range of between $2000 to $7500 for medium size homes, to well above that for
Prewire Planning Guide
This plan was developed in accordance with the EIA industry practices identified
in the Consumer Electronic Bus standard, which defines how information should
travel throughout the home. Compliance with these guidelines insures that the
residence will be prewired for all future needs.
A home control center
(HCC) should be established in an area adjacent to the electrical service
panel in the basement, garage or service area. A 4X6' backboard should be
installed to secure the prewired cabling to their appropriate positions in
preparation for the installation of the security, cable/satellite distribution,
phones, PC/Internet network, audio distribution, and the X10 power line carrier
systems signal conditioning equipment.
Two cable runs of RG6 quad shield coaxial cable should be "home run" from each
applicable room or area back to the HCC. RG6 cable is used for cable modems,
cable/satellite, DVD, & video cameras. The quad shielding on coaxial cable
insures a minimum loss of signal quality even if the cables are routed with 90
Two or more cable runs of Category 5E cable should be "home run" from each room
planned with a phone, PC, system wall controllers, digital audio controls,
thermostats, IR receivers, and cameras back to the HCC. Category 5 enhanced
cable consists of 4 pair of twisted wires. The cable is immune to electronic
noise and is tested and certified to communication speeds that far exceed the
speed of our home networks. We suggest using different color cable for each
application to easily identify cables in a bundle.
High quality jacketed 14 and 16 gauge stranded speaker wire should be prewired
to each of the rooms and exterior areas of the home identified with speakers and
analog volume controls, from the area identified for the home entertainment
A category 5E cable should be prewired from the home's primary PC to the HCC for
programming and control of the PC based home controller.
The electrical contractor should be instructed to insure that the line, neutral,
& switch legs are available at all switch box locations and that only deep
switch boxes be used for all planned smart switch and receptacle locations.
Specify that a minimum of 12 receptacle outlets be installed at the HCC &
entertainment center areas.
Security, Smoke Detection, & Access
We recommend that a central station monitored Napco Gemini security & smoke
detection system be installed. This is a Hardwired / Wireless multi-tasking
centrally monitored system. Monitored contacts should be installed at all first
floor and basement exterior doors and windows, as well as glass break detectors,
interior motion detectors, heat detectors and smoke detectors. Plain English
keypad stations should be located at three locations including the Master BdRm.
The Security system should be integrated into the JDS Stargate system at the HCC
for automatic control of safety lighting when the security system is tripped.
A 300' range Street Smart ultra-secure coded remote control system with (2) 4
Button Key Chain remotes can be provided for control of gates, garage doors,
interior doors, interior and exterior entrance lighting and the security system
from arriving vehicles. The system can be expanded to include exterior motion
detectors or driveway vehicle detector probes integrated with Stargate at any
Distribution System for Cable,
Satellite & Camera Video + PC Internet Network.
A Channel Vision RG6 Coax Cable & Catagory 5 Cable distribution system will be
installed at the HCC. This Panel combined with Xantech Infrared components will
perform the signal amplification, modulation and distribution of the video
signals from of Satellite, Cable programming, and entrance cameras to those
rooms planned with a TV or PC. An IR target will be installed in the rooms
planned with a TV to enable video source selection and control of Satellite
programming, Cable & the Entrance Camera. If a Dual LNB Satellite Dish is
utilized this will allow connection of 8 or more Satellite Receivers with
individual control. Programmed Universal Remotes such as the SL9000 or PUR08
should be usede for control of TV, A/V, and lighting.
The Cat 5 distribution portion of the panel provides the convenience of a patch
panel to distribute voice and data to each room directly from the phone system.
A PC LAN 8 node Hub will be included in the panel. High Speed Internet Cable
Service or DSL Service can be established on the network to allow all family
members to be online simultaneously. Multimedia outlets installed in each room
will provide phone service, video, and PC Network connection data where
A Panasonic Advanced Hybrid Phone System should be installed and integrated at
the HCC. The system is expandable to 6 incoming lines and 24 extensions. The
system will include Caller ID, a door phone at the front entry, hands free
intercom & paging. The available phone handsets include 90OMHZ cordless system
phones, corded LCD and non LCD system phones.
The 900MHZ cordless phones offer the convenience of remote and local control of
anything electrical from any point in the home or on the grounds.
Great Wireless Phone System alternatives to the Hardwired Panasonic Phone System
would be the two incoming line, 10 extension CyberGenie with voice recognition &
PC/Internet integration, as well as the two line, 8 extension Siemens 2.4 GHZ
Gigaset which is extremely clear, high performance, and attractively priced.
Home Control and Automation System
An X10 PLC network will be created on the house electrical service using Surge
Protection, Signal Couplers, Amplifiers, and noise filters as required to ensure
rock-solid system operation.
