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Eden Lights
04-26-2007, 10:32 PM
I have recieved alot of help from all the professionals here and for that I thank you all. While I would prefer not to go into certain products, I would like to say that everyone should consider UPB lighting controls for their clients. While not everything that works for one will work for everyone and that I understand, but I would like to say one thing. UPB lighting controls is one of the top five things that has grown my business in it's short 8 year history. It has taken me to a whole new level without any new employees, equipment, and etc.

NightScenes
04-26-2007, 10:53 PM
Are you talking about the Control Scape system?

seolatlanta
04-26-2007, 10:54 PM
Hey Eden-check your PM.

Eden Lights
04-26-2007, 11:45 PM
I didn't even know about the PM, sorry to everyone that has sent me one. I will try to respond to everyone asap.

Eden Lights
04-27-2007, 12:22 AM
Are you talking about the Control Scape system?

I am talking about the benefits of UPB controls in general, and Control Scape is one of the tools in my bag.

I had a install this week that the clients did some serious shopping. He had three designs and bids. I was not the only one with UPB in the bid, but the only one that purposed this.

-20 mintues before dusk the landscape lighting turns on.
-20 mintues before dusk the front porch recessed lights and the porch coach lights ramp on to a cohesive light level to proper illuminate the front door and porch area.
-20 mintues before dusk the garage and secondary entry coach lights come on to dimmed level, but slightly brighter than the front of the home timed event.

Customer has had to do nothing until now, but can do these things at a whim by using the touchpad from inside the home when needed.

All Bright button, Dog Walk button, Pizza Man button, or Noise in the night button. Whatever your client likes to call it. All light loads go to 100%

All on button returns everything back to the good look.

Romance or Candles button takes the lighting (Line and Low) in the private bedroom courtyard to approx. 55 %. My clients call this button something else, but I told them I didn't really need to know??

Fireplace button dims down the 14 FX TC's on the arbor around the fireplace too a level just enough to get the smore assembled without overpowering the fire's natural look.

Entertaining button stops all timer functions, Lights don't go down right in the middle of the party. All on button turns everthing right back to the good look if you do forget. (That might be 9 transformers and 33 exterior line V loads, the most I have on one exterior scene so far.)

Vacation button stops all normal timer functions.

Panic button blinks chosen loads

Alarm panel blinks chosen loads

All Off

At midnight all Landscape lighting off, all line voltage loads go to X% and maintain until their dusk off time.

DST, 2007EB, Astro Time clock, Power off memory, and etc. it's all in there.

Well I have said enough. Yes the learning curve was a little steep for me, but it has been worth the time. Start off small at your house or a friends place.

SamIV
04-27-2007, 09:39 PM
Can you please give me Control Scape's web address?

SamIV
Accent Outdoor Lighting

Eden Lights
04-27-2007, 10:40 PM
www.controlscape.net

Chris J
05-01-2007, 11:27 PM
I have a customer who is wanting the Control Scapes products to control the security lights on the corner of his home. 2-100w line voltage floods on each corner (total of four lights = 400watts) I assume I need to purchase a receiver switch to replace his current switch, but which one? The control scapes web site lists several different switches ranging in wattage from 600w to 2400w, and also something called an ELV switch (what's that?). Could one of you electricians help me understand which switch to use for this purpose?

Thanks,
Chris J

Eden Lights
05-01-2007, 11:52 PM
The UPB 600W standard switch would be ok for control of four flood lamps @ 100W each. A UPB 1000W switch would add some measure of safety in case someone installed 150W lamps during a replacement.

Check exact switch location, number of switches in electrical box, number of other dimmers in electrical box, and etc. and derate switch per specs.

ELV dimmers are for electronic low voltage transformers.

SamIV
05-02-2007, 10:30 AM
Eden,

Thanks for the web address. Spoke with someone there yesterday, new his product very well and was very helpful. Sending me literature on Control Scape as well as his i-touch home automation products. Did you buy their starter demo kit? Going to use the product on my next install. Also do, you always as a rule install the phase coupler?

Thanks,
SamIV

Pro-Scapes
05-02-2007, 04:39 PM
i wont install another system without a phase coupler. X 10 or otherwise... Have had 2 clients now move the controller to another room and it stopped working. They think my system failed and it costs me a trip.

Its not hard to have the electrician install the coupler while he is there to do line voltage. Only time I would even consider not using one is if I am 100% sure that they will not be moving anything and everything is already on the proper phase.

NightScenes
05-02-2007, 08:19 PM
Yeah Billy, there should always be a phase coupler in these type of systems. It saves alot of head aches.

