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New From TRUFIG: World’s Most Beautiful (and Expensive) Outlets?

TRUFIG already has made everyday electrical outlets, dimmers and keypads fade into the drywall; now it's bringing the same sleek solution to granite, wood and other solid surfaces.


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TRUFIG Solid Surface Solutions: Just $360 for the outlet, excluding installation and faux painting ... but it’s a heck of a lot prettier than the $3 alternative. (Image from TRUFIG factory, snapped by Bethesda Systems, Md.)

We already know that TRUFIG mounting solutions look awesome when used on Sheetrock. They make electrical outlets, dimmers, touchscreens and other electronic gear practically disappear into the wall.

But what if the wall is wood or granite or some other hard surface? Now there’s a TRUFIG for that.

Like the original product, the new TRUFIG Solid Surface Solutions do a great job of hiding in-wall electronics on unconventional surfaces. Installation, however, is more challenging than a straightforward Sheetrock job – not least because a depth-adjustment tool must be brought into the process.

The trickiest part is that the finishing trades must cut your receptacle holes perfectly. There are no bezels to hide imperfections, and no do-overs on imprecise cuts.

“The solid surface solution involves more work for us to coordinate with skilled trade labor as there are a few more steps for us and either a millworker or countertop manufacturer,” says Jonathan Stovall, an integrator with Bethesda Systems, Md., who attended TRUFIG Solid Surface training. “There is more prep relative to solely educating and quality-controlling a Sheetrock finisher.”

And if you really want the trim to disappear, prepare to pay for a skilled faux painter. Currently, you must use the TRUFIG magnetic fascias (white, almond and brown, all paintable) to finish the job. No, you can’t just slap some magnets onto a right-sized piece of granite, or whatever the surface may be.

“The fascias are thin and precisely machined to fit within the TRUFIG openings -- most likely way too much work for a local craftsman, especially within marble and granite.” says Stovall. “But I imagine someone will eventually try it with wood. It’s just not a sanctioned method yet. I’ve seen some amazing faux painters in my time. I believe it’s much easier to let them do their thing.”

The additional work of painters and wall finishers adds to the already-high price of the original TRUFIG, which starts at about $300 for a single-gang electrical outlet. The Solid Surface versions cost about 20- to 25-percent more than the basic Sheetrock line, according to Stovall. And that’s before the extra labor.

It’s all good for Bethesda Systems, though.

Not only can the company make good margins on otherwise mundane accessories, the TRUFIG Solid Surface line forces strong relationships with other trades.

“TRUFIG allows us to increase the level of communication and coordination between multiple subcontractors, and that does nothing but raise the quality of any construction project we touch,” Stovall says, “This ‘coordination platform’ allows us to be accountable directly to the general contractor -- a service unlike any other our industry has ever seen before.”

While growing its TRUFIG business, Bethesda is building relationships with the best of the related trades so the company doesn’t have to re-teach every new contractor.

Stovall explains, “We see TRUFIG as an integral part to growing our business because it will get us to the table earlier on in the project, allowing us more face time with the decision makers, and ultimately allowing us to sell more of our products and services.”

TRUFIG Solid Surface recently was named a 2010 CEDIA Manufacturer’s Excellence Awards finalist.

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Images from TRUFIG factory, snapped by Bethesda Systems, Md. More images here.
http://www.trufig.com




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Article Topics

News · Product News · Accessories · Trufig · Architectural · Cedia 2010 · Architects · Trufig Solid Surface · Bethesda Systems · All topics

About the Author

Julie Jacobson, Co-Founder, EH Publishing / Editor-at-large, CE Pro
Julie Jacobson, recipient of the 2014 CEA TechHome Leadership Award, is co-founder of EH Publishing, producer of CE Pro, Electronic House, Commercial Integrator, Security Sales and other leading technology publications. She currently spends most of her time writing for CE Pro in the areas of home automation, security, networked A/V and the business of home systems integration. Julie majored in Economics at the University of Michigan, spent a year abroad at Cambridge University, earned an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin, and has never taken a journalism class in her life. She's a washed-up Ultimate Frisbee player currently residing in Carlsbad, Calif. Follow her on Twitter @juliejacobson.

5 Comments (displayed in order by date/time)

Posted by Tuck  on  07/24  at  09:28 AM

Sure, they are nice. The fist pic looks like a painted 50 cent cover. What does this prove? Some people have more money than sense. Which is fine. Capitolism has built this country into the finest in the world. And in a few very short years, it all comes crumbling down as we join the socialist ranks of other countries. You like these products? You have the money to spare? By all means, its your choice to spend it (for now anways, while you HAVE that freedom). Maybe a tax on stupidly spend money is in the works by the great one.

Posted by 39 Cent Stamp  on  07/24  at  03:47 PM

I bet you that trufig is easier to sell than speakers. I remember when plasmas were $20,000 and a client said he wouldnt “waste” that kind of money on a TV. The conversations took place while standing on a $50,000 animal skin rug smile. I once saw a bunch of cigar boxes with birds painted on them that had price tags of $5000-$10000 on them. There were 10 of them. I once saw pool sticks with prices from $500-$2500 on them and there were at least 20 of them.

Once the ID sees trufig they will find room in the budget for it.

Im not sure how spending money will have us joining socialist ranks of other countries Tuck. Borrowing money from China to find illegal wars like the one in Iraq are what will force us into 3rd world status but we will still be a capitalist country… just like Mexico. Thank goodness those years are over and a new guy is running the show eh?

Posted by Julie Jacobson  on  07/25  at  05:57 AM

Tuck, I don’t get it either, but I’m pretty sure Trufig didn’t have me in mind when they were designing and pricing these things!

Posted by jimstolz76  on  07/25  at  06:22 AM

I have to admit I had higher expectations when I clicked on this link.  To me the whole point of Trufig is the seamless quality of it.  These look like a faux painted flat outlets.

I’m guessing it’s much more impressive in person.  It’s like when you muff up the drywall around an in-ceiling speaker just a hair… then stand there and stare at it.  Walk 3 more feet away and you won’t even be able to point it out to someone else.

I’m voting to add a wide angle pic of a finished room that has Trufig in the backsplash - not a closeup of a single outlet.  Anyone else?  smile

Posted by Julie Jacobson  on  07/25  at  01:04 PM

Agreed, Jim. Photos make it look like there’s a bezeled faceplate, not a flush-mount. Also, what happens when the wood or paint fades?

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