Control & Automation

Crestron Overhauls Studio, Makes Home Automation and A/V Much Simpler to Program

Crestron Studio v1.6 makes it simple to program complex audio/video systems, coupled with home automation through Pyng; reduces cost of ownership for customers.

Crestron Overhauls Studio, Makes Home Automation and A/V Much Simpler to Program
Crestron made home-automation programming simple through Pyng; now it simplifies complex A/V and other programming through Crestron Studio v1.6. Together, the two frameworks dramatically reduce programming burdens for more affordable installations.

Julie Jacobson · January 23, 2017

One year after Crestron hired former integrator John Clancy as VP Residential, the company has “restored faith” in its commitment to the home-automation channel, Clancy says in an interview with CE Pro.

New programs, products and software, he says, have made this commitment “really evident to the outside world.”

One of the most important developments for the residential sector is the complete refresh of Crestron Studio (v1.6), a platform that eliminates much of the pain associated with home automation programming.

Introduced in 2012, Studio isn't exactly new, but it is more resi-centric than ever, and built for the Pyng era. For its part, Pyng was Introduced in 2014 as the go-to environment for designing Crestron control systems through a simple app. While Pyng supports most environmental controls, including lights, thermostats, motorized shades, sensors, door locks and more, it doesn’t really extend to audio (except for Autonomic integration) or video (at all).

That’s where the new Crestron Studio comes in, allowing integrators to set up complex whole-house A/V (and automation) systems, “without having to write a single line of code.”

Anything created in Studio ports easily to Pyng, without any additional effort on the part of the integrator.

Integrators need not learn anything like SystemBuilder or SIMPL Windows, the advanced programming software previously required for almost all Crestron systems. At the same time, it’s not the old Wizard-based solutions that never quite fit the bill.

It’s so simple, in fact, that the greenest technologists can be ready to install systems after a three-day “Studio for Residential” course at Crestron HQ.

“A new dealer can be up and running in a few days,” Clancy says.

He adds that Studio v1.6 supports new residential products that the old software did not, such as Roku and other set-top boxes, as well as AV receivers.

Experienced Crestron Dealers React

Seeking feedback on the new software, Crestron ran it by several experienced dealers and “it was almost unanimous,” Clancy says. “They said, ‘This is great. It allows me and my colleagues to have entry-level programmers roll out everyday jobs, and I can work on the mega projects.’”

A key feature of Crestron Studio is that it generates GUIs for the dealer. While some dealers don’t like to be locked into a standard set of graphics, the paradigm itself has become pretty standard in the industry.

“We used to leave the UI to the dealer,” Clancy says. “Sometimes they turn out well; sometimes not so well. We have a UI that we think really works. If you don’t like it, you can change it with our theme generator.”

Meanwhile, Crestron now works with Sonos. Instead of simply implementing Sonos’s limited API, Crestron has elected (with Sonos’s blessing) to offer the complete Sonos app within the Crestron UI – an app within an app.

In general, ease of deployment is a key driver this year Crestron’s residential offerings. Behind the scenes, a new cloud-based framework ensures programmers are always working on the most current version of software; and a universal programming scheme ensures a smooth transition from one programmer to the next.

Clancy calls the new Studio software a “game changer” when coupled with Crestron’s other efforts to reduce the complexity of Crestron programming.

At the end of the day, he says, the “cost of ownership goes down” for clients, boosting the appeal of Crestron systems, even for modest projects.



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  About the Author

Julie Jacobson is founding editor of CE Pro, the leading media brand for the home-technology channel. She has covered the smart-home industry since 1994, long before there was much of an Internet, let alone an Internet of things. Currently she studies, speaks, writes and rabble-rouses in the areas of home automation, security, networked A/V, wellness-related technology, biophilic design, and the business of home technology. Julie majored in Economics at the University of Michigan, spent a year abroad at Cambridge University, and earned an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin. She is a recipient of the annual CTA TechHome Leadership Award, and a CEDIA Fellows honoree. A washed-up Ultimate Frisbee player, Julie currently resides in San Antonio, Texas and sometimes St. Paul, Minn. Follow on Twitter: @juliejacobson Email Julie at julie.jacobson@emeraldexpo.com

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  Article Topics


Control & Automation · Automation · Audio/Video · Distributed Audio · Multiroom Video · News · Products · Crestron · Pyng · Sonos · All Topics
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Comments