Chris J
05-02-2007, 10:00 PM
Just landed the job today, and will install my first Control Scape system per the homeowner's request. My *****, however, is that it is way too expensive. I loved the X-10 components, but didn't like the hassle of having the electrician install the phase coupler. If CS requires the same coupler, then why all the fuss? I know they have a few more bells and whistles, but the X-10 system will operate pretty much maintenance free as long as the phase coupler is installed.
Does anyone care to explain why the CS system is so dramatically more benificial than the X-10 line?

Thanks,

Chris J

Pro-Scapes
05-02-2007, 10:32 PM
much stronger signal and less interferance with the control scapes altho X 10 with a phase coupler is fairly reliable at least here. Im pretty certain it has alot to do with the amount of interferance in the lines as well.

I usually get 395 for x 10 systems installed. Control scapes would be closer to 7 or 8 installed depending on the components required it could go much much higher but the astro feature eliminates needs for a seperate photo cell as well. Dunno why x10 hasnt come up with an astro timer.

Intermatic has a small in trans astro timer for less than the MDL timers. Only catch is you got to open the Kichler transformers and invert the timer plug to fit it as there is only 1 plug on the timer and its on the wrong side. Inverting the timer plug solves this issue.

Chris J
05-02-2007, 10:50 PM
yep. been there, and done that.

NightScenes
05-03-2007, 07:22 AM
Chris, as Billy stated, the CS system sends a MUCH stronger signal through the line which means you don't have to worry about plasma tvs and such. It also has the astro clock that you can set by zip code. This does away with the need of photo cells.

Eden Lights
05-16-2007, 10:37 PM
Eden,

Thanks for the web address. Spoke with someone there yesterday, new his product very well and was very helpful. Sending me literature on Control Scape as well as his i-touch home automation products. Did you buy their starter demo kit? Going to use the product on my next install. Also do, you always as a rule install the phase coupler?

Thanks,
SamIV

My rule of thumb is to always install a phase coupler, which allows a more trouble free system and the unlimited upgrade potential.

But, If the customer doesn't want the cost of UPB they get it anyway on the cheap: controller and appliance module can almost always be put on the same electrical phase should there be a low signal problem. If you are using CS it has it's own signal tester and with everything else you will need to run Upstart on your pc to ensure proper signal strength.

Eden Lights
05-16-2007, 10:40 PM
Keypad example

High Performance Lighting
05-16-2007, 10:48 PM
Eden do you have a financial interest in this company?

Eden Lights
05-16-2007, 11:13 PM
Eden do you have a financial interest in this company?

What Company??

Eden Lights
05-16-2007, 11:30 PM
That was not a good response on my end, I am sorry. A direct answer would be no: I am not in any way married to HAI, Simply-Automated, Control-Scape, or PCS. I do have training and or experience with all of the above. I did not mention Web Mountain's product, since they are married to OLP and that product is not available to us landscape guys at wholesale. I did use that controller for a couple of weeks since it was the first to hit the market. ( I bought it at retail prices) It had nothing really unique about it anyways.

Chris J
05-17-2007, 12:02 AM
We will forgive you this time, but if you ever do that again it will be the end of your thumbs!

Eden Lights
06-19-2007, 11:39 PM
I have always tried to achieve multiple layers in my lighting designs as I am sure many of you do, forground-midground-background. This has been very hard without over luminating something when trying to achieve the three separate light levels. I just finished a job that we installed with three different transformer zones with UPB dimming on all three zones. After aiming, adjusting, and playing with various lamps as usual, I opened the laptop and started playing with the dimmers to create different scenes and I will have to say I made huge improvements in really getting contrast differences in the three zones which made for what I think is one of my best jobs yet. Architect, my partner, and I stood back and made adjustments together such as here is 80-85-90% on each zone and then clicked back and forth from all bright to our favorite scene and the results were very exciting. While many will argue against this due to the halogen cycle, I checked the capsule temps with my IR gun and all checked were within temp spec min. While I have nothing to sell or gain from the post, but I did want to share.

Pro-Scapes
06-20-2007, 08:39 AM
wow that is so cool. Way above and beyond where I am now but shows how much you really care and work with your designs.

Can you give us a run down of a set up and how it interfaces with your computer? I thought about doing this last year with x10 but never bought into the computer interface. Im glad I didnt because the UPB is so much better.

Mike M
06-20-2007, 08:44 AM
While many will argue against this due to the halogen cycle, I checked the capsule temps with my IR gun and all checked were within temp spec min

Is temp spec on the capsule a reliable method? What's your volt meter say at the fixture after you use the dimmer? Is your color temp effected?

Can't you just pop in varying wattage bulbs and light filters to tune/achieve light control?

I'm not doubting you, I'm just trying to learn the technical info regarding the halogen cycle and the variables we can play with.

Thanks,

Mike M

steveparrott
06-20-2007, 09:36 AM
Eden,

GE specifies a minimum capsule wall temp. of 250 degrees C for their tungsten-halogen MR-16's. Since the capsule in these MR-16's is enclosed in the glass covered reflector, how can your IR meter read the capsule wall temp?