A JDS Stargate, the most comprehensive and best supported integrated home
controller available will be installed. Stargate is a Windows based, PC
programmable home control system that interconnects the Phones, HVAC, PC,TV,
Video, A/V, Lighting and all other home systems, allowing them to communicate
with one another for control purposes. In addition to X10 control offered by
Stargate, it also includes digital and analog inputs as well as relay contact
closures for reliable interfacing to all other home systems. The Power Line
Carrier (XlO PLC) network will be established on the electrical service to
enable control signaling on the AC power line throughout the residence and
exterior lighting and recreation areas. Phone control is integrated into
Stargate turning any touch tone phone into a great system controller. Voice
response and Caller ID are also integrated in Stargate. Check Stargate out at
Smart Wall Switches / Modules will be located to insure adequate safety,
security, and scene lighting. TouchScreens, and 4 Button Leviton Wall
Controllers will be installed to enable automatic and remote control of selected
interior and exterior landscape and pool lighting, house audio, and status
conditions. This insures that the residence will always present a lived in
appearance. The 4 Button Wall Controllers and TouchScreens also provide a means
to trigger Scenarios such as Party Time, Away, Movie Time, Good Night, I'm Home
etc. that involve several home systems automatically with one button control.
Voice Response can be provided for Scenario selections, Guest Arrivals, and
Wake-ups etc as desired. An RS232 cable should be routed from the Stargate at
the HCC to your primary PC for both control and programming from your PC.
Optional Home Control Sub-Systems:
- Dimming Smart Switches can be added to create "one touch"
scene lighting, as can additional TouchScreens and Wall
- An Irrigation Controller, controlled by Stargate can provide
convenient integrated lawn & garden automatic irrigation.
- Smart bi-directional Thermostats can be installed to offer
centralized control based on time of day selections, or remote &
local phones and or universal hand held remotes.
- Voice recognition software can be installed on the primary
PC and can be integrated with the Smart Home phone system to
easily trigger scenarios such as Good Night, I�m home, etc.
- The system can be expanded with an Infrared Expander to
allow "one touch" control of whole house audio systems and home
theaters with the same 4 Button Wall Controllers and
- A Pool/Spa Controller can be installed and integrated with
Stargate to offer complete system control.
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California Contractors and Builders
Dave’s Home Theater works with builders and contractors in the Southern
California area. If you are a builder looking for assistance with custom home
theater, low voltage wiring, security systems, whole house audio or intercom
systems please contact us for more information. We work with builders and
contractors on single custom home jobs or entire neighborhoods. Our team can
provide all of your structured wiring needs for your telephone, cable, internet,
intercom, camera systems and security systems as well as set you up with
security monitoring. If you are a homeowner looking for a contractor to assist
you with a complete basement finish or ground up construction we can introduce
you to some of our contacts that we work closely with to ensure you have the
custom construction job integrated with the superior home audio, video,
security, home theater and more all at your finger tips.
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Cities Of Southern California We Service
City's We Service include Anaheim
Hills, Anaheim , Balboa Island, Newport Beach , Corona del Mar , Crystal Cove ,
Pelican Hill, Newport Beach, San Juan Capistrano Beach , Dana Point , El Modena,
Orange , French Park, , Floral Park, Santa Ana , Foothill Ranch, Lake Forest ,
Monarch Beach, Dana Point , Nellie Gail, Laguna Hills , Northwood, Irvine ,
Woodbridge, Irvine , Newport Coast, Newport Beach , Olive, Orange , Portola
Hills, Lake Forest , San Joaquin Hills, Laguna Niguel , San Joaquin Hills,
Newport Beach , Santa Ana Heights, Newport Beach, Tustin Ranch, Tustin, Talega,
San Clemente, West Garden Grove, Garden Grove, Yorba Hills, Yorba Linda, Mesa
Anaheim, Buena Park, Costa Mesa,
Cypress, Fountain Valley, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, La Habra,
La Palma, Los Alamitos, Orange, Placentia, Santa Ana, Seal Beach, Stanton,
Tustin, Villa Park, Westminister, Yorba Linda, Aliso Viejo, Dana Point, Laguna
Hills, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Woods, Lake Forest, Mission Viejo, Newport Beach,
Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clement, San Juan Capistrano, Ladera Ranch, Coto De
Caza, Anaheim Hills, Dove Canyon, Seal Beach, Diamond Bar, Sunset Beach,
Riverside, Corona, Alta Loma, Rancho Cucamonga, Upland, Claremont, Ontario,
Chino, Chino Hills, Paris, Murrieta, Beverly Hills, Brentwood, Santa Monica,
Cypress, Rolling Hills, Long Beach, San Fernando Valley, Burbank, Hollywood,
Palos Verdes, Fullerton, Ventura, West Hills, Marina Del Ray, Malibu, North
Ridge, Box Canyon, Del Mar, Vista
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questions you may have or to schedule an on site consultation at your place
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Licensed & Insured , License # 909750