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10 Tips for Outdoor Entertaining

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Summer will be here before you know it. Since the season is so short in New England, we want to make the most of it when we spend time outdoors. The trend to entertain outside gets stronger every year with improved technology and products. Here are 10 tips to enhance your outdoor A/V experience.

  1. Wireless audio can be your new BFF if not exposed to the elements.  Soundcast has weatherproof wireless  speakers that we would recommend. They are portable and battery powered so you can even take them to the beach! While we always prefer a hardwired connection for quality audio, wireless systems are great for getting music outside temporarily, without a lot of planning or structural wiring.
  2. Plan for permanent fixtures when building or renovating. The more speakers the better! It’s important to plan for permanent outdoor electronics. For example, you need to install pool speakers before the concrete is poured, and conduit will need to be run to any permanent outdoor video displays.
  3. Look for speakers that blend in. In the beginning rock speakers were all the rage, but there are more advanced speakers now that can be hidden among plantings. Compact speakers designed with flexible mounting options are increasingly popular because you can place them in trees, bushes, or virtually anywhere.
  4. Allocate the proper space for in-ground subwoofers, which produce great bass outdoors.
  5. Invest in a waterproof, rugged iPad cover or remote for outdoor control.
  6. Never use indoor gear outdoors. You can’t simply take your TV outside, install it and expect it to hold up to the elements. That is one reason why we like the products from Seura, especially their Storm series. Splash is made to be waterproof! Install the largest size screen you can accommodate for maximum viewing pleasure.
  7. Wow your guests with an outdoor movie theater, complete with a weatherproof screen and drop down projector. Just remember that appropriate housing is important.
  8. Run video wiring to several locations so that you can put video in one or more spots should you decide to add another screen, or move your screen, in the future.
  9. Add outdoor wireless access points to boost your signal for continuous Wi-Fi coverage outside. Or talk with us about some of our advanced network solutions.
  10. Light it right to set the mood and add to your home’s safety. We can program lighting for various activities, like watching TV outside, a late night dip in the pool or soak in the hot tub.

It’s not too late to get your property ready for summer. Get in touch with our System Design team. And don’t forget all the other elements that go into fabulous summer entertaining: a great play list, comfortable seating, an outdoor kitchen and, most important of all, family and friends.

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Audio Video Design Honored with 2017 Gold PRISM Award

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Audio Video Design, a concierge firm for smart home technology, automation and integration, was recognized for professional excellence with a coveted Gold PRISM Award on October 12, 2017.

Hosted by the Builders and Remodelers Association of Greater Boston (BRAGB), the PRISM Awards celebrate the finest projects and outstanding achievements of builders, developers, project owners, architects, land planners, marketing/advertising firms, interior designers, remodelers, and home technology contractors in the Greater Boston building industry.

AVD won a Gold PRISM in the category Best Use of Smart Home Technology  for their Cape Cod Cinematheque project. This year’s PRISM Awards Gala presented awards in nearly 80 different categories to honor accomplishments in the industry.

“We are delighted to have received a Gold PRISM Award from the Builders and Remodelers Association of Greater Boston. In this business it is always a team that earns the honors. No one person can do this by himself. I thank my team here at Audio Video Design for the conscientious attention to detail and dedication to customer satisfaction,” said AVD President, Brad Smith. “We are grateful to our industry partners on this project: interior designer Barbara Kotzen, Kotzen Interiors; and Encore Construction. We enjoyed collaborating with them to create this spectacular home theater.”

BRAGB received almost 300 entries for the PRISM Awards this year, which is the highest number of entries in the program since 2007. A distinguished panel representing various segments of the building industry from across the country performed the judging. For more information about the PRISM Awards please visit www.prism-awards.com

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Séura TVs for Indoors and Outside

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Not all mirror televisions are alike – Séura TV Mirrors are unique! Their vanishing televisions are awe-inspiring. Séura uses an innovative glass that resembles traditional silver mirror more closely than any of their previous models when the display is turned off, but permits ultra-high definition video to shine through while the display is operating. The result is a true-to-life reflection when turned off and a more vivid video quality when the TV is on. Every Séura  is designed and built to order to complement your home. 

TV Mirror Features:

  • Vanishing Technology: Elegance is instant. Vanishing glass is designed to provide excellent mirror reflectivity while making it possible for a television to completely disappear when turned off.
  • Customization: Unique design configuration options include mirror size, TV screen size, designer frames and other custom offerings.
  • Ultra High Definition: 4k UHD picture clarity four times the resolution of regular TVs at the moment.

Vanishing Vanity Mirrors

If you like to get your news first thing in the morning while you shave or put on make-up, check out this Seura Vanishing Vanity TV Mirror. Not only do we love it, but so does the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Chicago because they put one in every guest suite bathroom!

Outdoor Entertainment

We highly recommend Séura’s outdoor line of televisions – the Storm and Storm Ultra Bright Splash (pictured below). Elegant design meets best-in-class video performance in all weather conditions. And that means a lot here in New England! From rooftop decks to patios to poolside, Séura Outdoor TVs enhance beautifully designed spaces and bring people together.