By the way, I'm blown away with your advanced approach of setting various scenes in the landscape. With my theatrical lighting background, I've always been frustrated with the no-dimming constraints.

Pro-Scapes
06-20-2007, 05:29 PM
While many will argue against this due to the halogen cycle, I checked the capsule temps with my IR gun and all checked were within temp spec min

Is temp spec on the capsule a reliable method? What's your volt meter say at the fixture after you use the dimmer? Is your color temp effected?

Can't you just pop in varying wattage bulbs and light filters to tune/achieve light control?

I'm not doubting you, I'm just trying to learn the technical info regarding the halogen cycle and the variables we can play with.

Thanks,

Mike M

Mike the advantage would be that you can set a dimmed scene for day to day or should we say night to night... then a bit brighter when someones using the area say for a party. You can set the light level to compliment the activity or lack of activity in the area.

I am going to call control scapes and get the demo set they got and some dimmer mods so I can start playing with these. I really like the idea.

Eden... what have you found to be an acceptable voltage range at the lamp when dimmed ? I know I just redid a job the client was never really happy with but they did comment how long the lamps lasted (5 years) and the system was operating around 8 v.

Now that I got it up around 10.9 I am sure lamp life wont be 5 years.

Mike M
06-20-2007, 07:38 PM
Mike the advantage would be that you can set a dimmed scene for day to day or should we say night to night... then a bit brighter when someones using the area say for a party

Yeah, but this effect could also be done by setting "some lights on" and "all lights on." I like that, but there would be extra costs (double the wires) if trying to do it every-other-light kind of thing.

What we need are smart fixtures. If we can do line voltage that way, why not 12 V? The fixture does not need a chip, a device could be installed in-line or in a hub. This would also be great for change of seasons, as the landscape changes.

Mike M

FThera
06-20-2007, 10:21 PM
Keypad example

Eden

Maybe it's just the anal in me, but you need to turn all those screws so the line up. :rolleyes:

Chris J
06-20-2007, 10:49 PM
OTE=FThera;1871098]Eden

Maybe it's just the anal in me, but you need to turn all those screws so the line up. :rolleyes:[/QUOTE]

What the .... is it just me, or is everybody on drugs tonight? Maybe I'm stoned, or having flashbacks or something, but I'm just not getting these posts! Somebody wanna help an older guy out? Damn, I'm only 43! and I think I'm goin crazy already......:cry:
I'm going to bed. tonight isn't even my drinkin night.

FThera
06-20-2007, 11:20 PM
OTE=FThera;1871098]Eden

Maybe it's just the anal in me, but you need to turn all those screws so the line up. :rolleyes:

What the .... is it just me, or is everybody crazy tonight? Maybe I'm stoned, or having flashbacks or something, but I'm just not getting these posts! Somebody wanna help an older guy out? Damn, I'm only 43! and I think I'm goin crazy already......:cry:
I'm going to bed. tonight isn't even my drinkin night.[/QUOTE]


LOL...It's just me.....That lack of detail just bugs the Crap out of me when I see it.

Frank

Eden Lights
06-21-2007, 01:03 AM
Can you give us a run down of a set up and how it interfaces with your computer? I thought about doing this last year with x10 but never bought into the computer interface. Im glad I didnt because the UPB is so much better.

Thanks for the kind words. You program a UPB network of devices: dimmers, appliance modules, timers, and etc. through a CIM computer interface module while running a software called Upstart which is a free download from Simply-Automated, PCS lighting, or HAI. The ControlScape system is programmed through the controller and no computer running Upstart is needed to do basic programming. Advanced lighting controls is already full speed in my market in Landscape lighting installations so I have spent hundreds of hours wrapping my head around all this. You can have a ControlScape system up and running in mintues or spend hours with a more full featured tricked installtion with say the PCS TEC timer. Everyone has a different business model so you should research which system is right for you. I was out tonight tweaking a system that I have 10 hours of labor in the control system install and programming, but tomorrow I have an install that should come in at around .5 to 1.0 hour. So everyone can benefit from some level of control. UPB does have some cons and it's not perfect, but nothing else comes close to it's features in it's price range.

Eden Lights
06-21-2007, 01:19 AM
Is temp spec on the capsule a reliable method?
Mike M

Yes, per GE and Sylvania specs.


What's your volt meter say at the fixture after you use the dimmer?
Mike M

While I havn't checked in quite some time for voltages after dimming, but past checks have documented 8-10.5Volts with levels in the 55-95% range.


Is your color temp effected?
Mike M

Your Kelvin numbers are going down as you dim. (More Warm) GE has a nice software program to give you the exact numbers for their lamps.


