WIRING AND CONTROL NEW HOME BUILD USING LOGITECH HARMONY ELITE

mvahora

Novice Member
Hi,

My home is currently under construction and I am doing all the low voltage installations myself. I require some help in regards to the control methods of each device in each location.

Main lounge will have:
- 135" motorized projector screen that has RF and IR control.
- Epson projector the EH-TW8400 (or 5040ub)
- TV on the wall behind the projector screen
- 5.1.2 sound system
- Amazon Alexa Echo Dot for automated voice commands (e.g alexa turn on netflix or alexa play bluray etc)

These will all be wired to a cabinet in the same lounge making all the devices out of sight.

The cabinet in the main lounge will house:
-
Onkyo TX-RZ1100 AVR
- SKY Satellite box
- Freeview UHF box
- Bluray Player
- Logitech Harmony Elite HUB. (the elite remote will be in the lounge sitting in its charging holder)

This is a localized zone however I want to distribute the sky and freeview boxs out to another lounge and to three bedrooms. For this I will be using a 2x5 1080p HDMI matrix to send the AV over CAT6 cables to the other zones. Freeview and Sat in my country is only available in 1080p so no need for 4K matrix as of yet. Each of the other rooms will have their own localized bluray player & sound system as well as their own streaming sticks etc.

Each device will have access to wired network.

Questions are:

0. Does anyone know of any good 2x6 hdmi 1080p only matrixes? (4k ones are tooo expensive & currently not needed)
1. Will the harmony elite be able to control all my devices in the main lounge or will it not work if i place the hub in a closed cabinet?
2. Is the alexa compatible with Logitech Harmony Elite and will i be able to create scenes?
3. In terms of control what wiring should I run to the cabinet and how will i control the devices in the main lounge? (can someone please explain exactly how many cat cables ill need for control in the cabinet? whether its for harmony RF, Bluetooth or IR or IP?) i have an idea but im a little confused and want to be sure before the building is lined
4. How will I control the HDMI matrix sources from the other rooms? (im thinking of running 1 cat cable to each other room from the main cabinet, since each cat has 8 cores im assuming this will allow me to splice in 4 IR receivers if necessary which will allow control of the sat box and the freeview box) It will also leave 2 unused pairs which i can use if i add anything else in the future.
5. Do i need to run any cat cables between the cabinet and projector screen, and also between the projector and projector screen?
6. in terms of controlling the sat box and freeview box from the other room, i am aware that only one channel will be able to be viewed on all the devices simultaneously. However if only one person was watching and they wanted to change the channel on the sat box from a bedroom does that mean i would need to purchase several universal remotes and link them to the sky or freeview box?
7. How many remotes can be linked to one sky or freeview box?

Really appreciate the help.

Thank you
 
Last edited:

Adziadam

Active Member
I can answer 1. 1. Will the harmony elite be able to control all my devices in the main lounge or will it not work if i place the hub in a closed cabinet? = The Harmony can control devices in a closed cabinet as the hub acts as the IR sender. You do get 2 little IR blasters (extenders) you can put these in the different cabinet compartments if the hub signal does not reach the other devices.
 

mushii

Distinguished Member
If you are only doing 1080p then I wouldn’t bother with a matrix and use digital RF modulator and push the signals over Coax. Use a pair of modulators, one for Sky and one for Freeview. The better modulators also have IR passthrough to use magic eyes to control the boxes. Feed these into an aerial distribution amp and connect to each TV
Sky and Freeview will then appear as channels on every TV.
 

mvahora

Novice Member
If you are only doing 1080p then I wouldn’t bother with a matrix and use digital RF modulator and push the signals over Coax. Use a pair of modulators, one for Sky and one for Freeview. The better modulators also have IR passthrough to use magic eyes to control the boxes. Feed these into an aerial distribution amp and connect to each TV
Sky and Freeview will then appear as channels on every TV.

At the moment it is 1080p from the broadcaster. But this may change to 4k in the future so wouldn't it be better to stick to the HDMI matrix option running hdmi over CAT6?

