The Art of Hidden Technology

Aug 9, 2019

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As technology advances, we are able to adapt our approach to how AV equipment looks and feels in a modern home. When NV Integration entered the industry 11 years ago we set out to create uniquely tailored luxury homes, by fulfilling the vision of the client and the design team.

 

CENTRALISED IS BEST

In a typical modern home, rooms are commonly littered with smart home devices, audio setups, TVs, and just generally 'black box electronics'. These gadgets are great and are there to make our lives simpler, but they rarely consider the aesthetic downside. Taking up valuable space and often with trailing wires making a room look untidy. Our solution is to centralise equipment as much as possible, with only the necessary equipment in living spaces.

With this method control of the home stems from one place. With the added benefit of a home automation system, such as Crestron or Control4, which unifies technologies to interact with each other and allows the homeowner a simple modus operandi with a de-cluttered lifestyle.

 

 

Clean up the wall acne

Wall-mounted touch screens allow you to hide more technology than you might think. An integrated home is the combination of various technologies such as audio, video, security, lighting, and temperature, working in unison with each other. Each interface is programmed so you can quickly access or receive information, such as answering the door. This negates the need for having a variety of switches and buttons that are confusing and ultimately detract from the interior scheme.

On the left is a home automation system which displays a standard user interface, The right side touch panel from Crestron is completely customisable in its appearance and function. 

 

Let there be light

Smart lighting control systems, such as Lutron are the solution to having too many light switches that litter the walls of your home. Traditionally a light switch is wired to the physical light making the switch on the wall the only way to control it. However, with a lighting control system a scene function, such as 'Welcome' can control numerous circuits to predetermined levels.

Having the lighting wired to a central system enables you to have control over all of the lights without needing to be in the room or even the house. Furthermore, lights can be programmed to pre-sets such as movie mode where lights are dimmed, or a night time scene where lights turn down but also close blinds and curtains. Did we mention Lutron also controls those? While pre-programmed conditions can work autonomously, a simple wall-mounted keypad is a practical device, that looks stunning on the wall.

Examples of Lutron's Palladiom keypads. Left showing an architectural in-wall finish, and right standard installation.

 

TV, hidden in plain sight

With some creative thinking and the right design, there's plenty of ways to have a TV be seen only when you need it to be. 

Just two examples are mirror TVs and the Frame TV. The mirror TV is quite unique and completely customisable. The mirror is made of a special material that allows light to pass so when the TV is on it shows an image and when the TV is off it will simply be a mirror.

The Frame TV, on the other hand, is a TV which sits inside a bordered picture frame which is flush to the wall. Frame TVs have a default art mode so it will display high-quality artwork from an online catalogue when in standby.

 

On the left is a Samsung Frame TV. The right is showing an installed mirror TV in a bedroom. 

 

Hi-fi, yes and no?

Hi-Fi stands for High fidelity audio. This just means the highest quality of audio, and we love that but not the clutter that comes with it. Hi-Fi has been around forever but seems to be making a resurgence with digital technology like MQA. Combining various pieces of hardware, amplifiers, speakers, subwoofers, and media players. The big drawback is the space you need for all this equipment, that can often look very man cave.

With our centralised platform, we can leave the audio in the room without having to see one piece of hardware. But you also might be thinking where are the speakers? We regularly use invisible in-wall speakers that hide a thin topcoat of plaster. So that you hear sound, but don't see speakers.

Left and right images show invisible in-wall speakers hidden behind wallpaper and plaster finishes. The speakers have also been successfully installed behind wood veneers and even stone. Both of these systems are available to see and hear in our London showrooms.

 

If you are interested to learn more about the art of hidden technology click here to book a viewing to one of our showrooms.