Can't you just pop in varying wattage bulbs and light filters to tune/achieve light control?
Mike M

Yes, I use everything from window screens to various lenses, but we are talking about 1% increments you can't get that with the window screen.

Excellent Questions

Eden Lights
06-21-2007, 01:42 AM
Eden,

GE specifies a minimum capsule wall temp. of 250 degrees C for their tungsten-halogen MR-16's. Since the capsule in these MR-16's is enclosed in the glass covered reflector, how can your IR meter read the capsule wall temp?

By the way, I'm blown away with your advanced approach of setting various scenes in the landscape. With my theatrical lighting background, I've always been frustrated with the no-dimming constraints.

Yes you are correct, I don't use all covered glass MR's. My readings come from pointing at the capsule just to the side of the filament. This is not why I had the meter out, I was really checking dimmer temps. I have heard this discussed from every angle it seems, but I have not seen any problems with systems dimmed into the 7 volt range that are over 5 years old. Everyone should google this if interested, sinced it's discussed alot.

When I started in 1999 I traveled and studied alot of designs and I was blown away by the planning of controls for Landscape lighting by the late Michael Hooker and now we can achieve the same results at a fraction of the cost of the systems back then.

Mike M
06-21-2007, 08:30 AM
Maybe it's just the anal in me, but you need to turn all those screws so the line up

I have to agree. Must be an OCD thing. Or age, I'm 42.

Mike M

Pro-Scapes
06-21-2007, 10:05 AM
Eden... do you do things like have the scene change throughout the night ? or does the client change the scene manually when they change the use for the area.... say brighter for dining... dimmer for cocktails...ect.

Have you ever had someone want it to change light a little animated lighting show ?

Eden Lights
06-26-2007, 11:39 PM
Eden... do you do things like have the scene change throughout the night ? or does the client change the scene manually when they change the use for the area.... say brighter for dining... dimmer for cocktails...ect.

Have you ever had someone want it to change light a little animated lighting show ?

Both, Automated, Manual, and a combination. PM me if you want more info.

Lite4
06-27-2007, 02:12 AM
Wow, fantastic info. I havn't had the opportunity to use these kind of controls. But will definitely be pursueing them in the future. It would be cool as someone walks along a path or enters a particular garden room. The lights would change from a dim setting to a brighter setting automaticly as it senses movement within these zones, and then resets itself. The only thing I would worry about is the longevity of the halogen bulbs from the long periods of less than ideal voltage and low temp settings.

TurfPro
06-27-2007, 06:39 AM
Not to hijack the thread,but the "Controlscape" system looks suspiciously like the X-10 system. Can anyone who has used both confirm it IS different,and if so what were the specific differences/benefits over X-10.
The reason I ask is we are putting in our 1st control of this sort in a few weeks and would like to install a high quality product( seeing how we have to maintain it as well):clapping:
Thanks

Pro-Scapes
06-27-2007, 08:07 AM
tp.... different technologies... UPB in the control scape sends out a MUCH stronger signal than the X10. It is about 3 times the cost tho but on a 10k system we are talking a minimal amount and it will probably eliminate call backs.

On the other hand... with my complete x10's out there the only gripe I have from clients is the key fob remotes (they love these!) have a very poor range. They work pretty well at my house tho and I have installed moduals in my line voltag spots mounted on the barn so I can turn on the lights easily when we are outside.

I am still researching UPB controls but from what I have seen control scape does not offer alot of the program features of some of the other upb based controls out there.

TurfPro
06-28-2007, 07:23 AM
Pro-scapes,

Was contacted by Control-scape yesterday. Of course they said their product was superior, but what you said about their signal confirms what they said. As far as program features, all I'm interested in( as of now) is key fob style remote capability. So I'll prolly give it a try.
Thanks again

Pro-Scapes
06-28-2007, 08:32 AM
turf.... I am not sure what kind of controls the control scape system has... the key fobs I used were from x10 pro.... one thing I do like about the x10 is thier wide wide selection of control devices ranging from moduals that plug in easily to wireless remotes to dimable moduals.

Its just not as flexible as what eden is doing with creating dimmed out automated scenes. I think the x10 is fine for your cookie cutter homes or systems that may not require advanced controls. You may wanna invest in the signal tester and verify you got strong signal.

An issue I did have was the client moved the head unit and it was placed o a surger protector. This prevented the x10 from working right for some reason. Even with a coupler installed.

Pro-Scapes
07-06-2007, 08:41 AM
ok now on the dimmable device controllers....

For UPB are you guys using a controllable outlet ? I am not finding a controllable GFCI '???? and whats the diff with the ELV ? I guess I am just wanting to make sure I get this right!

NightScenes
07-06-2007, 09:25 AM
Billy, you might need to put a dimmable switch on the outlet. It takes a little more work but it will get the train to the station, so to speak.

