Home automation is about so much more than merely simplifying the control of the electronics systems around your home; it’s also about enriching and expanding your home entertainment experience—ensuring that, no matter where you are in the home, you can press a button and access whatever audio or video entertainment you’d like. To that end, Savant Systems—makers of the world’s only home automation company built entirely on Apple’s OS X operating system—has just announced the addition of a new innovative addition to its product lineup that makes distributing audio, video, and power signals from room-to-room easier, simpler, and more reliable than ever before.
Dubbed “SmartLink,” the new digital modules rely on the latest HDBaseT technology to send audio and video signals, as well as power and control commands, up to 100 meters via the exact same Ethernet cables that make up your home networking. This isn’t compressed, internet-based A/V, though, but rather full-HD, fully uncompressed picture and sound, with the exact same quality you would get from an HDMI cable—just without the added expense, and with the benefit of better reliability. And by sending all of those signals over a single cable, HDBaseT makes troubleshooting that much easier in the unlikely event that something does go wrong.
Savant is offering its SmartLink output modules in two- and four-port versions, and the receiving module—which is designed to take the signal from the ethernet cable and turn it back into HDMI audio/video, power, and control outputs, comes in a snappy wall-plate form factor to cut down on the clutter.
By bringing HDBaseT fully into the Savant control ecosystem, the company is able to provide remote access to connection status, real-time monitoring of video resolution, and better control of EDID (Extended Display Identification Data). If you’ve ever had trouble switching between video sources, especially in a multi-room video distribution system, EDID conflicts were probably the culprit.
The new Smartlink digital modules with HDBaseT technology are scheduled to start shipping to authorized Savant dealers and home tech specialists this spring.