Frequently Asked Questions

When it comes to home technology installs and home automation systems,
questions are normal. Explore our FAQ page and let us know what you want to know.

How Much Should I Expect To Spend On My Upcoming Technology Project?

When embarking on a new home build or remodel project, the fuzziest budget item for most homeowners is typically the technology budget. Your builder, architect, and interior designer can quickly ballpark what a pool, a kitchen, or an electrical contract will cost. When it comes to technology, though, they often shrug their shoulders since there are so many variables. Some clients want very basic systems, and others want audiophile music systems and George Jetson-levels of Home Automation. More often, homeowners do not really know what they want or need.

This tool will help you understand what you should expect to spend on a new home technology project.

In less than 20 questions you will receive a realistic budget range for various technology options in your home. This often takes 5 minutes or less. The calculated price includes labor, accessories, and design & engineering. Tax not included.

How Will Fiber Help My Home Technology?

An optical fiber is a flexible transparent fiber slightly thicker than a human hair, used most often as a means to transmit light between the two ends of the fiber and find wide usage in fiber-optic communications. The fiber permits signal transmission over longer distances and at higher bandwidth speeds more efficiently than copper cable and wires. Fiber is also immune to electromagnetic interference, a problem from which metal wires suffer.

How Can I Tell Who Offers Internet, TV And Phone Services In My Area?

Easy, Do some homework by entering the address of your home into these sites:

What's The Difference Between AT&T, Spectrum, Grande And Google Fiber?

  • AT&T has great landline phones, Whole home DVR and Non fiber homes have slower network speeds

  • Spectrum has basic IP phones, NO Whole home DVR, Live TV app for Roku and FAST network speeds

  • Grande Has basic IP phones but no long distance built in, TIVO Whole Home DVR and FAST network speeds

  • Google Fiber has basic IP phones, Just OK TV and DVR and FAST network speeds

  • DirecTV has no stand alone phone service at all, Highest 4K HD picture quality, Whole Home DVR and they do not offer network services directly (Now owned by AT&T so they can fill in the gaps) *Downside- DirecTV over satellite has issues during heavy rain storms.

What Does It Mean When A “For Sale” Home Description Says “Wired”?

What is it wired for and what can it do? 

This is when you should call a Low Voltage Integrator who offers a free in home “room by room” audit of what the home has been wired for. Call (512) 775-6101 -(Choose Option 1)

Can A Home Technology Wiring Audit Help Me?

YES! Technology Details Are Important And Austin Is A “Tech Town”.

This has become more important in the past years because many families living here do work from their home or need to see what the home is doing while they are away or out of town.

What Are The Benefits Of A Home That Is Wired For Technology?

  • Future Proofing

  • Keyless Entry and monitoring of kids access to home after school lets out

  • Monitoring and Management of content and websites children visit

  • Peace of mind from having a home secured with a hardline security system and monitoring

  • Garage door status feedback (did we leave the garage door open?)

  • Pool, Rain collection, water usage and Solar Data feedback when your not home

  • Lighting Status Feedback and Control (did we leave the lights on?)

  • Wi-Fi systems that NEVER need to be rebooted

  • Managed Hardwired devices that fail less and last longer

  • If everything is wired you can turn off wifi at night while you sleep and lower effects of EMF

If A Home Is Not Wired…

You are forced to go with less stable wireless solutions. Every device on wifi slows down other devices on wifi. Also keep in mind that standard routers provided by the service companies only allow a home to host 30 wifi devices at a time (on average) and these products can be very easily hacked through WPS.

How Far Can WiFi Reach?

No. Wireless systems using mesh technology often FAIL and need to be rebooted often to resolve “handshake issues”.

More wireless means more EMF in your home and around your families. Smart Homes done right will have lower levels of EMF in the home. (I could talk for days about EMF so call Pete directly if this is a concern)

Isn’t Everything Wireless Now?

  • Wirelessly repeated Mesh Wifi – Not Far (Max 1000 stable square feet with limited number of connected devices)

  • Hard Wired Extended Wi-Fi can cover Austins largest homes and even reach across miles on a ranch property using fiber technology.

How Can I “Cut The Cord” And Save On TV Services?

  • Over the air HD Antennas are affordable and get FREE live TV for Fox, NBC, CBS, PBS1, PBS2, PBS3, GRIT & ION.

  • Add a ROKU streaming player and get access to Netflix, HULU, XUMO, Amazon and many other great Apps

Want To Learn More About Wires Vs. Wireless?
Watch Our Videos And Visit Our Galleries!
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*The calculated home technology budget range you will receive will includes parts, labor & accessories (Tax not included)
(a round number is OK)
Numerous structures on the property: Dock, Casita, Guest House, Barn, Gate etc. Check all that apply.
Prewire installation calculations assume you would like your home fully wired for ALL home automation technologies shown throughout the budget calculator, including 'future-ready' wiring. Prewire pricing can vary substantially based on what features you would like in your home. The wiring budget is for low-voltage wiring, not for electrical.
Prewire pricing will vary based on exactly what features you would like in your home. Read this article about the importance of wiring/cabling in today's "wireless" world. Your local Smarter Homes integrator is the best resource for exact prewire pricing. Wiring budget is for low-voltage wiring only, not electrical.
Keep in mind that our modern lifestyle and our home's automation technology systems are extremely reliant on a quality network and Wi-Fi system. Most homes are moving towards enterprise-grade hardware and away from the types of network products you could buy in an office supply store or a consumer computer store. We recommend that all homeowners consider the network and Wi-Fi system to be the most important system and installation within the home.
Higher-quality sound or higher-grade architectural finished speakers can range from $5,000.00 to $10,000.00 PER ROOM
Basic background music system pricing ranges from $1,500.00 to $5,000.00 per room including all equipment, labor, and programming.
Range includes video sources such as AppleTV, a Blu-ray player, satellite receiver, and remotely-locating them for best aesthetics. A basic soundbar is included for better audio.
This is called “video distribution” and reduces the amount of audio/video equipment located at each TV location/room.
A surround sound system creates an immersive sound experience, much like a dedicated home theater room, though in a dual-purpose room such as a Family Room, Master Bedroom, etc. If you would like more than one surround system location, click on the "Add Another Surround System" button below
Typically, homeowners want to see the following areas: front of house, front door, driveway / gate, sides of house, and pool. If you are more concerned about security, you may want to add cameras for the perimeter of your property. Good-quality cameras see about 75 feet of distance on average. The high range of the budget estimate includes higher resolution cameras, better night vision, and longer surveillance recording time.
The installation of a lighting control system reduces wall clutter, allows preset lighting scenes at the push of a button, increases security through programming automation, and adds convenience.
Motorized shades add beauty, convenience, address privacy concerns, and can be used to save energy. If desired, provide your best guess on how many windows/shades you want to motorize. The higher-end of the budget range includes higher-end fabrics, large windows, and dual-roller shades (both sheer and privacy shades on one window).
For example, a house music app, an app to operate your TV, an app for lighting automation, an app for locks, an app for cameras, an app to open close garage doors & gates, etc. Or do you want to control the entire house through a single unified app that controls all the automation systems within the home?
Make your home feel larger by balancing the light between indoor and outdoor areas.
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Austin’s Certified Luxury Home Automation, Home Theater, Audio Video & Wi-Fi Experts
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