Pro-Scapes
07-06-2007, 10:05 AM
If I am not mistaken tho I should be able to place the 6 button keypad like in the porch light J box then add mods someplace for the landscape lighting or do I just need to do a GFCI everywhere then use a switch to control the voltage to that ? I was hoping to find something like a GFCI I could control via the TEC timer or control scapes box without having to place switches. The switching would come from the actual controller.

The only plug i am finding is the plug in modual from PCS

X10 offers an outlet as well but its not GFCI but they do have a modual I can have the electrician wire in before the GFCI

Eden Lights
07-06-2007, 10:17 AM
ok now on the dimmable device controllers....

For UPB are you guys using a controllable outlet ? I am not finding a controllable GFCI '???? and whats the diff with the ELV ? I guess I am just wanting to make sure I get this right!

The upb receptacle is non-dimming and made by simply-automated. One outlet is controlled and one is not on each receptacle. GFI protection must be before them in the way of a breaker or GFI receptacle. We use them very little because they are very hard to fit into any outdoor boxes that we have found and you must modify the inuse cover for the programming button. They also can not be duplexed off of at the plug.

ELV-is for electronic lowvoltage transformers vs. magnetic.

Eden Lights
07-06-2007, 10:18 AM
Billy, you might need to put a dimmable switch on the outlet. It takes a little more work but it will get the train to the station, so to speak.

This is the best method for transformers over 300 watts.

Pro-Scapes
07-06-2007, 10:33 AM
k thanks I think I am pickng this up more now... So ... lets keep this simple and to create 1 controlled outlet for a small 1 trans job I would need.

PCS tec timer or other controller such as control scapes. and the PIM with laptop running upstart (i know this is overkill for 1 trans this is just to be sure I have it straight.)

Have the electrician install my GFCI outlet as normal but place the dimmable switch before the GFCI. Then we need to install a sperate switch and GFCI for each outlet and trans we wish to control independantly ?

I dont know why I am losing my mind on this and not picking it up. I normally pick things up rather quickly. I do know I will be working with this automation company alot as we will reccomend eachother but I do want to be able to do these on my own as well.

Pro-Scapes
07-06-2007, 10:44 AM
If I am not mistaken tho I should be able to place the 6 button keypad like in the porch light J box then add mods someplace for the landscape lighting or do I just need to do a GFCI everywhere then use a switch to control the voltage to that ? I was hoping to find something like a GFCI I could control via the TEC timer or control scapes box without having to place switches. The switching would come from the actual controller.

The only plug i am finding is the plug in modual from PCS

X10 offers an outlet as well but its not GFCI but they do have a modual I can have the electrician wire in before the GFCI

Eden Lights
07-06-2007, 02:36 PM
k thanks I think I am pickng this up more now... So ... lets keep this simple and to create 1 controlled outlet for a small 1 trans job I would need.

PCS tec timer or other controller such as control scapes. and the PIM with laptop running upstart (i know this is overkill for 1 trans this is just to be sure I have it straight.)

Have the electrician install my GFCI outlet as normal but place the dimmable switch before the GFCI. Then we need to install a sperate switch and GFCI for each outlet and trans we wish to control independently ?

I don't know why I am losing my mind on this and not picking it up. I normally pick things up rather quickly. I do know I will be working with this automation company alot as we will reccomend eachother but I do want to be able to do these on my own as well.

What size transformer? Will you every upgrade to larger transformer? Do you need dimming? Will it be a dedicated circuit?

Tec timer is the most expensive, most feature rich, and it is the hardest to program. It is all done with UPstart, PCS version of upstart to be exact. This is the only one that can be programmed after setup without access to it, say for service. I just made some adjustments to one like this: started laptop when I was close, opened John Doe's upstart file, got out of the truck and plugged my laptop up to the the home by USB port to PIM into power by the front porch. Made adjustments to TEC, programmed TEC, saved John's new file. Unplugged PIM and shutdown PC while I was driving away.

ControlScape is completely different, no pc, no programming, and it is what I would recommend for your small jobs and while your learning.

I would not recommend Upstart programmed devices until you have really wrapped your head around it at home, it's not hard but it will take a little time, effort, and alot of mistakes. I was told a story of an first install that didn't work after two days of programming, client told installer to remove the equipment and put his photocell and $10 timer back in. Talk about a loss of income and reputation.

Does your Automation associate know and have experience with UPB products?

I can answer your other question after I know more about your install.

Pro-Scapes
07-06-2007, 02:50 PM
the job that will be controlled with Vantage and the AMX will be completly programmed by him on site at my direction of levels. There will be probably 6 transformers when all is complete but some of the area to be lit is not even built yet. The automation contractor will handle this and he knows my requirments of the 20a dedicated GFCI outlets and assures me all is well.

I am awaiting a return email from him on UPB.

