We searched far and wide for the best submission into this year’s Great Looking Racks contest, sponsored again by Middle Atlantic Products. In fact, this year’s awe-inspiring winner comes to us from the Mediterranean (as you’ll see, we also received a submission all the way from Australia), where Nicosia, Cyprus-based Elytronic cooked up and hooked up a multiple rack system for a project that integrated 25-plus subsystems with more than 12 kilometers of cabling.
It’s the result of intrepid design savvy and technical implementation for a job that began in 2011, with designs that included multiple revisions until the end of 2013 and project delivery finally this year, according to Elytronic managing director Harris Epaminondas.
“These long and huge projects require very analytic systems design, which will help simplify the installation steps and make easier the integration with other external subsystems like heating, air conditioning, ventilation, mechanical systems, generator, etc. Our design package with the various add-on documents was well over 100 pages,” Epaminondas says.
Among the subsystems addressed in the project scope were: automation and more than 35 control devices; lighting and shades; distributed video; distributed audio, including outdoor audio, more than 90 speakers and multiple multichannel media rooms; security including fire/burglar alarm, surveillance and door/gate control; 50-plus HVAC zones; intercom; oil and water tank readings and hot water boiler control; managed networking and a dozen access points; mechanical systems (ventilation fans, water recycle pump); irrigation; and indoor and outdoor swimming pools.
As for the rack setup, there’s a 500-square-foot dedicated equipment room that houses four Middle Atlantic racks, with another two installed in other areas of the property. The equipment room also includes two of the 12 intelligent lighting panels, and features a raised floor that allows all the cabling to be routed and enter below the racks.
“This allows the installation to be really clean and allow easy changes if requested,” notes Epaminondas.
Additionally, a dedicated air conditioning unit resides in the room, controlled by the Crestron automation system and scheduled to turn if the temperature goes above a set threshold.
“I think the original design is now in its 30th revision,” says Epaminondas, who adds, however, that for such a big project it helped that the client understands technology and all of its benefits for simplifying his home and family’s daily lives.
Count the architect among those impressed by Elytronic’s work, too.
“The architect jokingly admitted that the first thing he shows potential new customers is [this home’s] equipment room,” says Epaminondas. “He also shows this to explain to new customers what kind of system they should really add to their new home, and also to explain what kind of equipment room is required.”
More Great Looking Racks
CE Pro received excellent submissions from a number of custom installation firms. Click here to take a look at the runners-up.