Posted by automatedmike on January 30, 2017

I agree with Mike with “What has happened to lighting control?”, D3 is getting old and stale and we don’t even have ON and OFF signals to export just raise and lower? with the release and all the hype of Alexa this is something that is very much needed.
Many other things aren’t supported or are simply buggy in D3 and it seems Crestron doesn’t really care about the lighting and it takes TIME for us to provide the lighting customers want.
Just today visited another dealer and he tells me the rep is already shouting at the top of his lungs “You should see the new Crestron Studio, even a junior programmer can build systems so fast and overpriced programmers aren’t needed….sheesh does this marketing fluff sound familiar(Prodigy)?
Also, why did Crestron drop the framework and waste time on this instead, the framework was way more flexible code and while some may say they want pre-built GUI’s lets be honest, most don’t and they will request something you can’t provide and if all you have is a junior programmer that has no experience in SIMPL you’re gonna be in serious trouble.

Posted by nicholsjh on January 25, 2017

So Crestron Studio is now a direct Savant Blueprint wannabe.  Good for Crestron?

Posted by mike atlcontrol.com on January 24, 2017

Make no mistake..I love Crestron. Wouldn’t dream of switching to one of the other brands. I’ve been engaged in it for, soon to be, 20 years. And the new Studio is amazing in many respects. But really, why am I interested in saving millionaires money? Not that I want my programming time on a project to suck them dry of their hard-earned money, or mine. I don’t. But with hardware going south on margins right and left, labor (which at last check included programming) is still profitable. And, I need to make margin somewhere.
Furthermore, what has happened to lighting control, in Crestron Land? Choices for profitable LCS installs are nill. I can do limited stuff with PYNG. I can use the long defunct D3 Pro, or I can hire very pricey, and over-qualified (?) fully trained programmers to program lighting control? No disrespect guys, but no thank you, please!!!
So, while I appreciate the hard work and the new dedicated leader to the resi market segment, I haven’t had a local rep in a year(since they moved our guy to commercial). So, this is all a bit of a non-event for me, because it is still difficult to push a total control system, when it still can’t possibly do all that I have learned to shamefully accomplish with apps, and a tablet.
Sorry to be bitter. I do still love Crestron, as an organization and a product line. But we’re still far from “there”.
MTR

Posted by mike atlcontrol.com on January 24, 2017

Make no mistake..I love Crestron. Wouldn’t dream of switching to one of the other brands. I’ve been engaged in it for, soon to be, 20 years. And the new Studio is amazing in many respects. But really, why am I interested in saving millionaires money? Not that I want my programming time on a project to suck them dry of their hard-earned money, or mine. I don’t. But with hardware going south on margins right and left, labor (which at last check included programming) is still profitable. And, I need to make margin somewhere.
Furthermore, what has happened to lighting control, in Crestron Land? Choices for profitable LCS installs are nill. I can do limited stuff with PYNG. I can use the long defunct D3 Pro, or I can hire very pricey, and over-qualified (?) fully trained programmers to program lighting control? No disrespect guys, but no thank you, please!!!
So, while I appreciate the hard work and the new dedicated leader to the resi market segment, I haven’t had a local rep in a year(since they moved our guy to commercial). So, this is all a bit of a non-event for me, because it is still difficult to push a total control system, when it still can’t possibly do all that I have learned to shamefully accomplish with apps, and a tablet.
Sorry to be bitter. I do still love Crestron, as an organization and a product line. But we’re still far from “there”.
MTR

Posted by nicholsjh on January 25, 2017

So Crestron Studio is now a direct Savant Blueprint wannabe.  Good for Crestron?

Posted by automatedmike on January 30, 2017

I agree with Mike with “What has happened to lighting control?”, D3 is getting old and stale and we don’t even have ON and OFF signals to export just raise and lower? with the release and all the hype of Alexa this is something that is very much needed.
Many other things aren’t supported or are simply buggy in D3 and it seems Crestron doesn’t really care about the lighting and it takes TIME for us to provide the lighting customers want.
Just today visited another dealer and he tells me the rep is already shouting at the top of his lungs “You should see the new Crestron Studio, even a junior programmer can build systems so fast and overpriced programmers aren’t needed….sheesh does this marketing fluff sound familiar(Prodigy)?
Also, why did Crestron drop the framework and waste time on this instead, the framework was way more flexible code and while some may say they want pre-built GUI’s lets be honest, most don’t and they will request something you can’t provide and if all you have is a junior programmer that has no experience in SIMPL you’re gonna be in serious trouble.