Every integrator has probably already faced the questions from clients about why they should spend additional dollars for a hardwired, professionally installed multiroom audio system versus a less-expensive wireless alternative.
Fritz Werder, general manager for Legrand’s Nuvo and OnQ brands, says integrators need to be able to provide both standalone wireless systems and hardwired solutions for their clients, but there are some key differences CE pros can highlight with clients to express the value of a more sophisticated, connected system:
- Speaker Flexibility — “Professional installation means it is ‘built in’ versus just ‘plug in,” says Werder. “It also means it has the ability to work with all different speaker types, such as in-ceiling and outdoor, and having that flexibility so it is not just a standalone speaker.”
- Media Storage — Professional-level products are able to incorporate all sorts of media storage, whether that is streaming music services or files stored on NAS drives or DLNA servers.
- Control Options – Pro solutions offer control via in-wall keypads, integration with whole-house automation systems and touchpanels. “There is a multitude of options for professionally installed multiroom audio solutions that really stand out from the DIY consumer electronics solutions,” says Werder. He notes that third-party control is a very important element in highlighting the capabilities of integrators.
“We know from the studies that CE Pro does that multiroom audio and streaming audio is a big source of revenue for integrators. So being able to integrate it into a source control system or a full home automation system is really important. Integrators know how to sell that value to the homeowner. They know how to select the right drivers that work with which control systems,” says Werder.
Watch the rest of CE Pro’s discussion with Werder, where he also outlines the importance of the home network as the basis for a solid multiroom audio solution (both wired and wireless) and he reviews several of the key product solutions from Nuvo and OnQ.