I have another job where I removed the x10 do to an issue and the fact the client never used the features of it. It now features an astronomical timer inside the trans. It was a single 900w trans. The gfci was installed 2 ft from the power panel with an open breaker slot. I dont see the place for a switch in this configuration but I suppose we could install one in a weather proof box ? Applications like this I wish they had breakers with UPB capability or better yet a GFCI with dimmability and UPB control

The reason I am questioning that job is because we will be lighting the backyard and be using another 900 or pair of 600's on that phase of the project and it will need UPB or similar control capability as the clients will not wish to have the lights always so bright.

I think you are right on the control scapes for smaller jobs. I am just trying to make sure I get it right before i waste my time or the electricians. As with any project I always leave a reasonable amount of wattage left for expansion and try to leave room to change the trans should the clients needs change.

Thanks again for your time. I really appreciate it. I ordered the control scapes demo kit and plan to play here and iron out all my questions..

I am also looking into iTouch systems as well.

Eden Lights
07-06-2007, 02:59 PM
What brand and model of 900W transformer? Does it make click when you plug it up? If it does it is a relay switched trans and is not dimmable. While this feature has saved alot of timers and photocells from the heavy lifting, its not good for dimming. Most all 900 and up MDL style transformers are relay transformers now.

Eden Lights
07-06-2007, 03:02 PM
I will try to give you some more info tonight. My clients looking at be a little funny right at this moment, so back to work.

Pro-Scapes
07-06-2007, 04:29 PM
What brand and model of 900W transformer? Does it make click when you plug it up? If it does it is a relay switched trans and is not dimmable. While this feature has saved alot of timers and photocells from the heavy lifting, its not good for dimming. Most all 900 and up MDL style transformers are relay transformers now.

its a cast unit... I know its relay.... This posses a problem and I will need to select transformers carefully on this job I will be doing with vantage correct ?

If you not feel comfy discussing certain brands in public then please PM or email me.. I do have a certain trans I would like to use on this job do to acsess reasons and I know the in grounds I will be using do not contain relays. However 3 of the above ground transformers will no doubt have timer plugs in them.

Eden Lights
02-04-2008, 08:44 PM
I am talking about the benefits of UPB controls in general, and Control Scape is one of the tools in my bag.

I had a install this week that the clients did some serious shopping. He had three designs and bids. I was not the only one with UPB in the bid, but the only one that purposed this.

-20 mintues before dusk the landscape lighting turns on.
-20 mintues before dusk the front porch recessed lights and the porch coach lights ramp on to a cohesive light level to proper illuminate the front door and porch area.
-20 mintues before dusk the garage and secondary entry coach lights come on to dimmed level, but slightly brighter than the front of the home timed event.

Customer has had to do nothing until now, but can do these things at a whim by using the touchpad from inside the home when needed.

All Bright button, Dog Walk button, Pizza Man button, or Noise in the night button. Whatever your client likes to call it. All light loads go to 100%

All on button returns everything back to the good look.

Romance or Candles button takes the lighting (Line and Low) in the private bedroom courtyard to approx. 55 %. My clients call this button something else, but I told them I didn't really need to know??

Fireplace button dims down the 14 FX TC's on the arbor around the fireplace too a level just enough to get the smore assembled without overpowering the fire's natural look.

Entertaining button stops all timer functions, Lights don't go down right in the middle of the party. All on button turns everthing right back to the good look if you do forget. (That might be 9 transformers and 33 exterior line V loads, the most I have on one exterior scene so far.)

Vacation button stops all normal timer functions.

Panic button blinks chosen loads

Alarm panel blinks chosen loads

All Off

At midnight all Landscape lighting off, all line voltage loads go to X% and maintain until their dusk off time.

DST, 2007EB, Astro Time clock, Power off memory, and etc. it's all in there.

Well I have said enough. Yes the learning curve was a little steep for me, but it has been worth the time. Start off small at your house or a friends place.

James this is what we are doing on all our jobs. In the most simple form it is a transformer and a couple of dimmers for existing exterior lights. Scene keypad would be: All on (The good look-all levels dialed in at night) All off, All Bright, and Panic. From there you can go anywhere you want. PM me if you have questions or need more information about what we are doing.

Lite4
02-04-2008, 10:55 PM
Hey Eddie, I just called Control Scape this week to get some info from them about using their products. Do you install the switches on the interior of the home or do you have to have an electrician do it for you? Overall is the system easy to intergrate?

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
02-04-2008, 11:51 PM
I am using Simply Automated. I think Control Scape product looks like junk and would not dare to leave it behind in any of my client's homes. It reminds me of heathkit from the 70's and 80's.

As for my desire to do dynamic systems... I am not interested in dimming so much as I want to layer multiple zones of lighting effects into an environment. It would be hyper expensive I know, and I am wondering if anyone has done this and if it is in demand at all. Perhaps the market is not ready for such extravagance.