In saying that however i do have a coax signal running to each room using the digital distribution amplifier as per pic below but this is for a different reason. this is there so each tv can get direct uhf or sat signals if a scenario arises where its actually required.

Picture of STARVIEW Digital 2x 8 Digital Distribution Amplifier. Satellite
 

mushii

Distinguished Member
Put in 2 runs of Cat6a (Not Cat6) from the central node to each TV position (Just for distribution) and terminate each end in RJ45 or DD45 plugs and test each (with a cable tester like a Fluke Network tester, not a cheap continuity tester, you may need to rent one as they are more expensive than your matrix) to validate each cable is properly installed. Then I would carefully coil the cables out of the way. This way you have enough cables in for HDMI over IP or HDBaseT distribution. Then follow my suggestion of adding two Digital Modulators into your RF distribution Chain. Dont waste your money on a 1080P matrix, its dead money and un-necessary expense. Then when you want to move to 4k or 8k you will have certified cables in place.

I would also be looking to run at least 2 other (preferably different colour to the Cat6a cables) Cat6 cables to the rear of each TV for smart TV functions, plus additional Cat6 cable to any local equipment (games consoles, AVRs, etc). I tend to use Purple Cat6 for networking and Yellow Cat6a for Matrix distribution.
 

mvahora

Novice Member
Put in 2 runs of Cat6a (Not Cat6) from the central node to each TV position (Just for distribution) and terminate each end in RJ45 or DD45 plugs and test each (with a cable tester like a Fluke Network tester, not a cheap continuity tester, you may need to rent one as they are more expensive than your matrix) to validate each cable is properly installed. Then I would carefully coil the cables out of the way. This way you have enough cables in for HDMI over IP or HDBaseT distribution. Then follow my suggestion of adding two Digital Modulators into your RF distribution Chain. Dont waste your money on a 1080P matrix, its dead money and un-necessary expense. Then when you want to move to 4k or 8k you will have certified cables in place.

I would also be looking to run at least 2 other (preferably different colour to the Cat6a cables) Cat6 cables to the rear of each TV for smart TV functions, plus additional Cat6 cable to any local equipment (games consoles, AVRs, etc). I tend to use Purple Cat6 for networking and Yellow Cat6a for Matrix distribution.

Great thanks for that, a lot of what ive run is CAT6 not CAT6A. Ive had a look online and if cables runs are under about 35m then there should be no difference between the two cables. What are your thoughts? There also is the additional cost of terminations, wall plates, keystones etc of CAT6A.
 

mvahora

Novice Member
Put in 2 runs of Cat6a (Not Cat6) from the central node to each TV position (Just for distribution) and terminate each end in RJ45 or DD45 plugs and test each (with a cable tester like a Fluke Network tester, not a cheap continuity tester, you may need to rent one as they are more expensive than your matrix) to validate each cable is properly installed. Then I would carefully coil the cables out of the way. This way you have enough cables in for HDMI over IP or HDBaseT distribution. Then follow my suggestion of adding two Digital Modulators into your RF distribution Chain. Dont waste your money on a 1080P matrix, its dead money and un-necessary expense. Then when you want to move to 4k or 8k you will have certified cables in place.

I would also be looking to run at least 2 other (preferably different colour to the Cat6a cables) Cat6 cables to the rear of each TV for smart TV functions, plus additional Cat6 cable to any local equipment (games consoles, AVRs, etc). I tend to use Purple Cat6 for networking and Yellow Cat6a for Matrix distribution.

Also do you have any recommendations on RF modulators? The ones I'm looking at seem quite expensive
 

mushii

Distinguished Member
The cables for matrix distribution should not go through keystones. They should be terminated at either end with RJ45 or GG45 plugs. You need the minimum amount of breaks in 1080P / 4K distribution cabling.

I would recommend Cat6a cabling to provide the maximum bandwidth for 4K which will saturate the cabling.

I would recommend the Eddision Modulators which are about £130 each. Which even for 2 would be 5 - 10x cheaper than a matrix.
 

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