iST Blog

For observations about the latest advancements in home and business entertainment and automated control systems, iST's take on the latest music releases, or movies just auditioned in commercial and home theaters, please visit here often.

Customize Control4 Lighting Scenes

Automated Home Lighting

One of the key advantages of a Control 4 home automation system is the ability of a home owner to adjust lighting in a room, several rooms or the whole house at the touch of an onscreen button. We emphasize to our customers at Integrated Smart Technologies is their ability to customize their settings  to whatever degree of lighting they want, down to the levels of each lamp or light fixture.

Tags: automated lighting

Temperature on Your Terms: New Wireless Thermostat from Control4

Control4 Thermostat

The ability to set your thermostat to automatically turn down the temperature at a certain time and turn it back up at another set time is not new technology. It's not even new technology to be able to control these settings from your handheld or mobile device--that's a feature Control4 has already been able to offer for years. With a new user-interface from Control4, however, this experience is an easier way to get what you want out of your home automation climate control.

Rolled out for 2015, the new system was developed jointly with HVAC experts and works with the vast majority of popular HVAC systems including split HVAC, radiant heating, geothermal systems, and dual fuel systems. And this doesn't just control the temperature; it can also handle humidity, air filtration, shades and blinds, and fans.

Tags: thermostat

Dolby Atmos Brings a New Dimension in Sound to Your Home


You may have heard the immersive Dolby Atmos(r) audio system if you went to see a movie in the Chicago or Detroit area since 2012. It is the latest in Dolby's efforts that began decades ago to move away from the left/right speakers of stereo and into true surround sound. Dolby Atmos travels to another dimension to envelop you in sound that comes from all directions, including from above.

Tags: dolby atmos, surround sound

A Digital Movie Library at Your Fingertips

Movie Titles

Picture this: You're sitting at dinner with your family when someone suggests a movie night. You clean up the dishes (hopefully with some help!) and head into the family room and flip on the TV. You select a movie from your library or download one from a streaming service and hit play. At the same time the opening credits start up, your blinds close, your lights dim, and the sound system is adjusted, all from the touch of one button.

There's no getting in the car to run to the nearest RedBox, no shuffling through shelves of DVD cases, no disc-reading errors, no fiddling with the sound, and no arguing over who has to get up to turn off the lights after everyone is already settled in. We just can't guarantee the kids won't fight over who gets to push Play.

Tags: Movie Library

When Cloud Logic Gets Stormy, Local Automation Remains Reliable


There's been a lot of talk in recent years about "the cloud" and how it can make life easier and allow control of your home devices from anywhere. But a lot of people don't fully understand how it works. We have a hunch that local automation logic will continue to dominate home automation despite the advances in cloud logic. Here's why:

Tags: home automation

Avoid Control Clutter and Simplify Home Automated Systems

Home Automation

You're seeing more TV ads these days for remotes to control functions in you home. Maybe you're even thinking it may It may be a good idea to get a remote to set your thermostat, and a special app on your mobile for your garage door. Maybe a different control for a lamp, yet another app for your oven, and on, and on.

When you have separate controls for each function, you just end up with control clutter. And it gets worse, such as controlling your entertainment system with a new set of equipment that comes with additional wires and remotes.

Tags: home automation

iST Makes Total Home Audio Control Simple

Sonos whole home audio system

People want music everywhere, but that doesn't always happen in a home. You may be streaming music over your computer in one room, but can only listen to a radio in the kitchen. If you're throwing a party, the music's too loud in the living room, but drops off in the dining room and can't be heard at all on the patio.

Tags: sonos, whole home audio system

Technology Improves Marketability of Homes

Smart home

Did you know that 86% of builders believe that offering technology improves the marketability of their homes?*

That's right. Differentiating your homes can be a challenge for builders. But if you do it right, it can make the difference between a sale and an empty house. By offering Control4 home automation systems, you'll create a home for buyers where everything works better because it works together.

Tags: builders, control4, energy savings

10 reasons you need a home theater


There's nothing quite like a big screen, a soft seat, a cold drink, and a good movie. However, considering the price, hassle, and possibility of annoyance involved in venturing out for a night at the theater, it's worth looking into a better option - like investing in a home theater system for your home.

Think about it. No oversold shows, no odd show times, no kids tossing gummi bears at the back of your head, no empty toilet paper rolls in the bathroom. There are countless reasons - some practical, some personal - why the home theater idea should get a thumbs-up, but here are the top 10 reasons for getting a home theater.

Tags: home theater

10 movies you’ll want to watch on Blu-ray


There's a lot of beauty in Blu-ray - literally. There's a LOT of data on those disks, and the quality can be stunning.

You see, Blu-ray technology provides five times the storage available on traditional DVDs (which means more "extras") and it's designed to make the most of high-definition (HD) video by allowing recording, rewriting, and playback features with ultra-optimal visual and sound presentation. This means crystalline picture quality, fully enhanced audio, and space for director's to pack in documentaries, interviews, extra scenes, and other premium multimedia goodies.

It's kind of a big deal.

Tags: movies