Lite4
02-04-2008, 11:55 PM
Thanks James, I will look into simply automated and try to find their site.

Eden Lights
02-05-2008, 12:08 AM
I am using Simply Automated. I think Control Scape product looks like junk and would not dare to leave it behind in any of my client's homes. It reminds me of heathkit from the 70's and 80's.

As for my desire to do dynamic systems... I am not interested in dimming so much as I want to layer multiple zones of lighting effects into an environment. It would be hyper expensive I know, and I am wondering if anyone has done this and if it is in demand at all. Perhaps the market is not ready for such extravagance.

James, I don't think we want our clients to be interfacing their upb systems with any of the common landscape controller's?

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
02-05-2008, 12:16 AM
Not sure what you mean there Eddie.

I think that black box from Control Scape looks like crap. It even feels like crap. I am not about to leave that behind in a mulit-million dollar home.

I like the simply automated line as all of their switch and control modules have a nice polished look and good fit and finish. They also offer more module options from what I can see.

I am pretty new into UPB, but one sample kit of the Control Scape line was all it took to send me looking for alternatives.

Regards.

Eden Lights
02-05-2008, 12:16 AM
I am using Simply Automated. I think Control Scape product looks like junk and would not dare to leave it behind in any of my client's homes. It reminds me of heathkit from the 70's and 80's.

As for my desire to do dynamic systems... I am not interested in dimming so much as I want to layer multiple zones of lighting effects into an environment. It would be hyper expensive I know, and I am wondering if anyone has done this and if it is in demand at all. Perhaps the market is not ready for such extravagance.

We have a architect that specs zoned controls in all our plans that we do for him. That are almost always: Path and steps-Zone 1, Softscapes-Zone 2, and Hardscapes-Zone 3. While most of his jobs turn into alot more than that once everyone learns whats possible, even the smallest jobs that we design for him will have the three seperate transformers with at least appliance modules inside them, then a keypad and timer of choice finish off the system.

Lite4
02-05-2008, 12:21 AM
Is it possible to put a zone of lights on a motion sensor zone that will stay illuminated for 5-10 minutes once activated and then shut off.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
02-05-2008, 12:26 AM
Is it possible to put a zone of lights on a motion sensor zone that will stay illuminated for 5-10 minutes once activated and then shut off.

There are a couple of different LV motion sensors on the market. Look to RAB and Nightscaping. I am not a fan of motion switched outdoor lighting... too utilitarian for my tastes.

Regards.

Eden Lights
02-05-2008, 12:27 AM
James, I don't think we want our clients to be interfacing their upb systems with any of the common landscape controller's?

The feel and build quality of both the SA and the CS timers are about the same, what I am saying is that the customer should not even know where they are. They should be interfacing their system with a back lighted engraved keypad. When timer of choice fires at dusk-lights come on along with corresponding led button, etc. etc.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
02-05-2008, 12:28 AM
We have a architect that specs zoned controls in all our plans that we do for him. That are almost always: Path and steps-Zone 1, Softscapes-Zone 2, and Hardscapes-Zone 3. While most of his jobs turn into alot more than that once everyone learns whats possible, even the smallest jobs that we design for him will have the three seperate transformers with at least appliance modules inside them, then a keypad and timer of choice finish off the system.

This is sounding more like it... Although my idea is that each individual layer of the system would be effective on all areas, but comprised of different effects and intensities and coverage. So that the final product would be very dynamic. I wouldnt want a single transformer handling all paths, another doing moonlighting, another doing uplighting, etc etc.

Regards.

Eden Lights
02-05-2008, 12:36 AM
This is sounding more like it... Although my idea is that each individual layer of the system would be effective on all areas, but comprised of different effects and intensities and coverage. So that the final product would be very dynamic. I wouldnt want a single transformer handling all paths, another doing moonlighting, another doing uplighting, etc etc.

Regards.

I reaching my self imposed gag order for a public forum, but think about these simple examples: foreground, midground, background. Three seperate transformers with dimming or try this one: focal point, secondary focal points, and fill light with the same setup.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
02-05-2008, 12:43 AM
The feel and build quality of both the SA and the CS timers are about the same, what I am saying is that the customer should not even know where they are. They should be interfacing their system with a back lighted engraved keypad. When timer of choice fires at dusk-lights come on along with corresponding led button, etc. etc.

I dont think you can compare the build quality or fit and finish Eddie. Take a good look at the buttons on the image you provided and then compare it to the similar SA unit. The Control Scapes is the chevy, the SA is the Cadillac.
IMHO.

You are a quality lighting guy... your clients deserve the best! :)

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
02-05-2008, 12:45 AM
I reaching my self imposed gag order for a public forum, but think about these simple examples: foreground, midground, background. Three seperate transformers with dimming or try this one: focal point, secondary focal points, and fill light with the same setup.

