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European Custom Installer

System Integration for the Connected Home

Networking

WyreStorm Launches H2L Series Switchers

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Wyrestorm switcherWyreStorm announces the H2L Series-- Class B HDBaseT additions to its matrix switcher line, available in 6x6 and 8x8 models able to switch between 2K and 4K UHD video sources (30Hz 4:2:0).

The matrix switchers handle HDR, HDCP 2.2 and multi-channel audio up to DTS:X and Dolby Atmos, and installers can send out the HDBaseT outputs up to 35m for 4K and 70m for 1080p.

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Pakedge Upgrades PowerPak PDUs

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Control4 announces a new range of Pakedge PowerPak power control devices-- PDUs providing centralised power control and management, together with surge protection for all equipment in a connected home.

Pakedge PDUThe PDUs are BakPak-enabled, allowing installers to remotely monitor and manage their entire PowerPak customer base from a single interface. Outlets are individually controllable via telnet or web browser, and can also be pre-programmed. A Control4 driver enables automated and programmed outlet control within a Control4 project, adding intelligent power control to any device not connected to the network.

New PowerPak features include thresholds for current and voltage draw, and self-healing for non-responsive devices. Built-in UL1449 surge protection safeguards connected devices against power spikes, while SafeStart boot sequencing powers devices such as modems, routers and switches in the appropriate order for proper reset and optimal functionality.

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TP-Link Gets on Mesh Networking Bandwagon

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TP-Link is the next company to announce a home wireless mesh networking system-- the Deco M5, a means to blanket the home with wifi using three access points.

Deco M5Similar to other mesh networking offerings from the likes of Google, Netgear and Eero, the Deco M5 covers up to 450 square metres using 3 access points. In case customers need more coverage the system scales scales to 10 access points. Wireless comes through a dual-band system using the AC1300 wireless standard, and promises speeds of up to 400Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and 867Mbps on the 5GHz band.

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Z-Wave Devices Get Mandatory Security

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The Z-Wave Alliance announces all Z-Wave devices require "strict and uniform" adoption of the Security 2 (S2) framework, the most advanced security for connected devices, controllers, gateways and hubs available.

Zwave secureThe alliance board unanimously voted in favour of the addition of the S2 framework back in November 2016. From April 2017 a technical certification program administered through 3rd party test facilities in Europe, US and Asia will check all new certified devices carry the correct implementation of S2 security solutions containing rules for command classes, timers and device types. S2 devices should also be backwards compatible with existing devices on the market.

S2 removes the risk of devices getting hacked while included on the network, since devices are uniquely authenticated on the network via QR or pin-code included on the device itself. The addition of secure key exchange via Elliptic Curve Diffie-Hilman (ECDH) eliminates the threat of common hacks such as man in the middle and brute force, while the tunneling of Z-Wave over IP (Z/IP) traffic through a secure TLS 1.1 tunnel secures cloud communications.

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Crestron Ships DigitalMedia NVX Series

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Crestron starts shipping the DigitalMedia NVX series-- a means for installers to transmit 4K60 4:4:4 HDR video over standard 1 gigabit ethernet cable, with zero latency.

DVM NVXThe DVM NVX series is an "infinitely scalable" software-defined matrix able to share 4K60 4:4:4 HDR content securely over a dedicated 1Gb copper or fibre network, with no latency or limits. It has a focus on security, with 802.1X authentication ensuring every DV NVX device is explicitly authorised, Active Directory credential management ensuring only authorised administrators gain access and Secure CIP handling secure connections between DM NVX and Crestron control systems.

It consists of encoder/decoder Boxes (DM-NVX-350, DM-NVX-351), encoder/decoder cards (DM-NVX-350C, DM-NVX-351C), and a card chassis(DMF-CI8). DM NVX encoders/decoders feature built-in USB 2.0 routing, DSP and breakaway audio, HDCP 2.2 support, auto-switching, all-in-one encoding/decoding, and native ethernet support, as well as fibre via optional SPF modules.

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Flexson Adds Connectivity to Playbase

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Installers facing the lack of connectivity options offered by the Sonos Playbase get a Flexson solution-- a quartet plug-in upgrades featuring audio converters and HDMI switches.

Playbase addonCustomers get an Analogue to Digital converter for displays or sources with only analogue outputs, a Digital Coax to Optical converter to adapt digital sources and an HDMI converter featuring an optical digital audio breakout for the Playbase and 4K pass-through for HDMI.

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Netgear Expands Orbi System

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Netgear adds a pair of devices to the Orbi mesh wireless system-- the RBK30 and RBK40, both similar to the original RBK50 kit but featuring a smaller AC2200 router instead of an AC3000 unit.

Netgear OrbiThe RBK30 consists of a single AC2200 router and a small signal-boosting wall plug satellite, and covers around 325 square metres. The RBK40 consists of a pair of AC2200 routers and covers 370 square metres.

Like the RBK50, the routers use what Netgear calls a "tri-bend mesh system." Essentially the router sends out three channels, one to extend internet to the satellite and two others to feed the connections of other devices. The router supports 802.11ac wifi with speeds reaching up to 3Gbps, and the satellite can be placed anywhere to create a unified network with a single user-selectable SSID.

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