Come see the Séura TV Mirror in AVD’s new interactive Home Technology Design Center! Call 617-965-4600 for an appointment.

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Best New TV Technology in 2019

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2019: The Year of the Television?

TV’s reigned supreme at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Today’s AV consumers have witnessed a remarkable television evolution in their lifetimes. When furniture-cased models and their massive projection descendants gave way to flat screen technology, we marveled at displays that seemed like science fiction made real. TV manufacturers are still pushing the boundaries of what’s possible— with truly remarkable results. Curious? Read on to discover some of the jaw-dropping new TV technology unveiled in Las Vegas.

LG Is On a Roll

Want a TV that’s only there when you need it? LG’s Signature OLED R rises to the challenge— literally. Capitalizing on OLED’s inherent flexibility, OLED R rises from its sleek aluminum case with the touch of a button, spooling back into hiding when not in use. When its stunning display is retracted, OLED R capably serves as a Bluetooth sound system. With 4.2-channel Dolby Atmos audio, audiophiles won’t be disappointed! If you prefer state-of-the-art audio video with a minimalist aesthetic, start saving for OLED R’s arrival (late 2019).

 

8K TV’s: Is It Upgrade Time?

8K TV’s made waves at CES 2019, but are they worth the investment? 8K refers to a television’s resolution— specifically, how many pixels its display contains. More pixels result in a clearer, more lifelike picture. For TV’s over 40-inches, 4K, with nearly 4,000 horizontal pixels, is now the industry standard. With 8,000 horizontal pixels, 8K is a whopping improvement on the industry standard. Up close, the pixels of an 8K display are virtually impossible to distinguish, resulting in a video that’s incomparably clear and bright. Read about Sony’s 8K technology.

LG, Samsung, Sony and others will bring 8K to US audio video consumers in 2019, but is it worth the investment? While 8K is a remarkable technical achievement, it’s important to remember that none of the programming we love (films, live sports, streaming content, etc.) is available in 8K yet, and this isn’t likely to change soon. Also, you’ll need a really big TV (think 80+ inches) to notice any real difference between 4K and 8K. So, unless you have one heck of a living room, it’s probably sensible to admire this technology from afar, at least for now.

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How to Choose a Quality AV Company

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Home automation and audio-video technologies are, by their nature, flashy and exciting. Unsurprisingly, many AV companies in the Greater Boston area offer deals, promotions, and promises just as glitter. Because of this, selecting an AV company might seem overwhelming. How can you separate the substance from the hype?

Whether you’re shopping for a Sonos multi-room speaker system or full-scale automation for your new home, here are a handful of questions that you should ask before choosing an audio video company.

Do They Value Customers’ Time?

Home automation and related technologies make life more efficient. If the process of installing and maintaining these smart home systems becomes time-consuming, though, how “smart” is it, really? A quality AV company makes customers’ lives easier. This could mean guaranteed response times, skilled email and phone support, or top-flight preventive maintenance to head off problems before they begin. A truly excellent audio video company ensures that you enjoy your in-home technology as much as possible.

Are They There When You Need Them?

If you need help operating your home technology, your audio-visual company should be there for you. Look for skilled service managers and technicians who are available when you need them. A leading audio video company will offer comprehensive phone and email support and remedy issues through remote diagnostics. When on-site AV service is needed, choose a company that offers guaranteed response times. Life can’t be put on hold until the next available appointment. The best AV companies know this and are there when you need them.

Do They Listen to You?

Look for an AV consultant who is interested in your needs, not just the services they can sell. One of the first questions they should ask is, “What do you need your home to do that it’s not currently doing?” A great AV company will ask the right questions and create innovative solutions for your home, lifestyle, and budget.

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Best Home Audio System Brands in 2021

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Investing in a home audio system makes it easy to spread quality sound through every room in your home. High-end audio technologies offer a variety of customization options. Choose from outdoor speakers, Wi-Fi networking, and smartphone management. Consider these popular brands if you are planning to install audio products in your home.

Anthem

WEBSITE

https://www.anthemav.com/

REVIEW

Anthem is a premium brand that delivers the highest quality home audio products in the industry. There’s a reason why the brand is known as a power performer. It’s because the full-integrated systems create the ultimate audio experience in your home. Anthem offers three series of receivers: MRX, AVM, and MCA GEN 2.

If you are looking for a high-end audio system, then Anthem is a great brand to consider. They offer everything you need. Available products include processors, receivers, integrated amplifiers, distribution solutions, and more.

McIntosh

WEBSITE

https://www.mcintoshlabs.com/

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Experience Center
Waltham
Experience Center
Boston
Experience Center
2022-07-07
     
Roy, the technician assigned to the work at my home, was simply amazing - so kind, smart, considerate and the utmost customer-oriented person.
2022-05-19
     
SimpleHome did a fantastic job for us. Helped us design, spec and install two relatively complex TV and A/V installations.
2022-01-10
     

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