Getting there Eddie...my 'vision' is a bit more complex ... now to find a suitable client!

I recall a manu out of the UK that had a control system for layering outdoor lighting systems... I will have to hunt that down. Gregg C. any ideas? :) It was posted on Nightchat about 2 years ago as I recall.

Regards.

Eden Lights
02-05-2008, 12:59 AM
I dont think you can compare the build quality or fit and finish Eddie. Take a good look at the buttons on the image you provided and then compare it to the similar SA unit. The Control Scapes is the chevy, the SA is the Cadillac.
IMHO.

You are a quality lighting guy... your clients deserve the best! :)

If you have a client that can afford the best then you should be partnering with a Lutron Homeworks, Vantage, or Crestron installer for the controls and not a product like UPB.

Ok, we are getting together on this I think? The customer that you normally would sell a photocell and timer to, gets a CS timer and appliance module. It takes 1 minute to install and is rock solid. The customer never sees or touches the unit. For customers that can afford and buy into simplified living through lighting control then you can offer them more with other systems. What I am trying to say is my clients never see, touch or feel the timer controller. UPB is a technology that most all the products can inter-operate under in the same home. (Mix and Match)

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
02-05-2008, 01:18 AM
Gotchya now Eddie.

I like to keep my supply chains very simple. No need for multiple vendors in the same category. You should see some of the mechanical rooms I have to work in at these homes.... they are stunning, all the best of everything. Going to a Lutron or Vantage system is a bit overkill for LV outdoor, unless you are tying it into a whole home system.... not my market

Light on!

Pro-Scapes
02-05-2008, 07:45 AM
If you have a client that can afford the best then you should be partnering with a Lutron Homeworks, Vantage, or Crestron installer for the controls and not a product like UPB.

Ok, we are getting together on this I think? The customer that you normally would sell a photocell and timer to, gets a CS timer and appliance module. It takes 1 minute to install and is rock solid. The customer never sees or touches the unit. For customers that can afford and buy into simplified living through lighting control then you can offer them more with other systems. What I am trying to say is my clients never see, touch or feel the timer controller. UPB is a technology that most all the products can inter-operate under in the same home. (Mix and Match)


I agree. If the client is that high end and the elite of the elite a vantage or similar system will be installed in the home. Make sure you clarify this during construction and dictate your load requirements and locations.

On the Controlscapes timers. On a recent job I hide the timer in the laundry room. We will be installing 3 more switches once we finish the last phase of the project and 3 touch pads with 1 in the front foyer....1 in the master and 1 near the back door. Once that is all installed the system will be programmed into a situation similar to how eddie talked about and we may go to a tec timer for that.

Eden Lights
02-05-2008, 09:40 AM
Gotchya now Eddie.

I like to keep my supply chains very simple. No need for multiple vendors in the same category. You should see some of the mechanical rooms I have to work in at these homes.... they are stunning, all the best of everything. Going to a Lutron or Vantage system is a bit overkill for LV outdoor, unless you are tying it into a whole home system.... not my market

Light on!

James, I am sure that your on the right track and will get to where you want to be. With that being said your a hard man to help, one product is not good enough and another is overkill? Upstart and UPB is as powerful as anything out there in the world of lighting control and is a scalable product for all customers. Good luck on your quest.

JoeyD
02-05-2008, 11:07 AM
CS is an unbelievable system as is PulseWorx and SA. James I dont know why you are so hung up on the controller of the Control Scape. Sure it doesnt look as good as the LCD touchscreen but I find it hard to think that a homeowner would lift there nose and talk down to you on the quality of the box instead of high fiveing you when they push the button and all the lights come on. The SA system is much more complicated to program and leaves a lot more potential problems to occur with the homeowner becuase of its difficulty. I have programmed many of the SA systems for customers and have also programmed both and LCD and the desk top timer form CS. The CS unit is much better for what we do in landscpae lighting.

My $.02. Be on the lookout for the Unique UPB system coming soon!!!!

Pro-Scapes
02-05-2008, 11:08 PM
one of the biggest gripes I have heard from either current system owners (when I am there on a service call) that were installed by another company is its hard to control. Either they have to climb out there and fumble with dials when the power has gone out or they are limited to the times the installer has set forth for them.

I have made it a point to offer some sore of user control on each and every job now. Some clients are the set it and forget it timer type of people and some want to be able to turn them on and off. Client we met with tonight for an expasion said he sometimes likes to lay back on his patio and cut the lights off and relax by candle light. He loves he can touch a button and do this.

Eden Lights
02-06-2008, 10:35 AM
A couple of people asked to see one of our upstart files, If anyone else wants to see one please pm me your information so I can e-mail you one.